Hi there, my name is Daniel Puckett. First off thank you for your service. You guys are true heroes. Thank you for everything you do and continue to do. Since you guys inspire so many I thought I would share my story too.
Well, I was born club footed. My big toes were touching my knee caps and my feet were turned and tucked inward. So as an infant I had surgery and spent a long time in casts. The doctors said I had a 60% chance of walking and also said I would never run or play sports. It seemed as a baby I was already signed off to be crippled. Well, I ended up walking and running. I have never been able to run normally or as good as other people. I still played high school football my freshman year. Then moved to two different high schools and played my senior year as well. I also did track and field.
You see even though I am able to run it’s very difficult and painful. I am slower than most people and every step I take is in pain. My left foot is two inches shorter than my right and has almost no upward movement. But God has given me the strength to pursue things I love to do even if there is pain along the way. I joke and say i have to work twice as hard to achieve half of the results. Though there is some truth in this. When I graduated high school I was 6′ 1″ and a 162lbs. In really good shape. Well after 10 years passed I gained weight and Christmas of 2018 I weighed 262lbs. 100 more than high school. It wasn’t all muscle either. So I decided no matter how much pain and no matter how hard it was I was going to get in the best shape of my life.
So in exactly 1 year I lost 73lbs and now weigh 189lbs. I also am stronger than I have ever been. I have also done three spartan sprint races. I am signed up to do three more this year of all three distances. You see, I realized that life comes down to 2 things that you can control. FOCUS & EFFORT. God instilled in me that if I keep those two things under control I can accomplish great goals. Even goals that doctors said I would never be able to do. I can go on about how I grew up in a terrible childhood surrounded by drugs and not having a place to live at times but that’s a story for a different day. I hope maybe someone out there can understand that a minor handicap doesn’t have to hold you back. I am thankful I can walk…thankful I can run. Even of it causes pain I am thankful.