Passion: Helping men improve their health and vitality.
Vince and his family lived and served missions in Kosovo for several years, and eventually moved back to the States, deciding Ohio was the place to put down their roots. Vince places a high priority on health and strength, and this was spurred by the sudden loss of his brother. You will hear Vince talk about the ways he has been able to reach different communities of people through exercise and healthy eating. He has motivated many men through his coaching concepts of looking deeper than the simple fad diets and exercises. Vince trusts the sciences of movement and nutrition, and combines that with a healthy dose of accountability and purpose. In this feature, you’ll see a local man looking to make an impact in the community through helping men be healthy enough to stick around and be an impact on their families and friends.
“Eleven years ago, my younger brother died in his sleep. It was right before Christmas. The autopsy said congestive heart failure at 43 years old. That was a wake-up call to me. At that point, I started to realize I had to do something. So, I decided to begin running because it was a sport that I could do in my mid-40s.”
“Later, we moved to Kosovo, which is all Muslim, and we served in missions there. It is a very patriarchal culture. Religion-wise, it is based on works and deeds. It prioritizes masculinity, and men benefit from having an attitude of force and strength.
Due to the culture over there, I could only interact with the guys. Women were viewed as a totally different class. The Muslims there would see Christianity as being very effeminate. For example, some guys would ask if I could do something with them, and then they would be appalled that I would check with my wife first. Over there, it just wasn’t in their culture to value women in the same way as men.”
“When I went to Kosovo, I continued my routine of running and the men just knew me as the guy that always runs, and runs forever. My middle son and I were actually on the national running team, which is just a tiny little thing, but it was cool for him to be able to say that he was a part of it. I fell in love with running. And then one day, my knee just went out. I had a meniscus tear, and my doctor said no more high impact. He said I could do pretty much anything else to work out. So, I went and started working out at a gym, and I plugged in some online coaches.”
“I had an opportunity to be around some of the local guys while working out at the gym. The strength training and the science of exercise clicked with me, and I had already studied nutrition in college. In the first four or five months, I really made progress. I was blowing them away. That visible success bought me credibility in their eyes. ‘If Vince is saying this, then maybe I should listen to him.’ Some of the guys watched me transform a couple of other people at the gym with my coaching. Now, I was at the point where I could talk to them about my relationship with my wife and my faith. I had previously studied some of the Quran and Muslim beliefs. So, I could also question them about their faith and I understood how I could prompt them with different questions. My results in the gym helped them to see the evidence of some of the things I knew about training, which led them to trust that I also knew some things about my faith and their faith as well.”
“Back in the early 1970’s, the diet culture began telling everyone that food should be low in fat, and people should cut as many calories as possible. That’s the wrong mindset. People still use some of these ideas and get everything wrong about what’s actually best for fueling their bodies. Many people that I talk to only want to lose weight. But, I try to help people understand that they want to lose fat, and gain muscle. It isn’t all about weight. When you go on a diet… you will eventually go off of a diet. But if you change your mindset and your understanding, then you will change your lifestyle.”
“For me, it’s not just about asking people to sign up to become my clients. I view it as, ‘If you are pushing up daisies, then how can you support and care for your family?’ I regularly say, ‘Leave the legacy of your life for those you love.’”
“It’s about asking ourselves, ‘How can I get better?’ And when we do that, it isn’t, ‘How can I get better to be like Arnold Schwarzenegger?’ Because, if that is how I think, then I will always see myself as a loser. If that is my goal, then it’s a waste of time. The goals that I help other men set are, ‘How can you be the best you?’ and the way you do that is to be better today than you were yesterday.”
“When Covid was at its peak, people couldn’t go to gyms. I already knew the movements and science of weights and how they worked for the body, then I ordered some bands online and began to create ways to get the same results at home. With bands and body weight, I can accomplish all of my fitness goals. With nutrition and these movements, I continued to make gains. So I started creating an online coaching platform to help reach men in these ways.”
“I believe that people’s self esteem today is very low. Because of commercialism, you constantly hear the message of, ‘This is where you should be.’ It’s like me believing that I should be like Arnold Schwarzenegger. And if that’s my expectation, then I will always be a loser, so why should I even try? I try to get people to see their victories, and to grow each and every day toward being a better you.”
“There’s a triangle that I set up for the guys that I work with, and it is the parts of: nutrition, exercise and movement, and accountability. With my guys, we have regular check-ins and it helps to have that accountability to allow iron to sharpen iron. As a coach, I can say things that are 100 times harder than what your wife or friend would say to you, but you don’t take it personally because I hold a different type of relationship.”
“Your health is what you’ve been given, so if you’ve been given that, then you need to use it. If you want to be a part of the lives of your loved ones, then you need to take care of yourself, so you can hope to be around to be a living legacy.”