By Matty Maggiacomo
Matt Maggiacomo is one of the nicest guys you will ever meet, he always has a smile and hug to give out — but don’t be fooled: he will make you work HARD in his Barry’s Bootcamp classes! Matty teaches at one or more of Barry’s NYC locations almost every day, keeps up his own intense fitness regimen, and was a kickass TV host in his life before Barry’s. Most recently, he was caught modeling at NYFW — there’s really nothing this guy can’t do. So what’s a Day in the Sweat Life like for Matty? Read on.
1. What is the first thing you do when you wake up?
Like most of my fitness colleagues, I've grown accustomed to a very early wake up call. When I teach my first 6AM class at Barry's Bootcamp I'm typically up at 4:45AM. I'm one of those people whose body wakes up about 15 to 20 minutes before my brain. So once my brain joins the party and I can complete full sentences, I start my routine. I can assure you, I do not do cartwheels or backflips the minute the alarm begins to blare. I require a pretty strict routine in order to be productive, so I have my gym clothes laid out and ready to go and bag packed. I update my iPod with new music for the day, typically something with a BIG beat... I down a glass of fresh squeezed orange juice, a banana, a piece of multigrain toast with all-natural peanut butter, and of course, COFFEE. I'm useless without it...
2. What is your go-to workout?
There's a reason they call it "The Best Workout in the World" — and that's for no other reason besides the fact that IT IS the best workout in the world. I'm talking about Barry's, of course. I'm not saying it because I have to, but because I formed this opinion about Barry's Bootcamp well before I started to work there. My "first time" was with Barry Jay, the founder of this workout phenomenon. Instantly, I knew that this group fitness class was different from anything that I had ever taken before, even though it consisted of elements that were familiar to me: treadmills, free weights, benches. I knew it was special when we were in our fifth minute of bicep curls and I was still enjoying it! Then the shirts started to come off... and I was hooked!
There's just something about my trainer colleagues that keeps me coming back for more, and they each possess an "IT" factor that makes me want to spend an hour of my day sweating with them. I put my body on display probably more than I should (shameless plug: see my Instagram), and when people ask me what I do to stay in shape, my answer is always Barry's. I believe the body ideal for men has changed significantly, and lean muscle mass, a six-pack, and the ability to run a mile in 6 minutes are all qualities that many men strive for... these are all things that Barry's can help you with.
That being said, I'd be remiss if I said that Barry's was the only workout worth doing because I have a second home at Stoked 360 with Kira Stokes, who I call my "fitness muse." I believe that Kira reigns supreme as Fitness Queen, so if you haven't taken her class...you better get there!
3. What does a typical day of meals and snacks look like for you?
Don't they say a picture is worth a thousand words: “Must Eat All the Food!”
But for real, I'm not one of those trainers whose diet is so restricted that I don't enjoy myself. I'm Italian, so I need my pasta at least once a week. I'm also a red meat lover... I snack on bananas, plums, and cherries (very good for muscle soreness) and always have a Quest Bar or two in my bag. The NutriBullet is always at work in my house... a quick protein shake with Isopure Zero Carb whey protein, skim milk or almond milk, a scoop of peanut butter, a banana, and a few fresh strawberries is always my go-to. I try not to ever skip meals and eat as much as I can, considering I'm on my feet all day and burning calories while I teach... If I skip I start to lose energy, and nobody likes a lifeless fitness instructor.
4. What is your favorite indulgence?
For a fitness professional, I watch WAY TOO MUCH TV. I used to be the fat kid who sat in front of the TV for hours on end, so while I'm no longer out of shape, I still consume endless hours of television. I love my late night shows, and am newly obsessed with Stephen Colbert on the Late Show... I'm also a Saturday Night Live fanatic... and of course, anything on HBO. Game of Thrones!!!
5. What is your healthy living philosophy?
Happiness and healthiness are directly related. If you're healthy, happiness will be a direct result. It helps to keep a positive mind and be kind to people... we've started to close ourselves off a bit, even though we're more connected by technology than ever before, I think our obsession with social media and mobile technology is working against us. That's why I'm such a lover of group fitness... it's an opportunity to engage as a "pack" and work towards a common goal.
I think we need to understand that there are too many people out there who live unhealthy lives, this is especially true in New York City where being a "workaholic" is the norm. There are certain non-negotiables for a healthy lifestyle: 1) You MUST exercise in some way shape or form at least 6 days a week 2) You MUST learn to cook healthy meals for yourself 3) You MUST limit your alcohol consumption 4) You MUST tell others that you care about them, and chances are they'll return the favor 5) You MUST GO ON VACATION.
6. Do you meditate?
Does talking to myself on a regular basis count? This is an area of my life that I've been wanting to pay more attention to. Definitely one of my seasonal goals this fall.
7. What can we find in your gym bag?
If you were to rummage through my Thule backpack, you'd find… a couple of pairs of Barry's-brand gym clothes (clean or maybe not so clean), Gripads for when I lift heavy, a Mint Chocolate Chip Quest Bar wrapper, CamelBak water bottle, Tom Ford sunglasses, Thayer's Slippery Elm lozenges to keep my throat lubricated during a long day of teaching, Dermalogica skin purifying wipes, and two 20-pound dumbbells...
8. What is your favorite active wear brand?
I'm trying harder to be one of those "fashionable" fitness professionals, but it's HARD! I spend so much time trying to make what's UNDER the clothes look good, that sometimes I neglect what I'm wearing on my body. To shy away from a fitness-fashion "faux pas," I have a self-imposed "uniform" that I typically wear while I teach at Barry's... and it's all black all the time. Barry's tank and Nike Dri-Fit shorts along with my Nike Fly Knit sneakers. I live in UnderArmour leggings during the freezing months... and Brooks continues to hold the title as my favorite running shoe. I just bought a new pair of the PureCadence4's and they're awesome.
9. What is the last thing you do before you go to bed?
The last thing I do before I go to bed is say "I love you." I think it's so important to show that you love and care about the special people in your life by making that gesture before going to bed, because you never know what the next day may bring. It can be an "I love you" to your partner, to yourself, in a text message to friends or your family, even to your dog or cat! Spread a little love and I promise you'll wake up better in the morning.
10. What or who inspires you?
New York City!!! We're so lucky to live in the best city in the world, where thousands of cultures and millions of people mix within the crazy metropolis. It's hard not to be inspired by how grand the city is, the sheer magnitude of soaring skyscrapers on this tiny little island, but more so, it is the RHYTHM of the city that really inspires me — knowing that every opportunity is so close, within reach, is thrilling! Not to mention, NYC is home to one of the most vibrant fitness communities around, so it's remarkably motivating to work and play amongst some of the best in the business. I've been waiting for my love affair with NYC to end, but after 12 years of living here, it's still true love