Tell me a little about yourself and your background?
My name is Josh McMahan. I am a native Atlantan, born and raised here. I grew up playing all different types of sports, felt like I was always in a season. I found wrestling when I was in third grade and it quickly became my main sport. The successes and failures that I had in this sport are what continues to drive me today. I wrestled in college for a short period of time, until concussions finally ended my career. This was a tough “decision” to make but the long-term effects of this type of injury finally outweighed the upside of continuing to wrestle. I transferred schools to move back closer to home. After a year of more or less just partying, I moved home and took some time off school. Right when I decided I was going to move home my dad was diagnosed with colon cancer. Seeing my dad go through this was a big wake up call to me. While my dad was pretty active, he never really took care of himself. He was a smoker in his younger days, he never ate healthy, and had a desk job for most of his career. All of these things were a reflection of how I was taking care of myself and I knew it was time to make a change. When I moved home, I immediately got a full-time job and a gym membership. I had never fully quit working out after my wrestling career ended, but I definitely didn’t take it very seriously either. That was about to change.
I lost 40 lbs. in about 3 months, and got into the best shape of my life, at least aesthetically. This progress continued for another few months but then I fell off again. There could be many reasons to blame for this, starting school back, working crazy hours, getting into a relationship, partying, but at the end of the day it was the lack of making fitness and health a priority. About a year after taking another break from working out, my best friend/roommate and I decided to get back to it and joined a little 24-hour gym by our apartment. We started going every day, no matter what time it was. We fell in love with working out again and completely transformed. Not only did we take the gym more serious, we also started eating healthier and partying less. This just continued to snowball for me and I truly felt and saw the effects of my hard work. The success in the gym carried over to my personal life and my schooling. I was getting the best grades of my entire life, while taking the hardest courses of my college career. I was about to graduate with honors, was in great shape, and was in an amazing relationship. I graduated college and was offered a full-time position with a great company. Although it was not what I had my eyes set on as a career, I took the job. In the first week, I only worked out twice. Coming from someone who worked out 6-7 days a week, this was just not going to fly. I knew I needed something to hold me accountable to the gym, so I decided I was going to compete in a Men’s Physique bodybuilding show. This decision took me on an adventure I could have never predicted. I absolutely fell in love with transforming my body and learned so much along the way. Through this journey, I found my true passion in health and fitness. I founded Muscles and Mustaches, a company focused on raising awareness of men’s health issues that are onset from living a sedentary lifestyle. I quit my full-time job with the dream and desire of helping men take control of the health, so they can live a happier, more fulfilled life. In just the short time that I have been doing this, the impact that I have had on not only my clients but also people that I grew up with and even many that I don’t even know, has been beyond incredible. I feel satisfied every day, knowing that I get to help men live a healthier life.
What aspect of fitness do you enjoy the most?
The ability to sculpt your body however you want. Some parts require more work and attention, but it can always be done. I always had big legs growing up and a smaller upper body. This was something I drastically wanted to change but I didn’t believe it was possible. Then I put a huge focus on growing my upper body and shrinking the size of my legs. I was amazed at the results I received in just a short period of time. From this point on, I knew it was possible to change my body however I wanted.
How long have you been into fitness?
I have really been into fitness my whole life. Ever since I can remember, I have been playing sports. As I got older, I got more serious about wrestling and started focusing on weight training. I remember hating lifting weights all through high school. I don’t know why, I just did. I think the big change came when my brother and I started working out together in college. The programs were different all the time, and it was a way for us to spend time together and to push one another. However, my true love for fitness came about 2 years ago when I found out how to manipulate my workout and eating routines to get the results I wanted.
What was a turning point for you to take it seriously?
After completely transforming my body and my life with fitness in a short period of time. I quit working out for almost a year. I lost all the changes I had made and was feeling down about myself. I looked in the mirror one day and said enough is enough! I joined a gym the next day and the rest is history.
How has fitness impacted your life?
This is a hard question for me to answer because without fitness I can’t imagine where I would be in my life. Before I truly found fitness, I was not in a good place both mentally and physically. I partied every day and treated my body like complete shit. Fitness helped me find myself and my purpose in life. I have always loved helping people but for a while I didn’t know what I could offer to help people. Now I use my experiences and knowledge to help me gain control on their health. Fitness has introduced to so many amazing people and incredible experiences. I am forever grateful for what fitness has helped me achieve.
What words of advice or encouragement would you like to give to someone who is just starting out or would like to start but doesn’t know where to begin?
“The journey of a thousand miles, starts with a single step.” We all start somewhere, and that starting place is different for everyone. But to get where you want to go, you have to get started! If you have little to no fitness knowledge but really want to change your life; find someone who does and learn from them. This can be a trainer or coach, or even a friend you know that has the knowledge. If you have some experience in fitness, use that to get started! Try what you know for a while and when you feel like you are hitting a plateau, find someone who can help take your fitness to the next level. Don’t get discouraged, even the most fit people in the world have set backs. Just keep putting in the work, and you will be successful.