For New York City resident, fitness professional, and bestselling author, AJ Mihrzad’s life has had its “up and downs”. From dealing with fluctuating weight problems, personal tragedies including a recent home fire, AJ feels that the personal training of his body well compliments the training of his heart, mind, and soul. Rodrick “The Tampanian” Colbert interviewed AJ to find out what has helped him to keep pushing forward.
Colbert: What can you tell us about yourself?
Mihrzad: Well, I was the former chubby kid turned personal trainer, and I really just fell into fitness because I was in severe pain. At 53 pounds overweight, I suffered from severe back pain. I just hated myself, and I needed to change. Fitness gave me the ability to control my physical body, which then led me to lose the pain of my physical appearance, but also the pain of life and not being happy with myself. It gave me an intense feeling of confidence. That feeling of confidence allowed me to really take control of my life, quit my nine to five job, start a business, and branch off into different areas of fitness, nutrition, and psychology. I am the owner of Life Fuel Fitness which is based in Great Neck, NY and the founder of LifeFuel Supplements along with fitness software called LeanBuddy. Life Fuel Fitness was honored with being Voted the #1 Fitness/Weight-Loss Program in Long Island for 2013 by the Best of Great Neck Award Program.
Colbert: What part of the country do you call home?
Mihrzad: I currently reside in New York.
Colbert: Who inspires me the most?
Mihrzad: I have to say a combination of Anthony Robbins, Eckhart Tolle, and Warren Buffett. All three are great men, and they influenced me in a lot of different ways: Anthony Robbins for his performance and ability to teach me that I could have everything I want out of life. Eckhart Tolle taught me to live in the present moment and to have peace of mind as my highest ability. Warren Buffett just inspires me to literally make as much of an impact as I can on the world, but also give back in the process, extreme generosity.
Colbert: How long have you been into fitness and since when have you been very “hard core?”
Mihrzad: I’ve been into fitness, I would say, over 10 years now. I guess I really got hardcore a few years after I started to basically lose the weight. My goal was to just get abs. I really didn’t have much muscle. I went from being obese to skinny fat and then just plain old skinny. At that point, I then realized that if I had this much control in losing fat, I could also have the control to also gain muscle. Over the years, I’ve been into many different places from bodybuilding to power lifting to extreme endurance training, and martial arts. Finally, I settled on a level of balance, functional muscle that is both aesthetic and doesn’t take up as much of my time from a nutritional point of view.
Colbert: What is an average day life for you?
Mihrzad: That’s a great question. I haven’t been asked what my average day is like. Well, I have a very strict morning routine that I adhere to no matter what happens. That consists of reading, writing, breathing exercises, showing gratitude, listening to audio programs, and most times working out. I then get into my e-mails, focus on my different businesses. And I spend time working hard and playing hard, really just sprinting all out and taking short rests to recuperate and rejuvenate.
Colbert: As the founder of LifeFuelFit.com, what is your fitness philosophy?
Mihrzad: As the founder of LifeFuel Fit, my program encompasses the areas of fitness, nutrition, and mindset and bringing all three areas to work in unison to help someone transform their body. I have an undergrad in Exercise Science and a Masters in Psychology. I’ve used my educational background along with 12 years of experience as a trainer to help hundreds of people get into the best shape of their lives. Being overweight myself for many years allowed me to see weight loss from the point of view of many of my clients so I understand first hand how difficult the process is. I also created a fitness software and app called “Leanbuddy” that allows me to hold my clients accountable 24/7. This is the secret sauce on how I get so many results with my clients. I’ve been able to keep such a high success rate because I keep my clients motivated and disciplined towards following my programs consistently.
Colbert: Is it limited to only people interested in weight loss? What about bodybuilders?
Mihrzad: I would say I don’t adhere to everyone in my fitness program. My focus is more with beginners or people that are intermediate. I don’t really deal with too many advanced fitness people or bodybuilders. I use to cater to everyone, but then I realized that I wasn’t very specific. Now that I have a target client in mind, I am able to help them rather than diluting my program to fit everyone’s needs.
Colbert: Recently, you have revealed several personal setbacks. What can you tell us about these and how have you found the strength to overcome them?
Mihrzad: Recently, I have revealed personal setbacks. I feel that my many years of both fitness discipline and personal development have helped me overcome them. It’s just like anything in life. I’ve had some pretty bad tragedies and losses as of late, but of course, like anything, you learn how to deal with them. You do your best to manage yourself in a situation, whether it’s getting out of a survival mode, getting the right resources, and most importantly, being in the right mindset. I’ve found that the mindset is the most important element and I really base my whole business and life around it. So the first thing I focus on in many situations is to make sure my mind is in the right place.
I use to deal with personal setbacks by either working out or trying to stay productive or even going through a tragedy and just plug right through it. Then I realized that it would make me burnt out or made me feel worse, so now I focus more on my mindset. The way I get myself in the utmost mindset is having a conversation with a loved one or someone very positive, writing, inventing, letting it out, or just focusing on the present moment and realizing that a lot of things are out of my control, because I can only control a few things and I know that this too will pass. In reality the worse things just happen inside my mind. I create these terrible, terrible worst-case scenarios when I deal with tragedy, but I come to realize that it never really happens that way, so I try not to worry that much and I keep the faith that everything will work out. I also focus on gratitude because gratitude always brings me back, making me realize how blessed and lucky I am, so I just live in a state of gratitude as much as I can and that has really helped me to get over these speed bumps that we get on this journey we call life.
Colbert: What future plans to do have and are you interested in a more national media presence like a T.V. Show or a major best selling book?
Mihrzad: Well, of course, in the future, I would love to reach out to more people. Recently I launched a book that became a best seller and it’s called The Mind Body Solution: Train Your Brain for Permanent Weight Loss. Writing this book has given me the ability to connect with many people that have never heard of me, now they have become aware of my philosophy within their lives. I am so blessed and I would love to make bigger impacts in due time. At this moment, I don’t have any expectations. I used to have expectations of where my life should be, but now I just allow my life to guide me because I’m in the right place and exactly where I should be at this point. I try not to push too much, even though I’m very ambitious and I want as much success as I can get, but I also learned to enjoy what I have in the moment and I know that my future will always be taken care of.
Colbert: What is one final thought that you would like everyone to remember?
Mihrzad: One final thought that I want to be remembered by is a philosophy I share in my book, my business and in my life and that is to maximize the moment. We are so busy thinking about our past and our future and not really living in the present, which is where life truly exists. The more present we are, the happier we’ll be. It’s not just being present; for example just meditating all day long and not having any attachments. Rather my philosophy of maximizing the moment consists of being present and taking the appropriate action to move your life forward.
Realizing that you have an ideal self and in every situation of your life, your ideal self knows exactly what to do. Mostly it’s the really scary stuff like stepping out of your comfort zone, starting up a conversation, or taking a specific action. Doing something that you know should be done that will improve your life, even if causes some pain or discomfort initially.
By doing that, you will just catapult your life to so many different places and possibilities, meet people and be blessed with opportunities that you never had before.
My advice is to just spend one day, 24 hours just ”maximizing the moment”. Live in the NOW, be fully present, be aware of your thoughts, your actions, and your emotions, and do the best you can.
Just really live that moment to the fullest. Get crazy and see what happens; I would love to hear your results.