Growing up in DC, Mark participated in many athletic activities; martial arts, and team sports, including basketball through high school and in college, at The University of Chicago. He was always at the gym training or working out in some form or another. His own training would peak other's interest, who would ask him about his workouts and why he does what he does today -- which encouraged him to continue his education and obtain a number of certifications in personal training. His interest in fitness and his ability for teaching and coaching others was a fit.
Besides an interest in fitness, Mark has other motivations for staying healthy and in shape: the obstacles he has overcome. A lifestyle change assisted Mark’s mental and physical fitness, whereby 2005, he started boxing and won the Chicago Golden Gloves in his age and division, on his way to an impressive amateur boxing career. His love for boxing grew from his interest and practice in MMA. He holds a 6-1-0 professional fight record that he credits to his training in boxing, Brazilian Jiujitsu and wrestling.
By the time Mark had his last fight, he switched to a more demanding career, and found it increasingly difficult to keep training while working. “The gym is a place where I got my spirit back. The interaction with others in that environment and need for movement is what kept me motivated to keep going back.” He encourages his clients to find their own motivations and see the gym in the same ways: another way of interacting with people (besides the office), another way of listening to, and speaking with others, and testing yourself.
His advice for those who want to train or change their lifestyle but don’t know how to begin: “There will always be obstacles in the way. Meet the obstacle, but don’t get frustrated, throw your hands up, give up, or turn around. The obstacle is a part of the way, and tomorrow may bring a new obstacle. That simply means there is another opportunity to grow from another challenge.”
Mark is certified by ACE (American Council on Exercise), NASM (National Academy of Sports Medicine), NPTI (National Personal Training Institute), TFW-I and TFW-II (Training for Warriors, Level 1, 2), and BAMF (Badass MuthaFu...).