How boxing will challenge you mentally, not just physically
Jon Abaldonado donned his first pair of boxing gloves as a teenager down at the Blacktown Police Citizens Youth Club. Two decades later, he’s head boxing coach at Virgin Active Australia.
We’re always being promised “the secret” to getting and staying healthy. What’s yours?
For me it’s all about keeping active. Whether that’s through exercise at the gym or just going for walks or hikes in the outdoors enjoying nature. Also with a well-balanced diet, maintain meaningful social interactions and relationships, and choose work that is important to you. Being positive most of the time not stressing out on the little things which affects us daily so overall achieving balance in your life.
What’s something you know now about health that you wish you’d known five or 10 years ago?
When I was younger I thought working hard was the only way to get results but now I realise training smart is a whole different level. When you work hard, you’re just working. When you work smart, you’re working hard on the right things, for specific results.
What’s your nutrition philosophy?
I focus on portion control and everything in moderation so with that said on a typically healthy day I would generally have oats for breakfast, snacking on fruits and nuts, pasta salad for lunch and tofu – vegetable stir fry for dinner with plenty of fluids throughout the day. I love having pizza for my cheat meals.
What’s one area of your own health, fitness or wellbeing you’re working to improve?
As a Level 1 Accredited Boxing coach through Boxing Australia, one of my goals is to help people who are into boxing to get outside of their comfort zone and actually get in the ring. Competing in the amateur scene as you know is a tough sport and really intimidating, but it’s to really challenge them mentally and physically. I have a couple of fighters who are about to get into the ring for the first time in the next couple of weeks. So overall the goal is to be the best boxing coach.
What’s one thing you’d tell a friend to do if they asked your advice on something they can do to improve their health, starting today?
First and foremost, I would commend them by taking that step to improving their health. It’s never easy to make that change.
Then my suggestion would be to set short-term goals — for example, start going to the gym twice a week, slowly cut out junk food and even sleeping earlier. Once they’re consistent and get into a routine, then they can start thinking about long-term goals making lifestyle changes to their health.