1. What’s your name? Marco De Leon
2. How old are you? 31
4. Tell us a little bit about yourself: I live in south Texas and absolutely love to train. I was a competitive athlete for about 10 years--wrestling followed by weightlifting. These days, I tend to train to stay strong and coach competitive athletes in Olympic Weightlifting and Strongman. We started Bear Stout about 3 years ago because we wanted to coach and educate athletes in OLY and strongman and be as sport specific as possible to help them achieve their goals.
5. How would you describe your training style? Right now, it's, I think, classic strength and conditioning. I still focus on several OLY lifts to maintain my mobility and it's simply a love for the barbell, but also incorporate a lot of strongman movements and accessories.
6. How would you describe your fitness/strength level, currently? Fitness level: I can hoist several hundreds of pounds over my head, but I'm probably not going to make it on the run :)
7. What are your fitness/strength goals? Currently, I'd like to get stronger on log clean and presses, but I don't have desired number yet. Additionally, my overall goal right now is simply to improve from last year.
8. Describe your garage gym. Technically, it's a "patio" gym in my back yard and I would describe it as everything functional. It has all of the fun toys to keep the workouts fun and varied, yet simple and not easy.
9. Who works out in your garage gym? Right now, it's just me. We run workshops out of local CrossFit boxes.
10. Why did you build a garage gym? Because of convenience, really. My schedule gets stacked quickly so having something in my back yard is of great convenience for me. And when I buy good quality equipment, the next day it's right where I left it and nothing has been broken yet; it's a nice feeling.
11. What’s your favorite piece of equipment in your garage? Right now, I'd have to say my trusty barbell from Fringe. The barbell life chose me and while I use other pieces of equipment to work on weakness or improve my overall strength, the barbell is by far my favorite piece of equipment.
12. What piece of equipment was a waste? Sandbags, unfortunately. And don't get me wrong, I LOVE using sandbags in my training, but some of the ones I had originally tore pretty quickly.
13. What’s the next piece of equipment you’re going to get? I'm pretty close to buying a couple of logs!
14. Any dream piece of equipment? A yoke, for sure.
15. How did you build your garage gym? The majority of it was all at once--I originally started coaching OLY and Strongman out of a CrossFit box and kept saving the money I was making from that. When I branched out, the majority of the equipment was purchased all at once. The bigger or better quality equipment I now have came later--such as the squat rack/pull up bar rig from Fringe. That was something I really wanted, but didn't have space at the time. Slowly, I started building the quality of the equipment out.
16. Do you have any tips for anyone else looking to build a garage gym? Be simple--you don't need all of the bells and whistles at the beginning so be simple and you'll be surprised how effective your workouts will be. The very first pieces of equipment I purchased were dumbells and many times they're overlooked, but if you stash some cash and start with something like dumbells (as an example), you can have intense and effective workouts and continue to build your gym from there.