We talked with Cru Mahoney in May, 2020.
👋 Hi! Tell us about yourself and your training
Hey! My name is Cru Mahoney and I am 19 years old. I am from Raleigh, NC and have lived here for my whole life.
I am currently a full time business owner and love what I do. I started my nutrition bar company, SETBAR, about a year and a half ago and have accomplished some really cool things through our amazing products and message.
In terms of fitness, I put a lot of effort into being as well rounded as possible and constantly learning new skills, improving my current ones, and making consistency a major part of what I do.
I’ve been training for about seven years and my training has come in many different forms over time. In the earlier days, my focus was mainly on gymnastics movements as I was really big into freerunning.
My training consisted of only calisthenics to supplement all of the flips and tumbling I was doing.
As I progressed, I started getting into more body-building style training which eventually led to CrossFit, which I do currently.
Though I still love incorporating bodybuilding into my training, I find that CrossFit challenges me in a way that it always feels like I’m giving each workout my all.
Working towards athleticism rather than only the way I look is so rewarding as my abilities continue to expand in everything I do.
Each day is based on progression and discipline and being able to crush a workout every day knowing that I’ll be doing the same thing tomorrow is so powerful in building a strong mind.
Whether it’s waking up at 5am during the week and 6am on weekends, NEVER eating any sort of unhealthy foods, running every single morning no matter what, doing 3 weighted pull-ups every time I enter and exit my bedroom, never lying, I hold it so important to never let anything take me off track.
When I tell other people I do these sort of things, I make it a top priority to be fully truthful which means doing them no matter what, without fail, every day, and for the rest of my life.
⏱ Describe a typical day of training
A typical day of training always starts with doing 3 pull-ups with a 25lb belt in order to leave my room. Right after, I get outside and start my one mile run.
This is something I do every single day no matter what sort of working out I will be doing later that day, how sore I am from the day before, how terrible the weather is, etc.
My main workout for each day is around 11am or 12pm and I do this for the sake of eating a big lunch directly after training.
I have, by far, seen the most improvement in my athletic ability and fitness since starting CrossFit a little over a year ago.
Putting tons of emphasis on conditioning and doing heavier lifting is something I never used to do so the difference from a year ago to now is like night and day.
I train at a gym called CrossFit RDU and the owner Steve Johnson was actually in the CrossFit games. This means that there is pretty much never a day that you get away with an easy workout!
At this point, a day doesn’t feel complete unless I’ve done something to really challenge myself and push the limits.
Some of my favorite exercises are cleans and snatches because they are very technical and can always be improved on.
Others like handstand walks/pushups are tons of fun because handstands are the thing I’ve mastered most over the years.
👊 How do you keep going and push harder?
The main thing that keeps me going is the fact that I know some days aren’t going to be as amazing as others but that I MUST do something each and every day to challenge myself and be better than the day before.
That is something I do not give myself an option on because now matter how tough things get or how low motivation may be for one day, I know the standard I need to hold myself to.
Something I say to myself before a very difficult workout or obstacle in life is “When the time comes that this would be over, would you rather say you did it or that you didn’t? The one hour that this workout will take is going to come no matter what so what decision do you want to look back on?”
I think looking at things in terms of the future helps put into perspective the fact that the pain will end at some point and you’ll be left feeling at peace for having overcome what scared you at one point.
🏆 How are you doing today and what does the future look like?
Currently, my training is still improving quite a bit which is the best part of starting a new kind of training or anything new for that matter.
It is such a humbling experience to come from being really good at one thing and starting at ground zero on another.
I definitely wish I would’ve started doing CrossFit earlier but I’m thankful for everything I have learned through progressing in other styles of fitness as well.
Over the next 5 years, I am very excited to see how my body changes naturally and pair that with constantly improving my training.
I think staying consistent with everything I currently do and continuing to progress will yield some awesome results as I get into my early twenties.
The goals however don’t stop there because I make training and nutrition a priority in order to live a long and extremely healthy life.
Keeping a healthy body and mind also propels me to be very dedicated to growing my business, creating new opportunities, and encouraging the people I love to have a similar approach.
🤕 How do you recover, rest and handle injuries?
In terms of recovery, I put a lot of emphasis on injury prevention, posture and mobility.
I spend a lot of each day consciously reminding myself to keep good posture and positioning whether I’m doing an intense workout or just sitting at the kitchen table eating.
I find it very important to always make sure my body is strong and aligned and to focus on small details that the majority of people never think about.
When I do get injured, I do a lot of activation exercises and soft tissue massage using something like a massage gun. For example, if my lower back gets tweaked, I would do what I can to relax the muscle in the lower back but also strengthen the opposing muscles in the glutes.
This is so important as most workout related injuries come from preexisting inconsistencies or weaknesses in the body.
Lastly, sleep is a big part of the process so I get eight hours of sleep pretty much every night. Since I wake up early every day, I do my best to get to bed by 9pm even though that often sacrifices having fun with friends late at night.
🍎 How is your diet and what supplements do you use?
My nutrition is something I have been constantly refining over the past five years or so. I am at the point now where I do not eat processed foods, refined sugars, refined carbs, anything with ingredients I don’t recognize or approve of.
When I first started focusing on my diet, I would have cheat days and eat whatever I wanted on those days. Now, and for the past about 4 years, I have consumed absolutely NO junk food or things outside of my diet.
Even since then I have removed many things from my diet and am always looking for new ways to improve my nutrition. In being so strict with the way I eat, I make my food for the day each morning in order to be prepared to go anywhere I may need and have enough food on hand.
A lot of people wonder about cravings and my answer is always that I do not give myself the option to ever consume unhealthy food so it isn’t really something I think about.
Counting calories isn’t something I do because my diet is based on health and performance so I basically eat a lot of healthy food to fuel my daily activities (around 3,000 calories).
👍 What has inspired and motivated you?
What most significantly motivates me is my own goals that I so badly want to achieve and other people that I see stand out from the crowd.
Someone that really motivates me is David Goggins because he is an absolute master of his own mind and discipline. Listening to people like him inspires me and also comforts me in the sense that I don’t often get to share my mindset with other people.
Knowing that there are people that can relate and are even taking things to the next level really pushes me to never stop even though it is the “path less traveled.”
Something that is also very important is to have friends that challenge you to be better even if it’s not just in the gym.
I choose to only surround myself with people that make me a better person and that I can help do the same for them.
✏️ Advice for other people who want to improve themselves?
The best advice I could think to give someone in the realm of fitness or life in general is to be proud to be the person that is doing things that other people won’t.
Be proud to be the person that sacrifices more than the next guy. Be proud to be the hardest worker you know. Be proud to be the one eating something different from everyone else at the table.
You don’t end up at the top by doing the same things as the people in the middle so differentiate yourself and treat any current difficulty as something you’ll be able to look back on in the future.
🤝 Are you taking on clients right now?
I don’t specifically do any personal training at the moment, however, I always love to help other people with reaching their goals and making a difference in their life.
If I were to train someone, the thing they can most count on is that I genuinely care to see a difference in them and I’m the last to give up.
📝 Where can we learn more about you?
To learn more about me, I would love for you to follow me on instagram @crumahoney and definitely check out my nutrition bar company, SETBAR, at setbars.com and @setbars on instagram.
My business partner and I do a series on YouTube called Behind the Bar where we document the behind the scenes building of our small business so feel free to check it out!