The world of professional athleticism and fitness is no joke. It’s one thing to have an online persona and another to implement those teachings and values in your everyday life. It can be hard to get into this mindset, especially with barriers like online societal pressure and judgements. It’s a whole new world to navigate, but after years of experience, Toronto’s Eren Legend is making his mark both in real life and on social media.
Literally a “Legend”, Eren Legend
The Ottawa born native has been living in Toronto for the past 6-years. He knew there was more opportunity here in the city and over the past decade, he’s become a World Champion and IFBB Professional Athlete, a celebrity trainer, fashion designer, published writer and public speaker.
The grind never stops for Legend and amongst his well-known presence in the Toronto fitness community, he’s become a familiar face on Breakfast Television sharing some of his favourite workouts.
His Biggest Achievement to date: Canada’s 1st Physique World Champion
In 2014, Legend earned the Physique World Champion title. On top of the victory, the competition was being held in Canada and Legend says it was important to keep the title at home.
“That was a huge milestone in my life and in my career because I was able to become a professional athlete [with] a professional status. But for me it was really about being able to cement something for Canada. Nobody can ever take that away from me,” Legend said.
There were about 50 countries competing that year and as each country won, the national anthem played throughout the stadium. After a long, tiresome weekend, Legend won his title late at night on the last day and he says, “when I won, the Canadian anthem rang for the first time that entire weekend. It brought me to tears because it was so powerful to just be on the stage and share that moment with all the people that were in the crowd supporting me.”
After the win, he accomplished a few more major titles including Canada’s 1st Physique Olympian and a Team Canada Gold Medalist.
The Hardships Of Competition
Succeeding and becoming the best at what you do is never easy. Mentally, emotionally and physically, competition is hard and Legend refers to it as a double-edged sword. Legend always viewed his career as his profession and to him, the work didn’t begin as a pro athlete, it was when you were in competition mode.
But I always had the mentally of, “when I get on, I’m going to take the whole team with me.” The hardest part for me was trying to be available to the people I know supported and cared about me, while still trying to get the job done,” Legend said.
The grind of competition is something many athletes can understand.Tatiana furtado
It tends to be a “I can’t stop” mentality and Legend says during his World Champion competition, he was even competing with a torn meniscus and ACL.
“I was so committed to it all and I always thought of Muhammad Ali when he said, ‘I hated every minute of training but suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.’ That really resonated with me with everything in life,” Legend said.
Fitness Professional, turned Entrepreneur: Legend Fitted Apparel was Born
Eren Legend started his brand Legend back in 2013 when he was living in Ottawa. He took some time away from the fashion industry to focus on his athletic career and in 2019, he relaunched the brand as Legend Fitted Apparel.
The brand blew up and Legend says many professional athletes and celebrities were drawn to it. After all, who doesn’t want to feel like a Legend on their day-to-day.
“Throughout the pandemic, I redesigned the logo in a way that’s more classy, subtle and mainstream. I wanted it to be something that could really relate to a lot of people. Fashion design is one of my biggest passions because I love seeing how apparel can really empower people and give them a sense of identity and community,” Legend said
Legend Fitted isn’t only for the pros and celebrities, Legend says it’s for everyday people to feel confident about themselves while they go onto achieving their personal goals.
Eren Legend got the chance to train the star’s of Prime Video’s, American Gods season 2. He worked closely with star Ricky Whittle and co-star Pablo Schreiber. This opportunity engined his interest in training actors and actresses in the film studios.
Legend is moving to California at the end of the summer and he says its the right move for right now. Los Angeles is the perfect place for Legend to start pursuing high-level clientele like actors and athletes. It’s also the place he hopes Toronto was an amazing environment for him to grow on both and personal and professional level, but for him to reach his goals, he knows he needs to make the move.
“Amongst the first things I’m going to try and do is re-establish my presence and build myself up from the bottom. But realistically, all I want to do when I get there is have a little bit of peace. I want to be more conscious about my mental, spiritual and physical health. Its going to be some time to re-charge my soul,” Eren Legend said.
Photos, including feature: Courtesy of Eren Legend