Meet Zak

I have been fortunate to have been a strength coach and personal trainer since the year 2000. I found my career by chance, but love the day that I found this path and realized this is what I love to do. I have been very fortunate to have been exposed to a lot of different mentors and teachers over the years that have helped broaden my horizon as well as fill me with the best educational information in this industry. When I started this journey I was boxing at 147 and 156 lb weight classes in amateur boxing. In 2001 I competed in the Chicago Golden Gloves in the 156 lb class and made it to the semi-finals. I fought my fight with a fever of 102 and lost on points. I was disappointed in myself for losing, but I am proud that in the condition I was in I still went out there and fought. In October of 2001, I ran in the Chicago Marathon with a time of 2:59:57 which qualified me as an Elite as well as qualifying me for the Boston Marathon. I used an unorthodox training method for the marathon of heavy squats, deadlifts, and lifting in general, along with only running short distances with the main focus being on speed. The longest distance I ever ran in training was 12 miles. I believe this helped me be so successful in completing the marathon with such a great time.

I was re-introduced to powerlifting in 2003 and started competing in 2005. I love this sport as I love competing against myself – always trying to improve and better myself. I have been extremely fortunate to have learned from people such as Jim Wendler of Elite Fitness Systems at the time, Sebastian Burns and Mike Miller of Metal Militia, Louie Simmons and Chuck Vogelpohl of Westside Barbell and the amazing pleasure to train under, and with, Ed Coan for over 10 years. All of these giants influenced me and my training and it was always a pleasure to learn from them.

Please don’t confuse my hobby of powerlifting with my career as a trainer. My sport has helped me to become a better trainer but it is not my goal to make each and every client a powerlifter (but I wouldn’t complain!). It has helped me to take what I can and pass it along to my clients to suit their needs, wants and goals. I’m willing to learn from anyone that will pass something along that I can use to help anyone I’m working with, as my end goal is to get people the results they want and more!

Chicago Marathon October 2001

Time 2:59:57