Transformation: Juan Toran
Juan Toran had been following my six month program from the “Maximus Body” when he was in a terrible motorcycle accident which ended his training completely. Doctors told him he would probably never lift weights again and that if he did it would take months or even years. Juan was in tremendous pain and this led to him feeling sorry for himself, sitting around, poor eating and worst of all feeling sorry for himself. He lost all of his fitness, gained an excessive amount of bodyweight and had all but given up.
When I met him at a seminar I was teaching in Minnesota we had already emailed a few times so I knew his story. I gave him a signed book and wrote inside of it “there are no limits”. I told him not to let his injury hold him back and that if he wanted a change he could make one. I challenged him to fight for himself. I told him if he couldn’t lift weights with his upper body then everyday should be “MFLD” (Mother Fucking Leg Day) until he could
He accepted the challenge and despite being a police officer, with two kids and a wife at home, with an extremely busy schedule he was able to undue all the damage that had been done. Not only that he got in the best shape of his life.
With some hard work he made a transformation as powerful as I have ever seen both mentally and physically.
His story in his own words is below:
“I’m a dad to two young and energetic kids. I’m in my thirties. I am married. I’m a full time cop. I’m in that time of my life where each day is a non-stop race to juggle career and family responsibilities between two busy, full-time working parents.
Last summer, I was nearly done with Bobby Maximus’ “Maximus Body” 6 month program when my motorcycle slid out from underneath me at about 40 mph on a left curve descending a mountain in Idaho. I hit a pole, which caused me to high side over the bike and into a rocky clearing. I don’t remember the crash, these are things that were put together by my riding buddies reading the marks on the road. I limped away with a concussion, a broken rib, a separated AC joint in my right shoulder, bumps and bruises all over and a lot of road rash.
The ER doctor told me I would never press weight again. The orthopedic doctor I saw back home was more hopeful that I would recover, but he said it would take months or even years.
I spent the rest of the next several weeks in about as much pain as I’ve ever felt. I needed help getting dressed and getting in and out of bed. Laughing, coughing, sneezing, moving and reaching all hurt. So I did less of them. I sat around. I began feeling sorry for myself. I gained weight.
I attended one of Bobby Maximus’ seminars hosted by Joe Cebula at Crossfit Twin Cities. I left my sling in the car before I walking in, trying to not draw attention. I remember sitting through the seminar worried about what others were thinking of the big dude not participating in the exercises. Bobby and I had exchanged emails, so he knew who I was and what my situation was. At the end of the night, he wrote “There are no limits” in my book. He looked me in the eye and told me that if upper body was out of the question, then “every day is mother fucking leg day.”
I took it to heart. I began doing lunges and air squats every day. I started slow because my body was bruised up and my broken rib stabbed my insides if I breathed hard or twisted in any way. Eventually, I was able to begin moving faster and doing light cardio on a bike. Two months later I began jumping into modified WODs at the CrossFit gym where I teach breath-controlled-isometric-strength-and-flexibility classes (AKA yoga).
In the meantime, I watched on Instagram as Joe went through the 12 week “two-a-day” program from the “Maximus Body”. I remember thinking to myself that I wish I had time for that. How would I ever find time to fit in two-a-days while working 12 hour shifts, teaching yoga, raising kids and being a good spouse?
As the weeks progressed, I began lifting heavier and finding my shoulder able to do more and more. For no other reason than the fact that it landed on a Monday, on 1/1, I jumped headfirst into Bobby’s 12-week program. I changed my mindset from “I wish I had time” to “I will make time.” I wanted to rebuild myself not just to what I was before the crash, but to a new and improved version of myself, stronger, faster and leaner than before.
I sent Bobby an email to let him know what I was doing and he pointed me in the direction of his good friend Joe Cebula for coaching and support. Joe and I got in touch and discussed workout facilities, nutrition and schedule. I checked in with him several times a week, and when he didn’t hear from me for a couple days he would check in with me. He was a profound source of knowledge across the board – from training to injury rehab to proper recovery. As the weeks progressed, I embraced the suck through the workouts and felt the last remnants of my injury subside. Less than 6 months after my crash, I was pressing, lifting and moving with nearly no range of motion difficulty or pain.
The 12 week program isn’t easy if you take it seriously. It hurts. A lot. There is no DOMS, there is only CMS (Constant Muscular Soreness). But the results speak for themselves. I shaved 30 seconds off my 2K row (and now row it under 7 minutes). I added 21% to my bench press, 12% to my squat and 5% to my deadlift. I became faster and stronger. My body composition shifted. I look great. I added a little shred plan at the end and ended up looking better now, in my thirties (and less than a year after a serious traumatic injury), than I ever did in my teens or twenties.
It’s not an easy road, but that is what makes it worthwhile. If you think you don’t have time, you simply don’t want it badly enough. I made it happen and I work 12 hour shifts in a high-stress job, I am an involved father and husband. If you are reading this, you could be doing pushups instead. Put your phone down and go get it.”