Meet Gary Black, September Member of the Month

September 11, 2023
Meet Gary Black, September Member of the Month

Get ready to dive into the remarkable journey of Gary Black, a multifaceted athlete and entrepreneur at enduraLAB. Gary's quest for improvement led him to enduraLAB, seeking to infuse newfound energy into his endurance training while reigniting his passion for strength and functional fitness. As you read on, discover how he's transformed his workout routine, adopted healthier habits, and grown both as an athlete and a person, all while balancing a bustling family life and a thriving eyewear business.

What brought you to enduraLAB? 

I wanted to shake up my routine because I was hitting a wall in my running and biking performance. I remembered how great I felt when I trained at a strength/functional fitness gym before I got into triathlons. I wanted to bring back some of that energy while still focusing on endurance sports

What did your workout routine look like before joining the LAB? 

I aimed for two weekly strength sessions, essentially the equivalent of enduraLAB's warm-up routines, along with one long group ride, a weekly trail run, a quick FTP-style bike ride, and a shorter run featuring zone 4 intervals. 

What healthy changes have you made since joining the LAB? 

I've shifted to early morning workouts, whereas before, I squeezed them in during lunch or after work. Occasionally, I'd even go for late-night runs. Additionally, I've become more attentive to my protein intake, and now I am going to bed earlier aka falling asleep faster.

Tell us what you do outside of the LAB? 

Beyond the enduraLAB, I strive to be the best husband and father to my four children. I also wear the hat of a founder, running a retail eyewear company called Black Optical with six locations spanning Texas, Oklahoma, and St. Louis. My latest venture involves developing a prescription-ready athletic eyewear collection tailored for endurance athletes. When I'm not engaged in these pursuits, I indulge in my passion for collecting jazz records.

How have you grown as an athlete since joining the LAB? 

Brag a little. I've gained 6lbs of muscle since joining the lab, along with making friends in a smiler phase of life.

What is a goal you have set for yourself in the next 6 months? 

In terms of fitness, I've got my sights set on competing in the Austin Rattler 60 MTB race alongside a few of the enduraLAB Crew. Additionally, I'm aiming to roll out the athletic eyewear collection within the next 6 months.

What is your favorite enduraLAB event or program?

I thoroughly enjoy the strength cycles, and discovering my 5-rep and 3-rep maxes.

What advice would you have for a new person starting at enduraLAB? 

Trust in the process, don't hesitate to seek answers, and, most importantly, find fun in the act of moving.

If we had a workout in honor of you, what would it be called and what would it consist of? I'm not sure what I'd name the workout in my honor, but it would certainly include 400 or 800-meter sprints, likely incorporate cleans or deadlifts, feature double-unders, and definitely exclude burpees. What would the functional fitness version of an triathlon be?

Favorite treat meal/restaurant in D/FW?  

I always find comfort in Resident Taqueria and the brisket queso at Fox Trot Market when I'm in Dallas. In Fort Worth, Tokyo Cafe’s Tok Fries and Woodshed BBQ are top on my list. I really miss Blackcat Pizza!

Current read / podcast? 

This summer, my most inspiring reads were "Unreasonable Hospitality" by Will Guidara and Phil Jackson's "11 Rings.” 

Pump up song? 

I can't single out just one song, but anything by Tame Impala, Led Zeppelin, or Kendrick Lamar will definitely get my heart rate pumping.

Any final words or thoughts? 

Thank you and your team for the warm hospitality and for creating enduraLAB as a space for self-improvement. I'm grateful for my time here.

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