"Of course I will say I want to win it all, but, realistically, it would be great to finish in the top 10."
Iraq War veteran Daniel Tyminski is candid.
After returning from a 15-month deployment to Iraq, he struggled to adjust to civilian life. To cope, he took heroin.
Having been introduced to CrossFit while in the U.S. Army, Tyminski competed at the 2009 North East Regional while under the influence of the opiate. Surprisingly, he had an impressive showing and narrowly missed drug testing. Only the top five competitors are drug tested at Regionals.
“Placing 6th (at the Regional) made me realize that I could be a much better athlete, so I decided to quit (heroin),” he says. “If it wasn’t for CrossFit, I would probably still be doped up.”
Tyminski placed second at the 2011 North East Regional, then 25th at the CrossFit Games later that year. He spent the months that followed getting leaner, stronger and faster for the 2012 Games season, the 26-year-old says.
“There are so many great athletes coming into competition now and they have so much room for improvement,” Tyminski says. “I feel like it’s hard for the guys that are already at the top of their game to improve as much.”
Now a Games veteran, the CrossFit Lindy owner is focused on competing and having fun.
Winning Events 3 and 4 at the Regional and finishing second overall, he will have the chance to do both when he heads back to the Games in July.
"Daniel is someone who you want to be around because of the energy he exudes,” says fellow Regional competitor and occasional training partner Scott Paltos, of PUMP CrossFit and Performance. “It's not just about training and competing, it's about having a good time and doing it because he loves doing it. It's a great time when we get to train together.”
Tyminski’s personality is summed up in his box’s tagline: “At CrossFit Lindy we are only serious about two things: Helping you reach your goals and having fun along the way.”
As head coach, Tyminski enjoys programming for himself.
“I usually jump in and do the met-cons with the members about five times a week,” he says. “I try to train with some of our better athletes to get that extra push.”
In addition to the evening met-cons, Tyminski does either a strength-endurance workout or a workout that involves a run plus heavy Olympic lifting three mornings a week. He also does an additional morning of interval training and schedules himself two rest days per week.
“I’m just keeping everything the same,” Tyminski says of his training. “It has worked for me so far and I have fun with it — except for the running. I really hate the running.”
It comes as no surprise that his goal for this year’s Games is to do better than last year.
“Of course I will say I want to win it all, but, realistically, it would be great to finish in the top 10,” he says. “There is always a crazy surprise thrown in there that throws people off. Last year’s swim was fun and I’m excited to see what we get this year.”