My story of how I transitioned from working as a chemical engineer to working as a coach in the health and fitness space.
In 2016 I completed my undergraduate studies in Chemical Engineering and immediately sped off and started work in the oil refining industry. At the time, I felt like I was on top of the world. I finished an engineering degree and secured a role in a global Fortune 500 company. "I made it!" I thought at the time.
I think a relevant question to ask is why I thought I "made it"? Modern society teaches us at a young age that we can achieve anything that we aspire to be. We're encouraged to dream and set wild goals. To blaze our own path in life. Yet at the same time, we're instructed and guided by those around us to follow paths that have already been trekked by many. Go to traditional schools, get good grades. Take on a long-term career. Build a family and work until it's your time for eternal sleep. A bit dark, eh? But where's the innovation and charm like it was painted for us as kids? In theory, a life like this seems like one of quality, purpose and meaning. And it very well can be for some. Maybe many. But what I found in the workplace was quite different. What I encountered were young professionals constantly planning their escape, and stuck middle-aged adults with well-lined pockets who were burned out and disappointed that life didn't give them a different experience. I was one of those young professionals constantly planning and scheming his escape, yet not making any moves because of the stronghold the golden handcuffs had on me. I won't lie though, there was plenty of fun and excitement. To escape the routine life that I was living, I partied. A weekend without drinks and collecting hangovers didn't exist. While each of the individual moments felt extremely fun, my health was snowballing in the few years of working my dream corporate job. Then the turning point occurred.
In March of 2019, while I was using the office restroom, the door swung open and I immediately notice the heavy breathing. A coworker. He walks over to the urinal next to me and heavily plops one arm onto the wall for support. Arm support for taking a leak! The breathing got heavier and wheezing even kicked in. I was in massive shock! There's absolutely no way that a man in his 50's should be in the state that I had just witnessed. I thought of my dad who's the epitome of health, in his late 60's at the time, and feeling on top of the world. From that day on a new Carlos was born. One who was going to radiate health. "Q2 Carlos" as my good friend Robert Hayes would call it.
That's where the training obsession was born. I started going to the gym daily and spent every second that I wasn't at work or at the gym reading about how to train and how to reach a state of health that I had never reached before. In the early days, it was all traditional bodybuilding style weightlifting. Bro splits. But I was constantly amazed at how the men who could lift the most weight in the gym couldn't do a single pull-up. Men who could bench twice their bodyweight but couldn't do a single push-up. So I started to implement bodyweight movements, plyometric movements, basic flexibility, and light boxing into my training as an attempt to feel more capable in my own body. L-sits came into the picture. I remember on one occasion where I was asked after a set of L-sits if "I was one of those guys who could go from an L-sit to a handstand?". I laughed and expressed that I'd never be able to do that ;)
"there's been no turning back!"
Ever since then, there's been no turning back. In order for me to push myself to my highest potential, I've set out to learn from the teachers that inspire me most. Educators and coaches who have been able to deliver top-tier results to their students repeatedly, as well as reach a high level within their own practice. For me to do this to the best ability, I had to leave the security of my engineering career behind. Not with remorse, but with excitement. Excitement from the fact that the golden cuffs are off and that I was finally able to seek out the life I desired. A life where I could train relentlessly and learn new skills. The ultimate goal being able to share my story, inspire others and teach those who are willing to level up their lives. Yes, leveling up your physical skills will level up your life in many ways. We'll explore this idea in a future blog post.
If you've followed me on Instagram for some time, you might recognize some of the pictures below. They help illustrate my story of endlessly seeking to learn from those who I consider the best of the best in the fields I'm interested in.
Thank you for taking the time to read my first blog article and welcome to Los Mvmt, my online coaching business and movement community. Please subscribe to my weekly newsletter, The Sunday Spread, to stay up to date with training tips, thoughts, and my philosophies around training as well as life updates and other fun shits and gigs! :)
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