Thought of as a crusader of fitness, Brian McFadden is on a mission to share a lifestyle that incorporates food and fitness to live at your optimum level. His journey began 8 years ago studying as much as he could about sports performance and nutrition. It may have been his basketball background that motivated this mission with his participation in high school through college. After a series of concussions in the sport McFadden was forced to look elsewhere to fill his fitness void. “When my ability to play basketball at a high level was taken away I had to start my life over.  I had to adapt to a new life, and it was tough”, McFadden described.

What came next for McFadden could not have been better. He rose to the occasion and found a much more rewarding experience. “Fitness is not only my lifestyle, but I also love using it as a platform to help as many people as I can improve their lives through food and fitness”, said McFadden, and that his what he pushed for in the next stages of his life.

Today you can find McFadden as the head coach at CrossFit idog. He embodies their mantra of being passionate about growing, educating and enabling individuals to improve their mind, body and soul. Outside of the gym McFadden is busy working one on one with his clients by personalizing their fitness and nutrition plans. He stays busy contributing to his blog and creating new and exciting dishes. “Coming up with tasty, sometimes crazy recipes is so much fun” McFadden said.

Where McFadden really thrives is rising to the top in competition. With a history of placing 60th Overall in SoCal Region CrossFit Games Open in 2013 and placing 6th Overall in Open Class D Men’s Physique  NPC Iron Games he says, “My faith plays a huge role in my inspiration. I use the gifts I’ve been blessed with to serve others to help them live better lives”, said McFadden.

Be on the lookout for McFadden on the rise in men’s physique competitions and as a health and fitness coach changing lives for the better. Visit his blog http://www.itsbrianmcfadden.com/ for his take on fitness, nutrition and personal growth.

“I’m blessed to have to the opportunity to improve someone’s life through something that I love to do, says McFadden. Rise Bar is proud to support McFadden’s mission.

By: Liz Lang

Yes, this Pro Longboarder’s name really is Mothershead. Troy Mothershead, raised in San Clemente, CA, now resides in Ventura, CA where he works for Patagonia—a company that produces organic outdoor clothing, gear, and sportswear. This spunky High Riser started surfing just as a hobby, growing up he aggressively pursued dreams of playing as an NLF star—playing baseball and basketball during the off-seasons. When he hit middle school Mothershead whimsically decided to join the surf team. It only took him until the end of freshman year in high school to ditch all sports to exclusively surf.

“I spent a lot of my early years surfing in contests,” Mothershead says, “They were fun, but definitely warped my ability to truly enjoy the feeling of surfing. You are tailoring maneuvers to fit a judging criteria, rather than simply doing what feels best. I’ve surfed in very few contests the last 3 years or so. Riding a wave is a crazy feeling, and in the last few years I feel like I’ve really learned how to fully enjoy that.” The ocean is both a mysterious and exciting place that sparks many emotions. When we asked Mothershead about his experiences out in the water he said, “The ability to project speed off the rail of a piece of foam covered in fiberglass, while riding a wave that has traveled thousands of miles to meet you is pretty special. I feel like it’s something you just have to try yourself.”

Surfing wise, Mothershead hasn’t lined up a ton of goals. He says, “I think I ditched those with the whole contest thing. I just want surfing to be something I do because it’s fun and enjoyable and feels good. I’m not so worried about winning contests anymore, or exposure, or filming, or what have you. Although I will always be stoked to be involved in those things, I just want to be as excited about surfing as the kid from Missouri who has never seen the ocean before.” Mothershead finds his inspiration mostly from those who take a different path. “I have a lot of respect for that,” he says, “and I pay surfing homage to any of my epic teammates from my early years.” The hope for adventure “in this rad world God created for us, and each days new opportunity to hang out with and love the people around me” is what motivates Mothershead to rise each day.

If given the chance to surf with anyone, alive or dead, Mothershead would choose his role model, Jesus, because, “he didn’t even need a board to stand on water.” When he’s not surfing, you can find Mothershead rock climbing, watching football, poorly fixing surfboards, attempting to read, or occasionally snowboarding and wakeboarding. Post-surf, you can find Mothershead munching at a place called the Farmer and the Cook in Ojai, CA, which serves locally farmed food, dining at a mind-blowing vegan restaurant called Mary’s Secret Garden in Ventura, CA, or chowing on a carne asada burrito from any of the wonderful Mexican restaurants in Ventura, CA.

 

by Rini Sampath

Most toddlers are figuring out how to work their kiddie toys at a young age, but not Taylor Nelson. She was already in the big leagues:  At just five years old, this budding surfing superstar was grabbing her board and heading to the water.

Now, as a teenager she continues to pursue her passion for surfing. With her sweet smile and genuine nature, there’s no doubt this California native will make it big.

“I am so thankful to God for this beautiful earth that we live in. God has put in my heart to love every moment and to always soak up what the day has to offer,” Nelson said. “I rise because I know I am blessed to be on this earth and that it was created for me to love it and soak in all that it has to offer.”

As a resident of Thousand Oaks, Nelson spends a lot of time on the shimmering shores of Malibu beach and sailing the Channel Islands with her father. In preparation for her surfing competitions, Nelson runs marathons.

“Running is a huge part of my cross training for surfing. When I run I know that it’s all about perseverance and stamina.” She said. Nelson also loves to sail. “Nothing beats surfing in the morning and sailing in the afternoon. Sailing is special because it’s a hobby that was passed down to me by my dad and like my dad has taught me many life lessons.”

She draws inspiration from the talented female athletes in her life — from her surfing coach, Carla Rowland to Erin Ashley, another logger, many mentors have contributed to Nelson’s positivity and love for the sport.

“I look up to the lady loggers that have paved the surf path before and have been gracious enough to take me under their wing and show me their way,” she said. “Eveline Van Brande who I call my dynamic duo is an amazingly strong water woman she is such a good surfer, lifeguard and swimmer! She pushes me to keep up with her and push my ocean boundaries to the next level.”

Most recently, Nelson committed to the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Though it appears only logical for a talented surfer to take her voyage to the islands, the choice was out-of-the ordinary for Nelson.

“The moment I decided to accept the challenge to step completely out of my comfort zone was a huge step in my life,” she said. “I am really shocked and proud of myself that I did because years from now I know that I am not going to regret moving to Hawaii for college.”

As Nelson makes all kinds of leaps in both her personal and professional career, Rise Bar is excited to support her journey.

By Liz Lang

All of our High Risers are in some way amazingly talented and have a drive to live an unstoppable lifestyle—Travis Ricks, especially. He was born in Pocatello, ID and is a current San Diego, CA resident. Ricks has always been a devoted athlete, while growing up he excelled as a college bound wrestler. Though he didn’t have a father figure around at this time, he attributes learning to be a good sportsman from his role model, his high school wrestling coach. At the age of 17 Ricks was diagnosed with an aggressive cancer, ultimately leading to the amputation of his right leg just above the knee by the time he was 23 years old.

Losing a leg didn’t stop Ricks from competing athletically. The physical disability eventually pushed Ricks to become a paratriathlete and a USA National Para-Volleyball player. The paralympic games are held for athletes with physical or intellectual disabilities. Ricks says, “I love the camaraderie that sports bring out in people. I truly enjoy friendly and competitive competition and the lifelong bonds that they create.” Though becoming an amputee was a tough transition, Ricks was lucky enough to find the Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF).

The Challenged Athletes Foundation is a non-profit organization that provides admissions for training, competition, and equipment needs to people with disabilities. “CAF helped me get back to being an athlete again with their support and funding of a running leg. This led me to become a full time employee in the programs department setting up clinics for other challenged athletes. This also where I found out about and started competing in triathlons,” says Ricks. When it comes to training and race day, emotions usually range all over the board. For Ricks, “training for a triathlon is hard and very time consuming. Some days you just don’t want to put in the miles or the laps, but in the end when you finally compete and you do well it makes all the training and time spent well worth it!”

If Ricks was able to take a run with anyone, alive or dead, he’d choose Jim McLaren—the athlete whom the CAF was started for (he also had an amputated leg!). “It would be an honor to run with him, especially since he passed away before I got a chance to meet him.” A moment Rick is most proud of as an athlete was in 2011 when he won the USA Paratriathlon National Championships at the New York City Triathlon. Ricks says that his number one goal is to “make it to the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Paralympic Games.” And, after a long hard day of racing, Ricks likes to enjoy a big juicy burger and a beer.

by Rini Sampath

Dylan Gordon is a journalist. But he doesn’t need a reporter’s pen or notebooks to express his thoughts. He’s got a different tool to capture the world.

Gordon is a photographer. He is a visual journalist — one who upholds the age-old cliché, “A picture is worth a thousand words.” He finds ways in which to paint the world in a new hue with every click, with every print and every frame. “The greatest thing about photography for me is that it allows me to continue to stay invested in all of my passions while involving another element that I am also passionate about,” Gordon said.

Gordon enjoys photographing surfers, climbers, adventurers and explorers. He’s a connoisseur of all things exciting in the world. He described his love for surf photography, explaining that though surfing is not a highly-sought after career, it is a rewarding one. “I feel there is a lot of value behind telling the stories of these incredible people that choose to devote their lives to this sport and lifestyle,” Gordon said. “Its not as glorious of sport as it seems, but there lot of struggle, guts, passion and strength. I want to tell their stories and share their experiences.”

Though Gordon enjoys telling the stories of others, his own story is one worth hearing. He grew up on the central coast of California, spending most of his days competing in skateboarding events and working on his family’s ranch. But Gordon faced his greatest challenge in life when his father passed away in 2010. “It truly turned my motives around and his life taught me to utilize every opportunity to its furthest extent,” Gordon said. Today, Gordon surrounds himself with supportive friends and family. “I am extremely fortunate to be able to call a lot of incredibly talented and motivated people my friends. They are constantly inspiring me to push myself,” Gordon said.

Rise Bar is excited to keep creative minds like Dylan Gordon focused. With delicious flavors like Pineapple Macadamia Nut, it’s hard to go hungry in between exhausting shoots. “It’s perfect for any time of the day or weather. Its also nice and light, so you don’t get that bogged down feeling after you eat one,” Gordon said. “You get just enough substance from one that it gets you back on your feet and ties you over till you eat the next one somewhere down the trail.” As Gordon continues to chase his dreams by capturing the moments where others fulfill their goals, we encourage others to live by his life motto: Live the life you love, love the life you live.

Keep on Rising.

Check out Dylan’s website at DylanGordon.com