How Cardio, Mobility and Complex Training Keeps This Athlete Fit and Balanced in the "Real World"

My client Chase gives me hope. When I transitioned my personal training business to the Bay Club I didn’t know what to expect. He was the first client I was paired with. I immediately knew I had made the right decision. Though only in his early 20s, Chase has maturity and discipline beyond his years and it’s been my pleasure helping him transition from a college athlete to the professional world. It’s my honor helping him define his fitness goals, stay motivated and learn new styles of training beyond lifting the heaviest weight possible. The fact that he truly cares about his health, his posture and his mobility makes me beam with pride. I had to interview him to share his inspiring story.

What have been the most eye-opening realizations as you've transitioned from a college athlete into the "real world" of a desk job?

I think for me I took for granted how active I was in college beyond playing baseball. Every day in college I was walking around, hanging outside and playing sports recreationally. Working a desk job with long hours, you begin to realize how stagnant you become. I think the first few months I started working I thought I could work out like I had been and stay in the same shape, but I quickly realized that I was going to have to find a new way to achieve my goals. Another thing I never thought would effect me was how sitting in a chair all day would make my body feel. Posture was another thing I took for granted and quickly realized I would have to work on.

Why has fitness remained a priority for you and how do you find time and balance to manage eating properly, cardio, mobility and strength?

For me, fitness has been a stress relief outlet as well as helping me feed my competitive streak. Not able to play sports very often, I found myself missing the competition and drive that comes with that. Pushing myself to constantly improve and get better has been a pseudo competition for me. Beyond that, it serves as a great stress reliever and helps me clear my mind. I realized early into my working career fitness was going to be very important to me and therefore made it a priority. I (usually) will try to wake up early and go before work so I can make sure that I hit all the warm ups and exercises I need to feel good. Having your help with the programs has really helped me realize that working out is not all about strength and lifting the heaviest weights. I focus on cardio, strength and mobility which helps me feel more well rounded and balanced. Eating properly is the thing that links all of the training together and something I try to heavily focus on.

We've worked together on a few different programs now. What have been your favorite areas of focus? What's are your current health and fitness goals?

All our programs have been challenging and a lot of fun! I think one of my favorite things you’ve introduced me to is circuit workouts and complexes. My current favorite is the barbell complex (clean to front squat-> reverse lunges-> bent over row-> barbell ab rollouts) I used to focus on lifting as heavy as possible to be as big and strong as possible for my season. Now, I want to have a leaner frame, while maintaining strength and improving posture and mobility. For a long time I had no idea how to do this, but my current program perfectly hits all of these points. I do 3 days of cardio and 3 days of complex or circuit workouts. I’m still lifting weights and training all the muscle groups but in a way that feels much better on my joints and is helping me to maintain a more ideal physique. Focusing on cardio has been key for me as before I used to rely on my practices and games to get my cardio whereas now I really have to push myself to do the cardio or it will not get done.

How do you manage to stay motivated without the organization and support system of a sports team/coach?

This was something I had problems with when I first started training after college. I knew I wanted to maintain a good workout schedule, but without a very structured workout plan, I was not sure how I was going to get myself going. Meeting with you was an awesome first step. That got the ball rolling for me in terms of trying new exercises and getting excited about working out again. There would be still be days and times where I’d be feeling sort of unmotivated and for those days, I’d rely on my roommates and friends who are also into fitness to help keep me going. If I ever feel myself getting into a deeper rut, I usually contact you so we can figure out a new way to push myself, and that has been really awesome. Mixing it up and tweaking the programs pretty frequently has been a huge way to keep me motivated and going.

What advice do you have for your peers who might be considering taking on a fitness challenge but are dragging their feet?

For me, the first thing that really helped was to define a goal. It could be wanting to do X amount of pull-ups, lose 10 pounds, run a marathon, whatever. I struggled with what my goals were at first and until (with your help) I defined what my goals were I really struggled with getting going. Once the goal is defined, find your fitness support system. Whether that be a trainer (obviously JJ!!), friends, coworkers, etc., having people you can share your goals with and workout with is really awesome and motivating. I think a lot of people dread fitness or view it as something they should be doing. Find something that is fun for you while also helping achieve your goals. If you take care of your body it will take care of you in the long run!