In an era where health & fitness plays an integral part in many people’s journeys, who better than Hollywood’s Premier Mind & Body trainer Chris DiVecchio to share with us not only a few fitness tips but also his success story as a leading trainer not just in Hollywood but around the world.
I remember when I first connected with Chris nearly a decade ago when he was acting in LA and we had a bunch of friends in common. Throughout the years I have followed his journey on Social Media and I can say it has been pretty impressive.
We can all enter a gym, find a trainer, do a few sessions, get tired because it’s too much hard work or because we don’t get inspired.
Chris DiVecchio is not your average trainer, he is a student of life who not only will help you physically but mentally. He will inspire you to be the best you possibly can be. And I feel honored he has given his time to answer a few questions for us.
He brings a wealth of self-development transformation mixed with a very practical technique to his fitness training. Coming from a bodybuilding background and a D1 collegiate hockey career, Chris realized that he wanted to teach his simple techniques and strategies to help others achieve both physical and mental acuity.
As a fitness trainer and lifestyle specialist, Chris has a knack for inspiring accountability and achieving results quickly. With each client, Chris develops a unique and effective nutrition and personal training strategy. His vast knowledge of great recipes and food combinations allow him to create a diet that not only tastes great but will also be easy to maintain.
Chris has developed innovative fitness concepts and practices for all types of clients who are all working through very different life experiences, and he is excited to talk with you about your goals.
And if you think Hollywood is too far for those outside of the USA, then don’t! because Chris will bring Hollywood to you!. He works with clients globally and thanks to the technology we all use, it can be as efficient online as he can be in person.
So why don’t we let Chris tells us more about how this all begun!
First of all Chris, you have no idea how happy I am to do this interview with you, as you know I am all about inspiring and success stories of people who have worked hard, who have built something from the ground up and you are for sure a role model to many people who many want to follow in your footsteps.
As I mentioned earlier, we met as you were doing some acting in LA, I understand fitness is part of any actor’s regime, but how did you move from acting to fitness as a career? Can you tell us a little bit about your acting background and what was the turning point?
I’ve always been an athlete. My athletic career began back east in Boston where I played division 1 college hockey. Towards the end of my hockey career I became interested in weightlifting as a way to get stronger. But quickly fell in love with how I was easily able to transform my body. This peaked my interest and the jumping off point of an amateur bodybuilding career which then led to fitness modeling opportunities in New York.
After I graduated college I moved back to Boston where I continued to pursue modeling as well as taking acting classes. It was January of 2002 that I caught some interest from a manager in LA and it didn’t take long to make a decision to pack my bags and move out West. I spent 12 years in the entertainment industry doing everything from modeling, acting, TV, film, bartending, and personal training on the side. My true passion for the art of acting kept me going through those 12 years some of which were great and some of which were difficult. However, it started to reach a point where opportunities were slowing down and I knew I wanted more out of life. I knew I had a different approach to health and wellness and I literally made the decision overnight that I was going to start my business.
On a $1500 loan, I got from a friend I built a 10x10 structure out of wood, plumbing pipe, and electrical conduit. Purchased all the equipment I needed and opened up doors for business. I gave myself one year to hit a financial threshold that would be a turning point to walk away from my acting career. Two days shy of that date I hit my goal, called my management team, left acting and Premier Mind & Body took off.
That’s a pretty big leap you took Chris and it for sure has paid off. So what exactly is Premier Mind & Body fitness? What is the process at PMB?
Premier mind and body is a wellness concierge service that works intimately with individuals to customize programs that involve nutrition, exercise and vitamin supplementation.
In addition to those three components there’s an element of lifestyle coaching that is carefully integrated into the program to help client’s development high level of self-awareness to initiate the alignment of their actions and their goals. Before a client begins, together we go through an in-depth consultation that provides me with a lot of information about where they have been in their lives where they are currently and where they’re looking to go.
I also take a look at dietary restrictions, any type of medical issues, injuries, sleep patterns to determine how specifically I’m going to design their program as efficient as possible.
Now I understand you slogan of “Change the way you train”, which as you say, it speaks to your concept of taking a more methodical approach to fitness. You put a lot of emphasis on nutrition and recovery as opposed to the trap ,most people fail into of food restriction and overtraining.
So how can your program help change people’s lives? What’s your method?
I think most people when they enter the program are not aware of what their full potential is. Through the process of my 90 day transformation, we spend a lot of time identifying underlining issues that may be leading to habits that are holding them back from achieving the results they are looking for not only in the gym but in their lives as well.
The beauty of this program is that it teaches people the value of doing the inner work and not just the outer work. My method that I use involves a deep level of compassion as I understand the various struggles that people face in their lives. I often say that I’ve lived a thousand lives within my 40 years and by that, I mean I have worked on farms, I’ve worked blue collar jobs in construction, I’ve worked in bars and restaurants, I’ve worked in sales jobs, I’ve worked as an actor and now I work as an entrepreneur having started my own business.
With all that experience, I feel as though its helped me to understand and also figure out how to work around the different struggles associated with the different lifestyles. Because of that, my clientele is greatly diverse, but filled with the same purpose. Everyone is just trying to live the best life they can and be the best version of themselves
I love this because you bring the wisdom you have gathered from life onto what you do now. I have seen quite few transformations with your program over the years, but one of the most recent ones has been featured in places such a Good Morning America, Men’s Health, New York Post, Men’s Fitness & The Independent. What was so special about Walter’s transformation?. How hard was it to achieve what he wanted?
Walters transformation was a very unique situation. Initially, the journey began because Walter had a lot of money on the line for a prop bet where he had to get below 10% body fat in 6 months. When he came to me he was at 33% body fat and 245 lbs. Aside from the money what I thought the most interesting part of the story was how Walter really opened himself up to my program and completely changed his life.
This was more than a physical transformation. Walter’s relationship with friends and family and himself dramatically changed. So, it became bigger than the money. The most challenging part of this process was the fact that we had to hit a certain body fat percentage as appose to just losing weight.
Trying to lose body fat and build muscle at the same time can be easy obtained over the course of a year or two but trying to drop from 33% body fat to under 10% body fat in 6 months was by far the biggest challenge I’ve faced in my professional career because the balance of fat to muscle was so delicate. I would say that honestly most people would not be able to accomplish this in the short amount of time.
You talk a lot about unlocking your true potential. Can you tell us more about that philosophy?
When talking about true potential, I use a scale of 1-10. One being your absolute worst and 10 being your absolute best. Most people often live between a 3 and a 6 but what is interesting is that they believe that their 6 is actually a 10. Once they hit that 6 they think they have arrived and that backslide quickly begin towards the 3.
What I hope to achieve when working with clients is to get people to living between a 7 and 10. I push people to their real 10 so they can see what it looks like to live at their highest potential while the 7 becomes their balancing point. A 10 would be someone getting ready for a vacation, a wedding, a photo shoot, a reunion, whereas a 7 would allow you to be more flexible with your nutrition and exercise.
What can a new client expect when working with Chris DiVecchio? Can you tell us the difference between getting to work with you face to face and remotely?
A new client can expect to be dealing with a coach that will force them out of their comfort zone. If you’re looking for a real transformation the only place we can begin is with the truth. I have clients send me initial photos and we do photo updates every 2 weeks thereafter to track their progress. The initial photos are often difficult for people because they are not used to truly looking at themselves but the final photos are where the magic happens.
I encourage my clients to check in daily for accountability purpose on the PMB App. This interaction leaves very little wiggle room for clients to make excuses. While working with clients face to face certainly has its advantages, I have utilized technology to deliver my remote clients with the same experience. It’s the design of the program that allows me to support clients all over the world and still get great results.
So now that we know a little bit more about your background and story, let’s give our readers some health and fitness tips!
Now Chris, we all know the holidays are just around the corner and a lot of people are trying to shed a few pounds to fit into their party outfits, for those workaholics who don’t have much time to go to the gym, what would be the best type of exercise to shed a few pounds?
If your time is limited in the gym, the exercise that will give you the most bang for your buck would be HIIT (Hight Intensity Interval Training) on a treadmill. This involves a sequence of walking and sprinting for roughly 30 minutes. The high intensity spiking up and down over those 30 minutes will give you the best advantage to burning fat and preserving muscle in a short amount of time.
What are your top tips for not wanting to add too many calories when eating out?
You can never go wrong with protein and vegetables. Avoid sauces or keep them light. No complex carbohydrates after 5pm.
A lot of our readers are busy entrepreneurs who prefer a quick workout at home. Can you recommend 3 must have tools they should own ?
Hyperice Foam Roller – Used for Recovery
Assault Bike – High Interval Intensity Training Cardio
Bowflex SelectTECH Dumbbells that adjust from 5-52 lbs. This will provide variation for multiple workouts.
Thank you for all these tips Chris, I am sure our audience is loving this!. Now there are many people like myself, who travel a lot and cannot always get to the hotel gym. Can you give us 2 or 3 in room exercises that are a must for people on the go?
You can never go wrong with these basic body part movements. There are many variations of the push up that you can perform anywhere such as incline, decline, and flat. Core work is great because there are literally hundreds of movements that you can perform to target your mid-section. Squats and lunges can be done with body weight at high volume to help strengthen and tone your legs.
There is a love/hate feeling on this next question for many people out there. As an example, you workout with your girlfriend and it’s a success! I have heard many people have that … “ oh no! I would never workout with my partner or oh yes! I love having a workout with my partner” . What is the key to a productive & effective couple’s workout when the fitness levels might not be the same?
LOL. In this case, my girlfriend’s fitness level is far above mine but thankfully she has a lot of patience. In all seriousness, I think having a positive attitude, encouraging each other to hit goals and have fun during a workout are what makes a couple’s workout successful.
A lot of the workout videos we see out in the market and social media seem only fit for those who are already in great shape, what would the best exercises be for someone going from a sedentary lifestyle onto a new way of life. How many hours per week should they be working out ?
It’s important to make sure that you progress properly and not push yourself too hard too fast before your body is ready for it. A mixture of cardiovascular work and weight training is a great way to ease into the new lifestyle and get a feel for how your body is going to respond. As a beginner, I recommend 4-5 hours per week. Leaving the other 3 days for rest and recovery.
That was really useful. Now I want to talk nutrition, although we could probably spend weeks talking about this topic! And I’m sure we’ll do a follow up soon on nutrition. There are so many different trends when it comes to this topic, mainly because a celebrity decides to go on a lemon cleanse or a juicing spree or low carb, or only white food,etc…. What are your thoughts on all of these different diets and what should the best approach be to a healthy diet on a daily basis?
I don’t get too caught up in the trends of diets that you see out there today. I always take it back to the basics of keeping your food clean, maintaining a combination of protein, fats, and carbohydrates.
And I make sure to include variety so that people don’t get bored of their food. There is no such thing as a quick fix and anyone that has ever tried that approach has had to learn the hard way.
My approach to nutrition teaches people the science of food to help them understand what to eat, when to eat, and why to eat it so that they can look and feel their absolute best.
What are your thoughts on supplementation?
I think supplementation is important because the foods we eat today are not nutrient rich as they use to be. I’m a big advocate of supplements that support more of the physiological functions of the body. Things like managing cortisol (stress hormone), supplements to help improve sleep, supplement to help support your adrenal system and supplements to support thyroid function can all be very effective.
Fat burners and testosterone boosters tend to be more of a gimmick and don’t have a place in my program.
It’s refreshing to have someone not fall for the gimmicks of quick fixes. Now thoughts on Organic vs non-organic?
If we had the ability to know 100% the foods we’re getting are organic then it would certainly be more advantageous to consume products with less chemicals. However, the regulations around the food industry are highly controversial which makes it difficult to put that much weight on the value of organic over non-organic. If given the option and convenience I’ll choose organic but I don’t get too hung up on it.
Before we continue here are a few videos of Chris for you to enjoy!
Chris, looking back a few years ago when you started and where you are right now, how do you think Social Media and Technology have impacted the Health & Fitness Industry?
Its given coaches like myself a bigger platform to reach clients all over the world and has improved the way my business is ran.
What would you say have been some of your most memorable moments in your career so far?
1.The most memorable moment was when I was forced to move locations from where I originally grew the business. I started this business in my backyard with no overhead but I quickly was forced by my landlord to find another location. Within hours, I found myself in a 10,000 sq ft training facility which I currently operate out of and changed the course of my business. Had I not have been forced to move, I may have not have realized MY true potential.
2. Second most memorable was the accomplishment with Walter
What is your motto at PMB?
The named premier mind and body is very intentional. Mind comes before body in the title because I believe it’s the mental and emotional transformation that drives the physical transformation.
What's the goal of PMB in the next 5 years?
In the next 5 years PMB will continue to expand globally, continuing to work with one on one clients and engaging in more key note seminars.
You are a true inspiration Chris and I love the journey you’ve made so far . I know PMB is and will continue to make an impact on thousands of people around the world and I cannot wait to see where you are 10 years from now!. Now it’s time to answer a few general questions!
What or who inspires you in life?
Gary Vaynerchuk is someone who provides a lot of inspiration through his no BS pragmatic approach; however, I find inspiration in many ways. Making sure that I leave this planet having made a difference is something that drives me every single day. I feel incredibly fortunate to have found my passion and been able to do what I love while helping others.
I have been a part of so many extraordinary transformations that I believe deeply in people’s ability to change. As a result, I often find myself fighting harder for my clients than they fight for themselves until they start to see the results at which point they then take over.
Living the biggest life possible is another inspiration of mine. That includes traveling the world and soaking up as many experiences as I possibly can. Fortunately, I have a very special woman in my life who inspires me every day, to share those experiences with.
That’s like music to my ears! We both come from a belief in personal growth so that answer has put a big smile on my face. What does Chris Enjoy doing on his spare time?
Spare time is a new term I am learning about. I make myself available for my clients 24/7 so balancing work and life has been a challenge in the past. I’d be a hypocrite if I didn’t recognize the importance of making time to decompress and recharge so I’ve been incorporating It more now than ever.
Things I like to do with my free time are travel, spend time at the beach, go to concerts, explore new restaurants, try cooking new recipes, spend quality time with friends and family and just some good old-fashioned R&R.
With all the experience and wisdom you have gathered so far in life, what advice would you give to your younger self?
I’d have to say that I had a great life growing up. My parents did an incredible job raising me and my sister. They’ve always supported every decision I’ve made and kept an open mind. Knowing that I had that support made it easy for me to take risks but I feel as though I didn’t put as much thought into some of those risks before making those choices.
If I could give my younger self advice, it would be to have a little more patience before making major life decisions. I’ve been fortunate that I’ve also had a lot of risks work out; however, as an adult, I have learned and experienced the value of thinking before you act.
Tell us something not many people know about you
I have a tradition where I like to skydive on my birthday as a way to remind myself to keep taking risks
My favorite place to eat breakfast is a place in Orange County called Plums café. I get the Dungeness crab and asparagus omelet with 3 poached eggs, roasted potatoes and fruit. Oh, and lots of coffee J
I must try it out next time I’m in the OC! What country would you like to visit that you have not been to as yet?
Italy for sure! My father did quite a bit of work internationally so we traveled all through Europe the year after I was born. I have no recollection other than some super 8 films which are always incredibly nostalgic. I’m excited to go back to my roots, immerse myself in the history and culture and visit some of my ancestors. The pizza and wine is a little enticing as well J
I can for sure tell you, you will love Italy! But be careful, you might go and never leave! Italy might turn into your new base of operations! Haha.
And finally, what is the one item you cannot live without?
A softball. I know it probably sounds funny but I use a softball as my foam roller to loosen up the parts of my body that are carrying a lot of tension. I literally travel with it everywhere I go. I spend a lot of time on my feet as well as a lot of time in the gym so it’s common for my body to feel aches and pains. If I didn’t have that softball to roll on at the end of my day, who knows what my body would look and feel like.
Thank you so much for your time Chris!, It has been an honor to get an insight into your world and I cannot wait to do an update with you again in the near future!
Well there you have it folks, a view into Hollywood’s Premier Mind & Body trainer Chris DiVecchio.
For anyone wanting to connect with Chris, please visit his website: www.pmblife.com
And follow his new Social Media channels
Live, laugh, be bold, take risks & be super mega awesome