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GROUNDED with Nate Gaines

GROUNDED with DB Nate Gaines

In March, the Iowa Barnstormers players and coaches were traveling to their first game on the road, while the staff was busy in Des Moines finalizing details to welcome fans to Wells Fargo Arena for the home opener the following week. Reports of Covid-19’s rapid spread were covering the news channels, causing worry for what was to come of the 2020 season.

In what seemed like a blink of an eye, businesses began closing their doors and concerts and sporting events were postponed or canceled. The Indoor Football League was given no choice but to halt the season for the safety of the teams, staffs, and fans.

The Iowa Barnstormers were not able to take off, the season was grounded, and as quarantine swept across the nation so were the players, coaches, and staff.

Nate Gaines signed on to the Iowa Barnstormers for his rookie season at defensive back in 2020. Making the final roster following the two-week Training Camp, Nate was excited for his opportunity to hit the field before the unexpected and disappointing cancelation of the season. 

"I was devastated," said Gaines. "But the silver lining was that it gives us all more time to prepare to be a championship team."

Keeping his sights on the bright side of things, Nate never took his focus off of training. 

"At camp I saw the competition is at a high level and everyone wants to push each other to be their best. I have stayed in shape by working out and doing cardio. I have focused on trying to make sure my body is healthy whilst making some extra income." 

While Nate stated that his hobbies which include training, eating, and playing Fortnite have remained the same, he did tackle a new venture to earn income during the quarantine. When asked if there was anything notable that he accomplished during his time in lockdown, Nate casually commented that he got his life and health insurance certification, paving a new career path for himself.

Keeping a positive outlook throughout the pandemic, Nate did note the struggles that he dealt with during the unknown of quarantine.

"I learned that I'm a routine guy, I like having an itinerary."

Nate also noted that not being able to go to the gym was a struggle in the first few months of lockdown. So what will he do when things return to normal? 

"Go to the gym and out to the bar once...maybe twice."

Nate will enter the Iowa Barnstormers 2021 Training Camp in the Spring, excited for the return of football. The first thing on his agenda when the season kicks off, of course, is to "knock somebody out." 


What shows did you binge?
"Friends and Family Guy."

What are your favorite quarantine snacks?
"Takis and noodles."

Did you bake any kind of bread in quarantine?

Did you learn any TikTok dances?

What is the most creative workout you did?
"Full body followed by one on one basketball full court for cardio."


Written by: Juli Pettit



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