Sergio Carbajal, known in my household as my “gym boyfriend” since the only other man I see more than him is my husband, and creator of the unique workout PowerSerge took time from his busy schedule to share with me more about his amazing workout program.
Earlier this year Sergio had asked some of his students to be a part of his promo video. How could I say no to this handsome man that whipped me into the best shape of my life! It was of course an honor to be a part of it and I’m excited to share it with you here!
Since I met Sergio, he has always been an inspiration in helping me to achieve my full potential and constant encouragement. He’s a kind-hearted person who truly cares about his students and takes the time to teach and correct their form. From the first day I took his class, he scared the crap out of me, but his brutally honest and positive reinforcement kept me coming back and pushing my body harder each time! I recently asked him to share some his tips and secrets to staying in shape and how we created my favorite workout class!
Q: Tell me about your fitness background?
A: I have been in fitness my whole life. I grew up with great visuals and examples such as my dad, who was a boxer and trained extensively with weights. I also ran track in school and have danced professionally with many amazing celebrities on tours, TV, and films. My extensive training in gymnastics and kickboxing have allowed me to always be open to learning new ways to grow as a fitness professional!
Q: What’s your favorite outdoor activity to get in shape?
A: Training clients and group fitness is very demanding and I love doing most of the workout along with my students in class. I’ve recently started running, which has become my favorite outdoor activity. I spend this personal time listening to my favorite music, focusing on myself while taking in the quiet and the beauty we so often seem to miss while driving the busy streets of LA!
Q: In your opinion, what’s the secret and success to staying in shape?
A: Find a workout that challenges and motivates you every time you are in the gym. For that hour, kill it and push your body to the limits. Stop wasting time and taking up space at the gym!
Q: Now, let’s get down to business. What inspired you to create PowerSerge?
A: I didn’t want to teach the usual sculpting class or someone else’s method! With my extensive and diverse background, I knew I could come up with a program that is constantly challenging. My workout is a calorie-burning workout and focuses on movements that create long, lean muscle. I have yet to see any other workout as different and unique as PowerSerge!
Coming from a professional dancer background and understanding the importance of warming up your muscles, I always begin my class with this a short warm-up. I slowly increase the intensity and include stretching exercises throughout the class. The next portion of the class includes 3 to 5 lb weighted balls. I’ve recently incorporated the ViPR (weighted rubber tube) for the men in my classes. I love the ViPR, it such a great workout tool! Towards the end of class, I use the weighted body bar for basic ballet sculpting movements, isolations and extensions. This also encourages my students to learn how to move a little more fluid fashion, which is something they are not usually taught in a sculpting class. Finally, I wrap-up arms and abs – this is a must! I never skip working out the abs since it’s an important part of working out the core.
Q: What’s your one favorite/most effective workout move to achieve results?
A: When I’m working out, my personal favorite exercise move is something I created on the bars, which is demonstrated in the promo video. It’s a combination between wipers and flairs. When I’m teaching class, I love the oblique twist, which is done with the ball or ViPR- these will shred your abs and core up!
Q: Any favorite songs that are must-haves in class?
A: I always stick to music that is popular and fast-paced. People’s moods instantly change when they recognize a song and can sing along, like many of my students do. It enhances their workout and experience in my class.
Q: Any tips on how to stay motivated?
A: Staying motivated for many people is very difficult! People have to mentally decide to make a change in their body and health. The best advice I give to clients is to bring their favorite songs to workout with and find classes like PowerSerge that are fun and get you in shape! I also like to be brutally honest with my students and clients, but with a sense of humor. I hit them with the truth because I don’t like to sugar coat things. I lay it on THICK followed by a joke to lighten the mood! For most people, it’s a rude awakening but I see an instant but positive change in people’s work ethic and attitude when they come to my class! They know they’re coming to my class for a hard workout and I expect nothing less than their very best effort. I’m here to change people’s bodies and perception of working out and it’s not always easy.
Q: Any tips on getting the most out of each cardio session?
A: Most people in the fitness industry will just advise to do a continuous fast paced workout and go for the big sweat. I disagree! Every cardio set has to be better than the last, making your cardio sets Anaerobic. This will shock your system into the next gear and allow you to continue to build upon your current fitness level! You have train like an animal in your workouts and continue to build upon that good feeling of hard work and accomplishment. If you stay at the same pace throughout your cardio routine, you are going to bore your body to death! You might as well get on a treadmill, which I call “hamster wheel.” If you insist on using the treadmill, make sure to change it up with intense intervals.