Article by Chloe Wisdom, DSW, MSW, LSSBB, CSM
After over two decades of war, hundreds of thousands of veterans are returning home with a new challenge to face: overcoming the transition to civilian life and coping with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). For many service members who enlisted after 9/11, war is all they know and a life without another deployment on the horizon is hard to imagine. Exiting the military and coming home to a life without order and regiment can leave veterans feeling isolated and removed from society, acting as a catalyst to distressing PTSD, depression, and anxiety symptoms.
So how can we get involved and aid in emboldening our veterans to move confidently forward after decades of war and do so positively and constructively?
Oftentimes combat veterans are longing to replace that intense feeling of adrenaline that comes from being in a firefight, not because they enjoy war but because they are used to the high intensity and camaraderie they experienced during their deployments. While it's not a replacement, exercise and belonging to a local fitness community can help in fulfilling the void. Fitness provides a similar heart-pumping exhilaration and belonging to a gym can give one a sense of community and purpose. Whether it's self-improvement, weight loss, training for marathons, triathlons, mud races, or even a fitness competition, having goals to aspire to in the gym will give veterans a new mission.
Our mission is to help veterans returning from war get involved in their local gyms and exercise to find a new mission in life; while simultaneously improving their mental and physical health and wellbeing. We want to motivate our fellow service members to heal from and overcome PTSD, and other mental health issues, by staying active and getting involved in fitness. WarriorWOD provides veterans with gym memberships as a way to jump-start their journey. We want to end the PTSD epidemic and ease the transition from war to life as a veteran. Through fitness, we can help restore that which war has damaged.
About Dr. Chloe Wisdom
Dr. Chloe Wisdom has a Master's and Doctorate degree from the University of Southern California, specializing in Military Social Work and Change Innovation and Leadership Management. She is also an Army Veteran and DOD Contractor who has served 4 tours in Afghanistan. Additionally, Chloe is heavily involved in fitness herself, competes in fitness competitions in her spare time, and has also written a book called, "Bad Fitness Advice." Recently, she began competing in Pageants as well and holds the title of Ms. Missouri Petite. This coming August, she will compete at National's for the Ms. USA Petite title in August 2022.