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Meet Matthew Olaya of Training With Matt in Huntington Beach

Today we’d like to introduce you to Matthew Olaya.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Matthew. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I grew up in Palmdale California (High Desert LA County). I fell in love with competitive swimming at 12 years old. Swimming 6 days a week, 2x a day forced me to learn what priorities, sacrifices and commitment was. My Coach (Rocky Lopez) was my biggest role model to make the most out of life and never give up on my dreams. I never had the desire to go to college, but he made it a point to instill how important college was and how many different opportunities college can open up. Once I became a freshman in High School (Littlerock High School in Littlerock California http://www.lhslobos.org/) I committed myself to swim the next 4 years under Coach Rocky to get accepted into college through swimming. Waking up before school and traveling 20 mins to practice and another 30 minutes to school, and doing the same with evening practice, I spent a lot of free time catching up with homework and studying for exams. By the end of each week I was practicing over 20 hours a week and very little time to socialize with friends in school. The closest things in my life were family and swim team family. Just like the phrase states “Eat, Swim & Sleep” it was an all-in move that you see in the Poker Tournaments on TV. Throughout the next 4 years in High School our Tennis Courts, Grassy Areas were flooded with Portable Classrooms.

At the time Palmdale & Littlerock’s population was growing faster than the schooling had capacity for. By my Senior year there were 4,200 kids (maximum capacity for the school was 2,400 kids). If you have ever seen an episode of “Locked Up” on TV, you can see when prisons get overcrowded and the tension is so thick you can slice it with a butter knife. Imagine teenage kids that were “Know it Alls” trying to prove their identities amongst each other and trying to demonstrate that their groups were superior to the rest. Rest a sure I never fit into any of that drama, I spent all my spare time in High School staying away from the crowds and making friends with kids that were real and not afraid to show who they really were. Finally Senior Year I graduated with a 3.8 GPA, and was one of the 33% graduating class and one of the 11% that went onto College. Clearly you can see my school was not one that had a great reputation to go on with your schooling.

A couple months away from graduating I received a phone call from the Head Swim Coach at CSUN (Barry Schreifels) Cal State University of Northridge. I had to prove to him and the team there I would be a good fit and I would be a team player. One of the most memorable times in my life felt like a dream come true. Being a Collegiate Swimmer and being the 1st in my family to Graduate with a Bachelor’s Degree. Fast forward through the year, I made it onto the team and showed the potential I had and what the future would bring. I went a whole year undecided with my Major. Finally, 2nd year I decided to dive into Kinesiology (Study of the Human Movement) which was a decision made because of what great opportunity Sports and Health had given me.

At the end of my Junior Year I sat with all my Swim Team Family (Co-ed Team) at our Annual Swim Banquet to wrap up the year and honor those that help set the bar for success within the team. Coach Barry would give his presentations and hand trophies to those that were voted for each award. Sitting throughout the years watching all these great swimmers with amazing talent walk up to receive their awards was inspiring and definitely motivating for me to strive to be better each day. Back to that Junior year Swim Banquet, I sat with joy that I had lasted this long and how my life had changed for the better with College. As Coach Barry presents a prestigious award “Pete Accardy Award” which was a previous highly decorated CSUN Head Coach, this award was solely chosen by Coach Barry and Assistant Coach to one Male swimmer and one Female swimmer to honor their commitment to the team and setting the bar to what a Collegiate Swimmer stood for. Next thing I remember was a long pause with a couple team member’s elbows getting my attention. Coach Barry looking directly at me. As I walk up in front of all my Swim Team, I felt this overwhelming emotion that I could have never before described with words. Such an amazing honor to see my Swim Coach honor me with an award that recognized my Hard Work, Loyalty, Dedication, Commitment and Desire to Achieve more than what had been done.

Senior Year Swim Banquet I sat there with an emotional rollercoaster of what 4 years of College and Swimming had given me and what I was about to leave behind. Same thing, Coach Barry presenting more awards. I definitely was not even looking for another one. I was so happy with my last award that another one was not needed to make me feel great. But after another long pause I walked up to pick up my 2nd award which was MVP (Most Valuable Swimmer of the Year), Voted by my swim team family. This was just another great moment in time where I felt like everyone in my swimming world had recognized me for all my hard work and most importantly how much I cared about everyone and how optimistic I was about everyone’s life.

The reason I bring these moments are to bring up an important story that sums up my childhood. I grew up with plenty of love from my parents, never missing food, clothing or a roof over my head but my environment was not the greatest and it kept pulling at me to go down that dark road which most kids my age went down. I like to think that certain people are placed in your life to help guide you and realize what the world looks like. I am fortunate that I had close encounters with the dark side that made me realize what the potential outcome would look like. Being able to connect the dots and draw an educated guess as to what the potential outcome looked like, helped guide me down the right road. The road that was bumpy, dirty at times, but kept me humble to what I am and what I believe in now.

Fast forward again, I move out of Los Angeles County for the first time after College and become a part time swim coach in Huntington Beach. A few months after I move I met this influential Personal Trainer at 24 Hour Fitness and he convinces me that I might have a future as a Personal Trainer. I pull the trigger and join the team. Chris the Personal Trainer was my mentor, role model to what a humble, hardworking person looks like. Again, certain people are placed in your life to help you and remind you of what life is really about. I only lasted 6 months there, but those 6 months I learned so much and kept dreaming of what life looked like as a Self Employed Personal Trainer. I finally pulled the trigger and found a Privately Owned Gym in Huntington Beach (Corner of Beach BLVD & Adams Ave) Club Fitness Addiction. There I met the owners Rich and Sandy Lopez which welcomed Independent Personal Trainers with a low hourly rate to rent the gym out. This was a big move for me because I had to leave my business with 24 Hour Fitness and start over on my own. Finally “Training With Matt” was created. I picked up 2 Part Time Jobs to help sustain me while I grew my business. Traveling as a Vet Tech for a Mobile Vet Clinic both Saturdays and Sundays and small gigs throughout the week like cutting grass, washing cars, kept me busy but motived as to what I could potentially do as my own boss.

It took me 2.5 years until I could stop my part time jobs and live off of my income with my new clients. This was a huge milestone as to where I was going and with the thought of what another 2.5 years looked like. I was happy and motived to keep going. When I hit my 5 year marker I was averaging 30 + hours a week and enjoying my career as an educator, motivator and driven to self educate myself on everything that had to do with Health.

About 2 years ago I joined a private swim pool that had lap swimming. I decided to get back in the pool and swim and compete in Triathlons. From there I met so many great swimmers, workers at the pool and started a 2nd business. “SwimwithMatt.com” was created which was my way to reconnect to my true love and passion. Swimming was a love of mine and I knew how to coach kids and adults. Having the pool be 1 mile away from the gym was very convenient for me and still able to book clients throughout the day without a lot of lost time.

At the pool, I taught 4 year olds how to float on their back and swim on their stomach in case of an emergency. I taught 40 year olds to conquer their fear of water by doing the same as the younger kids. I helped competitive swimmers sharpen up their stroke to swim more efficient and quicker. I helped some swimmers swim faster by incorporating strength training at the gym and establish mental strength exercises to help them conquer any underlining fears that were driven by mental blocks.

July 29, 2017, marks my 7th year as an Self Employed Personal Trainer. On the side, I have started a business that specializes in developing Physical Therapy Tools to help people through injuries, and any muscular related issues. Besides these businesses I own, I have started to save my money throughout the years and purchased a couple investment homes to help me in the future with diversifying my income. People often comment how I should slow down and enjoy life and not let it pass me by. The sad part is that my life has never been slow and it will not be any time soon. Life is what you make it. If you like what you do, that is the point of living your life. In my case life is a timeline that is laid out. Throughout my timeline I want big accomplishments each year.

This is what fuels me and this is what brings joy in my life. At the age of 31, I feel younger and healthier than ever. Make sure to look for me in the future, because I guarantee you I will keep charging ahead.

From the words of the greatest role model in my life “This is the country of unlimited opportunity, take advantage of it and do what you want to do!” Coach Rocky.

Has it been a smooth road?
Most of my challenges were growing up. Growing up in Palmdale California was rough at times. Dealing with gangs was the hardest part. I remember walking to Elementary school every day and being scared of what was going to happen. From gang members waving their guns to Pit bulls running wild, I learned to stand my ground and just go with confidence.

Getting out of Palmdale was the best thing for me. It gave me the ability to see how there was a whole other world outside this small town. Besides a bigger picture in my life, I realized life was easy outside of Palmdale.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Training With Matt – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
TrainingwithMatt.com is my Personal Training Business. I specialize in many different aspects of Exercise. With my Degree in Kinesiology and 4 years’ experience in Division 1 NCAA Swimming I know a lot about competitive athletes.

I work with people who have injuries and help rehab them while staying active to lose weight.

I work with people who are new to exercise.

I work with children who need physical activity in their life and athletes who need more coordination and endurance for their sport.

I am currently working for a patient who has Parkinson’s Disease.

SwimwithMatt.com is my Swimming Business.

I work with people who are learning to swim.

I work with people that want to add swimming to their exercise.

I work with athletes who want to make their swimming more efficient.

I work with athletes who want swimming as a Cross Training Tool.

I work with individuals who have mild to extreme cases of Autism.

I work with individuals who have mild to extreme cases of Down Syndrome.

I am not afraid to learn more and to help others achieve what they want to achieve. I set my self apart from others with the fact I am in the business to learn and help others.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
Huntington Beach has been amazing. Ocean breeze, clean air and safe city makes it desirable.

I love swimming in my outdoor pool year round. I love Road Cycling down PCH towards Laguna Beach and Mountain Biking El Moro in Newport Beach. I love running down the boardwalk with that amazing view.

To me, this is paradise, no need for vacations.

Pricing:

  • Gym Personal Training Sessions: 30 mins $35 60 mins $50
  • Swimming Lessons: 30 mins $35 60 mins $50

Contact Info:


Image Credit:
Evan Lopez www.OraganicOrginalsProductions.com

Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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