The underlying meaning of the word ‘Salud’ is ‘good health’, which forms an important part of our mission. In addition to the sustainable and environmentally friendly production of healthy products, we also promote health awareness among our employees, customers and consumers. Sport is one of our top priorities. Successfully financing a starting out top sports career unfortunately isn’t something that’s readily available to every talent. We also know like no other how difficult it is to develop something and to subsequently continue with this. That’s why the Salud Food Group decided to launch the ‘Together we’ll make their dreams come true’ initiative. We’ll put an athlete in the spotlight every quarter and financially support him or her with help from customers like you, making sure their sports dreams can come true.

Who is Nicolas?

My name is Nicolas Schönrock, I am 24 years old and I live in Cologne, Germany. I practice many sports and enjoy an athletic lifestyle. I like running and skateboarding in my spare time and I love skiing and snowboarding during the winter months. However, my main focus is on crossfit, with lifting weights and power lifting. Crossfit is very popular in Germany and many gyms are now focussing on this sport. These gyms are sometimes also referred to as ‘crossfit boxes’.

What does sport mean to you?

Sport means everything to me. My parents are both very athletic and have always encouraged me to take part in sports. I therefore started playing football from a very young age and I played for regional teams in Germany. I subsequently tried my hand at a variety of different sports, including breakdance, hiphop, skiing, snowboarding, golf, mountain climbing and running. I then decided to try out some gym sessions, which awakened my love for my current sport. Weightlifting and crossfit give me the opportunity to work on myself and my discipline every single day. Crossfit allows you to be in complete control, if you work hard on your fitness, this will instantly be evident in the results! I really can’t imagine life without sport.

“I can’t imagine        

life

without sport”

When did you decide to strive for a career in sport?

There wasn’t a specific point in time, it was simply a dream which started to flourish over time. The more time I spent in the gym, the more I realised all the options available to me and what I could achieve with crossfit. I was certainly also inspired by other athletes, some of my biggest examples are Marc Fitt, a French/Canadian fitness model, and Matt Fraser, a successful crossfit athlete and the “fittest man in the world”. I saw what they were achieving and this motivated me to fully commit myself to the sport and to become the very best version of myself.

Crossfit has been gaining in popularity since I first started and, as a result, there are now also bigger competitions. This growth naturally resulted in bigger challenges too, which I am more than happy to rise to! This includes sticking to a rigorous training and nutrition plan. I train in the gym 5 to 6 days a week and I also do cardio circuits and continue working on my technique by attending weekly classes. My nutritional plan ensures my body can optimally recover after a training session and that it has sufficient nutrients on board for the next session, allowing me to reach optimal performance levels.

 

“You only need

a fraction of a

second to

hurt yourself”

What are the risks associated with your sport?

There are definitely some risks associated with crossfit, but the risk is really as high as you make it yourself. You need to know yourself very well with crossfit, technique is very important, but at the end of the day, you need to have sufficient self-knowledge to know whether or not you can lift a weight. This means you’re always working with, but also against, yourself. Your focus should always be on your posture. There only needs to be a fraction of a second where your posture isn’t optimal and you can end up with a serious injury. I have experienced this myself whilst doing a dead lift. I am always very careful and focussed on optimising my posture, but I was more tired than I realised at the end of a training session and ended up hurting my back. This resulted in me barely being able to sit or walk for three months. I certainly learnt my lesson and now make sure I take 15 minutes both before and after a training sessions to warm up and cool down my muscles. 

 How do you prepare for a competition?

Competitions are all about performance, but preparation is certainly important too. This preparation already starts months before a competition, with a strict nutrition and training programme, which will be adjusted in line with the type of competition. I make sure I take in more calories and protein for tournaments, I get plenty of sleep and drink enough to ensure my body is strong and fit enough to lift those weights. If it’s more about my body’s condition, rather than the lifting of weights, I prepare by eating fewer calories and less salt. This will make my body look tighter and stronger, although I won’t necessarily be at my strongest. I make sure I have the right mindset before each and every competition and I realise this through meditation.    

What do you hope to have achieved in five years’ time?

I hope to be a famous German crossfit athlete in five years’ time and to have established myself as a professional. Until that time, I would like to continue participating with crossfit tournaments, including the ‘German Open’ in 2020.

Would you like to find out more about Nicolas Schönrock? Follow him on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/nicolasschoenrock/