Fitmark Ambassador, Brandan Fokken is one of those people you can count on to make a difference. Through his Fokken Strong fitness empire, he’s changing things for the better and wants to see more of a holistic and healthy approach to personal and competitive fitness.
Through hard work, I believe you can accomplish anything you want, Fitmark Ambassador – Brandan Fokken
Brandan has been a regular at the gym since his teenage years, and has been competing since 2010. Recently, he was just awarded his IFBB pro card – a very proud moment for all of us. But it was his near death experience that changed his whole perspective about the fitness industry and the dangers of extreme dieting for competition. He told Fitness Most Magazine:
They ran tests on me all night. By morning I couldn’t move my legs or my feet, I couldn’t sit up by myself, and my arms barely worked…I was paralyzed, and they weren’t sure why…I saw a lot of my life pass by in my head, all the way to the point of being buried, a true near death experience…I started to black out and honestly thought that was the end…at one point when I thought I was going to pass, said in my head, ‘If I get out of here, I’ll do good’.
So what happened? How did a strong and muscular guy go from fit and healthy one minute to fighting for his life the next?
It was a combination of extreme dieting and dehydration from water depletion for competition, the hot Las Vegas sun, and air travel. Brandan’s body went into shock and started breaking itself down, in an effort to conserve fat and energy, by flushing out all the electrolytes and other essential vitamins and minerals from his body. The doctors agreed he was suffering from re-feeding syndrome. After five days in the ICU, Brandan was restored to health.
Humbled by the experience, Brandan, together with his wife Amber Orton Fokken, are giving back and speaking out about the dangers and pitfalls of extreme dieting. With the help of a hormone doctor, Brandan makes sure his clients receive the best possible advice, something he now subscribes to himself since his near death experience. By giving back, speaking out and helping others steer clear of the pitfalls in the sport of competitive and personal fitness, Brandan has come full circle. What is it he says about being #FokkenStrong?
Someone who is Fokken Strong is also strong enough to lift up others. Whether this means encouraging someone in the gym, at work, at home or anywhere else, I encourage you all to lift up one another. Random acts of kindness are underrated but are some of the most beautiful things in this world. I love this line of work because I get to encourage and inspire people on a daily basis. I find great joy in the success of my clients and believe in helping them succeed on stage and in life.
We’d like to thank Brandan for his courage and commitment, and send our hearty congratulations for securing your IFBB pro card. You can find out more about Brandan by visiting brandanfokken.com.
Sport Your Lifestyle
The Fitmark Team