Bryan Foss is a former professional basketball player who is now a Personal Wellness Coach for Herbalife Nutrition.
Born in Plymouth, Minnesota, Foss attended Osseo Senior High School, where he quickly became a star basketball player.
In fact, before he graduated in 2002, the 6-5 guard led the Orioles to a state championship and amassed 1,492 points, a school record that stood until 2014.
But for Foss, developing into an elite basketball player was never part of his plan.
Instead, Foss says he initially got into the sport because it brought him joy.
“You fall in love with what you love to do,” Foss explains, adding that “my focus wasn’t on breaking records. I just played basketball because I loved doing it.”
It helped that Foss’ parents instilled the importance of having a strong work ethic, which complemented his natural talent for the game.
“I was taught that when you do something, you do it to the best of your ability, and there is no quitting involved,” Foss says.
This mentality served Foss well, so much so that following his unprecedented scoring spree at Osseo, he accepted an athletic scholarship to the University of Minnesota-Duluth, a public college two hours north of Minneapolis.
During his five-year tenure as a Bulldog, Foss continued to ascend as a basketball talent.
As a senior, Foss posted averages of 17.3 points and 7.8 rebounds, punctuated by a season-high 29 points on the road against South Dakota in February 2007.
“Being at UMD was a great experience. Duluth is a great city and I had great teammates who all supported each other,” he recalls of his time as a Bulldog.
While it may be easy to look at Foss’ gaudy stat lines and assume that the sharpshooter was able to coast by on his raw talent, the reality is that at every level of his career, Foss has displayed a tireless devotion to his craft.
Of course, Foss’ parents deserve much of the credit for his work ethic, but Foss himself also saw how much he could improve on the court if he absorbed a workload that many of his competitors were happy to shy away from.
“When you put in the extra time and effort, whether that’s before games or after practices, it will show in the results you get,” says Foss, who following a brilliant senior campaign at UMD inked a contract with Queluz, a pro team based in Portugal.
Unsurprisingly, Foss never let the fact that basketball was changing his life inflate his ego.
“Even when I was in Portugal, I still put in the time and the effort,” Foss says.
During that 2007-08 season in Portugal, Foss was named to the league’s all-star team after torching defenders with the same knockdown jumper that for years had kept opposing head coaches up all night trying to figure out how to slow down such a premier shooter.
Yet, despite a sublime rookie season, Foss still left the gym every day feeling slightly unfulfilled.
“When you are living and playing overseas, you don’t have a family life. On top of that, I was operating with a very small-minded mentality, in the sense that I wasn’t looking at how everything would affect my future,” Foss mentions before explaining that in between practices, weightlifting sessions, and games, he often found himself questioning the trajectory his life was on.
“If I could do things over, I would have taken online courses and explored new things that I might be interested in, in order to better prepare myself for the future, because as everyone knows, basketball doesn’t last forever.”
For Foss, the culmination of his basketball career came sooner than many, including himself, could have anticipated.
There were myriad scouts and general managers overseas who assumed Foss would return to Europe for a second season, especially after Foss’ rookie year saw him put up over 20 points per game against former Division-I players and other grown men who were fighting for their basketball lives.
But once Foss heard back from his agent about the offers that teams were sending him, he was less than enthused.
For context, Foss’ numbers trumped those of his more heralded American peers, but Europeans coaches wanted to see Foss prove himself for at least one more year before they committed to shelling out a sizeable contract.
“I told myself it was an all or nothing deal, that teams were going to pay me what I wanted, or I wasn’t going to play,” Foss says, and as that summer progressed and the offers that came in continued to be underwhelming, Foss’ stint as a professional basketball player were all but over.
Looking back, it’s fair to wonder what kind of further success Foss would have achieved if he had signed for less money, but there were also external factors that were stunting his career.
“If I were to do things over, I would have hired a different agent because he wasn’t performing. I thought he was the only agent out there and that I had to work with him, but in hindsight I should have gone a different direction,” Foss reveals.
“At the time, my agent also had a lot of clients on his plate, and I wasn’t a high priority for him because some of his other clients went to Division-I schools.”
Unlike some former players, Foss quickly let go of the game of basketball, never seeking to return to the professional game and instead focusing his efforts on the next phase of his life.
In addition to accepting small gigs in order to pay his bills, Foss also began working as a personal trainer, an occupation he enjoyed, but soon the uneven hours began to wear on Foss’ psyche.
“When you’re a personal trainer you work odd hours. You work with people before they go to work, and after they go to work. In between you have long stretches of free time, and I often wondered how I could be more productive,” Foss says.
“But ultimately, that type of schedule wasn’t conducive to having a family, so I had to find a better solution.”
Fortunately, Foss later landed a job with Herbalife Nutrition, a global entity that develops and sells dietary supplements.
“I train people on a physical level, and I also work with them on their nutrition plans, and when you put those two things together you get sick results,” says Foss, who has been with Herbalife for the last thirteen years.
Foss loves spending every day helping people reach their fitness goals, and while exercise is an obvious component to all the consulting he does, Foss is also quick to mention that diet is the most important aspect for someone to consider when trying to live a healthy and well-balanced life.
“Eighty percent of people’s results actually comes from nutrition. People think it is the other way around and so they go to the gym a lot, but it’s nutrition that gets people the results that they are looking for,” he explains.
Foss has helped so many over the last decade-plus, but from his vantage point, Herbalife has enriched his life just as much.
“Herbalife has shown me a new way to live by giving me a chance to work with different people, while also being able to spend a lot of time with my family,” Foss says.
“They have also given me opportunities to do what I like to do, which is help people get in fantastic shape and feel good about themselves.”
All things considered, getting in shape doesn’t require one to book a personal training session with Foss, or purchase one of Herbalife’s specialized nutrition products.
According to Foss, making a concerted effort toward steadily improving each day is key.
“You don’t need to be in the gym for an hour. If you’re there for thirty minutes that’s an amazing accomplishment, but you have to be focused while you’re there,” Foss emphasizes.
“Whether you’re on the treadmill or doing weights, do it with intention and give your best effort.”
Therefore, in the same way Foss used to approach basketball with a determined mindset, people today can also adopt the same approach in order to reach not only their fitness goals, but also their lifelong aspirations.
“Change the way you look at nutrition and life because if you have a bad mindset, you’re likely not going to eat an apple every day, or you’re going to talk yourself out of going to the gym,” Foss says.
“You have to change your mind in order to change your life.” QS
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