From My Lowest Point In 2008, I Found Personal, Spiritual, And Physical Growth In Recovery

Today, I’m a Personal Trainer, Best Selling Author, Entrepreneur, but most of all I think of myself as a Life Transformational Coach.

In 2008, I was at my lowest low…depressed…out of shape…addicted to painkillers (snorting roughly 300-400mg/daily) and selling massive amounts of drugs. .

My transformation began on Cinco De Mayo of 2008, I was riding with two of my friends to pick up some oxycontin and I heard these lights behind me and I looked in the rear view mirror and it was the cops. All I could think about is how my life was over.

I had a half pound of pot in my trunk and $2000 in cash and felt like my life spinning out of control. I was arrested and convicted of felony drug charges (intent to distribute). I was sentenced to 5 years everything but 90 days, 5 years probation, all kinds of drug classes and fines.

But, the judge said “Doug, if you complete everything without messing up, I will strike the felony off your record.” I remember standing there looking at him and thinking…I won’t even live that long…so what’s the point.

I reported to jail about a week after my 21st birthday (10/21/2008), I was crying, detoxing cold turkey from painkillers for roughly 3 weeks! But, my cellmate Eric, encouraged me to start exercising. I had never exercised. I couldn’t do a pushup, could barely walk and could have been a model for Pillsbury. I was 50 lb overweight!

But, with my cellmates encouragement, training and inspiration, I was able to do 10 pushups and run a mile when I left. Exercise had and healthy living gave me a great outlet to beat my addiction to drugs. I got out and followed the plan Eric had given me and lost another 50 lb and haven’t touched any illegal drugs since.

I changed my friends, changed my habits and it in turn helped me to change the relationship with myself in turn, my life.

Once I got to a goal fitness level, I decided to get certified to help other people use fitness to change their lives.

In 2010, I applied for a job at a local wellness center, who thankfully gave me a chance as I was still a convicted felon at the time. I remember getting the job and jumping up and down.

My new “high,” was helping people succeed with their health and fitness as my cell mate had helped me.

I thankfully built a successful training business and time flew by and In January of 2014, the judge took the felony off my record. Woohoo! My life will be forever changed.

Since then, I have been on a journey to figure out what God has planned for me to discover my deepest purpose. My purpose is to help people become better versions of themselves, but, especially helping people who are struggling with addiction use fitness and positive encouragement to turn their lives around.

I’m blessed to have helped hundreds of people improve their health and wellness during my time in the fitness industry so far. I published my first book, “From Felony to Fitness to Free,” to inspire people that they too can turn a negative into a positive and to remember how far you have come and not how far you have to go.

I published my second book, “Faith Family Fitness,” to encourage you to grow closer to God, believe in yourself, surround yourself with the BEST and to stay mentally, physically and spiritually fit.

I’ve been fortunate to have appeared on WBAL, WJZ, ABC and FOX 45, as well as on former drug czar Mike Gimbels “Straight Talk” show discussing fitness for addiction recovery numerous times. Also thankful to have been featured in the Baltimore Sun, PFP Magazine, Towson Times and voted as one of Baltimores 12 Fitness Heroes in 2015.

In late 2015, I partnered with the Maryland Addiction Recovery Center in Towson, a well established and reputable treatment center, we launched a fitness program where I train the patients and end each workout with a 10-15 minute motivational talk on “life.” The patients really seem to enjoy them and it brings me great joy to do them as well.

You can find a bit more about what I do there here

I believe with the genuine ability to be passionate, caring and loyal in everything that you do will allow you to live a purposeful, prosperous and fulfilling life, which is what I am working towards.

Now, I am on a crusade to help make an impact in this drug epidemic. I believe fitness and sound nutrition and goal setting can be a crucial tool for people going through ANY trouble in life, especially addiction.

I currently train average joes, busy CEOs and Moms and Dads. But I am extremely passionate about and work with a variety of adults and kids struggling with addiction and recovery.

I help them incorporate personal, spiritual and physical development to aide in their recovery, such as fitness, nutrition, goal setting and the power of journaling and Faith and also inspiring them to hang around the right people.

Thanks for your time,