What made you seek out and and join a program rather than just joining a traditional gym?
I didn’t find Ambitious; I feel like Ambitious found me. When I first visited Ambitious, I was just getting back to exercising after years of inactivity. I was basically planning to settle into my old routine of the same boring mix of cardio on elliptical machines and circuit training on machines. It never produced much in the way of results, but it was better than nothing. And I didn’t know any better.
On my first visit to Ambitious, I looked around at all the gear, a little intimidated. I had never trained like that - never done a squat, dead lift, or pull-up, never swung a kettle bell, never pushed a sled. More than once, I had met with trainers who beat me up and left me for dead. I never went back to them.
I told Carmen, "I'm not ready for what you do here." He said, "You're ready. We'll work with you to your own ability. Trust me." I said "If you break me, I'm never coming back." He said, "Trust me."
I couldn’t be happier that I did.
What do you view as your greatest accomplishment(s) since training at Ambitious Athletics?
I’ve made a lot of gains on the strength and fitness front, and have done many things that I never thought I ever could or would. But I feel like I have so much more to do there, so many ways I want to improve. So honestly, my greatest accomplishment at Ambitious is being selected as an All-Star. To me that means I have been making positive contributions to the Ambitious Community, and that means a lot. The community is very important to me and frankly it’s what has kept me coming back for more than a year now. So to be considered by Carmen as someone that has made a difference in that respect is huge. Thanks man!
In 5 words or less, describe Ambitious Athletics to an outsider.
Good people getting better together.
If you were to be stranded on an island but could take one piece of training equipment, one music album to listen to, and your favorite food, what would you bring?
One piece of training equipment: a set of resistance bands (this counts as one, right?). They are flexible (no pun intended) tools that can create a full gym’s worth of exercises for you if you think creatively about how to use them.
One music album: this was the hardest part of this whole questionnaire. I have pretty broad tastes in music, and switch up my listening habits depending on my mood and the situation. If I had to pick only one record to listen to forever, though, it would have to be Prince’s "Sign O’ The Times". It’s the crowning achievement in a body of work full of high points, and runs the gamut of musical styles and the human condition: it’s funky, it rocks, it’s sometimes sweet and lovely, sometimes deeply spiritual, and sometimes utterly filthy. It’s totally accessible and universal and yet perfectly idiosyncratic and weird and sometimes jarring in the way only Prince can be. A true work of genius.
Favorite food: man, this is another tough one. My comfort food is pad thai, but if I ate that every day I’d be pretty huge. This may be cheating, but let’s say some sort of Greek/Mediterranean platter, with meat, vegetables, rice, hummus, and tzaziki.
If you could share some words of wisdom to a new member at Ambitious, what would you tell them?
Trust. Trust the system to produce results for you if you commit and put in the hard work. Trust your coaches and classmates to know how to bring out the best in you, and to always have your best interests at heart. Most of all, trust yourself and know that whatever you think you’re capable of at any given time, you’re always capable of more.