Meet the Experts: Tyler Colvin
Here at CBDistillery® we know that taking charge of your health and wellness is a daunting task and it's sometimes overwhelming to know whose recommendations to rely upon.
Transparency is key to our approach in every aspect of our business, which is why we wanted to introduce a series of conversations with CBDistillery® staff as well as other experts in their fields. We hope that these conversations will offer more information about our company and products and help foster trust in our products.
For our latest edition, Content Strategist Adrian Crawford sat down with Tyler Colvin, a Division I college athletics coach, certified personal trainer and physical therapist, to discuss the best way to get back into outdoor exercise and getting our bodies moving as the weather gets better.
Adrian Crawford: First things first. Can you give me an idea of what the daily life of a Division I college coach looks like?
Tyler Colvin: Chaotic in season, orderly out of season. A typical day in season might look like this:
0600 – Wake up
0630 – Work out
0745 – Finish workout and go supervise the team lift. The team has a strength coach assigned to them, but we like to be in there as well to keep them accountable
0845 – Head over to the office. Our facility is all self-contained on campus so it’s pretty convenient. I’ll use this time to answer emails, plan practice, talk to players when they come in. One of my seniors a couple years ago described the coaches’ job as “half coach, half chauffer, half therapist”, and that sums It up nicely.
1000 – Practice
1300 – Wrap up practice, debrief individual players who come in with questions, answer emails that came through during practice
1345 – Lunch
1430 – Afternoons vary, but this time is typically filled with maintenance on our equipment, planning for upcoming travel, film analysis, meeting with players and researching and contacting recruits.
AC: Next up, the origin story. What was it that started you on your journey to eventually end up as a personal trainer, coach and physical therapist?
TC: Well, I’ve always been active. I know that’s a cliché and I hate clichés but it’s true. I was originally recruited out of high school as a tennis player and ended up as a non-athletic regular person instead. I received my B.S. in Civil/Environmental Engineering, but the job market was sluggish, and I decided instead of moving back home I would go to grad school. In grad school I discovered that I really didn’t want to sit behind a desk 40 hours a week for the next 40 years, and after I finished, I started pursuing coaching as a career.
I got lucky with connections and was able to get a volunteer assistant coaching position at an ACC school. This paid little to no money, so I needed to offset my income somehow. While I was in undergrad, I had gotten certified as a personal trainer and so that was one of my many part-time jobs, along with fitness studio manager, task-rabbit before TaskRabbit existed, painter, etc.
As a personal trainer I found my niche as a recovery specialist and prepping elite high school athletes for college. I did a lot of work with clients post-surgery and with back pain or previous back injury. After surgery, most insurance covers a few physical therapy sessions, but after those are up, clients need to continue working to strengthen the repaired area. A lot of back discomfort and injury is directly related to a muscle imbalance somewhere in the body, typically in the hips and upper legs. For high school athletes, I focused mainly on increasing their base strength and mobility so that when they did get into a varsity weight room they were prepared.
After a few years as a volunteer assistant, my head coach and I agreed that I needed to pursue a full-time position within the industry. He made me promise that if it wasn’t working out as a career by the time I turned 30, I’d quit and fall back on engineering. A couple of blind cross country moves later, here I am. I’m happy to say that I was able to call him on my 30th birthday and tell him it was working.
AC: We've heard about the concept of self-care more and more often in recent years. How does exercise work in the physiological sense, i.e. what happens to the body and mind when we’re in the gym or out there for a run?
TC: In a sentence, being active releases a cocktail of chemicals in the brain. Serotonin and dopamine are the two main neuroreceptors we associate with happiness, and are also two of the endorphins released while being active. Additionally, raising your heart rate can stimulate the production of norepinephrine which helps to lower stress and improve cognitive function. Lastly, physical change. Everyone, to some degree, myself included, has some level of body dysmorphia. Seeing changes in your appearance can boost your self-confidence and self-esteem.
AC: The past few years have been unprecedented, to say the least. Have you noticed a shift towards outdoor workouts and different types of exercise in a time when gyms or indoor fitness might feel less safe?
TC: You know this is a great question. I think you’d see that after the covid-induced boutique fitness studio crash, group fitness is on the rise again. OrangeTheory, F45, Barry’s, Pure Barre, all seem to be expanding at a rapid rate. Certainly in 2020/2021 we saw a big shift towards outdoor activities in general, but since then, in my opinion, it seems that people are back to sweating as a group in a confined space.
AC: Springtime and warmer weather offers the chance for a fresh start when it comes to fitness. What’s your advice for folks who want to get going on a new commitment to working out but aren’t sure how to start?
TC: Start small. I tell people this all the time. In order for an activity to become part of your routine, a habit, it takes on average 6 weeks of repetition. If you do a Whole30 or similar, it can have incredible effects and results, but it isn’t sustainable and doesn’t become part of your routine. Small, bite sized chunks of activity are easy to incorporate into your schedule and not a huge disruption to your life. After a while you can add more and more as you like.
As an example: say your goal is to walk 20 minutes a day, 3 days a week. Think about your activities when you get out of work and ask yourself where you could repurpose 20 minutes for being active. Look at your app screen time and see if you can cut down the scrolling for a bit and listen to music, an audiobook or a podcast. Eventually you stop thinking about it and then start to look forward to it, and that’s when you know you’ve made it into a habit.
AC: We recently ran a relaxation study that found more than half of participants didn’t have a regular routine for winding down at the end of the day. What’s your favorite way to unwind?
TC: Formerly binge-watching Netflix and scrolling Twitter until my eyes bled. I know people are going to hate me for this but I have made a conscious effort to put the screens down and read before bed. In the summer, going to hit some golf balls helps take my mind off of things. When I have to focus on what I’m doing, I don’t have time to focus on the things during my day, which is my personal definition of relaxation.
AC: Last one: What’s your favorite workout tip that athletes at any level of experience can take onboard?
TC: Go see a professional! Even if you’ve been working out for years, a good personal trainer can introduce you to new exercises and maybe fix some of your bad habits. I used to tell people all the time, you hire a CPA to do your taxes and an architect to design your house; why entrust your health to your neighbor’s cousin? I know I can take any athlete of any ability level and find something that they need to work on. Body mechanics, technique, mobility, all matter when working out.