Growing up, I was always fairly heavy, but at 6’6,” things seemed to even out. When I started playing football in high school, the coaches told me to gain weight so that I could be an offensive tackle capable of playing at the Division 1 level. A major injury, however, spoiled my projected college sports career and I entered undergrad at 320lbs. By the end, I was closer to 400lbs.

Fitness and exercise for me were only associated with team sports, so, once those ended, it ceased to even be an afterthought. However, when I was 22 years old, a doctor told me that I’d be lucky if I even made it to age 40. That harsh realization finally prompted me to take my health seriously. It took years of dedication and patience to truly make my lifestyle change, but, within two years I had lost 170 lbs, and gained a love for everything fitness.

It wasn’t and still isn’t, just a hobby of mine. Fitness was the catalyst that saved my life. Far beyond just changing my body composition, pursuing fitness has completely re-engineered how I navigate and approach my friends, my family, and my life. And, ultimately, it inspired me to leave my comfortable desk job and pursue a career in personal training, in an effort to take my experiences and help others make lifestyle changes of their own.