Yeahhhhhhh buddy, that’s me. This was our 7th grade musical “Into the Woods” which I played the pivotal role of Milky White the cow. I tried to make the role something special, but the closed minded directors at the ECS drama club were quite frankly holding me back from reaching my true artistic potential. A couple years later, the same musical was performed, and the role was given to a cow shaped piece of plywood on 4 wheels. THE POINT IS I did not have the greatest childhood as you can imagine. I was your typical overweight kid with little skills, it may have taken me 20 minutes to hobble a mile, but I would whoop that ass on the sega genesis. All jokes aside, the fat kids have it tough enough but when your parents want you to wear skinny jeans because they don’t want “baggy jeans hangin off your butt” or sweat pants, the sky is the limit with how other kids can be dicks. Routinely I would get out of school, plop on the couch and down a bag of Lays because I couldn’t do much else. I tried to play sports, but I wound up quitting the football team Freshman year because I was simply too out of shape to keep up.
My saving grace would be a summer job at a local rafting company on the Delaware River where I simply pulled rafts out of the water and stacked them up day after day. It was brutal work for the shape I was in and now that I recall, it was uphill (not to sound cliche). Two friends of mine that worked with me gave it to me straight that the reason I caught so much shit at school was how bad of shape I was in and how badly I let what others think get to me. They signed me up for the football team Junior year without me having a choice in the matter, and they single handedly pushed me to finish out, and from that point on I was a three season athlete and would be named captain of the track team (I was good at throwing, who knew?). It was those summers on the river where I learned that the will to change absolutely has to come from within, with a little support in the right place.
Jump to the fall of 2004, I was trying to enlist into the Air Force but I weighed 225 lbs. My challenge was to lose 20 lbs to make weight by that December. Using an elliptical machine and my fathers weight bench, I shipped out that July for Basic coming in at a lean 182 lbs. Lets do the math here people, 43 lbs in 8 months. I had experienced my transformation.
I still serve today, stationed at MacDill AFB here in sunny Tampa Bay. I found my better half, Jennie is a 2nd grade teacher at a local elementary school and she keeps me in check. We have a great house, a wild Parson Russell Terrier named Champ, and great family and friends to share our lives with. I’m still working with that same drive I found as a 16 year old, and I have actually found my calling as a fitness trainer. Since those days in my basement on the elliptical machine, I’ve pretty much done it all: distance running, bodybuilding, powerlifting, hell I’ve even done cardio kickboxing. Two years ago, I stumbled across CrossFit and found it’s programming to be outstanding. Last June I got certified as a CrossFit trainer and I’ve been doing a lot of teaching at CF B.N.I. just trying to help the owners out where I can and bring my experiences to the table. I’m not your typical fitness trainer who’s always been good at working out. I don’t need the money (already work a full time job), I’m just passionate about helping people take that next step. I’ve been through the mud and I know what it’s like to feel like you’ll never reach the finish line.
For the longest time I’ve been going about my business at work, the gym, and teaching. While I had toyed with the idea of starting a blog, I had always talked myself out of it. Nowadays, I find that I have a lot of insight I can provide about a lot of things related to CrossFit/general fitness and life in general. If there’s one thing I accomplish with this, it’s for people to read it and understand me when that inevitable question of “who the f*** is this guy?!” comes up. Let’s really get down to it…
Comment question this week:
-Screw your Fran time, why do you work out?