"I first met Travis in 2010 at a small jiu-jitsu club in South Kansas City. I was a relative newbie there, taking up the grappling art in an attempt to shed the blubber that had slowly accumulated around my waist, thighs, ass...you get the idea. It wasn't good. I wasn't good. Not at jiu-jitsu and not with myself, but I had at least taken some steps to improve my 'situation'.
Anyway, Travis was there as a guest one night teaching some wrestling and takedown technique. I doubt he remembers meeting me that night, but I remember the evening well. Travis is the kind of guy who makes an impression, a no-nonsense one.
I would not encounter Travis again until I moved my jiu-jitsu training to Kansas City Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in 2011. I believe I rolled with him my second or third time attending KCBJJ. Again, probably not something he remembers, but it's an experience I still haven't forgotten.
I had maybe dropped 10lbs since I had first met Travis, but I was still carrying a ridiculous amount of weight, around 265lbs. of it. So me = fat, out-of-shape and lacking in both technique and mobility.
Travis, in his way, was polite about kicking my ass that night, but I think he submitted me about five times in two minutes. He never made me feel out of place, though, not from a personal standpoint anyway (physically, yes). He offered me advice and quality instruction because that's what he does. He's as real as real gets and he is all about helping people reach their full potential.
So Fast forward to 2012. I'm still struggling to overcome the battle of the bulge. I mean this stuff was hanging on for dear life and lackluster commitment to defeating it was not helping the matter.
But I made my best decision in that seemingly endless fight in March of that year, signing up for 12 personal training sessions at Travis' Underground Gym.
I guess I should pause here to give a little more of my personal background. At one point in my life, I was an athlete. I was quick, agile and almost always involved in some sort of physical activity. But a busy, sedentary job and the responsibility of raising four kids had somehow wiped away my once active existence and transformed me into an excuse laden toad.
I went from 200lbs. to 275lbs. in just over four years. And I felt completely worthless. I looked awful, I felt awful and I probably seemed awful to those closest to me. But, as I said, I was good at finding excuses. I could not start working out because I was too busy. I didn't have time. I could not change my eating habits for the same reasons, or so I said to myself.
Consequently, I remained mired in my own personal muck, both physically and mentally. I finally reached a breaking point, convincing myself I had to do something if I wanted be able to do anything with my kids as they grew older. The sobering thought of being too fat, tired and out of shape to play with my children propelled me to sign up for jiu jitsu in 2010. And that, as I previously stated led to my fortuitous meeting with Travis.
Back to Underground, I weighed 249.6lbs at my first training session. I left the first workout, as I did every subsequent one, feeling sore and worn out but also accomplished. Travis pushes you every minute and he has an uncanny ability to provide the exact motivation you need exactly when you need it.
I can honestly say I've never met anyone like him. He is not only a tremendous person, one who cares deeply about the people he trains, but he is, perhaps, the most dedicated athlete I've ever encountered. And he brings that same dedication and enthusiasm in helping clients meet their goals.
Travis helped me rediscover my old self, the one who didn't make excuses, the one who enjoyed an active life. I lost nearly 30lbs. working with him at Underground Gym during that short time and I have continued the healthy eating and exercise habits I learned there. I am happy to report I am under 200lbs for the first time in over 15 years.
So if you're on the fence about getting yourself back in shape, get the Hell off of it. The decision is on you. No one can help you if you don't first help yourself. I can promise if you do, Travis will get you where you want to go!"