Get Inspired and Fit: Interview with Trainer Elad Michaeli

Get Inspired and Fit: Interview with Trainer Elad Michaeli

Introduction

Connect with Elad: Website | Instagram | E-book | Training application to work with Elad | Training Club

Inspired to start weight training to improve your fitness, health, physique, or confidence? Or, perhaps to lose some of the fat gained during these challenge days with the pandemic? This article will help you.

I interviewed a personal trainer, Elad Michaeli, who has his own fat-to-fit transformation story. Elad also provides us with some general advice to kickstart our fitness transformation journeys.

Elad told me that his girlfriend provides vital support for the Instagram page, as she behind the camera capturing the images.

According to a comment on one of his Instagram posts, Elad’s height is 5 feet 10 inches (1.78 m) and his weight at that time was 153 pounds (69.6 kg).

In October 2020, Elad did an interview with Bulk Hackers.

Elad Michaeli Training Club

Elad has opened a training club located in Israel. If you are in the country and are interesting in improving your fitness, contact him for more details.

An Interview with Online Personal Trainer Elad Michaeli

I had the opportunity to interview through email, Elad Michaeli, a 22-year-old (birth date 22-October (Libra)) personal and online trainer from Israel.

He has had several jobs. He started as a baker (bread, muffins, and cakes) to help bring in money to help his family. I was curious to see what things he baked were his favorites. It turns out he bakes and makes other meals. “Personally, I’m like a mini cook, I like making things in the kitchen (healthy mostly),” Elad said.

He does not have a sweet tooth (unlike me–I love carbohydrates, lol), explaining, “I would say bread is my favourite baked item because I don’t really like sweets. I’m more a meat guy. “

Elad joined the army when he was 18, but he also had a computer-based job. During this time, Elad also attended Wingate Academy where he studied fitness and nutrition.

In 2019, Elad started his personal training business, Elad Michaeli Fitness. Due to the pandemic with COVID-19 in 2020, he moved his training business online.

Elad is also a fitness influencer. At the time of the post, Elad has 118,000 followers on Instagram, and he has posted numerous workout demonstrations (even two with his cats) that could be done from home.

Elad’s Fitness Transformation

While Elad has a detailed physique now, this was not always the case. Elad started his journey being overweight and an insecure 12-year-old, who wanted to make a change.

“Being overweight really bothered me, especially because everyone was laughing at me and made me feel even worse,” Elad explained. Due to the bullying that he endured, Elad was sad and spent time by himself. It was during this time that he decided to improve himself. Elad mentioned a motivation quote that was his inspiration “First they laugh at you, then they will ask for advice.” He admits that his journey was not always a straight path, but he was able to make progress with his brother’s support. 

Muay Thai as a Teenager

His brother enrolled him into a Muay Thai class, which he stated that he loved on his website. I asked more about Muay Thai, as I found out it is a full-contact combat sport. According to the Tiger Muay Thai website–

Muay Thai is referred to as “The Art of Eight Limbs”; and using eight points of contact the body mimics weapons of war. The hands become the sword and dagger; the shins and forearms were hardened in training to act as armor against blows, and the elbow to fell opponents like a heavy mace or hammer; the legs and knees became the axe and staff. The body operated as one unit. The knees and elbows constantly searching and testing for an opening while grappling and trying to spin an enemy to the ground for the kill.

With someone who is insecure, it struck me as an unusual sport with which to start. Elad told me that the gym “was quite a small place with 10-15 people and all of them were 20+ years old.” He liked going to that gym precisely because he was the youngest person there. “Being 12 years old at that kind of place was odd but that [is] what I really liked about that place. He continued, “The fact that I could go someplace after school [where there were no kids] made me feel calm, and it was the first step to progression.”

My impression is that Elad being so young would make people cautious about having to hit a 12-year-old, especially if you are a young adult. As Elad grew older and bigger, by 15 years old, the other members of the gym began to spar with him for real. “[W]hen I grew up and was kinda big, they stopped feeling sorry [for] me,” Elad explained. He continued, “When we trained together, they hit me like I was one of them. [I]t made me feel [like I was part of] a small family.”

By the time Elad was 17, the atmosphere at the Muay Thai gym changed–new people joined and the trainer moved. Elad enjoyed being with the people at the gym before all the changes. So, he decided to leave the gym.

Elad’s parents signed papers allowing him to join a small gym. Elad found that the trainers were not helpful. “I remember the trainers that were there [were] extremely lazy. [They] always tried to hide so no one would ask them questions.” Elad admitted that he did not know what he was doing. He explained to me that he constructed a “brutal” training routine and that he had terrible form. He remained without injury, fortunately. He decided to start researching workout information on YouTube and in books.

I asked Elad about the books and YouTube videos that were most helpful to him. He mentioned Starting Strength by Mark Rippetoe. YouTubers that Elad idolized were Jeff Seid and Lazar Angelov. He copied their workout routines and exercise form.


Elad’s goal is to be “ripped and extremely strong.” Having followed his fitness journey for almost 10 years, Elad has had experience following different diets and training methods (for example, 5×5 and the push-pull-legs split routine). He is trying out calisthenics (see author’s note below), which he is incorporating with weight training.

Elad follows other Instagram fitness influencers that have the same goal of being lean and strong, Fraser Wilson (who was covered previously on this blog), Chris Heria, and Adi Gillespie.


Author’s note on calisthenics

Calisthenics is a popular fitness option. Calisthenics is mostly bodyweight exercises, movements, and holds. One of the major trainers the calisthenics area is Daniel Vadnal.


Connect with Elad: Website | Instagram | E-book | Training application to work with Elad | Training Club

The Importance of Being Consistent with Training

One of my blogs features Rowan Row, an online trainer on YouTube. Rowan observed on his Instagram page:

If only people understood how important it is to be consistent. Everything that has value in life is a product of consistency. Success, health, fitness, wealth, friendships, relationships, and all other aspirations are all about consistency.” (Sylvester McNutt III)

I asked for Elad’s reaction. He explained “I couldn’t agree more with Rowan’s quote, I believe [that being] consistent is the key to everything in life because you just can’t watch TV all day and wait for things to happen or get better. You gotta stick to something and work your way from there. My clients’ consistency had a huge part in their success, but I’m always trying to give my full support so they will remain consistent and achieve their goals.”

General Workout Tips from Elad for Our Workout Journeys

While interviewing Elad to learn more about his fitness transformation journey, I wanted to get his thoughts on helping people who are about to start their fitness journeys. With the challenging pandemic and its related lock-downs, people may have added some body fat that they want to lose as we look forward to a new year.

My questions are in bold and Elad’s response follows. (Edited for clarity.)

Connect with Elad: Website | Instagram | E-book | Training application to work with Elad | Training Club

What advice do you have for a new person who is over 25 percent body fat and wants to start a training program?

“The best advice I could give to someone with over 25 percent is to start slow and progress, usually when my extremely overweight clients are telling me “I’m willing to give it all” and I build a kind of rough diet plan they just give up right away and when I’m building a diet with a low-calorie deficit, using [intermittent] fasting they seem to stick to the diet plan and they get better results.”

Would you recommend bodyweight exercises or maybe starting with elastic bands or dumbbells?

“I’d highly recommend incorporating bodyweight exercises because it all starts from there, being able to bench 200lbs and not doing 20 push-ups with the right technique is just not worth it and it’s not good for you being weak at bodyweight exercises especially on abs. Elastic bands and pair of dumbbells are more than enough. I’ve been using only bodyweight and some bands for 3 months due to the quarantine and I didn’t even lose 1 lb of muscle. A beginner would gain muscle during the process.”

Is there a good basic routine that would be good to start with as a new trainee?

A good routine to start as a beginner is the push-up, incorporating different variations, along with some squat variations and abs workouts. Definitely progress will be shown through this routine.

(Author’s note: This routine can be done at home.)

How much time should be a person work with a program to develop a healthy workout habit?

“Developing a healthy workout routine it’s in the mindset, I believe it can happen after a week, month and even longer it all depends how much it’s important to them.”

What is your advice on a cardio program?

“[M]y advice is to find the type of cardio that suits you the best and stick to that, if you don’t like running you can take your bike and if you don’t like the ground then swimming it’s. Same with cardio need to find something that you can stay consistent with.”

Any other general helpful tips you can think of?

“[E]veryone has their days that the motivation levels are down and they just want to quit but before doing that remember why you started in the first place.”

Conclusion

It was nice chatting with Elad over email about his fitness journey. It is an interesting story, and since Elad is 21 at the time that this post was written, there will be more success stories in the future.

I hope that general advice is helpful for readers seeking to start a fitness journey to lose lock-down fat gain.

If you have any questions for Elad, please leave them in the comments or send me an email.

Is there anything you would have asked Elad that was not asked in my interview? Did you feel inspired or encouraged by Elad’s transformation story? Please let me know your questions and reflections in the comments section.

Times Square, New York City, and Calvin Klein

Times Square, New York City, and Calvin Klein

Please like, share, and comment. It helps me know what content you, the reader, like.

The Influence of CK on Underwear Advertising and Social Media Influencers

Introduction

Note: This story is based on observations in a pre-pandemic New York City. May we recover from this pandemic experience, so that we will be able to scale back up with deliberate care–over time–to pre-pandemic levels.

One-time fitness model and personal trainer Kyle Hynick posted some photographs from his photoshoot with New York-based Photographer Jade Young seemingly in Times Square in New York City. The backdrop had people there who appeared not to be looking at a dude posing for photographs in his Calvin Klein underwear. The people essentially appeared to be fully engaged in doing tourist things. Initially, I thought that the background of Times Square was a creation of photo editing.

My thought was not correct. A commentator on Kyle’s photos stated that the commenter viewed Kyle’s photoshoot in person. I was immediately intrigued. Of course, physique competitors seek the limelight and can pose their well-trained and dieted physiques on stage in front of an audience. Posing a physique on a public stage is just a matter of scale.

I discovered that another model, Tyson Dayley, a WBFF pro fitness model, also had a photoshoot in Times Square. In his photos and video that he posted on Instagram, however, the people in the background also were taking photos of Tyson. People were sitting close by.

Times Square, Manhattan, New York City. What draws Photographer Jade Young there? Why a male in underwear appears to be an unsurprising sight? I did a quick Internet search on the history of Times Square to find out.

Times Square: from Gritty to Upscale Tourist Destination and Corporate Location

Times Square, a tourist destination and business area, was once home to adult films and gritty culture. There is a blog post on the history and transformation of Times Square at the Times Square District Management Association website.

Times Square and Calvin Klein Underwear

In Photographer Jade Young’s photos in Times Square, at times the models wear Calvin Klein underwear. There is a connection between Calvin Klein underwear and Times Square: the billboard ads for the underwear brand made history there.

In 1982, Calvin Klein had a billboard ad with Olympic athlete Tom Hintnaus in Times Square. The photographer was Bruce Weber. According to a New York Times article, the billboard ad stopped traffic.

Since then, Calvin Klein ads pushed underwear advertising forward, including the next model, Mark Wahlberg. Following Mark Wahlberg, other models became famous after being featured in a Calvin Klein underwear ad. (See also another article on CK models becoming actors.) The New York Times published another article about another former Calvin Klein model, Antonio Sabato, Jr.

Also in Times Square, is a guy who has made a lot of money walking around Times Square in cowboy boots and underwear, the “Naked Cowboy“. Freshpair’s National Underwear Day, August 5, had a runway show in Times Square.

Jade Young and Times Square Photoshoots

When the Calvin Klein ads first appeared, high-speed Internet or social media sites did not exist. But that history seems to have had some influence on fitness models and influencers, who often feature underwear or men’s clothing brands in their social media posts.

In addition, there are more underwear brands in the market. Still, Calvin Klein, now part of PVH Corporation, remains a strong market player in underwear.

Jade Young now also takes photoshoots in Times Square with men in underwear in person rather than in a billboard photograph. I think the transition also humanizes the model as you could interact with the model and the photographer and perhaps even get an autograph. Formerly, you only could look up at a huge billboard ad.

Jade Young and Kyle Hynick

Kyle Hynick, featured on this blog, posted several photos from Times Square.

Jade Young and Tyson Dayley

Tyson Dayley, a pro fitness model and fitness influencer, also posted photos and videos taken in Times Square.

A Sidenote-Calvin Klein in Hell’s Kitchen, Manhattan

Michael Hallenbeck, an NYC-area photographer had a photo shoot (2018) with fitness model Nick Sandell in Hell’s Kitchen.

Hallenbeck captured images of Sandell posing around Manhattan in a pair of Calvin Klein boxer briefs.

Conclusion

When I looked at Jade Young’s photos of models in Times Square, I did not expect that it would lead to a blog post. But the notion of posing in public so openly was an attention grabber. When doing research and finding articles that traced a story, my old journalistic love for a story was reawakened. I could not resist.

How interesting that a Calvin Klein ad pushed the mainstream culture forward as well as developed many new underwear brands. Despite that, Calvin Klein remains a market force.

If you notice any Instagram posts with other fitness models in Times Square, please leave a comment with the link.

Mens Fitness Models: Richard Duchon

Mens Fitness Models: Richard Duchon

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Richard’s social media: Instagram | YouTube | Website | Training App |

Introduction

Richard Duchon, who was born in Austria, moved to the Netherlands when he was younger and still lives there. Richard is a law student as well as a fitness model, fitness YouTuber, and online trainer. His birthdate is October 8 (Libra).

Currently, he is sponsored by the fitness brand, Gymshark.

After the closure of gyms worldwide as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, several fitness YouTubers created at-home workouts. In writing another blog post on these home workouts, I found some of Richard’s videos on YouTube.

In the time before the pandemic, Richard did several gym workouts, which demonstrate his body-part split routine, which I will also cover in this blog post.

Richard’s Social Media

Richard’s social media: Instagram | YouTube | Website | Training App |

Featured on Fit Media Channel

Richard was featured on Fit Media Channel on YouTube as “The Body of 2019.”

Since that feature, Richard returned to Fit Media Channel to demonstrate workout exercises for the shoulder.

Gym Workouts

Richard, according to one of his YouTube videos, follows a four-day body-part split workout to suit his goal for a balanced physique.

The two ways of training are full-body training, which is a workout for all muscle groups in every workout. Alternatively, you can do what Richard does, which is to train a muscle group or groups each training day.

Richard’s social media: Instagram | YouTube | Website | Training App |

Richard’s Workout

Richard explains his best workout split. Richard takes one day off per week from training.

Chest

Back

Arms

Shoulders and Abs

Cardio

Legs

At-Home Workouts

Bodyweight Workouts

For an experienced weight trainer like Richard, the pandemic-caused closure gyms could present a problem. But, gym trainers like Richard created bodyweight workouts to continue their training in the interim period.

The exercises are those exercises I remember in physical education classes in schools I attended in the United States. It shows creativity and resilience to be able to think of alternative exercises rather than just giving up and waiting for more-ideal training days after the pandemic has ended.

Also, I like the idea of relying on bodyweight exercises, as it allows absolute beginners who are interested to start their own fitness journey with the equipment they already have—some space in an apartment or house and their own body weight.

In the bodyweight workouts, Richard performs full-body training as well as performing his workout split with bodyweight exercises. Based on his exercise form, Richard has been able to master his bodyweight in these exercises.

Home Workouts with Weights

Richard also made home workouts with weights.

Conclusion

As I went to law school as well, I respect Richard for being able to attend to the heavy demand of law school while also taking time to take care of his physique and train his clients.

Although a gym trainer, he is well-acquainted with bodyweight exercises. I saw the relative ease he had doing the bodyweight workouts, showing that he has been doing them along with gym training.

I wish Richard continued success.