👋 Hi! Tell us about yourself and your training
My name is Antonio. I was born in San Diego, CA where I lived for five years until my father and I moved to NJ. Both of my parents were military (Navy) and my father had gotten out while my mother was still enlisted.
From ages five to 18, I grew up in Jersey. I was involved in athletics at a young age. I played baseball for 14 years and participated in other recreational sports throughout my childhood. I tried my hand in basketball, lacrosse, and track & field.
I first got introduced to fitness at age 11 through my father who was heavily involved in exercise and weight-training. My initial start was using P90X for my people who remember that at-home program.
Most of my time was spent doing things that involved some form of physical activity, whether it was organized or with some of my friends.
⏱ Describe a typical day of training
My training always stays consistent, yet is never the same. I continue to implement exercises that best engage the muscle I’m targeting, but continue to fine-tune my execution of such exercises.
I have been training for about a decade now; my splits, training time, training philosophy has gone through change after change within those 10 years. For the last two 1/2 to three years, I have been following Push, Pull, Legs—Typically going four to six days a week, every week.
My approach to every training day comes down to two things: One is to get uncomfortable and push myself beyond what I think I’m capable of, second is to attempt to complete a “perfect rep” —meaning, I place form at the fore front no matter what.
How I do an exercise is the most important thing in my eyes. Making sure I empty the tank and leave nothing on the table is the X factor.
My favorite exercises would be:
- Legs – Split Squats , Goblet Squat/Lunge
- Back – V-Bar Pull-Downs
- Chest – Cable Crossovers
- Shoulders – Face Pulls
- Triceps – Tricep Rope Extension
- Biceps – Reverse Curls/Hammer Curls
- Cardio – Stairmaster
I do have a fitness bag, I carry my foam roller, my ab rollout set-up, tripod, deodorant, cologne, lock, spare headphones, and gym shakes (protein shake + water container).
I do not track or log progress anymore but I had it in the past at times.
👊 How do you keep going and push harder?
I have pride in what I do. I’ve fallen in love with improvement. I believe that once you find something that reigns you in, it’s an unbreakable bond.
I’ve been fortunate enough to get the opportunity to have a exercise background in playing sports and having parents that encouraged such commitments. Without them guiding me and emphasizing the power of work and discipline, I may not be where I’m at today.
I’d say now at this point, me continuing this fitness pursuit is now bigger than me. I’m no longer doing this for my own personal benefit but leading by example for others to show what belief and work can do for someone trying to achieve their goals or make positive change.
🏆 How are you doing today and what does the future look like?
Today, I am feeling great. I am blessed to have the opportunity to wake up everyday and do something I love. I never take this privilege for granted because I know just how quickly it can be taken away from me.
The future looks like the actions I do today. Tomorrow is just the unveiling of what I made happen yesterday. I’m always trying to learn and experience something new. I take things day by day because that’s all I can do.
My goals have swapped and changed too many times to count, but one has stayed the same in lieu of all of that: Leaving an impact. Whether it be in professional relationships, personal ones.
I want to lead a life of positivity through my actions and encourage others to do the same. If I can do that, everything else will fall into place exactly how it’s suppose to — but it starts with me and my actions.
If I could start over fitness journey, well, everything that I’ve done in the past has gotten me to this point, failures and all so I would not change a thing.
🤕 How do you recover, rest and handle injuries?
I used to hate rest days. I never took them! Man was I crazy.. at one point I was working out seven days a week for I’d say five to six months. It definitely caught up to me as I would catch a cold at least once a month and I started to show low-back problems and it lingered for a considerable amount of time.
I would say after some minor injuries and re-occurring sickness, I made the change to incorporate more rest days and take an active role in my recovery. I foam roll every two days, I stretch and do mindfulness meditation, and I take two to three rest days a week now, which seemed impossible when I was 17-18 years old, lol.
When I travel and if there is an LA Fitness available or a hotel gym, I will continue to exercise. I have paid for day passes in the past but try to refrain from doing so if my stay is pretty long.
🍎 How is your diet and what supplements do you use?
My diet has always been emphasized with whole foods and utilizing the entire food group (Protein, Carbohydrate, & Fats) I eat two of these together in almost every meal.
I will track macros usually before summer when I cut but haven’t tracked since Summer of 2018. I would say I typically consume anywhere from 2,000 – 3,500 calories per day.
The supplements I use are Ghost Pre-Workout, GNC Creatine Monohydrate, and Whey Isolate Protein Powder.
I use to be a Gatorade junkie and definitely drank my fair share of alcohol growing up. I would say I’ve gone away from both, rarely doing either. I tend to just stick with water nowadays. I was never a big soda person and sweets were nice but never had real cravings or a sweet tooth.
I sometimes drink coffee if someone gets me a gift card for Starbucks! I do not make a big deal out of others choosing certain foods or items. I am not currently fixated on any prep-type diet, but even if I was I would never make a big deal out of it.
👍 What has inspired and motivated you?
My father has inspired me. My mother has inspired me. My extended family. My friends. Strangers. I take away from everyone and everything — I look at a persons behavior/mindset and either emulate or eliminate some of the things I see for my own life.
More practically, I love reading. I read books that incite thinking. The Alchemist, The Moral Landscape, Thinking Fast and Slow are just some to name.
I listen to inspiring and motivating individuals who practice optimism, practicality, and purpose in their life like Gary Vaynerchuk, Eric Thomas, Inky Johnson, The Rock, Nipsey Hussle R.I.P., and Kobe Bryant R.I.P.
The best advice I ever received could never be pinpointed to one single phrase or statement. What I would say has stayed with me for awhile is: “We all have the power to put others in a better position when we place value on things that make us better ourselves”.
It starts with us and what we decide to do with our energy and time. When placed in good faith, it can forever leave a lasting impact on those around us, and I truly believe that.
As for music, I actually have a playlist for both gym rap music and rock (which needs some additions). I’d say 90% of the time it’s rap. But there’s something about Black Sabbath’s Heaven and Hell that gets me amped in the gym… I love it!
✏️ Advice for other people who want to improve themselves?
I would say improvement needs to start with how we think about improvement. Working on ourselves in all aspects. It starts with our self-talk—how are we engaging with ourselves, what is our perception of ourselves.
Fueling positive self-talk is that we can be in a place of accepting new challenges and allowing for better energy to enter our realm. We have to believe we’re deserving of improvement before we actually make some. Next is not falling in love with the end result but finding love in the process.
Understanding that you can certainly make positive changes but it takes time and work, consistently. This extends beyond bodybuilding/fitness but certainly applies to it.
For more practical advice, find a way to engage in exercise and continue to engage in forms that you find fun and interesting. If it’s weight-training, cool. Basketball? Cool. Cardio? Cool. It’s suppose to be fun! Let’s keep it that way.
🤝 Are you taking on clients right now?
I do online coaching, yes. I have the NSCA CPT, REDcross CPR/AED & Level 1 USA Weightlifting certification. I’m also in school (college) full-time so I do not currently work, although I have been applying to in-person coaching/training positions.
I take clients who are willing to be accountable without me asking. I will never tell you that you should pick me over someone else. That’s up to you and what fits you and your ideal trainer-client relationship. But I will say that there SHOULD come a day where you no longer need me, if I do my job correctly.
I should be able to give you everything you need to know the best way to achieve your results. I will also never guarantee results by a certain amount of weeks/months. I look the way I do because I’ve been showing up every week, year after year.
The secret to fitness? There is no end goal as it’s a continuous push to see growth and progress both mentally and physically.
📝 Where can we learn more about you?
You can find me on several platforms. I engage in conversations outside of fitness. I share opinions on mindset, sport-related content, personal thoughts, and pop-culture news (music, shows).
I have two accounts, my personal and my “coaching/clothing” idea that introduces fitness tips, motivational posts, and everything in between!
Thank you Laarni, Bulk Hackers, and everyone who took time out of their day to read this. Keep working hard and believe in yourself!