When it comes to changing your life, the most challenging part may be figuring out the first step. Devin Jourdun, through his focus on health and fitness, decided to shift his mindset to achieve his own image of success.
In a world where the focus is often on living up to physical images from outside outlets, a focus on self-image and how you define it can place you on a track towards true happiness.
What keeps you motivated to move forward? What makes you wake up and want to take on the challenges of the day?
Devin Jourdun: It’s being able to open up doors for other men of color to walk through, curate conversations for other men to sit at, and just being that light for other people- giving back to a world that’s given me so much.
My motivation lies in operating and navigating in spaces that aren’t accustomed to or created for black men to succeed, especially on his terms.
Take us back to the time when you knew you needed to make a change. What was happening in your life at that point, and what was the moment the “switch flipped” for you?
Devin Jourdun: The beginning of my fitness journey was to try to beat depression. I went through clinical depression, and instead of overeating, I was just not eating enough. Depression pushed me to seek a way of beating it naturally.
You own a business as an athletic trainer. You also raise awareness about mental health. How are these two things truly connected, and what do you find to be a common roadblock in people’s mindset as they are working towards their goals?
Devin Jourdun: One hour of exercise a week is correlated to lower levels of mood, anxiety, and substance use disorders. Amongst people in the U.S., those who make consistent physical activity a part of their routines are less likely to have depression, panic disorder, and phobias.
The most common roadblock that I’ve found while working intimately with individuals has been their lack of realism. Your goals must be achievable. While you can achieve almost anything you set your mind to, some things can take a long time.
If the goal is attainable, you still need to allow sufficient time to achieve it. Set realistic objectives by beginning small, working diligently, then working up to much bigger goals.
You transformed your body as an expression of creating yourself to be who you want to be. What advice would you give to someone struggling to find a way to do this for themselves beyond fitness?
Devin Jourdun: My mother taught me the significance of not just being seen, but of seeing myself. I hope that anyone reading this interview does not fall victim to what social media says they should be or who they should love. You have no ceiling.
Who do you find to be an inspiration to you? What parallels do you see in their life to yours?
Devin Jourdun: Three people who I look to as inspiration are Charlamagne Tha God, Kevin Hart, and Beyoncé. These are three media icons who entertained their way, with so much purpose and conviction, while also enduring personal bouts with mental illness.
I admire anyone who uses their platform and voice to create change and mental health consciousness.
In a recent story with Men’s Health, you spoke about fitting a specific mold when it comes to body types, especially in the gay community. Inclusivity is still a gap that needs to be bridged. What are your thoughts on how this is still an issue today, and how will you use your business approach to address this?
Devin Jourdun: For me, it is about magnifying the virtue in all of us. I seldom felt represented in billboards, magazines, and advertisements. Presently we exist in a beautiful time of real change towards acceptance. I’m so happy with the progress being made in and around the LGBTQIA+ Black community.
Masculinity is being redefined. Diversity and inclusion go beyond race. My company, Ready Results Fitness, is committed to pouring into the younger generation to enhance them both physically and mentally.
By sharing my story, I want to create more helpful representations, so anyone struggling with body acceptance can see that the alchemy you control in the world is the power to affirm your own existence.
Let’s jump forward ten years. Where do you see yourself and your business?
Devin Jourdun: I’m working on my book while continuing to grow my Ready Results brand, expanding it in a place where it’s not going to be so athletically inclined—continuing to do my philanthropy endeavors in Atlanta, Florida, and Chicago. And the most important thing is living, loving, and understanding.
The last six months have been hard for me because of COVID-19 and almost losing my partner. But God continues to keep me going and keeps me in a positive space.
I get to get up every day and do what makes me happy is something that I don’t take for granted.
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