Athlete Profile: Matt AhingInstagram: @unlifter Category: CBBF Athlete Do you use a trainer? Yes Trainer: Jonathan Merkley
What Motivated You To Begin Training?
I had always been a chubby kid. Even though I played sports, and could runaround for hours, I was never happy with how I looked. It had a huge part to play in my self esteem, and I was shy and awkward growing up.I decided I didn’t want to be like that anymore, so I made a change.
If you have transformed yourself what do you attribute to arriving at your starting point:
My best friend after high school, Ahmed got me into the gym working out with him. I didn’t really know what to do, but I listened to him to learn some of the basics. He taught me a lot, and the following January I stumbled upon a front desk position at the north Athletic Club in London. From there, a lot of questions, learned a lot and that lit a fire under me to continue improving.
Tell us a little about your training philosophy:
Change and learning. There is no one correct way to train. And as soon as you find something that works, you’ll eventually need to change it up or your body won’t respond to it the same moving forward. I’m constantly working with different angles, ranges and loads to see how my body responds, and make the best steps forward.
Tell us a little bit about your diet philosophy:
Balance. The best eating plan will come down to eating things that aren’t processed. Anyone in the fitness industry will tell you that, but hide the fact that they would eat a bag of Doritos or a pizza in one sitting. There’s nothing wrong with splurging here and there as long as the majority of what you’re putting into your body applies to the goal you are working towards.
Please tell us about your competitive history and placings (if applicable):
Barrie Natural Championships 2015 – Light Middleweight – 1st Place, Ontario Natural Provincials 2015- Light Middleweight – 3rd Place
How Many Years have You Competed?
Tell us about some of your short and long term goals:
In the short term, I’m trying to develop my upper body more to have a good showing at the natural world qualifier in 2016. From there, if I’m selected I want to move on to the world natural championships.
Who do you look to for motivation and why?
Drive is what motivates me. Whether it’s one of my clients pushing through a tough workout after a full day at work, or one of the people in the industry who’s physiques I look up to. Seeing other people shut up about reasons why they can’t, and just do it is what pushes me to keep going.
What are some of the most difficult obstacles that you have had to overcome?
Last September I had a minor rotator strain. It left me off pressing for approx. 3 months. And because the lagging muscle groups in my physique were chest and shoulders, this was a tough pill to swallow. I focused on recovering as best I could, coming back and pushing harder than I had before the injury. Luckily the work I put in, and the physique I managed to put together earned a 1st place victory at my first show.
Tell us some of your pet peeves surrounding healthy life and the gym:
Doubt and laziness are the two things that bother me about the industry. Everyone has their side as to what’s best, but they’re quick to brush someone elses methods off to the side. And people who want to change need to be committed to the process or it won’t happen.
What is the number one piece of advice that you would give someone that looks to you for inspiration?
Never stop learning. Find someone in the industry you can really trust, think about what they say. Apply it and even try to make it better if you can. The more you think about fitness, the more you realize how much is actually possible.
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