My Story

At the age of 21 I began my spiritual awakening. I believe most people like to site the time in their life that they gained the clarity to pull themselves back into alignment with their life’s true purpose as their spiritual awakening. To me the important first steps were when I became unmistakably clear that I had veered off a path towards my true essence. I was wrapping up a college career that was by most people estimation fantastic. Four years of division 1 athletics, a 4.0 from a top 10 University, and various awards and recognition of success. But beneath that was fear, uncertainty, and a lack of joy. For the first time in my life I was face to face with the discomfort that none of my accomplishments mattered because I didn’t feel inspired or happy about my path.

Early on I made an attempt to escape the discomfort. I traveled to the far reaches of the globe to hide from those fears and uncertainty. But I learned quickly that you cannot escape those feelings. In fact when I left my home and traveled away those fears and uncertainties followed me, and suddenly I there were no daily distractions. For the first time in almost 4 years since I began college I spent all my days in the moment. I remained present each day to experience life as it unfolded, not how I had hoped and planned for it to go. I learned for the first time that it was OK to lose control, to but unhappy and share that with someone else, and to be completely filled with happiness and tell those around me.

College was over and I was seeing life through a new lens. How was I going to live my most authentic life and not try to be anything for anyone else but me? How was I going to follow my heart and persevere on my path towards creating a life that was filled with purpose, integrity, and joy? The answer was not easy to see and my life needed to take one more final detour to help steer me towards the life I lead today.

Medical school was a rewarding experience. Intellectually I was constantly stimulated. I had to remain disciplined in my life’s daily rituals and habits in order to be healthy and stay informed as a student. Ultimately my time in medical school was the final test in my spiritual awakening path. It called into question my commitment to my happiness, my essence, and myself. A voice inside of me was telling me over and over again that I was on the wrong path and that I was betraying the path that I was supposed to be on by staying in medical school. I allowed myself to share this vulnerability with my friends, family, and classmates. And despite the mixed feelings of those closest to me in my life I followed my instinct and left school.

The chapter of my life that followed is simply a manifestation of me finally making choices to live out my essence. I went to medical school with the dream of one day being able to teach and empower people with the knowledge and tools they needed to begin their own pursuit of health and happiness. So that had to begin with me. For over 3 years I have committed myself to the pursuit of health and happinesss. Through a balance of daily disciplines while staying receptive to new ideas and methods I’ve cultivated a lifestyle that gives back to me while allowing me to give to others. Having humility while carving out a path for myself has made room for tremendous growth and guidance from places I never thought I would receive it from.

Living the lessons I try to teach to others remains the foundation of my life. Leading from the front is the best and only way I know how to see my message get spread. Life presented me with an opportunity to share with people the best and worst parts of my life. Showing everyone that it is ok to fail just as it is ok to celebrate success has become an instrumental tool in my quest to help people lead healthier and happier lives. By staying committed to these principles, by sharing my own vulnerabilities, I hope to connect to a wider audience.

My spiritual journey continues only now I am blessed to be able to share it with so many amazing people. You know you have found your passion when it allows you to live out your essence daily. Sharing, leading, discipline, vulnerability, perserverence; this is the mantra that drives my career and pushes me to excel in my sport. I coach and compete in the sport of fitness because my life feels right when I’m leading by example and stay disciplined. I coach and write about my experiences being an athlete because sharing with others and giving is what ultimately allows me to receive from the world.  Owning my vulnerabilities and facing them in the public eye is what allows me to persevere and grow.

This is not a training and nutrition log. This is my life. At times repetitive, at other times extreme, but always with an open heart and a receptive lens to experience each day and moment for what it has to offer me. If one persons connects with an emotion, a daily ritual, an experience, or a thought I have then I’m living my dream.

Without you this journey is incomplete.

Marcus

7 thoughts on “My Story

  1. I started my OPT experience with Coach James Taylor a few weeks ago and I stumbled upon your blog soon after when I was looking through the OPT main site. I just wanted to tell you that as a person who likes to blog my own experience for myself I am amazed with how in-depth you are in your blog. I have made visiting your blog and reading your journey apart of my daily routine. Thank you for letting us into your life and journey. I am constantly learning from your information and experience as it aids me in my own.

    Maxwell Hearth

  2. Marcus,

    Im sitting here on a Sunday before an exam week in Med School. I, like you, feel conflicted with this path. I started CF in 2009 with my brother. Last year we started a CF gym 1 month before I got my acceptance letter to med school. Im not sure how I could describe the feeling but in light of the pressure from family, friends and all the work I put in to get that acceptance, I decided to enroll. Im finishing my 1st year now and its been an incredibly stressful yet rewarding time of life. In the back of my mind I know my passion lies back at that CF gym. Yet I love many things about medicine, except medicine (if that makes sense). I love the science, the patient interaction and the cerebral challenge. Yet I dislike the drugs, chronically (self-inflicted) diseased patients seeking them, and of course the long hours and stress. I cannot see myself in a specialty where I have to diagnose common disease and presecribe day after day. Anyways Ill stop rambling but I wanted to see if I could get your email to chat about your experience in med school.
    -Nick

  3. Wow, I distinctly recall looking at some triathlon-related medal I won in college or something and feeling this sinking feeling inside. (At first it was nice/the rush of adrenaline but later on just looking at the medal made me feel really numb/dead) I was like ‘what the heck wrong with me’~ this is supposed to be a time of celebration/recognition that I trained for, etc!

    I am glad you found your path. I took 20 years longer to find mine. Isn’t it funny what our individual paths turns out to be? I mean its just wild, really. Today I was talking to myself before my morning run about a bunch of house remodeling projects on our plate (too many to mention) and I said to myself ‘Well, Kelly, who cares? The proverbial “they” are only in my head! Who cares if I have a brand new stainless steel stove and dishwasher when instead I am choosing to travel/run trails worldwide/put my money into my passions versus living up to the Jones’s in my head.” Then as usual I headed off on my pre-dawn run in the beautiful rocky mtns of Colorado with a huge smile on my face. And I chased down the most amazing burned orange/bright pink sunrise… ahhh….

    Because at the end of our lives no one outside of ourselves truly cares what we do and how we do it. But we do/we know if we choose to allow ourselves to fulfill our destiny. Those voices inside nudging us to right ourselves back to our true purpose in life. Cheers to listening to those voices!

  4. Hi Marcus,
    I stumbled upon your page tonight and am so thankful that I did. I am currently struggling with a similar predicament as I pursue my DPT. My ultimate goal in life is to help people move and live better. I want to make a difference in the world and help people be healthy. Recently, I have fallen in love with the sport of fitness. As a former collegiate athlete, I love being able to move and challenge myself daily. However, the DPT program is so rigorous that I know I will have to put my involvement with Crossfit on hold for at least 3 more years. I would love to talk more with you about how you made your final decision to leave medical school and how you set out to continue to thrive. I am worried that without my DPT I will not be able to make as big of an impact. Thank you again for sharing your story. I truly respect your vulnerability and look forward to hopefully speaking soon.

    Sofi P.

    • Hey Sofi,

      Making the switch from medical school to pursue a career in health and fitness made the decision a bit easier for me. Don’t get me wrong, it was still extremely difficult. However, I ended up doing health care in a way. I knew I wanted to be involved in this field but I had simply chosen the wrong outlet for me. So here I am now, almost a decade later, and very grateful I followed my heart.

      Thanks,
      Marcus

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