Bodybuilder Turned CrossFitter Josh Bunch Talks With

(Last Updated On: October 3, 2019)

How did you get started in bodybuilding/fitness?

I got started in bodybuilding when I watched Commando with my Dad. With him and I, it was always about blowing stuff up, and watching men be men. He was in the Military, and started me off loving my country and the impression rather large fit human being had on this world. As a young boy, barely nine years old, I knew I wanted to be fit.

When I turned eighteen, I purchased a membership to a health club after playing sports in high school. Even back then, I knew it would be time consuming, and I wasn’t willing to half-ass it. From that moment, thirteen years ago, I have done nothing but fitness and nutrition.

What made you decide to switch from bodybuilding to CrossFit?

To me, bodybuilding wasn’t so much about sculpting as it was the challenge. The drugs, the manipulation, the crazy tactics always excited me because of what I believed the body could become. But the main draw was the challenge. The dedication bodybuilding required was something most people would never do, and I loved that. But even more than my self-righteous love for that, was my love for difficulty, and overcoming something truly difficult.

I sought out the hardest bodybuilding routines I could find until one day I stumbled upon CrossFit. I watched one video of an athlete performing a classic CrossFit couplet-”Fran”, then I listened to CrossFit’s masterful creator, Coach Greg Glassman, describe his creation. The next day I proceeded to open a CrossFit location, and six months later that was a reality. It was what I was searching for.

Josh Bunch crossfit

Do you still do any bodybuilding exercises or do you go 100% CrossFit?

I still perform what would be considered bodybuilding exercises but now they serve a different purpose and fall under a different name. Today they are called auxiliary, and they are meant to specifically target weakness. Yes weakness can simply mean not strong, or it can mean asymmetrical at which point I would try to bring up a lagging body part to match its cohorts.

I use this approach to fitness/figure competitors all the time. CrossFit get them into condition, auxiliary work specific to their own hang-ups, refines the package judges look at on stage. In fact, I believe it was Frank Zane who said it best, and I paraphrase, “don’t add muscle where you don’t need it”.

Josh Bunch CrossFit

What kind of music do you listen to when you are working out?

My favorites include Korn, Rage against the Machine, Non-point, Lil-Wayne, Jay-Z, and pretty much everything similar.

We all have at least one, what is the most embarrassing song on your iPod?

Well, you would have to really care what people think to be embarrassed and usually, I do not. However, it may be surprising to know that Lyle Lovett’s, “Nobody knows me but my Baby” is found to be quite soothing at times…..but so is just about everything from Rage against the Machine, so go figure.

Josh Bunch Crossfit

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Favorite sports team?

To be honest, I don’t really have one. I guess I would say the buckeyes because my Dad loved them. I would much rather play the sport itself, or train the athletes on the field ensuring they are injury free, and set records. I have no interest wasting time watching other people have fun unless I am training them.

What does your diet look?

I travel around the country giving seminars pertaining to nutrition. It’s called “Don’t Eat Dumb %$#&”. The main principle is, “Do only what heals, never what hurts”. As you can imagine, by diet is immaculate. Otherwise, I would be what I hate most…a hypocrite.

If you have to categorize my meal plan it would be Paleo. Among other things it is weighed and measured. It also does not allow for any real method of “cheating”.

Meal #1

10 oz meat (usually turkey or beef, sometimes fish)
3 Whole eggs
2 tbs coconut oil
1 tbs MCT oil
2oz Nuts (usually cashews and almonds)
5g omega 3
*Every third day I will add 1 cup of Kale

Meal #2

Repeat #1

What are your favorite and least favorite CrossFit exercises?

The Olympic lifts are just powerful and cool, but they are not just CrossFit exercises obviously. Pull-ups and Handstand push-ups are also a favorite when it comes to selection, but again, these are not CrossFit only, they are part of an expression of fitness in, what we consider, its most functional form. It would be easier to categorize the exercises that aren’t CrossFit. Such as machines, and so forth. But again, I hate to rule anything out ever.

Most hated is easy….thrusters is the worst exercise ever…that and running.

Josh Bunch crossfit abs

Between bodybuilding and CrossFit would you say one is more difficult than the other?

Physically bodybuilding is no match when it comes to CrossFit. The intensity is not even on the same planet, and that is speaking for a competitive bodybuilder who tried to make it as hard as possible realizing long ago that intensity=results.

However, when it comes to diet, bodybuilders might have the edge. Top tier CrossFitters often pair a slight genetic predisposition to being awesome when they show up on the CrossFit field. A perfect diet would of course enhance this, but a sub-par diet doesn’t necessarily detract from it either. Some athletes can just get away with murder when it comes to their food, while others get fat and slow by looking at doughnuts.

Most CrossFitters would have a very hard time living in a pure Caloric deficit day after day in order to look cute for minutes on a stage, only to be judged by a human, and not a clock…not very consistent to say the least. Crushing a five minute workout is by all means more physically demanding that any bodybuilding program to date. Not eating for weeks on end when you are starving, then dehydrating yourself for days before a show is a certain kind of slow burn that many will never know, and never want to know.

If you could give somebody only one fitness tip what would it be?

Community. Buddhist say that only the Snow Lions among us can go it alone, the rest need a Sangha(Virtuous community). A Snow Lion is defined as endlessly cheerful, with never ending courage. If this isn’t you, you need help.

Your success will be directly related to those you surround yourself with so find an environment full of honest, fit, strong, and consistent humans dedicated towards telling the whole truth. A community who murders gossips, and crucifies the self-centered. A community that is only successful, if everyone succeeds.

Tell us about your biggest bodybuilding/CrossFit influence?

I didn’t really have a bodybuilding influence besides comic books and movies. But without a doubt, the biggest influence within the entire CrossFit planet, the man I owe my current life’s journey too, is Coach Greg Glassman.

Josh Bunch crossfit tattoos

Favorite cheat food?

If I could make pizza Paleo, and eat it everyday I would, but I can’t so I don’t/

Do you take any supplements?

The only supplements I take are Creatine, Liquid Egg Whites, BCAA’s, Nuun, and MCT oil.

What does the future hold for you?

I will open a 10,000 square foot CrossFit facility dedicated to saving every last human that trust me enough to walk through the door and stand beside me loyal until their goals are achieved.

I will publish a New York Times bestseller about nutrition/philosophy/CrossFit, and it will beat Tim Ferris’s 4 hour body.

I will Open two more CrossFit affiliates to give to other people who could act as our external hand giving.

I will create salvation for troubled youths, and addicts through fitness.

I will continue to travel around the world spreading the gospel of fitness and nutrition.

Josh Bunch
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