Filmmakers help student vie for ‘Fit Man’ title

June 4, 2014

stephens A Bryan senior with a passion for fitness and helping others attain a healthy lifestyle is a finalist for Men’s Fitness magazine’s “Fit Man on Campus” Contest, thanks in part to assistance from two film-making friends.

Alex Stephens Alex Stephens, a communication studies: corporate option major, is a long-time fitness buff who likes to keep up with the latest in health and nutrition trends. “I visit the men’s fitness website and its companion website men’s health almost daily,” he said. About a month and a half ago he saw an article about the contest and, on a whim, decided to enter.

“I’m not the fittest person here,” he said, “but my view of fitness is something I think many people can identify with.”

About a week after he entered the contest he checked his email and found a six-day-old response from the contest coordinator, inviting him to submit a 300-word biography. Thirty minutes after sending the information “I got an email back asking for a 60-second video about my approach to health and fitness.”

With only a few days to prepare the video, he turned to Mr. Chris Clark, director of Bryan’s film program, who recommended he enlist Grant Pauley and Kyle Gibson, students in the film program who are taking the digital editing class this semester.

Kyle Gibson, left, and Grant Pauley review their video of Alex. Alex, who also is in the editing class, “had put some thought into this,” Grant said. “He had an idea of what he wanted. Mostly what we tried to do was direct him as to the best way to show off his personality.”

“He made it a lot easier,” Kyle added. “He came to us with the text and idea, and we fit it to film.”

Despite the short deadline, the three produced a video that shows Alex in an interview setting, at the pool, running on a mountain trail, and working out.

He quickly learned that he has been chosen as one of the 16 finalists for the competition, which will begin Monday, October 15, and run through Wednesday, December. 12. Some 1,200 cfitmanollege men entered the contest and “a couple hundred” were chosen as semi-finalists before the finalists were selected.

Even though he entered on the spur of the moment, “This is something I want to pursue now,” Alex said. “I have a passion for people who wish to be better than the way they are now. This competition will give me the chance to show others what I believe fitness is all about. As I contemplate the future, I hope someday to be working in the fitness field and helping others achieve their goals with a missional approach.”

“The goal of “Fittest Man on Campus” is very subjective. I believe there are many types of fitness,” he said, “but my view is something I think many people can identify with and realistically pursue.” That pursuit will include bi-weekly challenges sent to the finalists, who must complete the challenge, submit a video, and earn viewers’ votes in the process. “Being at Bryan it will be hard to get the most votes, because I’m up against guys at big state schools,” he said.

That’s another reason Mr. Clark has been interested in this project – to help one of his students who is concerned about others. He pointed out that friends can vote for Alex by “liking” his page on the contest website and encourage him in this challenge.