Our Breakthrough Spotlight Member for June is Andrew Munson! Andrew shares about hitting some new PRs in our recent Breakthrough Strength Challenge, as well as physical strength helping him take on new adventures outside the gym!
BREAKTHROUGH: Thank you, Andrew, for being our Spotlight member for June. In terms of how you got started with us, I feel like you had the weirdest start to training ever!
ANDREW: I did!
BREAKTHROUGH: … because you did one day with us in the gym in person in March 2020. And then before your next training session, we were shut down!
ANDREW: It was all Facebook and Zooms after that. I work better definitely with coaching and in-person stuff, so it was definitely weird!
BREAKTHROUGH: Oh my gosh! But you stayed with it and it has been great!
ANDREW: It has definitely been worth it. I feel like I’ve gotten stronger for sure. Absolutely.
BREAKTHROUGH: You have! You absolutely have! So, let’s back up to before the pandemic… What made you want to start training in the first place?
ANDREW: I knew somebody who trains here, and he said you should come and try it out and see how you like it. He said the owners of the gym are great and they will work with you. And that is the kind of style that I really like. I really like that one-on-one, small kind of feel. The same way with school. I went to a small school for that reason. But it was one of those things where I went looking for something. I was looking for a place. And the big gyms, it is easy to get lost in a place like that. I don’t know anything about weight training. I don’t know anything about gyms, but I played sports growing up. I played soccer, so I knew how to run! But I didn’t know like, what weights do I need to use to get stronger and stuff like that. I was looking for something more personal and I came across Breakthrough. It has been amazing so far. It has been really, really helpful!
BREAKTHROUGH: Great! What are some things that you are feeling now that you have noticed as a result of your training?
ANDREW: Well, in late 2019, I had a pretty bad shoulder injury and I definitely feel like my shoulder has been getting stronger. Really everything has been getting stronger. My upper body strength has been getting stronger. I am able to lift more over my head than I ever have before. And I am kind of learning about what it is like to train in a more professional sense. What it is like to actually do weight training and what it is like to actually use barbells, kettlebells, and stuff like that.
BREAKTHROUGH: Yeah! Well, speaking of overhead pressing and all of that going really well, you just did your first challenge with us, The Breakthrough Strength Challenge. You did so amazing, especially considering we have been so focused on making sure your shoulder feels ok. You haven’t been lifting super heavy. We have been building up very gradually, so to see you press double 24’s! That is incredible!
ANDREW: I was apprehensive going into it, for sure. I was like, hopefully, I don’t hurt myself; hopefully this all goes well. I mean I trust you guys. I know if it is too heavy. That is the nice thing about working out here. I have had trainers before, and it was like I never felt like they actually listened to me, sometimes. Whereas here, I am like, oh my shoulder is sore and you guys are like OK, well let’s adjust the workout; let’s adjust our training and stuff like that. So, I always felt like I know it’s going to be good. Yeah, 24’s! I didn’t think I could do it either, to be honest. I just kind of kept building and building and building and we got there! I almost got 28’s, by the way!
BREAKTHROUGH: I know! It was so close! Did you feel good with your performance?
ANDREW: I felt amazing with my performance! How could I not! I walked out of there and, oh my God, I didn’t think I could do that! We practiced a little bit with 28’s in here, and I was never able to get them up. But I think I was able to get them up higher than I ever did in the gym.
BREAKTHROUGH: You did!
ANDREW: I think I walked out of that and felt like I achieved expectations or exceeded them, actually. I am pretty happy with all of that.
BREAKTHROUGH: Great! We were for sure! To see you guys accomplish stuff like that is why we do what we do. It is pretty awesome to see people make that kind of progress. I always feel like when we discover what we can do in the gym, or in a challenge, it gives us confidence outside the gym too… So, I wonder what ways you might be experiencing this…
ANDREW: Yeah, I think I have definitely become more assertive with what I am looking for and what I want. I mean, my life, this past year has been really tough. Right? I definitely feel more confident and more assured of what I want and am looking for. I am kind of in a career transition anyway, so this has given me the confidence to know that I can go in that direction and feel comfortable.
BREAKTHROUGH: Great! The other thing we like to hear from people is what is your why? Do you have a deeper reason - aside from it’s just cool to be stronger- Is there something else that motivates you to come in and keep doing all this hard stuff to take care of yourself?
ANDREW: I think it is good to be healthy, and I think it is good to be in good shape. That is pretty much my why. When I was in high school, I was in great shape, but I want to be stronger than that. It’s just about getting in shape, being stronger, eating healthier. When you are doing that, for me, I definitely know that I sleep better at night. I definitely know that when I am exercising, everything else feels better, right? You feel like you are thinking more clearly. 2020 kind of threw us all for a loop, but I guess that my why is to be stronger and be in better shape. Ultimately, I feel like the rest of what I am trying to do in my professional and personal like will also fall into place in that regard.
BREAKTHROUGH: Yeah, you’re young and you are in a transition period career-wise, and figuring out the next step you want to take in life. So, the stronger you are physically, you have already discovered that it carries over and you can sleep better, you can think better, so physical strength is not just about physical strength. It is about all of these other things. You are right, it will pay a big dividend as you keep going with this next chapter of your life.
ANDREW: Well, like my side hustle. It is one of those things where exercise is definitely super important. One of those things where I feel like I need to be I good shape to be able to do it.
BREAKTHROUGH: Exactly! Your side hustle – we should probably clarify for the interview…
ANDREW: I referee soccer. Ha, ha! I was telling Caleb the other day that some of the side shuffle drills that we have been doing, I feel like I am definitely able to be more explosive and be a little bit quicker.
BREAKTHROUGH: That’s great!
ANDREW: It just hadn’t been something that I’d been working on for a long time. I thought, oh I am young! I can just go out there and run! But now that I am getting older – well, I’m not old but getting older and now I have to concentrate on doing that on the weekend. Making sure I am doing other things to be in shape and make sure I am physically strong too.
BREAKTHROUGH: Exactly. That is great. It is awesome to have something else like that in your life where you get to see the things that you trained for put into practice.
ANDREW: And I can do more of them and feel stronger and I am able to get through them and feel like I can do another day of this!
BREAKTHROUGH: Totally! That is awesome, and exactly how it should be. I appreciate you sharing all of this with us, Andrew!
ANDREW: You are welcome!