I was born and raised in Sydney, Australia. I was a mischievous little brat and I had an intense passion for sport. I was always uber competitive in everything I did.
As a kid I tried many sports but I decided very early on that I wanted to be a professional soccer player. This dream was influenced largely by my Dad, who had come to Australia from England in his 20s and met my Mum. Fittingly, the two met at a gym where Mum worked as a fitness instructor. Looking back, it all makes sense now. 🤔
By the time I was 9 or 10, soccer became my life. I stopped participating in all the other sports. I left school at 15 to travel to South America, Central America and finally to Europe in search of a pro contract. I spent time in residency with several clubs across continents. It was a longtime dream to travel the world playing at that level.
I was a decent player however I never even got close to playing for any of the teams you see on TV every Sunday. At 18 years old I was still trying to earn a spot on the bench with a 2nd division team in Costa Rica.
The harsh reality started to sink in: I probably wasn’t going to be the next Ronaldo. Manchester United weren’t calling anytime soon. Being as idealistic as I was, anything less than superstardom didn’t interest me. As a kid I was the poster boy for “go big or go home”. Applying this mantra to my soccer career I hung up the boots and moved home.
I started racing in triathlons and won a big race in California when I was 18. I was approached by a sponsor after the race. I learned about these guys called “professional triathletes” who trained like animals all day every day and travelled the world racing in extreme endurance events in exotic locations.
After I met a few of these guys I became convinced they were the baddest men on the planet and my life changed forever. I teamed up with one of the most respected coaches in the USA and based myself in Los Angeles. I wanted to be a world champion in what was one of if not the world’s most brutal sport.
California is a popular training base for many of the world’s best cyclists and triathletes. I routinely linked up with Olympians, World Champions and other up and coming pros to train together over the years 🏊🏼♂️ 🚴🏽♂️🏃🏽♂️
After a few years in the sport I knew an Olympic Distance World Title (shorter distance, ~2 hour race) was never on the cards for me. Because of my large frame and heavy build, I didn’t have the foot speed to win that style of race. However I thought my notable strength and my unusual ability to endure a massive volume of training would make me a contender in the Ironman one day (longer race, ~8 hours).
A typical week in my life between ages 19 and 22 might have included 20-25 miles of swimming, 300-350 miles of cycling and 40-50 miles of running, plus a few 60-90 minute weight room sessions. There were many occasions where I surpassed all of those figures in the same week, exceeding 40 hours of training in 7 days.
I woke up at 4am and went to bed at 8pm. I spent every waking minute training or eating. I took a day off from training once every 3 weeks. I rarely saw friends or went to social events. I was completely committed. It was as extreme and ridiculous as it sounds.
I raced in triathlons all over the USA and internationally, winning a bunch of races and proving myself as a top amateur competitor within my first few years in the sport.
My first professional race was in 2014 in New South Wales in my native Australia and I got my ass handed to me. Actually, I didn’t even finish the race. I dropped out. I had been ill for two weeks leading in and it was probably a bad idea to compete. 🤷🏽♂️
Despite showing promise early on, after a few years it became clear to me that I was a long shot at ever winning a world championship or making it to the Olympics. Watching me race the top guys in the sport was like watching a wet buffalo chase a herd of deer. I was just way too big. I was built for the Mr. Olympia, not for the Ironman. 😂
In my early 20s I pivoted away from athletics and became an entrepreneur.
Keeping with the “go big or go home” theme, at 22 I decided to sideline my Olympic dreams and go all-in on tech. Not even a week after my first pro race in February 2014, a friend called and invited me to join him on a business venture. We pitched a developer to join as our lead engineer and the three of us spent the next month hacking together our first app, Timeagram.
I didn’t know it at the time but I was setting off on a rollercoaster ride that would last several years and test my endurance like never before. The app took off. I stopped racing entirely. I traded in my bicycle for an ipad. I spent the next few years living in Santa Monica, known in the tech industry as “Silicone Beach”.
After Timeagram I lead sales teams at a couple of different tech startups, then later CoFounded another consumer app, FashionTap. Years later I built a couple E-commerce brands and worked on a dozen or so different projects in varying capacities. Like many in the tech world I was bouncing from one company to another, working frantically to scale something quickly and sell it so I could retire before my 25th birthday.
During my early years as an entrepreneur I found time for the gym a couple times a week on a good week. I stopped swimming, biking and running cold turkey. My eating and drinking habits were the same as most 20-somethings in the modern western world (ie. my eating and drinking habits were fucking terrible).
I got fat. I completely lost sense of my identity. I grew anxious about my fitness (or lack thereof). I was unhappy. I convinced myself 12 hours work days were necessary and I wore all-nighters like a badge of honor. I would tell myself my weight gain was OK because “I was not an athlete anymore. I was a business man”. For all you ex-college athletes out there… maybe this sounds familiar?
I was overworked. I held down 2-3 side jobs at a time to fund my moonshot startups. This sedentary lifestyle seemed to work for other entrepreneurs but it took me a few years to realize that it didn’t work for me.
After a whirlwind of crazy ups and downs, repeated letdowns and several remarkable low points… I had a full on breakdown at age 24. I went through an extremely dark period of confusion and consternation. I hit the proverbial “rock bottom”, per se.
My athletic adventures seemed like a distant past life. Getting outdoors and enjoying a beautiful day on the trails seemed like something I would never be able to do ever again. I had nothing to show for all my ambitious business endeavors.
I was uncertain about what I was supposed to be doing with my life. I had let my relationships with loved ones deteriorate. Worst of all, I was totally miserable and wasting my precious life. Something had to change.
I left California and spent 4 months living on a farm in a secluded part of the woods in Oregon. I started training again, albeit modestly. I didn’t check my email for 3 months. I stopped working on all my businesses. I started working on myself. It saved my life!
As I turned 25 and entered into the next “quarter” of my life, I began to prioritize my happiness ahead of everything else. I swore to never lose sight of what’s important to me again.
When I was 26 I finally got into good shape again for the first time in 5 years. My journey had taken me from one extreme to another and back again. Well, sort of…
I take a healthier, more sustainable approach to fitness now. I’m not sacrificing my health or my lifestyle to try to win anything. I train like an animal but I do it because I love it and because of the many ways it improves my quality of life.
In the last 10 years, my experiences as both an athlete and an entrepreneur have given me unique insights into the challenges young men face as they try to get ripped and stay super fit while making a living and enjoying life.
So now, I’m putting my vast experience to good use. I’ve developed a system for helping young guys get insanely fit, strong and ripped while still being able to perform at work or school and enjoy their lives.
I started “You’re Dominating” in 2018 to help other young guys in the modern world use fitness to improve their lives and build self confidence.
You’re Dominating is going to help 1000 guys get shredded – that’s the easy part. But one day, it’s going to be much bigger and more impactful than that 😎 👊🏼