House Of Muscle: Hello everyone. House Of Muscle is proud to be sitting here with up and coming Atlanta Falcons LB Matt Hansen! Thanks for doing this interview with us Matt. Tell us about yourself.
Matt Hansen: What's up everyone? My name is Matt Hansen and I'm 22 years old. I'm from Narragansett, RI and proud of it, even though they list me from Providence, RI haha.
HOM: You've come up from a smaller football school and made it. Must be a dream come true. What does it feel like?
Matt: Let's get one thing straight. I haven't made it the way I want to make it yet. I recently ruptured my patella tendon in my knee and was put on the injured reserve, but I will be back next season! That being said, it does feel pretty good to get as far as I have from not only a small school, but also the smallest state. I feel as if every other state almost looks down on us because we are so small, but we have proven that we have very good athletes in this state.
HOM: Agreed. Thanks for representing RI well. Tell us about your current training routine; what is your training like?
Matt: Currently I'm not able to do much in terms of training because of my injury. But normally I mostly focus on explosive lifts and speed training. The NFL is getting faster and faster every year and I feel that explosiveness and speed are the two things you need most in order to succeed.
HOM: Good point Matt. With the constant evolution in training and nutrition, athletes are becoming much faster. What is your favorite exercise to train?
Matt: My favorite exercise to train is the bench press! Haha, but unfortunately having a strong bench doesn't mean you're a good football player, and honestly, is not that important. A couple of my favorite things to do are weighted squat jumps and power cleans with correct form. If you do both of these things with correct form, you can really feel yourself getting more explosive.
HOM: No shame in liking the bench, Matt. Everybody wants a big bench! You train like an animal in the gym and you have accomplished great things at a young age. What do you think separates you from the rest?
Matt: The thing I believe that separates me is that I am scared to fail. I hate losing (even though we did plenty of that in college at URI) and always want to be the best, so I strive to out-work the competition. I am easily embarrassed by personal failure and it motivates me because I hate that feeling.
HOM: That's great motivation. Sounds like you have the heart of a champion. What sort of recovery work do you do to stay healthy and keep performing at a high level? Stretching? Massages? Chiropractor, etc?
Matt: I think stretching, massages, and chiropractic care are all very important in keeping your body right for competition. I would say the thing I wish I did more in high school and college would definitely be stretching. Flexibility is so important when it comes to speed and power and I think a lot of people take that for granted. Also, flexibility is very important in terms of injury prevention. I like to do yoga (even though it sucks haha) and pool workouts that are easier on your joints, but still very difficult.
HOM: Great tips on flexibility. Something that people may overlook. What was the gym like where you trained in Florida when getting ready for the NFL? Describe the atmosphere.
Matt: The gym I trained at while getting ready for the NFL was in Naples, Florida. I was there with guys who came from bigger schools and were more highly touted. Out of the 12 guys working out there, 8 got drafted with one going in the first round. The atmosphere was sick and it just motivated me every day to get better because I was there with better guys. It also helped confirm that I belonged with these guys.
HOM: Sounds like a great place to train! Definitely inspirational. What is your current nutrition program? What is a typical day of eating like for you?
Matt: One of the things I do need to work on is my nutrition plan. When I was working out in Florida, we had a chef right at the facility who would make our meals. Typically I eat 5 times a day. My breakfast consists of a lot of eggs and either ham or bacon with one piece of toast. My other meals are either meat or fish, with a sweet potato or rice as a carb source, and vegetables. I try to drink mostly water to stay hydrated. It is so important to eat right and treat your body right.
HOM: Great point. Nutrition is one of the hardest parts to master in the pursuit of strength and muscle gains. Do you use any supplements? Tell us about your supplement regimen.
Matt: I do use supplements and I think they are very important to maximize your ability. I use creatine, protein, amino acids, and multi-vitamins. I'm looking forward to using House Of Muscle products!
HOM: Great choices. We will get you set up with some high quality House Of Muscle supplements for sure. Tell us about the biggest obstacle you've faced in your young career so far.
Matt: I think the biggest obstacle for me was truly believing that I could play at the NFL level. I never really thought about making it this far growing up and I was still a little in awe when I got the call from the Falcons saying they wanted to sign me as an un-drafted free agent. But once I got comfortable there and realized I belonged, I was all set!
HOM: Congratulations on overcoming it with hard work. What are some of your top tips for upcoming strength enthusiasts and athletes who train?
Matt: One tip I have is to switch up your workout regimen. After awhile change is good and it helps you break through some of those plateaus that you can't seem to get through. It also keeps the mind fresh because it is easy to get complacent by doing the same routine over and over again. As I said earlier, I'm a firm believer in out-working everyone. However, proper rest is just as important and it is key to rest your muscles and mind a couple days a week.
HOM: You know your stuff Matt, great advice. What are your future goals for the coming years?
Matt: My number one goal right now is to get healthy. I was running with the second team defense in Atlanta and I was feeling really comfortable down there. My future goal is to make the team next year and become a solid player in the league.
HOM: Keep up the hard work and we are sure you will get there! Anyone you would like to thank? Final thoughts?
Matt:First, I would like to thank House Of Muscle for giving me the opportunity to do this interview with them! Next, I would like to thank everyone who has believed in and supported me from day one, especially since I got hurt. And finally, I'd like to thank everyone for reading this and let everyone know that I'm confident that next year is going to be my year!
HOM: Thank you Matt. It was an honor speaking to you. We look forward to talking with you in the future. Good luck on your knee rehab and keep us posted how your career in the NFL is going. Thanks again for your time and the great advice!
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