In April 2018 Max Swahn will graduate from the University of Pittsburgh, Swanson School of Engineering. His major, Industrial Engineering, is one of the most demanding disciplines that one can pursue. However, Max has found that fitness—specifically bodybuilding—is one of the best ways to relieve stress, relax, and increase focus. “In high school, I played hockey, and that’s how I first got exposed to bodybuilding. I didn’t fall in love with weight training, though, until I started college,” Max says. Due to the demands of his studies, Max no longer has time to play hockey. Instead, he focuses on weight training which is less time intensive but just as fun as playing hockey.
Just as Max Swahn is dedicated to his studies, he is also just as dedicated to bodybuilding. Max goes to the gym nearly every day after class and work are finished. The set schedule helps Max stay disciplined. Plus, it’s something to look forward to after working hard all day. Many bodybuilders compete in various competitions. So far, though, Max hasn’t participated in any competitions; however, it’s something that he plans on doing in the future.
When most people think about getting fit they only focus on the positive effects that getting in shape has on one’s health and physique. “Every day you go to the gym you grow and build on what you did yesterday,” Max says. “It’s something that keeps your body and mind healthy, and it helps you better handle stressful events in your life.” However, Max is quick to point out that there is one positive aspect of bodybuilding that a lot of people don’t realize. “There’s a sense of community at the gym. I’ve met some of my closest friends through bodybuilding. If you go six days a week and see the same people each day, it’s easy to become friends with them.”
Max Swahn says that taking the first step toward fitness is often the most difficult step. “If you’ve never lifted weights before you might be nervous to enter the gym, but you shouldn’t be. In general, everyone at the gym is friendly and glad to give you advice if you need it.” Max’s advice is to start small but make sure you actually get started. “There’s not one time you’ll leave the gym and feel like you didn’t accomplish something. You’ll never leave with the feeling that you shouldn’t have worked out at all.”
Besides bodybuilding Max enjoys watching hockey, working on cars, and collecting WWII memorabilia. After graduating college, Max is interested in working in a consulting capacity that’s related to engineering.