Today we’d like to introduce you to David Wang.
David, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I grew up in Northern California and started my journey of self-improvement through fitness over a decade ago.
Growing up, I was typically the youngest and was bullied and ridiculed for my weakness and size.
As a young teenager, I struggled with low self-esteem due to a lot of ridicule and struggled with self-image.
I still remember one of the most vivid incidences of bullying in my life.
Nearly a decade ago, I remembered gasping for breath as hands clenched my neck and held me down…
As I pleaded for help at this summer tennis camp, all I heard were laughs from my peers around me.
Words like these were words I heard throughout my childhood, and this incident was just one of many times I was bullied as a scrawny ~110 lb. kid.
I was afraid to talk to girls and remember struggling to look others in the eye. I was insecure to go out in public and too weak to defend myself.
That was what my life was like until I became so fed up, I ended up punching a hole in my bedroom wall.
That night, I was rushed into the Emergency Room and told I had broken my hand.
I ended up being casted for around eight weeks, and that night was a big turning point for me.
Two paths became clear as time passed:
1. I could continue down a path hurting and destroying myself and playing video games all day
2. I could take positive action to better my life through fitness as a haven
I saw fitness as a venue to transform my life and to improve my confidence, self-image and strength and decided to embark on the second path.
I started my journey banging out thousands of push-ups in my room with my “Perfect Push-Up” set, blasting hip-hop and electronic music, and doing countless curls with my blue 12 pound dumbbells.
Yet, I didn’t know how to train properly and struggled to achieve the progress I desired.
In my junior year, I met a coach in high school who really helped me develop greater self-belief and discipline.
He was an Olympic-Caliber athlete and inspired me through his work ethic, and he helped me to become a much stronger, more athletic and more confident person.
I fell in love with the progress and changes I was seeing both physically and mentally, and so I decided to study and research the human body in college, became a certified personal trainer, and eventually a Master Trainer and Distinguished Evidence-Based Nutritionist.
I also became a natural signed fitness model with one of the nation’s top agencies, Naturally Fit Agency and graduated with high honors at a Top 25 University (the University of Southern California) in Human Biology: Applied Physiology.
Nearly eight years ago, I began training and coaching others at USC, and today, I’ve been able to provide and grow my coaching nationwide through the amazing technology we have available to us today.
I’ve had the honor and privilege to assist so many – from students to actors and even medical doctors who are looking to reach new heights through fitness.
And over a decade later, my life has transformed in so many ways for the better.
It’s taken a lot of self-education and investing into mentors and coaches to achieve these goals, and I’m incredibly grateful for all the support along the way.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
I wouldn’t say it has been “smooth.” There have been a lot of ups and downs and “failures” along the way.
One of the biggest bumps I encountered was simply being doubted by others for how I would succeed or make an impact on others through this passion for fitness.
I still remember outside my AP Art History class in high school when I was still a pretty scrawny kid and I shared this goal, I was told and ridiculed – “You better start working out.”
But instances like these have simply served as fuel and I’m grateful for every single one of them.
Moreover, another challenge for me was breaking past the pressure as an Asian to just focus on getting a safe and secure job and become a doctor or lawyer. I do love learning and helping others with their health and was actually planning to attend medical school this past year, but as my fitness business began to scale nationwide and as I began to really love how much I was learning and the impact I was making on other’s lives, I felt a calling to pursue this journey further and decided it simply wasn’t the right time to pursue further formal schooling.
I did experience some doubt and questioning surrounding this decision to continue on this unconventional path but am so grateful I did. So far, it has turned out to be a decision that has led to amazing opportunities. For example, late last year in 2019, Ryan Potter reached out for help to prepare for his superhero role for Titans in DCUniverse as Beast Boy, and this very likely wouldn’t have happened if I hadn’t followed my inner-voice. I’ve also learned how to deliver high-quality coaching to people from all around the country.
Yet, another difficulty was when I first began learning how to deliver coaching online nationwide back in 2018. At the time, I was primarily just an in-person trainer, and I struggled to deliver quality service because the online space was so different and requires a lot more skills to succeed. In order to improve my skill-set, I became an evidence-based nutritionist and also took action to invest into learning from some of the top coaches and mentors in the entrepreneurial space to improve my skills as a coach.
Back in the day, I also struggled a lot to put myself out there out of fear of judgment. Yet, over time, continuing to simply take action and believe in myself has been key to break past these struggles and has helped to support continual growth.
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about David Wang Fitness – what should we know?
Currently, I primarily focus on serving men who are looking to get lean, strong, and build their best bodies and minds through fitness. I also specifically resonate with helping those who have struggled with bullying and low self-esteem. Because I personally struggled with depressive times throughout my childhood, was bullied and had low self-esteem, my coaching revolves not only around the body (training and nutrition), but also mindset as well.
To me, fitness isn’t just about getting lean and strong, it’s also about developing a stronger mindset to set oneself up for success in life and reach greater heights. So many of the lessons one learns from succeeding in fitness can be applied to succeed in other aspects of life – discipline, mental strength, consistency, and not giving up.
Ultimately, I’m most proud of all of the amazing transformations those I’ve worked with have achieved through our work together (a bunch of their own inspiring stories are on my website!).
For example, I just filmed an inspiring video with one of the men I worked with named Brandon Saraniti from Cleveland, Ohio who struggled with major depression before we started working together.
In it, he shared – “I felt like I didn’t really have a “Why” for my life and I felt like I really didn’t have a purpose…” – Brandon
He came to me worried about being “extremely underweight” at only 129 pounds, and his goal was to put on muscle. And while he’s now ~143lbs, his biggest transformation was more than physical.
In our chat, he shares how fitness helped him find purpose, develop greater self-discipline and belief on his journey to becoming a Fulbright Scholar, and how our work helped him along the way.
Men I’ve worked with have told me what really sets me apart is my ability to empathize with their situation, and how it’s not just about working out or training. Aside from the amazing physical and mental results many of them have achieved through our work together, many have shared they appreciate that I actually care about them as people, and work to understand their unique situations.
I’ve been told that without this deeper sense of care, they wouldn’t be able to achieve their goals and keep moving forward through the challenging times. Moreover, I’ve been told that they feel my story of being bullied and struggling with low self-esteem inspires and resonates with them.
Those I’ve worked with have also shared with me that what sets me apart is that I’ve found a path through actual experience. The knowledge and real-life experience I’ve gained building my dream physique going from a scrawny Asian ~110 lb. kid who could barely deadlift 95 lbs. to a ~180 lb. signed fitness model deadlifting over 600 lbs., a Master Trainer, Nutritionist and Coach allow me to provide them with a high-level of comprehensive coaching.
Trainers can be great. Yet, many trainers focus only on the training side and leave the mental and nutrition-side fairly unaddressed. While I do simply offer training or nutrition plans to certain people who request this, I also offer more high-end support and service to those I work with on a VIP basis. I consider this “coaching” not just “training” because I aim to focus on the holistic picture and do my best to understand each person I work with on a high-level basis. I admit, there have been times where I did not do this in my career or lost sight of the importance of looking at fitness holistically, and I recognized this led to less connection and sub-par results, and thus have decided to prioritize this holistic aspect of coaching to create greater positive change.
Throughout the years, I’ve realized gaps in my expertise, and am constantly working to improve and invest in my own knowledge and skills to deliver better results and service to those I serve.
Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
So many people in my life play a role in all of my success and growth. I would say my biggest supporter and cheerleader has been my father – he has been with me through the ups and downs and has cheered me on in the challenging times.
I’m grateful to family and friends who have been there along the journey, and also to the many coaches I’ve had related to various areas in life – fitness, entrepreneurial endeavors, and so much more.
One of the biggest roles those who have been there along my journey have played is simply sharing their individual pieces of wisdom and simply being supportive along the journey.
And I’m incredibly grateful to those who’ve chosen me to help them along their own journeys, and for the honor and privilege to serve them. Working with each one of them has taught me many lessons. Even though they see me as their “guide/mentor,” I also see them as my own teachers through our work together. Many of them have inspired me to keep growing and learning in their own ways.
- Website: www.davidwangfitness.com
- Phone: 530-617-2566
- Email: email@example.com
David Wang and Nextshark