Kevin recently qualified and was invited to represent Team USA in the Mediterranean Cup in Italy. We sat down and asked him some questions about his training.
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This interview will start out with some longer answering questions and finish with some short response questions. We cover everything from how he got started to what he eats everyday. Enjoy!
Where did your athletic journey begin?
As soon as I could walk I was playing sports. I am not sure exactly when it began, but I can tell you I started playing team sports at a very young age and played on all the way until I graduated high school.
How did you get into weightlifting and when/why did you start working with Chris Lofland and BlueWave?
My wife and I wanted to join a CrossFit to do something different. The first day I walked in I was asked to do a weightlifting meet. I didn't know what that entailed, but I said sure, sounds like a challenge and did it four weeks later. I was hooked.
Because of my job in the Marine Corps, I wasn't able to actually train, I had a coach, but wasn't able to really follow a program. When Nikki and I decided to move to Texas, we ensured we'd be somewhere near a legit weightlifting club with a coach. We tried out a gym in the area and didn't really fit in or like it much, so we looked further and found Chris and the moment we walked in we loved it.
Let's compare your first and last meet (Nationals 2019). When did you first compete, what was your inspiration then compared to now and what was your most recent performance?
It was almost exactly three years to the day. Three years ago my inspiration was the challenge. To this day, this remains true, but I now have so much more inspiration. I am constantly inspired by others around me, especially my teammates. I am inspired by my amazing wife, who just like me shows up to train everyday and works her tail off. Honestly, people everywhere have it so much worse than me. I know dudes who don’t have legs who would do anything to be walking into a gym everyday with their own two feet like me. That may sound weird, but it's what inspires me the most because it doesn’t let me take one day for granted, I am not wasting any opportunities life may grant me with.
At this competition (Nationals 2019) I lifted as a 109 kg lifter, I attempted 140/145/146 on snatch, but missed my second attempt at 145. On clean and jerk I attempted 181/187/187 and missed my second attempt as well. I finished with a 333 total. This was my best meet total.
Do you have any daily habits that improve your performance in the gym?
Visualization and being present everywhere I am. When I am at school, I am at school. When I am at the gym, I am there to train. Prioritizing my focus into one thing at a time has helped me more than anything. Another huge thing that has helped is not sacrificing sleep for training. I don’t overtrain, it was something that has led me to have injuries in the past and this past year I decide to listen to my body more than ever.
What's your full day of eating look like?
Morning: A glass of water before anything, then I eat overnight oats with tons of fruit, OJ/Spinach smoothie, and a protein shake to stunt my hunger for the next couple hours.
Midday: This can vary depending on my schedule, throughout my day I snack on things to ensure I am intaking carbs around training. Most days I try to eat a lunch with whole foods, but sometimes I snack extra instead.
Evening: When I get home from training I eat rice with a form of protein(fish/chicken), if I don’t have time I drink a protein shake instead, but this is not ideal, I like getting good sources of whole foods instead.
Evening 2: Around 8 pm I eat a very large dinner that varies. Tonight as I am writing this I am eating three homemade burritos, with flank steak, chicken, pico de gallo, guac, and some cheese.
Evening Snack: This is typically a bowl of cereal or something like that.
What do your rest day(s) look like and how often?
I take a full rest day Sunday, and this is not an “active rest day”, I stretch and stuff and throw the ball with Parker, my dog, but I like to actually chill out on the couch or in bed for one day. Taking a day completely off from anything fitness related helps me mentally rest and refit.
What's your go-to recovery method?
That would have to be electric shockwave therapy at Move Chiropractic, Dr. Parker and Dr. Farley know what they’re doing when it comes to my recovery!
But, my go to daily recovery method is honestly coming home and getting outside with Parker(my dog is not named after my chiropractor, although I'm not against my next dog being named Farley)
What is your favorite quote?
“Who you are is what you do when you’re at your most uncomfortable.”
What are you jamming out to during training?
Lately, I have been obsessed with a rock band called ‘Dance Gavin Dance’, but aside from that it is rap, metal, alternative, all different stuff.
You're going for a big lift, are you getting hyped up or focused?
Biggest lessons learned during your weightlifting journey?
Taking time off can be your best friend and that any day can be your last day, make it count.
Where can people go to follow your journey?