How did you get started as a personal trainer and did you go to a training school?
Becoming a personal trainer was somewhat serendipitous for me. I was lucky enough to play travel, collegiate and professional soccer. As I moved up the ranks, each level brought with it a new strength and conditioning coach who would push me in training to enhance my on-field abilities. As early as high school, I spent summers training youth who were interested in pursuing high level competition in soccer and tennis. When I moved back to D.C. for good, a friend convinced me to add personal training to my repertoire while out on a run. After checking out the curriculum offered by the American Council on Exercise, I decided to get my certification. Since then I’ve helped grow three health and wellness start-ups and hosted a wide range of classes, helped hundreds of clients achieve their fitness goals and coached youth in soccer and tennis across D.C.
How would you describe your philosophy on being fit and healthy?
My overall philosophy for being healthy is to follow the 80/20 rule. Over the course of a week, you should spend 80% of your time dedicated to training hard and eating right. Then take the remaining 20% to relax, unwind and indulge in some good food. In terms of being fit – the stronger, faster and more flexible you can be, the better you’ll feel. Everyone has a beast mode. When you hit that mode, it’s a fantastic feeling.
What is your typical meal for…
Breakfast: If I have an early client, a scoop of almond butter and organic jam, a banana and coffee with bone broth protein powder. After I’m done with morning clients, a breakfast sandwich that typically has egg, cheese, bacon, avocado and tomato. Fruit on the side.
Lunch: Lunch varies, but it almost always consists of protein, vegetables and complex carbs.
Dinner: More often than not…Sweetgreen salad or Chipotle burrito bowl. On Tuesday’s, tacos.
Snacks or sweets: Whole Foods nut mix, apples, oranges. The only sweet I get cravings for is ice cream.
Food right before a workout: Peanut butter, banana, honey, no sooner than 45 minutes before.
Food right after a workout: Good protein, such as salmon, grass-fed steak or chicken. Couple that with vegetables and complex carbs. Quality pizza is also an option, especially after a long cardio session.
What is something unique about your Veluxe workouts?
I challenge my clients. Anyone can come in and facilitate a workout. My goal is to make sure they get the most out of our session. Whether we’re doing a plank, squat or lunge…you can always expect me to throw in a caveat.
What is a typical Veluxe workout like?
You’ll have to book to find out.
Why are your workouts so great and effective?
My workouts are specifically tailored to meet each clients’ individual needs or goals. Every workout incorporates strength, mobility and flexibility elements. That way, when those 50 minutes are up, you’ve hit all the necessary areas.
What is the one exercise move you swear by to instantly feel better and more energized?
A squat thrust. It’s like a burpee without the push-up. If you can’t do impact exercises, a speed squat. Both hit the legs and core, which provide a strong foundation for everything else. Plus, everyone likes toned abs and buns.
When you’re on vacation and don’t have access to a gym or to any equipment, what are some great exercises to keep you toned?
Squats, controlled sit-ups and controlled pushups. There’s a reason the military is so fond of them.
If you don’t have a home gym, what are a few pieces of equipment that a person who works out regularly should have?
A kettlebell, one set of dumbbells, ankle band and a super band.
What are the best sneakers for…
I personally like the Nike Zoom Streak LT. It’s a fairly thin, flat profile which helps me recruit more muscles in the foot as I run. It’s not for everyone, however. I would suggest getting your foot fitted at a running store, e.g. Pacers, Nike, Fleet Feet, Georgetown Running Company.
New Balance seems to have a solid background in this area. When lounging, I would say go shoeless!
Nike Metcon Flyknit. It’s the best shoe I’ve used for cross-training.