Competing in triathlons has always been a love of mine. I love to swim, bike, and run. Growing up, running was always my best sport of the three, so I took the advice of my coaches and focused on running during my later years in High School and had fun doing it! I was so excited to go run for the USC Cross Country and Track Team too, but before the season began I hyper-extended my knee in a “non-sanctioned” practice. After rehabbing my knee over most of the season, somehow I qualified for, and ran at the PAC 10 Championship Cross Country Race the last year they ran the full 10k (1992) at Stanford University. I started the track season shortly after that but ultimately left the team due to USC’s lack of focus on the distance running program. Time to enjoy College Life! After that, my body slowly began to change through college into a Recreational Sport model.
After college I worked in Construction Management sitting in front of a computer and phone for hours on end. Exercise consisted of walking the jobsite and hitting the Pacific Ocean for some surf for the first few years. I moved back to Bakersfield in 2000 where I was lucky to meet and marry an amazing woman, became the father of two awesome kids and received my MBA all while working on some of the most interesting projects with which I could ask to be involved. Even though my life sounded perfect, I still found myself getting divorced and living alone in Lake Tahoe. I never thought that this would be the way my life would turn out. I soon realized that the most important thing to me, my family, was no longer living near me anymore. I didn’t think there was anything I could do about it. I continued to eat horribly, drank alcohol pretty much every night, and never worked out. I traveled every other weekend, seven hours each way, to spend about 30 hours with my kids. My performance at work began to suffer and it seemed like nothing was going right in my life. Everything was spiraling out of control and I didn’t see any way out.
When you get to where I was in my life there really were only two possible outcomes, eventual death, or making some sort of change to better my life situation. Fortunately I was given the opportunity to make a change that actually meant something. I knew that I was living an unhealthy lifestyle. I needed to make drastic changes in my life in order to get healthy physically, emotionally, and spiritually. I cut the alcohol out of my diet. I quickly began to feel better. I lost fat and gained some muscle. Cutting out these pointless calories helped me to believe that I could get healthy again. I began walking and was introduced to P90X by a very dear friend, however I wasn’t ready to jump in with both feet and was hesitant to go jumping around due to my weight; scared that I might hurt my knee again. Soon thereafter, the opportunity presented itself to allow me to leave the project that was keeping me in Tahoe and move to Bakersfield to live closer to my children. This decision was simple and I leaped at the opportunity to be with my children once again.
So now I needed to find a way to facilitate my ability to achieve my goals: (1) Spend all the time with my kids I am able to; (2) Get healthy; (3) Become financially secure; and (4) Help people to learn how to do the same.
Since I had been introduced to P90X, I remembered that one of my friends, Mike Ryan, was big into Team Beachbody and was doing really well; him and his then wife Kelley were real products of the products. I called him up a couple days after New Years 2012 and told him that I had taken a few steps towards changing my life and that I was ready to take the next step, embrace Shakeology as a way to help get my nutrition back on point, start P90X, and go for it! So I signed back up, ordered the P90X Challenge Pack and began the new journey towards a healthy life.
I can tell you today that I look forward to everyday that I get to spend with my kids, I am healthier and stronger now than when I left home to go to college as an 18 year old, I am competing in triathlons again as a sponsored triathlete, I am taking the steps and making the necessary changes in my life to become financially secure again, and I am helping others to see that they can do the same.
Thank you to my Mom and to my Dad for being so supportive in my life. And thank you also to my friends and family in Team Beachbody for your peer support along the road to a successful transformation!
Timeline of Transformation
September 2011 – Weighed 226 lbs and had an assumed over 25% (possibly 30%) Body Fat – Cut out alcohol from diet.
Jan 1, 2012 – Quit drinking all soft drinks.
Jan 14, 2012 – Weighed 206 lbs and 24.1% Body Fat.
April 12, 2012 – Completed the P90X 90 Day Challenge – Weighed 180 and 11% Body Fat.
Apr 19, 2012 – Weighed 175 and 10% Body Fat.
Apr 30, 2012 – Started P90X2 – 14 week program.
May 6, 2012 – Created this health and fitness blog site – www.fityak.com.
June 3, 2012 – Became certified as a P90X Professional.
July 12, 2012 – Weighed 167 and 7.7% Body Fat and achieved my goal of being at a competitive running/racing weight.
July 14, 2012 – Competed in Castaic Lake Sprint Triathlon Series Race I – Had not competed in this triathlon since 1994. Placed 3rd in 35-39 Age Group and 19th Overall – 1hr 0m 15.58s.
Aug 5, 2012 – Completed P90X2.
Aug 11, 2012 – Competed in Castaic Lake Sprint Triathlon Series Race II – Placed 2nd in 35-39 Age Group and 13th Overall – 54m 45.9s (5m 30s faster in 4 weeks – attribute this to Phase 3 of P90X2 – Post Activation Potentiation).
Sept 30, 2012 – Competed in Bakersfield Triathlon – Olympic Distance – Had not competed in this race since 1989 – Placed 2nd in 35-39 Age Group and 4th Overall.
October 8, 2012 – Start date of Insanity: The Asylum with the goal of becoming an Elite Athlete. What a great 30 Day Program. I really felt the improvement in my leg speed and agility!
December 3, 2012 – Started Round 2 of P90X2.
***As of December 2022****
For many years after that I continued to evolve. I got away from the day to day training and became a teacher and coach for high school. I lost site of some of my goals. And while I am extremely happy with where I am, I lost the physical health that I had attained. Time to get back after it!