Name: Eugene Monroe
    Age: 28
    Home location: Plainfield, NJ
    Sport/Position: Football/Left Tackle
    Current Team: Baltimore Ravens
    Years in current sport: 7
    1. What is the most ridiculous question you have ever been asked by an interviewer? NFL players have numerous experiences dealing with media. They work in our facilities, and maneuver our locker rooms' daily. Most times, interactions with the media are quite pleasant. However, there are times when a reporter may be trying to direct the narrative so fiercely that they'll ask you the same question in multiple ways, baiting you to give them a bit you may regret. I think it's comical, I end up giving them the same answer verbatim or just telling them to can it. I've learned to control the direction of the interview and tell my story, regardless of the question asked. Im also respectful and have appreciation for their profession.
    2. Who is your favorite athlete? Why? My favorite athlete is Ronda Rousey. She is clearly dominating women's MMA. Her physical attributes and technique set her apart from her competition. Ronda's intangibles make her special. Take a look at her training. Have you ever looked at her demeanor before a fight? It takes me back to my youth, watching Mike Tyson enter the ring with supreme confidence. It is the spirit of a champion.
    3. How was your chemistry with your college team? My college teammates are my brothers. In the most literal way, we poured blood, sweat, and tears for each other. We became young men together. We fought for each other with everything we had, every day. We laughed in the good times and buckled down when things got tough. We are a family beyond the locker room. And as young adults, we share family experiences and prosperity together as business men and community leaders. Go HOOS!
    4. What was the moment that you realized you had the potential to become a professional football player? From the moment I started playing football, I knew it was a sport that I wanted to dominate. I hung a flag with all of the NFL teams on the ceiling over my bed and wrote in red marker, "You should be working."  During my third year in college, my teammate Chris Long invited me to New York to see him be drafted in the first down.  After battling with him and other top draft picks for 3 years, dominating on the field, overcoming injuries and personal adversity I knew I'd be Virginia's next first round NFL pick. I was fully confident and nothing was going to get in my way. Not even the surgically repaired shoulder I was rehabbing at the time, nor my knee which raised red flags on my medical exams.
    5. What coach and/or teammate has been most influential during your career? My uncle has been the biggest influence on my career. He stepped up as a father figure when my father passed away. Many of the values I have, faith, toughness, work ethic, love, resolve and others, have come from being around my uncle. When there's a job, it will be finished no matter the cost. If someone is in need, I will go out of my way to offer assistance. These traits and more define who I am as a player but more importantly as a person.
    6. What are some of the hardest lessons you've learned as an NFL player? The first game of my career was a huge reality check. I was the starting left tackle for the Jaguars, a first round pick full of potential. I was humbled that day and learned to respect my opponents no matter how confident I might have been. I promised to always ask myself the tough questions. Am I working hard enough? Am I studying my opponent enough? What are my weaknesses? How will they attack them and how will I improve them? I flew home that afternoon understanding how real professional football is a grown man's game that will eat you up and spit you out like you were never there if you don't show up and prove yourself every moment. Not everyday, every moment. You never know when the time will come. Luckily I learned that lesson very early in my career!
    eugene photo 67. What one or two things do you currently do in your training that are keys to your success? Two crucial components of my training are; a variety of endurance training and solid nutrition. Everything I do is to improve my ability to perform on game day. Resistance training helps to develop power and explosion; it's also vital for injury prevention. Conditioning and cardio help improve endurance. These items need to be combined. My performance must be sustained over 3.5 hours or longer during a game. I do copious amounts of cardio from swimming and cycling long distance, uphill sprinting mixing it up with high intensity intervals. I vary the rest intervals as they vary on game day too. Sometimes I'll wake up, cycle 30 miles, bust out the cones, speed ladder and medicine balls for a circuit of agility and core work, and then jump into some football specific drill work. A game has gone by, my 3 hour morning session. Learning to push through fatigue like that also builds character and confidence. Immediately after finishing my nutrition continues. That includes healthy foods and supplements that help me recovery from my morning grind and provide fuel for my next session. The foods I choose and the amounts are also catered to the type of exercise I'll be doing. My lifting incorporates endurance too. I do numerous sets of every muscle group; 4-5 sets of reps between 10-30 reps. Sometimes I'll do 100 rep sets. It develops very strong muscular endurance. I also mix in heavy lifting and powerful, athletic movements to gain strength and athleticism.
    8. You are a family man and it seems that helping children are huge part of the foundations you support. Tell us about why giving back is so important in your life. Nothing that I've been able to do has happened solely because of me. There has been someone, or something there to help me as I look back on my life. Giving yourself to others is something that everyone should do. Not just because it's edifying, but because you can genuine impact someone else's life in a positive way, no matter how small.
    9. If you could compare yourself to any character in a film/fiction who would he be? I would come back as me. I love the life God has given me. I would go through all of the experiences that made me who I am today all over again.
    Learn more and follow Eugene Monroe at:
    Instagram: @EugeneMonroe60
    Twitter: @TheSeventyFifth
    Website: eugenemonroe.com

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