Today's Interview: As I'm sure many of you know I am a HUGE fan of Barry's Bootcamp and have had great success with his Fat Blaster workouts! So needless to say I was thrilled to have the opportunity to "interview" him for a Two Belles Fitness post. I really like his inspiring responses so I wanted to share them here :) as well
Belles: We LOVED your 5 Day Academy & BBC Fat Blaster. Do you have any new dvds on the horizon?
Barry: Not right now but would definitely love to do more. I've always wanted to do one for kids. I love kids and thinks its important to help them find their way with exercise and nutrition young...
Belles: Many of us are familiar with you from your workouts, but for those that aren’t, can you tell us a little bit about yourself and how you found yourself involved in fitness?
Barry: Sure. I think probably the most surprising thing is that I'm quiet outside of bootcamp. I love being at home with my 3 dogs just writing... hanging with friends, nothing big or splashy. I'm almost never out and about at the popular hang outs... whatever they are these days.
I found fitness back in the 80's and loved it. guess just living in LA it was hard to not see it all around me. I worked in entertainment public relations and management, working with Roseanne, Bill Cosby, Lou Rawls, Dionne Warwick - I managed Chaka Khan for two years...it was another life. I got fired. I went to work on a temp assignment for Weho city hall (lets just say I type fast) and when that was over the Mayor referred me to a friend of his who had a fitness studio. I needed a job and loved fitness and working behind the desk I was told I could take classes for free. Sold! As soon as I started working there was taking like 17 classes a week... you might say I was addicted. Then one day working there, an instructor didn't show up and the manager sent me in to teach. I was HOOKED!! That class became mine - then other instructors quit and in three weeks I had 27 classes a week - and in two years only missed 2!! my biz partner John and Rachel Mumford were students in my classes... when that place closed suddenly (by now I'm working at the weather channel AND instructing) John said we should open a place together - he had the $$$, Rachel was over the actress thing and wanted something she could sink her teeth into and I would be the main dude instructor. I was scared but it was too good to turn down... John was (is) one of the smartest people I knew and Rachel is the most driven and knows so much about presentation!! I knew dumbbells! :-) We were the perfect triangle and we knew it. We actually opened in the same place that fitness studio closed. so you can say I own the desk I used to work behind, thanks to John and Rachel. Pretty amazing!!
Along the way this pretty cool kid came along; had more on the ball than anyone I had really ever seen - he was on FIRE. He started working there, then instructing at bootcamp and long story short we are all partners now, its Joey Gonzalez and without him we would not be in NYC right now - which is pretty amazing!!
Belles: You mention giving up sugar in your dvds, what advice can you offer those of us that would love to give up sugar but dont know where to start?
Barry: It was SO HARD!! I tried and failed many times. I seriously had to take it one day at a time. I just made sure that I had plenty of the foods I could eat around....and got the crap out of the house. It was one of the best things I ever did for myself. Sugar is a drug and eating sugar makes us want more sugar. I gave up dairy as well which also helped. Dairy can make you crave sugar. Go figure. If you're able to have a cheat meal a week that includes sugar and the rest of the time you're fine - more power to ya. I had to give it up and I lost about 15 lbs just from giving up sugar - results kept me going strong.
Belles: How did giving up sugar benefit you?
more natural energy
ate better foods instead
not "depending" on it was freedom
Belles: There are many known benefits to exercising beyond aesthetics, what is your number one motivator to continue exercising?
Barry: Aside from health - number one benefit is positive thinking! Working out helps us over come our negative thoughts. No, its not the cure but it helps a lot. I have seen people workout and then stop and get depressed. There's a direct connection between mind and body - one that should be honored. I think it also helps keep us on track with the rest of our decisions in life. maybe we just quit smoking or we are eating better because we are working out - if we stop working out we may start throwing those other things out the window of "who cares" - also working out gives us energy! the less we do, the less we wanna do. working out gets our bodies wanting to live our lives more energetically!!
Belles: How has fitness helped you become the person you are today?
Barry: Seriously - it saved my life. When I first started working out I was a drug addicted kid who over dosed many times - one time I made it home and wasn't sure how. I was 120 lbs and gaunt!! I gave up EVERYTHING (cigarettes, drugs, drinking, not eating) and joined a gym. I drank weight gain drinks and started eating regular meals! The transformation was incredible and those who knew me couldn't believe their eyes. Aside from that fitness has given me a way to help others which has helped me not only stay in shape but feel purposeful in this life. it's changed me because I have seen people age without grace and honestly - I feel like a kid! I love being in shape at my age (48) and knowing I can stay this way and appreciate the one body God gave me - taking care of it so I can be enjoying life at 80!!
Belles: I also meant to ask about your BBC Gym. If you want to include any info about it: what can you share with us about your gym Barry's Bootcamp?
Barry: Treadmills, weights, resistance bands, great energizing music - creating a fun hard working environment where people can get the best workout in the world! I want them to feel like they have a personal trainer - I know them. I'm there to help. I help with food. I love seeing bootcampers become friends. its that kind of place. you come in there dry and leave soaking wet. as I say to them 'the wetter the better' every day is a different body part - every week that body part is approached a slightly different way - we keep you on your toes and truth they keep me on my toes because I want them to have the best workout in the world and I work hard to bring it to them.