The Juice · The Juice Features

I’m A Fighter

I was just a server.

Just a regular dude.

[A] former boxer that just wanted to get a good workout in.

I’d been working at a restaurant in a casino for so long; I didn’t even know the rest of the world actually existed.

I was definitely close minded.

[I] didn’t understand yoga.

[I was] kind of naive to it.


I was fit.

My core had never been so strong… My six pack…

I worked out! That was my shit! I worked out just to have a six pack.

I did millions and millions of sit ups and crunchies and medicine balls to the stomach.

So, to come into that workout for 45 minutes and [for] my core to just be done after the first set of freaking tabata, I was like what is this!

To walk out of there and be like damn, that made me feel out of shape, it was crazy.

I could go to the gym and lift and come in and do Tanya’s class at 10 on Sundays and feel like, holy shit; that is the ultimate workout.

That kept me coming back.


Everything Happens For A Reason

My ex-wife and I have been divorced for about 14 years, since [our daughter] Haley was 3. I had some relationships in between there, but I’m single, been single for 4-5 years now, just trying to find me I guess… Trying to figure me out.

When I lost my job a couple years ago it really rocked my world.

I didn’t even come to the studio for 2 or 3 months for whatever reason, I guess because I couldn’t afford it.

Tanya [lent] her hand out and she kept me in there.

To tell you the truth, it saved my life. I was pretty much going to go crazy.

Listening to those words and knowing that they had a meaning to what I was going through really meant a lot.

“You did the best that you could, with the best that you’ve got and your best is always good enough. No matter who you are, no matter where you come from and no matter what you do, it’s enough. It’s always enough.”

[There’s] so much energy [in that room] it just refueled me to learn that everything happens for a reason, even if we don’t understand it at the beginning and maybe even if we don’t understand it at the end.

There’s always a reason.


I was blown away when that moment came.

Last September when I became an instructor, I was just like, holy crap, damn. This is why I was fired from my job. Okay, I’ll take it.

For [Tanya] to need somebody to step in and for me to be that person… Then for it to just take off like that… I owe her the world.

That’s why I’m in it now; I’m in it to win it for her.


Company Policy

I [had] worked there [for] 19 years when I was let go.

I was physically abused [at] my job.

During a shift, I was injured and I lost my job because of certain [company policies] that came with that injury.

Because I was injured as he put his hands on me, company policy [said] that I must be drug tested. I failed the drug test so I was let go.

It was amazing to me to think that people can put their hands on you in the work place and get away with it.

It’s all because it comes down to finances.

I have an ex-wife and kids; I’ve got to pay bills.

I was so used to living my life a certain way for T-W-E-N-T-Y years.

When your world is turned upside down you’re just like, what the hell.

December 2016, I cancelled my membership.

They didn’t see me for 2 months.

I started working at Feast and a friend of mine had been going to the Sierra Rose [studio] and I told her, ‘Oh, well next time you go in there tell Tanya I say what’s up.’

Kristina told her my story.

She was all like, ‘Yeah, yeah he had a little f*** up at work and so he…’ and Tanya was like, ‘Well tell his ass to get back in here because we need him in here because where the hell has he been!’

Man, I mean, I felt embarrassed, but definitely grateful… Thankful.

I never would of expected that from her.


Sugar Coat It

I left it on the mat.

Each drop of sweat [meant] something.

It was ugly.

I cried many times, you know, just why? How did I let him get away with that?

I’m not going to sugar coat it; the feelings are still there, they’re not going to go away.

I’m never going to forget that moment in my life.


Yoga is what kept me grounded.

Bikram and Pilates were the only things that would calm me down [and] make me feel like I [had] to make peace with it or I [was] going to go crazy.

It was that room.

It was that room that would just make it go away.

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It’s a great place to find peace, [to] find happiness.


The Coworker

When a former coworker from the Silver Legacy walked into class…

Carlos looked the past dead in the eye.

He confronted the tears.

Oh my god, my mind just went crazy.

I was like, oh my god, not only did I get fired from there, but I come [to Juice Box Yoga] for peace and then I’m reminded of it… it’s not his fault or anything, I don’t even know if he knew what had happened, but just the fact that something would remind me of that…

That day when [he] came in, I totally just cried in that corner [of the room].

What. The. Heck. Man.

It was a tough road.

It really took Tanya’s love and strength… I don’t know… I don’t know how, I don’t know why, but that’s who she is.


Fat Little Six-Year-Old

I’ve always wanted my life to go [in this direction I] just wasn’t sure how and when.

Since I was a young teenager, since I was like 18 [and] boxing for the Boys and Girls Club, I’d always have little kids I would help [teach] from the beginning, you know, boom, boom.

One of [those little kids] is one of the best fighters in Reno right now, he fights for the Mighty Mites.

I’ve known him since he was 6-years-old. He’s 20 now, he’s a grown man and he is a great fighter.

I’ll never forget [when] my manager said, ‘You see that fat little six-year-old kid over there, he’s going to make it.’

14 years later he’s one of the best fighters in Reno.



I never [had] time to be a fitness instructor.

Working in the food industry, it would just take my time.

I didn’t want to do it during the day because that would mean going to work for the gym.

Every time I would go to the gym, I’d see a personal trainer, one on one, [and they] definitely never looked like they were the happiest people in the world.

I knew a personal trainer like that wasn’t me.

I didn’t know what my calling was.

I knew I wanted to teach boxing but the restaurant industry was there. It’s a casino, I made consistent money, I’d worked there forever, I had regulars.

My money was always the same.

I don’t like change. I hate change.

It’s taught me how to be comfortable with being uncomfortable.


The Six Pack

I’m in a perfect spot right now when it comes to my employment.

Helping other people get healthier is a big goal of mine.

I tell my kids, ‘You don’t want to wait too long to start exercising because then it’s too late.’

I use Juice Box as a way to get people to start coming in so then they keep coming back and they find their happiness within being healthy.

I’m a teacher; I love to teach.

We can all learn something new, it doesn’t matter who you are, you can always learn something new.

I can teach you something new.

My thing [is] to teach you to want it more than the next person. That’s going to make him want it more so you’re going to have to keep pushing more and more. That’s what it’s about.

It’s pushing ‘til your six pack gets like [this].

I keep telling them, ‘Suck it in a little bit more.’

‘You guys got it.’

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The students are my motivation.


When Tanya hired me, I looked at every single student as one of my fighters.

I treat them the same way.

They’ve already been training with me for 5 months.

They all feel their strength; they all see the difference in their body.

The challenge is to challenge them to challenge a little bit harder.

That’s what fighters do.



I am this happy, high spirited, super motivated person that is not going to be held back because I don’t want none of them to be held back.

I’m super motivated to motivate everybody.

I’m super happy to motivate everybody.

I definitely take it back to when I was 12-years-old and I started boxing. Those 12 years of fighting, if it wasn’t for those 12 years of discipline, it would be different.

I wouldn’t be the same person that I am right now.


5 days a week Carlos wakes up at 3:45 a.m.

3:45… 10-15 students, 10-15 students that have told me, ‘I wish we had more 5 a.m. classes.’

That was all the motivation I needed.

10-15 people, 5-15 people, that are like, ‘Hey man, if you can be here, we’ll be here.’

They have not disappointed.

That’s my motivation to get up every day.


The Spotlight

I didn’t believe in myself in a lot of things because I never really challenged myself outside of the restaurant business, outside of boxing.

When the opportunity came it was super nerve racking.

I’m a shy person, I hate being in the spotlight, I do not like being in front of people, I dislike talking in front of people and that was all of it.

I was really nervous but I did believe at that moment when I taught you guys in that private class, that I could do this, that I could motivate people to be better people.

One of the best things that ever happened to me… I get to teach.


Tanya has done a great job of developing me.

She came [to] me and was like, ‘Uh… maybe just a little too much upper body still for the ladies…’ and it was funny because as soon as she said that, this older lady comes out of the room to get a kettle bell and she’s just got these guns and Tanya looks at her, gives her the kettle bell, turns around, and says, ‘X that. I want arms like that!’

She’s done a great job of keeping me centered, keeping me level, keeping me grounded and not letting me get too crazy, [enabling me] to get the best out of all of [the students].

That’s what it’s about.

March 2016

I was always up beat.

Self-esteem always high; self-confidence always high.

October 2016

Out of a job; out of confidence.

It took me down in the dumps man. Especially during Christmas.

There was no confidence or self-esteem going on there.

February 2018

It’s probably at it’s highest ever.

[I’m] super confident, super excited about whatever is next.

I try to tell my kids, my nephews, my son, my daughter, ‘Walk with your chest up man, be proud of who you are. Besides the fact that it’s good posture it gives you self-confidence.’


The Fight

Knowing that once you walk in there it’s not going to be a letdown when you walk out; [knowing] you’re not going to be like, f*** that sucked.

Know your body.

The thing that makes a great fighter is your heart; you’ve got to have heart.

If you don’t have heart, don’t get in the ring.

If you’re going to bring it, bring it 100%.

Don’t let anybody get in your way.

I’ve always dug deep.

Dig deep into your heart, into your soul, when you look at yourself in the mirror.

You’ve got to be able to look at you and be like let’s go get it.

This workout.

Me and you.

Just me and you.

Me and the mirror.

Let’s go right now.

Finish it.

It’s all about you.

Nobody else.

I’m a fighter.

9 thoughts on “I’m A Fighter

  1. I have know Carlos most of my life. He boxed with my older brother. All of this is so very true. I haven’t yet tried one of his classes but this story has me thinking I should. Great job Carlos. Very proud of you.

    1. Thank you sister and I can truly say that cuz you are like a sister!!!! Life is a trip and the ride has been pretty crazy to say the least!!!! You have known me for 28 years and I’m glad you can relate to this story as you know Ray and Thelma are a huge part in all of this!!! Your mom and family too!!! Love you very much!!❤️❤️❤️

      1. You are blessed Carlos. Keep up all your hard work. See you soon, maybe in one of your classes.

  2. Carlos, thank you for sharing your story and thank you for bringing such a positive vibe and attitude to juice box!

    1. Thank you Leslie!!!! I still remember your first class!!!! Next to me in the hot corner and I’ll could think of is “how can I motivate her to keep coming back??” I worked out hard next to you and you stayed in the room and then you kept coming back!!!! Made me push harder every time I saw you in there!!! Thank you for being one of the many students that motivated me as a student and now as a teacher!!! You guys are the greatest!!!!❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

  3. Funny. I read this while I sit here with sore legs from Carlos’ Sunday class. Haha. You kicked my butt that day, but you’re not gonna stop me, bro. I love your classes. You’re a fantastic instructor. You are a big reason people come back to face the pain.

  4. I so enjoyed reading Carlos’ story. Well more like, on the edge of my seat! This had drama, pathos, tragedy, and triumph- and it was a true story! Juice Box was where I learned Bikram; Tanya is such a memorable person; her strength and warmth are captured well. And some irreverence, too! Bravo Carlos! If I get back to Reno I’ll have to take your class. Fighters!

  5. What up you’ll!!!!!! Thank you for your kind words!!!! This is for all you that I have sweated with, shared energy with, and changed our life’s with one drop of sweat at a time!!!!😅
    From the very first time I was on that mat for my first ever class at the Juice box I’ve been mesmerized by you!!!! A bunch of strangers in a HOT A** room working 100%, 100% of the time!!!! No matter the class being led by some of the most impressive instructors I had met, and my 3 favorite ones are amazing, but the Juice box was different!!!! I screamed and yelled not for attention but because that SH** HURT, but then I noticed how you all would feed off that energy and it just made me push myself harder which made me scream louder cuz it hurt/burned more!!! Every single one of you!!!! From DA DROPLET TO SIERRA ROSE 🌹!!!!!!! Every single one of you awesome students!!!! Vinyasa, Bikram, Yin, Pilates no matter the class you guys bring it which fueled me and still does to this day!!!! To you and Tanya, family and staff!!!! I give the BIGGEST THANK YOU 🙏🏾 from all of my HEART ❤️ every single one you has made me a better person the last 7 months and I could never thank you enough!!!! You guys make my life super happy!!!! I love you all, I’ll see you all this weekend in one of my 5 classes!!!! Extra energy this weekend!!! Friday 5am n 4pm, Saturday 630 n 1130 n Sunday at Sierra Rose 🌹 at 12 o’clock!!! I hope to see you soon!!! NAMASTE 🙏🏾 ❤️🌹

  6. Carlos. . . . .
    I also worked at that shit hole for over 20 years.
    I found my own happiness also,
    I went back to school in my 50s,
    Now a stylist at a salon in sparks.
    Sending love and best wishes for you.
    Faith Chavez

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