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From The Hood To Hollywood: Meet The Trainer Behind Michael B. Jordan’s Famous Physique

#xoMan

Fast. Big. Strong.


All words you or anybody else for that matter could use to describe celebrity trainer and body transformation specialist Corey Calliet.

But for this New Orleans native, the aforementioned words are all accurate descriptions for the whirlwind of a year he's had that finally seems to be coming to an end.

And if we're being completely honest, it's not hard to see why.

After moving to LA in 2014, Corey was catapulted into the spotlight after CREED, when actor Michael B. Jordan became physical evidence to his fitness training prowess. And this year alone, thanks to two record-breaking box office hits, namely Black Panther and CREED II, the young 30-something has been highly sought after by celebrities and professional athletes (John Boyega, A$AP Rocky to name a few) alike and is arguably more visible and busier than ever. Which is something that becomes evident during our brief conversation via phone during a small window on his jam packed schedule.

"I wasn't expecting everything to blow up so quick," he says. "You know I had a little buzz going, but because I've been able to capitalize on those moments, I see myself being able to finish out the year strong."

And it's that confidence, coupled with determination derived from humble beginnings that makes Corey stand out amongst the saturated market of fitness gurus and exercise experts. It's not lost on him that your environment can have an effect on you before you can affect it, which is why it was pertinent for him to fully believe in his dreams and his skill set and forge a new path in a new city in order to create a new life. Citing what he calls the journey from "the hood to Hollywood" as the fuel that pushes him to be more successful than he ever thought possible, he lets me know that it's not just personal success he's after.

"Coming from where I come from and going through all I've gone through have all prepared me. So I use my journey to inspire people to be greater than they ever thought they could be. I don't do this for me, I do this for everyone else."

So it's no wonder why fans and followers are always tagging him in their gym selfies, weight loss progress pics, or interacting with him under his motivational posts on IG. Corey has been able to masterfully finesse putting the "personal" back in personal training. He knows and understands that it's the people who are of utter importance at the end of the day. It's the lives he touches by helping them shift both internal paradigms and external pounds that serve as the major motivation that helps him to push forward. And it's the ability to relate to others and inspire them despite the spotlight that makes training all worthwhile.

"I don't care how big or famous I get, I want to always be able to talk to the people," he shares. "The people are the ones that make you, they're the ones who go with you on your journey."

But don't let the Nike sweats fool you. There's a lot more to Corey than just deadlifts and dumbbells.

Up next for Calliet is a territory that seeks to work a muscle you can't define or discover in the weight room: acting.

Catching a mere glimpse into this particular skill set during his cameos in CREED II this past November, Corey will be flexing his muscles on screen more in the upcoming year he tells me, as he makes mention of the first official movie script he's just received. The focus, he says in the new year, is to show people just how they too, are able to pivot into a different industry and still be able to flourish. It's to show them that it's okay to go full speed in the direction of their dreams in order to lay hold of a future you once thought was unattainable.

And while previous seasons have served as the primer for the ones to come, they also serve as the launching pad for his next. And through his success, it will hopefully propel the lives of others through their occasional rainy season and into their prosperous season much like Corey himself. And while people may experience a myriad of gains and losses, his hope is through his own tough moments, people will find the inspiration needed to push onward and upward into their future.

"Everything I've gone through was to help somebody else get to where they're going. And if I had to go through the roughest of times to get to the better times, that's just proof that my life was a full transformation. My whole life is proof of that."

Transformation.

Defined as a thorough or dramatic change in form or appearance.

But for Corey Calliet, this 14-letter word is more than just another entry in the dictionary.

It's a way of living and it's something he plans on continuing to carry out in the lives of others, one fitness challenge, one bicep curl, one encouraging word at a time.

To keep up with Corey, follow him on Instagram.

Featured image by Ron Adar / Shutterstock.com

ACLU By ACLUSponsored

Over the past four years, we grew accustomed to a regular barrage of blatant, segregationist-style racism from the White House. Donald Trump tweeted that “the Squad," four Democratic Congresswomen who are Black, Latinx, and South Asian, should “go back" to the “corrupt" countries they came from; that same year, he called Elizabeth Warren “Pocahontas," mocking her belief that she might be descended from Native American ancestors.

But as outrageous as the racist comments Trump regularly spewed were, the racially unjust governmental actions his administration took and, in the case of COVID-19, didn't take, impacted millions more — especially Black and Brown people.

To begin to heal and move toward real racial justice, we must address not only the harms of the past four years, but also the harms tracing back to this country's origins. Racism has played an active role in the creation of our systems of education, health care, ownership, and employment, and virtually every other facet of life since this nation's founding.

Our history has shown us that it's not enough to take racist policies off the books if we are going to achieve true justice. Those past policies have structured our society and created deeply-rooted patterns and practices that can only be disrupted and reformed with new policies of similar strength and efficacy. In short, a systemic problem requires a systemic solution. To combat systemic racism, we must pursue systemic equality.

What is Systemic Racism?

A system is a collection of elements that are organized for a common purpose. Racism in America is a system that combines economic, political, and social components. That system specifically disempowers and disenfranchises Black people, while maintaining and expanding implicit and explicit advantages for white people, leading to better opportunities in jobs, education, and housing, and discrimination in the criminal legal system. For example, the country's voting systems empower white voters at the expense of voters of color, resulting in an unequal system of governance in which those communities have little voice and representation, even in policies that directly impact them.

Systemic Equality is a Systemic Solution

In the years ahead, the ACLU will pursue administrative and legislative campaigns targeting the Biden-Harris administration and Congress. We will leverage legal advocacy to dismantle systemic barriers, and will work with our affiliates to change policies nearer to the communities most harmed by these legacies. The goal is to build a nation where every person can achieve their highest potential, unhampered by structural and institutional racism.

To begin, in 2021, we believe the Biden administration and Congress should take the following crucial steps to advance systemic equality:

Voting Rights

The administration must issue an executive order creating a Justice Department lead staff position on voting rights violations in every U.S. Attorney office. We are seeing a flood of unlawful restrictions on voting across the country, and at every level of state and local government. This nationwide problem requires nationwide investigatory and enforcement resources. Even if it requires new training and approval protocols, a new voting rights enforcement program with the participation of all 93 U.S. Attorney offices is the best way to help ensure nationwide enforcement of voting rights laws.

These assistant U.S. attorneys should begin by ensuring that every American in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons who is eligible to vote can vote, and monitor the Census and redistricting process to fight the dilution of voting power in communities of color.

We are also calling on Congress to pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act to finally create a fair and equal national voting system, the cause for which John Lewis devoted his life.

Student Debt

Black borrowers pay more than other students for the same degrees, and graduate with an average of $7,400 more in debt than their white peers. In the years following graduation, the debt gap more than triples. Nearly half of Black borrowers will default within 12 years. In other words, for Black Americans, the American dream costs more. Last week, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, along with House Reps. Ayanna Pressley, Maxine Waters, and others, called on President Biden to cancel up to $50,000 in federal student loan debt per borrower.

We couldn't agree more. By forgiving $50,000 of student debt, President Biden can unleash pent up economic potential in Black communities, while relieving them of a burden that forestalls so many hopes and dreams. Black women in particular will benefit from this executive action, as they are proportionately the most indebted group of all Americans.

Postal Banking

In both low and high income majority-Black communities, traditional bank branches are 50 percent more likely to close than in white communities. The result is that nearly 50 percent of Black Americans are unbanked or underbanked, and many pay more than $2,000 in fees associated with subprime financial institutions. Over their lifetime, those fees can add up to as much as two years of annual income for the average Black family.

The U.S. Postal Service can and should meet this crisis by providing competitive, low-cost financial services to help advance economic equality. We call on President Biden to appoint new members to the Postal Board of Governors so that the Post Office can do the work of providing essential services to every American.

Fair Housing

Across the country, millions of people are living in communities of concentrated poverty, including 26 percent of all Black children. The Biden administration should again implement the 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule, which required localities that receive federal funds for housing to investigate and address barriers to fair housing and patterns or practices that promote bias. In 1980, the average Black person lived in a neighborhood that was 62 percent Black and 31 percent white. By 2010, the average Black person's neighborhood was 48 percent Black and 34 percent white. Reinstating the Obama-era Fair Housing Rule will combat this ongoing segregation and set us on a path to true integration.

Congress should also pass the American Housing and Economic Mobility Act, or a similar measure, to finally redress the legacy of redlining and break down the walls of segregation once and for all.

Broadband Access

To realize broadband's potential to benefit our democracy and connect us to one another, all people in the United States must have equal access and broadband must be made affordable for the most vulnerable. Yet today, 15 percent of American households with school-age children do not have subscriptions to any form of broadband, including one-quarter of Black households (an additional 23 percent of African Americans are “smartphone-only" internet users, meaning they lack traditional home broadband service but do own a smartphone, which is insufficient to attend class, do homework, or apply for a job). The Biden administration, Federal Communications Commission, and Congress must develop and implement plans to increase funding for broadband to expand universal access.

Enhanced, Refundable Child Tax Credits

The United States faces a crisis of child poverty. Seventeen percent of all American children are impoverished — a rate higher than not just peer nations like Canada and the U.K., but Mexico and Russia as well. Currently, more than 50 percent of Black and Latinx children in the U.S. do not qualify for the full benefit, compared to 23 percent of white children, and nearly one in five Black children do not receive any credit at all.

To combat this crisis, President Biden and Congress should enhance the child tax credit and make it fully refundable. If we enhance the child tax credit, we can cut child poverty by 40 percent and instantly lift over 50 percent of Black children out of poverty.

Reparations

We cannot repair harms that we have not fully diagnosed. We must commit to a thorough examination of the impact of the legacy of chattel slavery on racial inequality today. In 2021, Congress must pass H.R. 40, which would establish a commission to study reparations and make recommendations for Black Americans.

The Long View

For the past century, the ACLU has fought for racial justice in legislatures and in courts, including through several landmark Supreme Court cases. While the court has not always ruled in favor of racial justice, incremental wins throughout history have helped to chip away at different forms of racism such as school segregation ( Brown v. Board), racial bias in the criminal legal system (Powell v. Alabama, i.e. the Scottsboro Boys), and marriage inequality (Loving v. Virginia). While these landmark victories initiated necessary reforms, they were only a starting point.

Systemic racism continues to pervade the lives of Black people through voter suppression, lack of financial services, housing discrimination, and other areas. More than anything, doing this work has taught the ACLU that we must fight on every front in order to overcome our country's legacies of racism. That is what our Systemic Equality agenda is all about.

In the weeks ahead, we will both expand on our views of why these campaigns are crucial to systemic equality and signal the path this country must take. We will also dive into our work to build organizing, advocacy, and legal power in the South — a region with a unique history of racial oppression and violence alongside a rich history of antiracist organizing and advocacy. We are committed to four principles throughout this campaign: reconciliation, access, prosperity, and empowerment. We hope that our actions can meet our ambition to, as Dr. King said, lead this nation to live out the true meaning of its creed.

What you can do:
Take the pledge: Systemic Equality Agenda
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Featured image by Shutterstock

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