Johnson’s energy extends out of classroom, into inspiring fitness regimen

Matt Johnson

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Johnson’s energy extends out of classroom, into inspiring fitness regimen

Science teacher Matt Johnson's fitness transformation

Science teacher Matt Johnson's fitness transformation

Science teacher Matt Johnson's fitness transformation

Science teacher Matt Johnson's fitness transformation

Brennan Guilds

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Motivation is often a distant fantasy that lies in legends, along with unicorns and universal peace. This tale is no different for motivator-in-chief and science teacher Matthew Johnson.

You can often find him garnering hype at football games and pep rallies. Those who take his classes are already all too aware of his inspiring teaching style.

However, the questions often arise: “How does he do it?” and “How can I be more like him?”

But Johnson wasn’t always the physical specimen you now see bounding through the halls with too much energy. Father of two boys, Luke and Ryan, Johnson states his main inspiration as “being healthy for my family and myself so that I can be the best I can be.” Sounds easy right?

It hasn’t been. 

“I had some depression and anxiety growing up and some of that lasted into college,” Johnson said. “My son had early struggles and things going on right after he was born, [like having] surgeries.”  

At his heaviest, Johnson was just over 280 pounds. “Way overeating, too many orders of fast food, and milkshakes, and bad stuff like snacking [then] trying to hide it…so that no one would really know. [I was] hiding it from my wife, that’s how bad it was,” Johnson said.

“The biggest trouble of staying motivated was my own mindset,” Johnson added. “It’s always tough to stay in good habits.”

Johnson says consistency is the most difficult part of staying motivated. “You start something and miss one day or fall back into a bad habit and then it is just like a ripple effect of bad stuff,” Johnson added.

Now Johnson uses dieting and exercise to maintain a healthy status quo. He works with his wife, Ashley, on a fitness program that he shares through multiple social media accounts. Johnson is a self-proclaimed “Life and Fitness Coach.”

“We work together to try to find people that need a change in their life [and to] help them make the transition to have a healthier lifestyle,” Johnson said.

“We want to take it as far as we can…and be helping hundreds of thousands of people if we can,” Johnson added.

It is hard to be motivated, but the best thing you can do is to immerse yourself in good habits and set high goals. Your own worst enemy is yourself.

“I would give up too easily. I would make excuses. I would stop believing in myself, and I would give up,” Johnson said. “The main challenge for everyone in life is your own self-look in the mirror, that is the challenge.”

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