My Mentor’s Interrogation File.
Well, well, well! I bring you the interrogation file of my Guru and mentor, Todd Reinhard. I had planned this longtime ago, but somehow wasn’t able to get through it. Todd graciously accepted my request, and here is the result. Do examine the answers keenly.
All I can say is that I have and I am still learning a great deal about life and fitness from my mentor, for he still continues to extend his helping hand whenever I am at crossroads for no benefit whatsoever. His thoughts have helped immensely to introspect whether be it about life, fitness, or nutrition. For example, he was the reason behind my razor sharp muscularity for the 2005 competition. Lastly, I have to convey that it is because of him I am able to spread my wings.
Q) Can you provide a brief history of yourself and your training background? How it all started? Who was the source of your inspiration?
Brother, you know, I’ve always been a very physically active person–ever since I was a child. But I would say that I first became involved in systematic fitness training when I became interested in boxing. I guess I was about 12 or 13 years old. Sugar Ray Leonard was a great inspiration at the time. And, of course, I was greatly inspired by all of the Rocky movies–especially by R3. Years later, I developed a passion for footbag, which I perceived as a type of martial art. I guess I was about 20 years old when I started practicing, and I stayed with the sport for about 10 years. When I was about 25, I started studying Bruce Lee, and to this day, I believe he was and is the consummate “fitness” guru.
Q) What is the single most important factor you would like to pinpoint to individuals who want to/are pursuing fitness?
It is important, I believe, to embrace variety and to do SOMEthing physically active every day. Don’t allow yourself, if at all possible, to just lay around all day long. At the very least, go for a twenty to thirty minute walk.
Q) I have known you to push beyond your limits. At the same time I want to ask you what is the stupidest thing you have ever done regarding training?
That’s really a tough question to answer, VB, because I look at everything, no matter what, as a learning experience. But I guess the stupidest thing one can do is to attempt to define “fitness” too narrowly and become obsessive. I’ve done that on a number of occasions, and it can become rather debilitating.
Q) What motivates you to train?
Nothing, really. I’ve been working out daily now for so long that it’s a habit–like brushing my teeth. I just get up early and head to the gym. Some days, and, indeed, some times of the year I tend to work much harder than others, but I pretty much do what I feel like doing. I enjoy physical activity, so there’s not a whole lot of external motivation necessary.
Q) What is your training philosophy?
HA! That all depends upon the day of the week you ask me! Seriously though, my general philosophy for everything is to enjoy whatever it is you do. Life itself is a training regimen, so embrace it as wholly as possible. Never become too rigid or fixated. Experiment, be creative.
Q) Do you study the field?
Honestly, not anymore–at least not much. I have studied it–very intensely. But over the years I’ve come to realize that enjoyment and “playfulness” are the keys to staying holistically “fit.” It’s really not about particular protocols or diets or exercises or anything really. It’s much more about moving and creative expression.
Q) What are your thoughts on nutrition for the typical diet?
My advice is very general: consume as much natural food as possible and avoid highly processed foods. I believe there is some truth to the theory that white sugar is addictive, so be conservative with your intake. Fish and vegetables are probably the best staples for one to include in her diet.
Q) What specific problems do you see that men and women have with their own training?
I would have to say that most people set unrealistic goals for themselves and simply burn-out too fast. They go all out for a few weeks, and then nothing after that. People have to aim for long-term fitness–and by fitness, I’m talking about well-being. The “all or nothing” attitude tends to be a huge obstacle to long-term wellness.
Q) When it comes to physical training, what should men and women aim for? How should they keep themselves motivated?
You know, I’m reluctant to say what people “should” aim for, but in general, I suppose, it makes sense to aspire for a sense of balance. People are individuals, and I really don’t like to put them in a box. The best I can really suggest is that everybody should be willing to experiment. Sometimes training partners can be great motivators–as can children and/or pets. If all else fails, sit down and watch the Rocky series!
Q) Anything else you would like to mention?
Just this: it is not necessary, or advisable, to make physical fitness an end in itself. It should be viewed as a component of a life more richly lived. Thanks for the questions, my friend. Namaste.
PS: You can interact with Todd at : email@example.com