Growing up, I pretty much always carried around some extra weight.
There were times when I was in pretty good shape – like during high school cross country or wrestling season – but I was usually walking around with a good 20-25 extra pounds.
While attending Virginia Tech as an undergraduate, my weight yo-yoed a bit depending on how much of a role beer and Jimmy Johns were playing in my diet and just how consistently I was running, lifting, or dancing (I’ve been known to cut a rug).
Between going to class, participating in service events, and enjoying all the social opportunities I could, I honestly just didn’t pay a whole lot of attention to how I looked, and certainly not how much I weighed.
I knew a little bit about nutrition – mainly the basics like what a calorie was – but I never really paid too much attention much attention to the details.
When I graduated in 2009 and started working as an engineer for a mining company out in Arizona, I figured it was time to get my act together and start eating like a responsible adult (a laughable notion).
I didn’t just want to lose some fat and build some muscle.
I also wanted to feel good, move well, and have confidence that my efforts were going to accommodate long-term health.
I wanted to have it all.
I wanted to be lean, strong, and healthy.
No longer having the commitments that came along with being a full-time student and all the extracurricular activities I was involved with, I started pouring all of my free time towards learning as much as I could about nutrition and training.
Something my engineer side thought would be fairly straightforward (surely, I’d just find out what I needed to do, do it, and everything would fall into place) ended up spiraling into several years of experimenting with different diets and different training approaches.
I tried vegan, vegetarian, low fat, ketosis, paleo, and all sorts of shades of gray in between.
I ran, I biked, I used the elliptical, I tried all different types of lifting strategies, and explored body weight routines incorporating calisthenics and yoga.
Despite my efforts, I never felt like what I was doing ever really “worked”.
I always felt like I was too small, too fat, too weak, or too tired.
While I didn’t realize it at the time, there was a bigger problem at play than what I was eating or how I was training.
I thought I was just doing what I needed to do to be “healthy”.
Really, though, I ended up letting food and exercise rule my life.
I was obsessing about every bite that I put in my mouth and would freak out if I couldn’t eat perfectly in alignment with whatever my approach was at that time.
I was putting exercise ahead of sleep, my friends, my family, and even work in some ways.
I would never miss a planned training session, even when I felt run down, tired, or had nagging injuries.
I was letting my focus (obsession, really) on food and exercise cause me to miss out on what matters most in life – friends, family, hobbies, etc.
Not only were my efforts towards diet and exercise negatively affecting my quality of life, but I had little to show for it.
After a few years and much effort, though, I was underweight, weak, irritable, hungry, and tired all the time.
Worst of all, I’d slipped into a pattern of beating myself up constantly.
I beat myself up for how I looked,
I beat myself for how I felt,
I beat myself up for caring so much.
I felt like there was something wrong with me.
Why was I putting in so much effort with so little to show for it?
Why was I the only one I knew who cared so much about this stuff?
Why couldn’t I just get healthy, get fit, and get on with my life?
I put so much pressure on myself to look a certain way.
I put so much pressure on myself to somebody who knew how to take care of himself.
I put so much pressure on myself to get things right.
I was embarrassed that I wasn’t living up to any of these expectations I’d set for myself.
I was embarrassed that I sunk so much time into my health and fitness, yet was anything but healthy and fit.
I eventually learned (the hard way) that doing LESS is often infinitely better than doing more in terms of body composition, performance, and general health.
I learned that most of the headlines, blogs, videos, and articles about getting lean, strong, and healthy just don’t reflect reality.
Most advice in the world of health and fitness makes reaching our goals out to be much easier – “Follow this one simple trick!” – or much more difficult – “No pain, no gain!” – than it really is.
Not only that, but often it doesn’t matter how strictly we diet or how hard we train if we aren’t focused on other things that matter just as much, if not more.
If we aren’t focusing also on stress management, smart training, recovery, sleep, and our relationships, we’ll never be happy with our progress.
If we aren’t focusing also on learning to love and accept ourselves as we are, we’ll never be satisfied by hitting any target body weight, body fat percentage, race time, or deadlift PR.
My mission isn’t just to help you lose fat, build strength, and improve your health.
That stuff is cool, but they’re not all that matter.
My mission is to also help you learn how to get ridiculously healthy without stressing over food, obsessing over exercise, or beating yourself up.
So many of us hate what we see when we look in the mirror, even when we think we’re doing everything right.
So many of us aren’t even trying because we think that living in a way that makes us look and feel awesome is going to be overly complicated and take all of our time and effort.
We’re constantly sold quick fixes that make us feel like failures when we don’t make any progress, or overly complicated strategies that make us feel like we’re obsessing over every bite we put in our mouth.
Worst of all, we’re sent the message that our worth is tied up in the definition of our midsections, the size of our clothes, the number on the scale, or how “disciplined” we are.
If we don’t look like the people on the magazine covers or in the movies, we’re weak…
…we’re not motivated…
…we lack will power…
These messages absolutely break my heart and I want to put an end to all of it.
My mission is to help you live a better life; to help you get that rockin’ bod without having to spend all of your energy, effort, and precious time maintaining it; spending that time instead with your friends, family, and all the other things in life that bring you joy.
After all, what good are fitness and a clean bill of health if you’ve got to miss out on all the joys of life to keep them?
That’s where I come in.
Not only do I know what it’s like to feel overwhelmed, frustrated, and confused at all the conflicting information out there.
No only do I know what it’s like to feel like food exercise rule your life.
I still still sink hours every day learning all that I can about nutrition, training, and behavior change so that I can can help you figure out what habits and behaviors actually work and then incorporate those habits and behaviors into your life in a sustainable way.
I’ve earned the NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, Precision Nutrition Level 2 Certified Coach, and Certified Primal Health Coach credentials, but more importantly, I’ve been in your shoes.
So if you are the type that cares deeply about how they look and feel but you’re tired of working out every single day…
…or hates obsessively counting calories and carbs or worrying about every minute ingredient in your food…
Then schedule a call with me HERE to learn how you can lose fat, build strength, and improve your health without feeling like your whole life revolves around diet and exercise.
This doesn’t have to be as time consuming & complicated as you are making it right now.
Let’s fix this.