Everyone is inspired by transformations, but no one really expected to get an epic showcase from Raymond Gutierrez. A well-known celebrity and socialite, it seemed like he already had it all, until he woke up one morning and realized he still lacked one most important thing: the elusive fulfillment that comes from being fit and healthy. This realization prompted him to meet Arnold Aninion, a strategic, well-spoken fitness trainer who used to play for the Philippine Volcanoes.
Replacing his traditional lifestyle with a strict diet and a herculean training routine that required him to train two to three times a day, seven days a week was no easy task, but Mond chose to pour his heart into the gym, day in and day out. Life threw many obstacles and curveballs at him, but Mond’s unflinching determination is a testament to the fact that hard work pays off, regardless of the circumstances involved. In this interview, Arnold Aninion wholeheartedly articulates Mond’s journey towards attaining one of the most dramatic body transformations the celebrity world has ever seen.
PHILIPPINE STAR: What was the starting point of Mond when he entered your program?
ARNOLD ANINION: When he started, he had not been going to the gym. However, he was trying to diet. He had already started to live quite a structured lifestyle by not going out too much and putting himself in situations where he can potentially be tempted. The original goal was just to lose weight. There was no specific number, but my goal was to make it dramatic. I told him, “Let’s make this the best transformation ever.”
How much weight did he lose and what other changes did his body undergo?
In under three months, he lost 22 kgs. Aside from the weight loss, what changed was his attitude. He was a new person — he viewed going to the gym very differently because he had a new vision for himself. You’re looking at a guy who never goes to the gym, and then suddenly has to revolve his life around being healthy. That was his biggest change — his mindset towards health and fitness.
How did you accomplish that? What was your game plan?
The first thing we had to do was to restructure his eating habits. Then we set him a really rigorous schedule for training. He trained seven days a week without rest. To lose that amount of weight, you’d have to train at least two to three times a day. He was doing just that — every day, without fail. We would talk every day. There wasn’t a day that we spent apart; even if we were apart, we kept talking on the phone or messaging. That’s what it was: It was a very structured eating plan, a rigorous regimen of resistance training, and tons of cardio.
Can you share with us his training program?
He would do an hour of fasted cardio in the morning to get his body started. A few hours later, we would go to the gym and approach his training through two different ways. We would switch between a traditional bodybuilding routine and hybrid density training every one to two weeks. We kept it different so that his body would always be shocked.
What was his nutrition program?
We would go five days of ketogenic, and then two days of refeed (a sudden increase in carbs). Ketogenic means low carb, high fat, and high protein. All his fat sources came from non-animal sources. His protein sources were just fish. He would then have two days of refeeds just to put nutrients back in there. Eventually, we no longer had any refeeds.
Was there any defining turning point while you were working together where he really changed?
After the first month, he realized that his weight loss was slow. He said, “When am I really going to lose weight?” I remember telling him, “The best thing you can do right now is to focus on the journey and learn from it.” He replied, “You’re right. I need to enjoy the process and embrace everything. The results are not as fast as I want, but it’s going to happen.” All of a sudden, we went harder than ever. One night, he sent me a message saying, “You have to check me out.” He stopped wearing those baggy shirts; he started going in with cut-off sleeves and shirts that flaunted his arms.
Do you have any message for Mond?
Yeah, I want to tell Mond that I’m so grateful to him for choosing me as his trainer and that I’m so encouraged by his struggle. More so, he’s won my admiration and my respect; despite everything that worked against him, he chose to keep moving ahead. Not once did he ever let it deter him. Mond is human, so when it did deter him, he was honest about it. He allowed his different support systems to come in and take effect. I just want to encourage him to keep going through the journey, and to keep learning.
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