We talked with Paul Chelemen in December, 2019.
👋 Hi! Tell us about yourself and your training
Hi, I’m Paul Chelemen, vegan personal trainer and yoga teacher. I’m 31 years old.
Originally I’m from Hungary. I’ve been living here in Vienna, Austria for 6 years, with my beautiful wife and our two and half years old daughter.
My little family lives a vegan lifestyle. Me and my wife have been vegan for 6 years and my daughter from her birth.
I’ve been training regularly for 10 years. I do functional training/movements and yoga.
I can’t imagine my life without moving and practicing. For me training is one of the best ways of self expression on a physical level.
We need to take care of our body, if we want to live a high quality life.
Basically your body shows how you think of yourself. It’s the creation of your thoughts and mindset. We shouldn’t forget that and we need to take responsibility of it.
It’s not about the appearance. It’s about much more than that.
⏱ Describe a typical day of training
After the birth of my daughter, I decided to spend as much time as I can with my little family.
That decision has changed everything.
Before I trained regularly with weights 5 times per week. Training was always in the first place for me, but then I realised that there are much more precious experiences that I want to have in my life. Like being a father.
The training I did before, I couldn’t really enjoy it anymore. I needed to change something because after the spiritual experiences I had in my life and after becoming a dad. somehow I got a feeling that it was time for change.
At this point I need to mention my younger brother who started calisthenics many years ago and unconsciously motivated me since that time.
When we were out in a park I always wondered how it could be that without weights I couldn’t really prove anyone how strong I was.
Literally my muscle mass was not really functional. Except for pull ups I couldn’t do anything.
Contrary to my brother who was like a god of the movements. He did everything in a very playful way and everybody was always surprised what he was capable of: hand stands and variations, muscle ups etc.
I felt that his training was not only a training of getting strong or getting an aesthetic body. It was far more than that. That’s a totally new and higher level.
So after the birth of my daughter I decided to start to only do bodyweight training!!!
It was a big and risky decision at that time, because I was really afraid of losing muscle mass.
But it turned out to be the best way to have new impulses, look at the training in a much more playful way than before and spend as much time with my family as I can.
It’s been two years now. I love what I do, it’s a totally different feeling. It’s a higher expression of the movements.
I do muscle ups with gymnastic rings and on the bar too, different types of hand stands, my favourite is the press hand stand, pistol squat, single arm pull up etc.
In this kind of training you feel yourself like a monkey on the tree 🙂 I’m so happy with the results.
In the meantime I started to teach yoga too. Since my childhood yoga played an important role, but I was only doing different asanas with breathing techniques and exercises for more flexibility.
When I changed my training, I added strength elements and my yoga became much more complex.
Basically my workout routine is very simple. I always have a pull day and then a push day, once a week a leg day too.
I always choose a maximum of 2 exercises and practice them. I do them most of the time at home (I have a rack station too) or where I’m working in the gym.
I practice almost everyday (usually I have one day off per week), sometimes all day long.
Training that way, I can spend more time with my family too, because I can train whenever and wherever I want.
I do my training in a playful way when I’m with my family as well. That’s why my little daughter is already trying to do different movements too. I think that’s the best way to inspire her, just showing her a good example.
In the meantime my wife become a little ninja warrior as wel 🙂 She was inspired too by what me and my brother was doing.
Basically my whole family is practicing different movements!
👊 How do you keep going and push harder?
It’s so simple to maintain my motivation because everything has become so playful. It has become my way of living.
Like children, they can’t imagine themselves without playing.
I don’t really need to push myself hard to do what I love.
🏆 How are you doing today and what does the future look like?
Basically in my training my goal is to keep playing further. To always learn some new movements because I can never be the master of everything.
As a trainer and yoga teacher, I’d like to share the knowledge I’ve learned so far with more and more people.
I’m freelance professional personal trainer who works as employee (trainer) in one of the most famous gyms in Vienna (John Harris Gym).
I want to invest more time in my yoga classes business too. My wife and I are a perfect team for this because she is a promotion video maker. She helps me a lot advertising my business.
🤕 How do you recover, rest and handle injuries?
I try to listen to my body. If I feel I need to have a break then I take it. I also sleep quite a lot (5-6 hours per night and I always have a 1-2 hours nap in the afternoon) and try to avoid any stressful activities.
For almost 6 years, I haven’t drinked any alcohol.
I would say that with my clean vegan diet, my recovery time is faster 🙂 Also, in the last 6 years I haven’t had any injuries.
🍎 How is your diet and what supplements do you use?
I’ve been on a high carb, low fat plant based diet for 6 years. That means my carb intake is very high, around 300-350 g/day. My protein intake is 90-110 g/day and fat is 25-35 g/day.
For me this diet definitely works. I feel so energetic because of the high carb consumption. My body works fast, including metabolism, digesting process and recovery time.
For me, high carb means no refined sugars or sweeteners. Only fruits and whole grain products.
I use only a vegan unflavoured protein powder from MyProtein.
I try to avoid gluten too and don’t consume any fatty products with trans fat or foods with any excess oils.
My fat intake is very low. That’s why my body works so fast. Tt takes a lot of effort to process the fats contrary to carbs.
Before I changed to a plant based diet (6 years ago), I too struggled with my weight.
Now it’s almost impossible for me to have much excess body fat. At the end of the day, you can’t have a big calorie intake only from the carbs if your fat consumption is low!
I don’t have really cheat days. I only occasionally, a couple of times per year, eat vegan burgers and sometimes I have a vegan pizza just with veggies and without any extra oil.
I don’t have any cravings for sweets because I eat a lot of smoothies and fruits at the beginning of the day. After that I don’t want any sweets and I never had salt cravings for chips and etc.
To be honest, I love what I eat, I don’t need anything else. If I once or twice a year have a little fattier food, I right away have away a discomfortable feeling and my body says I don’t need that.
My goal too is to make my ageing process slower 🙂
👍 What has inspired and motivated you?
My mom and the way she lives. She’s been on a plant based diet for a decade and she looks so young.
My family (my wife and my beautiful daughter) and my brother. I’m so happy and grateful for these people and they helped and help me to live the life I dreamed for!
In the fitness industry, Ido Portal inspires me with his movement culture.
From the yoga field Dylan Werner and Patrick Beach. They are amazing people.
✏️ Advice for other people who want to improve themselves?
It’s sometimes hard to believe it or accept it, but we are the creators of our own life.
Our circumstances now is the reflection of our thoughts and minds (mainly from the past).
Imagine if we live our life in that way, if we stop looking for excuses and we take the responsibility of every single moment and action what we have or take.
It’s only our decision what makes the difference.
🤝 Are you taking on clients right now?
I take clients as a personal trainer and a yoga teacher.
Unfortunately most people train because they are afraid of gaining weight. Moving and training is more than that on the physical and spiritual level.
My goal is to help people to have a nice lean natural body! And with a little effort, it’s possible with a plant based diet.
With the right lifestyle, it is really easy to maintain a healthy, lean body and be young forever 🙂
I try to motivate everybody to reduce their meat consumption a bit. That can only be a win-win situation. Good for our body and spirit, for the environment and the animals.
Clients who resonates with me or the mindset are welcome to come to me for help or advice.
📝 Where can we learn more about you?
You can find me on my website: https://www.paulchelemen.com/
I’m also on YouTube.