This is my story and I’m stickin’ to it!
First of all welcome and thank you for checking out my strength/fitness blog. My mission is to give you the most up to date, hardcore, no B.S. muscle building and nutrition advice, and to help you accomplish your strength and fitness goals.
There’s a lot of useless info and products out there being sold by guys who don’t “walk the talk” and are out just to take your hard earned money without delivering you the results you deserve. I promise I am not one of those guys, and if you stick with me I will prove it.
I will be sharing with you my own training style and what has worked and not worked for me as well as recommending other training programs and products that I believe are the most effective at giving you the results you are looking for.
To help you better understand where I am coming from here’s a brief story of how and why I became a strength/fitness coach and that I do “walk the talk”! I know some of you will be able to relate. It will take just a few minutes of your time and I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I did living it!
Here you go!
As a young kid growing up I was athletic and loved playing all kinds of sports. Although I was blessed with good athletic genes I wasn’t blessed with size and strength and was always the smallest kid whenever my friends and I would get together. I entered high school at age 14, and weighed in at a skinny 110 pounds and was playing on the JV football team.
One of the head varsity football coaches called me “skinny“, and told me that I was going to be a horse jockey not a football player. That lit a fire inside me that still burns today. I knew if I were to have a shot at playing I needed to gain some size and strength. So I turned to the weight room and as soon as I picked up my first barbell I knew I had found home.
My first training program
I consistently followed a typical bodybuilding program back then, which utilized a lot of compound movements such as; squats, bench, shoulder pressing, heavy rowing, barbell curls, leg extensions, leg curls. I would be in the gym for 2 hours at a pop because of the high volume and amount of exercises that we did, and hardly ever took a day-off.
Although this wasn’t the best program to follow for developing athletic strength, I worked hard and was consistent, and four years later I had an all-star season as a senior tailback and graduated high school weighing 180 pounds lean, strong and I was on my way to being a starting running back for a Division III college.
After playing one season in college, I underwent back surgery for an L5-S1 herniated disc in the summer of 1993. From then I was forced to re-evaluate my training and to find out why the true cause of the injury and how to prevent it from happening again.
The injury, I believe and from what I have learned throughout my many years of training and education, was caused by the one-dimensional, bodybuilding type training I had been following, which created muscular and postural imbalances in my body.
After I fully recovered from the surgery I continued weight training, but never returned to college. In 1994, I joined the United States Marine Corp, OORAH! I was a little worried about how my back would hold up in Marine boot camp and infantry school.
I ended up graduating boot camp with honors and excelled in the physical aspect of the training, which I believe was due to the consistent weight training and mental toughness that comes when you fully embrace what the iron game can give you. I honorably served for 6 years with 3 years in the infantry and 3 years on Marine Security Guard Duty (Embassy security).
On a side note
For my second embassy security assignment I was posted in Helsinki, Finland. While there I joined an amateur football team, the Helsinki Roosters, in 2000 and ended up starting at fullback for them and winning a national championship that year and also in 2002, 2004 and a bronze medal in 2005. In 2004 I was also awarded the MVP for foreign players in the league.
I don’t tell you this to brag but to show you that all the hard work and consistency in the gym had paid off. I went from the “skinny”, 14 year old freshman to starting tailback, recovered from back surgery to honorably serve in America’s finest fighting force, and played for one of the top ranked amateur football teams in all of Europe.
My Passion and Purpose
Ever since I picked up my first barbell I had a passion for the iron game. When I left the Marine Corps it was a no-brainer as to what I wanted to do next. I believe there is an athlete in all of us and my purpose is to help athletes, young and old, to achieve maximum physical performance and most important of all, prevent injury.
Since 2001, I have formally studied under some of the best coaching minds in the world to include top Olympic coaches; Dr Jack Barnathon, who has worked with Olympic gold medalist swimmer Dara Torres, and John Schaeffer; who trains Olympic gold medalist, speed skater Apollo Ohno.
I am a certified exercise coach with the CHEK (Corrective Holistic Exercise Kinesiology) Institute. I am also a member and certified youth training specialist with the IYCA, International Youth Conditioning Association, the leading authority in youth athletic training.
I also attended the Underground Strength Coach certification with athletic training expert Zach Evan-Esh. Under Zach I learned how to coach and prepare athletes and weekend warriors with an effective combination of power lifting, strong man training and bodybuilding.
In September of 2008 I was inducted into my High School Athletic Hall of Fame for my accomplishments in Football and Track.
I am also a competitive all natural amateur bodybuilder and have been featured on Bodybuilding.com, amateur of the week. Check it HERE!
Think, Look and Be Strong!