Why I’m Vegan:

f693124e-0774-4b47-9f34-8e7543161251The reason I converted to a plant based lifestyle is my love and passion for all animals. Second was for my health. I saw my father suffer from stage 4 colon cancer and pass away. After that I was determined to continue my plant based lifestyle for the rest of my life.

It has been 12 years being plant based and I have never looked back. It all started my senior year playing division one basketball at Colorado State University. After becoming plant based I immediately noticed a difference not only in my performance but my energy level increased. I was able to recover more quickly after intense workouts. My strength increased while dropping body fat. I also was able to get through the winter months without getting the flu or even a cold.

After graduating from CSU I had the opportunity to play for the WNBA, but it was at the time of my father’s passing that I decided not to play in order to be there for my family. Months later I decided to take up boxing in my dads honor. I grew up in the boxing gym with my dad but never had competed until this point. My father was a professional boxer and one of the best feather weight fighters in the world.

Boxing is one of the most physically demanding sports that I have ever done. Being plant based helped me with my stamina, recovery, and endurance which helped me become a 3x Colorado Golden Glove State champion. While boxing I also lifted weights everyday to keep my strength. I started lifting 15 years ago because I wanted to build body mass and strength to play college basketball. I was always the shortest player on the floor and wanted to make up for that with strength. It was always my dream to get a full ride scholarship and play pro ball.

After years of lifting and then changing over to a plant based lifestyle I immediately noticed changes in my physique. I became leaner while becoming stronger and my recovery was quicker. I even noticed my joints were not as sore after a hard lift.

Overall, I felt so much better, having endless energy and even to this day. 9 years ago I decided to start a personal training business. I took my passion of sports and incorporated it into a business. I do in-home training and specialize in strength training, boxing and basketball skill work. I have experience in working with all aspects of the population. I have trained elite athletes, kids, the elderly and people struggling with many types of injuries. Also, on the side of training I was an assistant girls basketball and strength coach for Regis Jesuit High School. At the time RJHS was one of the top 10 high school basketball programs in the US. Also winning a state championship that year.

Becoming plant based 12 years ago has completely changed my life for the better, in every aspect of my life. I feel so grateful that I found a plant based lifestyle. It has made me appreciate life more, that I am not harming any animals, hurting the environment and taking the best care of my health. My hope for the future that more people with embrace a plant based lifestyle and think of all the animals and the planet that we all share.

Why I Train the Way I Do:

99bd26e8-3066-43a5-85d1-5a0db5a532e3My current training program consists of focusing on one body part a day. For example, I will train chest on Monday and won’t train chest again until 6 days later. I will spend an 1 to 2 hours on one body part, really blasting the muscle then giving it 6 days of rest. If I feel like a muscle group is lacking then I will hit that muscle twice in one week. Lately, I feel like my back needs more work so I have been spending two hard days during the week on just back. Typically I will start my workout with a compound/multi joint exercise and then focus on isolated movements later on in the workout. During the course of my workout I will go super heavy, for 1 to 5 reps, medium weight for 6 to 15 reps and lighter weight for 25 to 50 reps. However, I focus mostly on the 6 to 15 rep range because my aim is to gain as much muscle mass as possible. I’ve found though, including a high rep range can also aid hypertrophy. It’s important to me to have muscle endurance as well which is why I incorporate a high rep range. Over my years of training I swear by adding high rep into my everyday routine, I feel like my strength has increased tremendously. Remember, muscle endurance will increase muscle mass as well. The whole idea of this is to hit all the muscle fibers, fast and slow twitch. When I’m training my goal is to work and recruit as many muscle fibers as possible. Targeting more muscle fibers means greater gains in strength and muscle mass.

During my workout I always include a burnout set at the end of an exercise. For example, on chest my last set I will strip the weight to about half of my max and rep out as many as possible. Another type of burnout I incorporate is single arm isolation, an example of this I would do with db on chest press. I will press one arm at a time while the other arm in up in the air engaged the whole time, then switching arms. I also include negative movements and unilateral movements in my workouts. Sometimes I will end a set with negatives or even my entire workout. This puts a ton of added stress on the muscle fibers and makes me extremely sore, so I don’t do this type of workout everyday. The last type of technique I add into my workouts is unilateral, which means working one arm one leg at a time. This is important because you want to work each arm/leg independently to balance out your strength. When we squat, bench press, military press it is common that one arm is always working harder than the other, even though you feel like you’re pressing each one evenly. I will add a unilateral movement at the end of each set or will complete a whole workout just doing unilateral movements. Remember it’s important that both your right/left arm and leg are equal in strength. An unbalance in strength can cause problems later in life, such as back and knee problems.

On the days that I don’t have a ton of time, I will do an entire bodyweight workout at home or at the gym. For example, I will do 1,000 pushups, which usually takes me 45 minutes. I will do many different variations of pushups to really hit every muscle. I will do the same with legs, I will complete 1,000 different types of bodyweight squats and lunges. For back I will do 500 different type of pull ups. I love to be outdoors so I will go to the local park and do pull ups and muscle ups on the monkey bars. You don’t need fancy expensive equipment to get a great workout. These bodyweight workouts are some of my favorites to do because they are super challenging and I’m completely fatigued when I’m done.

I separate my cardio and weight training. I usually lift weights in the morning and then some type of cardio during the day or evening. My favorite types are boxing, sprinting and skipping rope. I get at least 5 cardio sessions a week. Even though I do the same type of cardio each week I always mix it up and challenge myself.

Typical Training Week:

Monday – Chest
DB Flat Bench
Incline DB Chest Press
Incline DB Chest Fly
Hammer Machine
Cable Fly
Push Ups
Tuesday – Back
Wide Grip PullUps
BB Overhand Rows
BB Underhand Rows
Neutral Grip Pull Ups
Australian Pull-ups
Cable Rows
Lat Pulldowns
Wednesday – Quads/Hamstrings
Deadlifts
Squats
Sumo squats
Step ups
Walking Lunges
Good Mornings
Hack Squat
RDL’s
Lying leg curl
Thursday – Shoulders
DB Military Press
DB Side Raises
DB Rear Flys
HandStand Push Ups
Machine Rear Flys
Cable Side Raises
Cable rear flys
Friday – Biceps
Weighted Pull-ups Underhand Grip
Alt DB Bicep Curls
Alt DB Hammer Curl
Incline Seated DB Curl
Rope Cable Curl
Single Arm Cable Curl
Reverse Single Arm Curl
Saturday – Triceps
BB Skull Crushers
Close grip bench press
Weighted Dips
Rope Cable Extensions
Close Grips Pushups on Medicine Ball
Single Arm Pushdowns
Single Arm Reverse Pushdowns
Sunday – REST DAY

Cardio 5x a week

Monday
30 to 60 minutes of interval running outside on a soccer field. Sprint the sidelines and jog the end-zones

Tuesday
Boxing- hitting the heavy bag
10, 1 minute rounds
10, 30 second rounds
10, 20 second rounds
10, 10 second rounds
1:1 ratio or rest, usually do this with a partner

Wednesday
10, 100 yard sprints

Thursday
30 minutes of jumping rope

Friday
10 suicides on the basketball court