The fitness expert, marketing guru, and entrepreneur shares his life, dreams, and aspirations.
Every once in a while, your life's journey brings into your world people that are truly inspirational. It is the mission of this magazine. Meet Regie Simmons. Through my adventures in social media, our paths crossed; and, I was glad that I took the time to say hello. After a few emails and notes back in forth, I learn that he was my hometown – Detroit, Michigan. He is also an accomplished fitness expert and body builder – he competed in nine amateur shows, including the Mid-Florida Classic 2013 – Masters MP, where he nabbed 1st Place and the overall awards.
But, wait…there's more inspiration. He graduated from two prestigious universities with degrees. He has worked in the pharmaceutical and biotech industry for nearly 10 years. and, in his free time, he writes for several magazines and websites including GeneticWar.com, RX Muscle.com, MensPhysique.com, Fit Nation Magazine, and NPCNewsOnline.com. He is also an entrepreneur – he is the founder of the fitness equipment company, Fitbodiez. I decided that when you meet someone like Regie, you share his story. Enjoy and get inspired!
BWJ: When did your journey into personal fitness and the sport of bodybuilding begin?
RS:The journey started about 2011 after I landed my dream job in the Marketing department of a biotechnology company. I was working really long hours (not including my roughly 3 ½ hour commute) and my diet wasn't the best.
One morning while shaving, I noticed that I had a "slight" double chin. I was only in my mid-30s and realized that this was only going to get worse if something didn't change. I purchased a new pair of running shoes and a NIKE ID band and started running. And, by running, I mean a very slow jog around the track. It had been some time since I had done anything physical and I struggled to make a single lap. Over time, my cardiovascular health improved and I ended up running more than 200 miles in a single summer. One day, after returning home from a run, I noticed that I had abs in the glass door of my house. Actual abs! Shortly after this revelation, I joined a gym and started training where I met a woman who competed in bodybuilding. She introduced me to the Men's Physique class of bodybuilding. I took the stage for the first time in 2012.
BWJ: You have stated that you "dabbled in" weight training while in college. Did you ever compete?
RS:I have actually dabbled in bodybuilding off and on since I was a child. The first time I picked up a weight was in the basement of my grandmother's home in Detroit. I trained a little in high school while running track, and again in college, at Howard University, when I took a weight lifting course as part of my undergrad degree.
I always believed the things that people told me about weight training – specifically, that I didn't have the genetics for building muscle. I was skinny or skinny fat for the majority of my life, and I didn't really understand the principles behind weight training and bodybuilding
During my divorce, I actually sought refuge in the gym where I didn't have to think about my life—it was just the weights, the music and me. I ultimately stepped on stage in 2012 and won my pro card in 2014, after competing in 9 amateur shows.
BWJ: You are quite accomplished outside of our achievements as a bodybuilder and personal fitness expert, what are some of your additional dreams?
RS:Thank you very much! I have been in the pharmaceutical/biotechnology industry for the last 12 or so years, and I'm still having fun. I am currently a Senior Director of Marketing for a global biotechnology company with hopes of being a VP of Marketing in the near future. There are only a handful of positions higher than VP of Marketing, so we'll see what happens down the road. Maybe, Chief Commercial Officer?
BWJ: For those chasing their dreams, what advice would you give them to get started and keep motivated?
RS:I think there are a few tips that I would offer people:
BWJ: What's immediately on the horizon for Regie Simmons? What should our readers look forward to hearing about in the future?
RS:I am still training 5-6 days per week, but I'm taking a break from competing. My wife and I just had our second child, a girl, five months ago and I can tell you that two children are a game changer. We always wanted two, but I don't know that either of us appreciated how much work it would be. For the moment, I am very focused on being a father to our children, Carter and Addelynn. I am also focused on continuing to build our equipment supply company, FitBodiez.
Next year, I hope to make a return to the stage and would like to land a few more magazine covers. Keep your fingers crossed for me.
BWJ: Since you are living your dreams, what does the word "passion" mean to you?
RS:If I'm passionate about something, I can literally get lost in that activity for hours without noticing the passage of time. For example, I lose all track of time when I'm in the gym working out or brainstorming and outlining a strategy at my whiteboard at work. I don't look at either one of these activities as a chore. I'm not looking at my watch wondering when it's going to be over. I hope that everyone reading this has something that they are passionate about because it's such a rewarding emotion to have.
BWJ: What does the word "purpose" mean to you?
RS:Purpose is a higher order calling that should guide your actions and behaviors. Sometimes people go through life without ever really finding their true purpose, and for that reason, they meander through life feeling unfulfilled. My purpose is to be a great father, marketing executive, entrepreneur, and fitness professional.
Photos Courtesy of Regie Simmons. Photography by James Patrick, ACG, ALB.
Brian Westley Johnson is the managing editor-in-chief of Soulivity Magazine, an online magazine-journal which reaches over 150K people monthly across the globe. For over 25 years, Brian has spent his life traveling the world as a business development professional using his skills and demonstrable expertise in sales and marketing strategy and execution to assist enterprising medium and large organizations in achieving growth targets. Now, he has dedicated his life to a new mission – to support everyone in living their highest quality life with passion, purpose, and joy.