Our first official day as Bexar Barbell was May 20, 2020 (we will get to the unofficial stuff later). We started with just under 65 athletes, a few sets of Pendlay plates, six barbells, and an oversized, detached garage in my backyard. The majority of our athletes transitioned from a different club in town along with myself and were ready for a fresh start. Athletes trained at times that fit their schedule but we also met as a team four times a week for three hours. During a time of chaos, our athletes had one constant in their daily lives, each other.
Team Training was small controlled groups in which athletes could stay safe and healthy but still have the community of each other to keep their sanity. As city regulations lifted the training sessions grew and athletes began to have to bring lawn chairs to sit in the driveway to watch their teammates lift due to lack of space inside the garage. What started as a means to an end, was no longer sufficient. What I never anticipated to happen, happened. We needed more space.
In just under five months we had outgrown our grassroots location. I had no great plans for growth, I didn’t market the team, I didn’t advertise taking on athletes, I poured myself into my existing athletes and ensured that they were happy, healthy and strong. I was completely content with the amount of athletes we had but still the team grew and the underlying fact loomed: we needed more space.
Around this time I received a text message from a local crossfit gym owner asking if I was interested in coming by to talk about potentially subletting space. There began the collaboration of Fit Stop x Bexar Barbell. (We will also get to that later.)We still have the garage outfit for athletes needing a refuge after a long day. A place where people need to get their training in but maybe aren’t in a place for human interaction. Or maybe just one of those early or late sessions where you gotta get in lifting when you can. We have you covered.
As a team we are diverse. Our youngest is 8 and the oldest is 74. We have athletes who are still learning the fundamentals, and athletes who compete internationally on Team USA. We have students, soldiers, teachers, doctors, coaches, and entrepreneurs. When people first join the team I tell them that every person on my platforms has a life.
They might have a job they don’t love, or a home life that isn’t the best, or maybe they are fighting with their significant other but my goal is to provide for them one place they can go where they feel relief. A place where they can have the worst day but know that the moment they get to practice it will be better. Isn’t that what we all really need? One place in this world where everything kind of makes sense. One place where we feel understood and accepted.
The one thing that brings our athletes together is the desire to be better. I tell my athletes that there is more to life than being a better athlete, but my goal is also for them to be a better human. Along with teaching technical proficiency I strive to instill courage, positive self esteem, and mental strength in them daily. I want the things they learn from not only myself, but also their teammates to allow them to succeed in their daily lives. After all, one day will be their last day on the platform. I want the things they learn at Bexar to follow them for their lives so that they may be productive and uplifting members of society.
As a team we provide a safe environment. I push my athletes to ask questions, to strive to expand their knowledge of the sport and that no question is “stupid” or should not be asked. We offer flexible team training hours so that we fit all athletes schedules and no one feels as if they have to rush to get to training or through their training. We do not allow egos, bad attitudes, or negative energy. On the platforms we are all the same. An athlete, with a barbell and some kilos. I expect each and every athlete to be supportive and uplifting of one another regardless of the metric on the bar.
If you are looking for that uplifting team environment that keeps you coming back for more, look no further. I pride myself on the statement that I coach the best humans anyone could ask for. Don’t believe me? Come find out for yourself. We offer free drop-ins (by appointment only) to anyone in the community looking for a change in scenery or who just wants to check us out. No pressure, no commitment, just some lifting, and an amazing environment.