Meet Noah Galloway, a 33-year-old, two-time Iraq war veteran — and double amputee. Galloway is the first reader in the magazine’s 26-year history to be chosen to grace the cover following the publication’s search for the “Ultimate Men’s Health Guy.” He was chosen from a pool of 1,300 applicants when the for his commitment to health — both physically and mentally — and his strive to better himself.
But Noah wasn’t always this way. Five years ago, he spent his days smoking, drinking, and in a deep depression until one day, the father of three looked in the mirror and decided that he didn’t like what he had become. Embarrassed about how out of shape he was — and fearing gym goers would stare at his prosthetics — Galloway began working out in the middle of the night at a 24-hour gym. Mere months later, he was working out regularly — in the daylight — and was running races. He underwent a complete physical (and mental) transformation.
Galloway first joined the military following the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. Having grown up in a military family, he never particularly felt a call to serve until that fateful morning. Then, everything changed. 20-year-old Noah felt that it was his duty to enlist and serve his country. He was on his second tour in Iraq when the Humvee he was driving ran over a bomb. Galloway survived the explosion, but lost both his left and right arm.
Today, friends and family say that the man gracing the cover of “Men’s Health” is a different person than the one they once saw confined to a bed in the Walter Reed National Military Center in the nation’s capital. As for Galloway? According to the “Men’s Health” Editor-In-Chief, Bill Phillips, he wouldn’t change his situation.
“Noah has said that he wouldn’t change anything because he’s a better man because of what happened to him, which is really amazing to say because he’s been through so much.”
Phillips went on to say that Galloway said he could choose “whether to be bitter about what happened to him in Iraq, or to be better,” and he obviously chose to be better — something we could all learn from..
Images via Men’s Health