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Combat Athlete Training Application

Combat Athlete Performance Consultation

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    STORE #15 & #16, 400 NY-17M,
    Monroe, NY 10950
    Email: info@believeyouareelite.com
    Phone: (845) 656-5943

    Social Media


    Professional Athlete

    Shane "Hurricane" Burgos, UFC Featherweight

    “Been working with @believeelitetraining @nxtleveltc for almost a year now. I can honestly say he’s been a missing link for me, not just in my physical preparation for competition but even more so in my mental preparation! Way more then just a coach, he’s someone who pushes me to the absolute max and doesn’t ever let me give less then 100%. Always reminding me to visualize the win and to constantly tell myself how I’m gonna get the job done! He’s brought out the best in me in only 10 months. Can’t wait to see where I’m at this time next year. Thank u my brother!”

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    Professional Athlete

    Mike Tobey, Professional Basketball Player

    “I always really enjoyed doing my summer workouts with Coach J.R. He is very knowledgeable about his approach to training and pushes you be better with goal setting in and out of the weight room. Over the years he has become a good friend and I continue to go to him for advice about all aspects of what it takes to become an elite athlete. I wish I had something like believe elite training when I was growing up because it is never too early to start a professional approach to athletics and nutrition if you want to get a step ahead of the competition. Coach J.R and believe elite training are doing everything the right way and are on par with the strength coaches I have seen and worked with at the NCAA, European, and NBA level.”

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    Professional Athlete

    Justin Reyes, Professional Basketball Player

    “I can’t say enough about coach JR and Believe Elite Training and how it helped me and continues to help me to this day. Since I’ve graduated I signed with an agent, trained in California with pros, eventually made an NBA G- League team(Salt Lake City Stars), and am currently playing in Puerto Rico with potential offers to play on their national team. I am blessed to not only have trained with Coach JR but just to have him in my life. He became family to me, and that means more than anything I have accomplished.”

    View Justin's NBA G-League Stats

    “I once learned that the sport of wrestling is more than 90% a mental game. Being a Division 1 wrestler, I have learned that when it comes down to the inches and the seconds, the more mentally motivated person usually finds a way to win. JR over the years has not only pushed me physically, but he has helped shape me into a man willing to go through the mental pain of those last inches and seconds of a match and come out victorious.”

    Vincent Vespa, College Athlete

    Hofstra University Wrestling - 1st EVER BELIEVE ATHLETE

    “Working with Coach Rahn over the years has not only made me physically better, It has made me an even better man today. He has instilled core values that I carry with myself to this day like hard work, commitment, and chasing opportunities. He has been able to give many athletes including myself a sharp mindset that can get them through any obstacle that they face not only in athletics but in life. Coach Rahn is able to get the most out of any athlete by continuously strengthening their mindset, as well as
    coaching them to be the best versions of themselves. As I continue my career in wrestling I am grateful I have coach Rahn in my corner because I know how big of an impact he has had not only my life, but in the lives of others.”

    Marco Vespa, College Athlete

    Penn State Wrestling

    “With the help of coach J.R.’s coaching, life lessons and training, I was able to dig deep, and come out of the darkness better and stronger than ever. It has been a challenging journey, but keeping this positive mindset and not letting anyone “outwork” me in the gym or on the field, led to me earning 1st team all-conference honors my freshman year and leading my college baseball team in multiple categories. The bottom line is nothing is promised, you have to set your mind to it, put in the work and go get it. So dream big, work hard and make it happen. No excuses, just Believe!”

    Drew Jemison, College Athlete

    Saint Thomas Aquinas College Baseball - 1st Team All Conference

    “Working with Coach J.R. at Believe Elite for the past 2 years has not only changed me as a student athlete physically but, also mentally. Coach J.R. has instilled the concept of “hard work pays off” and has taught me that there is no such thing as an excuse. Working with Coach J.R. has given me more confidence in myself, a more disciplined work ethic, and a stronger mindset. With Coach J.R.’s help, I have been able to reach multiple goals that I had once thought were unreachable. He has worked my mindset to one of a champion. He has helped me bring my game to a much higher level. I am excited to be working with Coach J.R. this summer to help me get ready for the collegiate level.”

    Erin Smith, High School Athlete

    Goshen High Schools Girls Varsity Basketball Class A Player of the Year, 1st Team All Section & All Time Leading Scorer

    “After a few weeks I could feel the physical advantage that I was gaining over my competition, and eventually the mental edge. I knew that the work I was putting in with John, far exceeded anything anyone else was doing. That type of confidence that he instills in all of us is priceless . I can’t stress enough that the mental side of the game I learned from John is equally as important to the physical work that we put in. Working with John is without a doubt the main reason why I’m playing Division 1 football today.”

    Mike Boyle, College Athlete

    Stony Brook University Football

    “Coach J.R. and Coach Dawn took an awkwardly, tall 15 year old girl and turned her into the coordinated powerhouse that I am today. Months later I started getting compliments from coaches and parents of other teammates on how much stronger and faster I was compared to other girls, and personally, from my previous year. However, not only did I physically change, I was more confident. I was confident on and off the court, which I attribute to my confidence in knowing what I was doing. I knew the system, I had to work hard, train hard and eat right in order to be the best that I could possibly be and with that I owe so much to Believe Elite Training for showing me and supporting me every step of the way.”

    Melissa Alifano, College Athlete

    Saint Thomas Aquinas Women’s Basketball

    “The person that has been the biggest inspiration in my life, besides my parents, is coach J.R. He taught me every value I live by today, literally. Dream big and once you believe in that to an extent dream even bigger. Dreams also come with the responsibility of out working your self and out working your competition. You are your own test, and you have to surpass that test every single day to get to where you want to be. Coach J.R. taught me mindset is EVERYTHING. Do workouts when your opponents are asleep, you worked out when he was being lazy and you take that to every opponent and in life. You have to be different. You are your own obstacle everyday and you make the choice how to overcome through your work ethic and discipline. You know what the right thing is to do everyday, but the hardest part is taking action. Coach J.R. told me to go get it everyday & don’t let anything stop me until I hit my goal. He made me BELIEVE in myself. He transformed me!”

    Dylan Earl, College Athlete

    Ithaca College Wresting

    “I started working with Coach J.R. a couple of years ago, it changed everything. His passion for athletics mixed with his desire to be the best was contagious. He helped me with my nutrition, my mindset, and my training. His guidance went far beyond sports and without his help I know I wouldn’t be the athlete or the man I am today. The content that lies within this book goes beyond athletics, it should be taken very seriously. The journey of self improvement never ends.”

    Ryan Rodriguez, College Athlete

    Binghamton University Men’s Golf

    “Working with Coach JR has honestly changed my life. When I got to Believe, I was a good athlete that got away with just having more skill than most. I was an average high school athlete. Coach JR has taught me to never take the foot off the gas pedal and to always, no matter what, give it 100%! With him in my ear, I was able to get stronger, faster and smarter. He has taught me so much about life in general through his workouts. When coach speaks, we listen because of all the knowledge that he has! With all he has done for me, he helped me become more than the average high school athlete. He helped me achieve my goal of becoming a division 1 baseball player. The journey is not over and I can not wait to see what more we can achieve together!”

    Ben Avila, College Athlete

    Division 1 - Grambling State

    “Truthfully without John Rahn I would not be the man I am today with all the positive life lessons he has taught me. The main 3 people I can truly thank are my parents, John Rahn, and John Gartiser for giving me the ability to; win 3 section titles, 2x state place winner, 2nd in NYS wrestling tournament (with only one loss the whole season), All American becoming nationally ranked and becoming his first BIG10 athlete . Over the years John influenced positive thoughts into my head to make me BELIEVE I am the best. The different thing with John Rahn is; he did not know my attitude, motivation, and work ethic to make me become the best but he worked with me to find out all of my mental and physical pros and cons.”

    Nick McShea, College Athlete

    Maryland University Wrestling (Big10)

    “One of the best parts about being a Believe athlete wasn’t just Coach J.R.’s ability to push me when I was tired, or wanting to give up, but the impact he had on me when he wasn’t around. John made me give 110% every-time I went to the gym alone, or was at school and didn’t have one on one time. Honestly that was one of the many incredible parts about working with Believe Elite Athletic Training, they truly instill a mindset that takes your athletes to the next level, always, not just when I was with there training. Forever thankful for that.”

    Mike White, College Athlete

    Marist Football Quarterback

    “I’ve been working with Coach John Rahn since my freshman year of high school (I’m a senior now). I’ve always known baseball was a mental sport but I never realized how much that actually meant until I started working with Coach JR. JR was always telling me about these books and motivational videos and at first you think to yourself “why?’, but then you realize. You realize that to really accomplish your goals and to do what you want to do you have to set yourself apart from others. Coach JR made me realize all this and one day it just clicked. I took everything he had been telling me, the books, the videos, the speeches, and I started watching and reading all of them. You can have the talent but JR has engraved it in my head that if you don’t work for it and if you take your foot off the gas pedal, you’re never going to reach those goals, whether it is in sports or in the real world. Coach JR has helped me dramatically with bettering my mindset and is one of the reasons I was able to reach my first goal of committing to a division 1 school. I know JR and I will continue to work both with the weights and the mindset training because Coach JR is working as hard, or harder, than all of us.”

    Brandon Ortiz, College Athlete

    SUNY Binghamton D1 -Baseball

    “When I first started out I found it very hard to stick to a routine of working out when I wasn’t being forced to do so. Since meeting you my mindset has completely changed. Coach J.R. has shown me how much I could grow both mentally and physically so that I could achieve my goals. Every time I thought I couldn’t make it through a workout, he was there to help push me to the end and in those times he helped me realize how important the mental side of this game was. How it was important to keep a positive attitude to help you reach your goals. Coach J.R. and Believe were there when I had questions about anything and always gave their best effort into everything they do and it has been great to look toward all of the trainers role models. I came to John to work out but he has given me so much more along with a friendship that I’ll never forget. Now along with his help, I have been able to complete my goal of playing baseball in college at a D1 level, but just like he has said before – “Now’s the time to put your foot on the gas”… and I cant wait to see what happens next.”

    Ethan Sarmiento, College Athlete

    UMASS Lowell - D1 Baseball

    Believe Elite Training Application

    1-on-1 Coaching Application

    Fill out the form below to submit a training consultation request with Coach John Rahn.

    Complete Athlete Development

    Believe Elite

    Developing the Complete Athlete

    Learn, understand, and see how the top athletes in the world control their mind, develop it, and use it to their advantage to become a truly Elite Athlete.

    Get direct access to the Believe team and trainers to help answer any questions along the way concerning the program, nutrition, mindset, or anything else that comes up.

    360º Development

    Targeting each athlete’s form and technique allows us to prescribe more complex and rigorous exercises in a safe environment.

    Competitive Edge

    These programs utilize all of our equipment and techniques to develop explosive power, strength, and speed.

    Defining the Complete Athlete

    The Five Points of our Signature Star


    The fundamentals of strength training are the foundation of every athlete’s training at Believe. Muscle makes your body move faster and every athlete needs to increase their relative strength. Teaching proper technique and the specifics of safe and effective weight training, insures that every athlete has the tools they need to reach their peak performance. Check out all Believe Elite’s programs.


    In order to perform at an ELITE level you have to have the tactical elements and balance in training; cardiovascular work, nutrition for performance, and recovery/rest time. In addition to strength training, the emphasis at Believe on the WHOLE athlete delivers results when you need it the most — when you compete.


    This is the game changer—the key to literally unlock real results—especially for the developing youth athlete. “Muscle is made in the kitchen.” Often overlooked, proper nutrition has many benefits including:

    • Fuel for Performance
    • Muscle Building capabilities
    • Decreased Risk of Injury
    • Decreased Body Fat percentage
    • Decreased Health Risks


    The goal of the coaches at B.E.A.T is to TEACH our student athletes how to LIVE HEALTHY. Our Motto is LIVE FIT! The lessons taught in our training gym are not just aimed at becoming a better athlete but to live a healthy lifestyle and create great habits. We want our youth athletes to LIVE FIT! See what Believe Elite athletes have accomplished on the athletes page.


    Our staff has a tremendous amount of training and experience on the athletic field and performance industry. Motivating an athlete is our specialty. Seeing athletes succeed on the playing field is our passion. Our goal is to help our athletes realize their fullest potential at each stage of development, and to create a positive framework for their sport and their lives. At Believe we see each athlete as an individual and our approach caters to their unique needs. We offer round the clock support which lets our athletes know we are available for them. Motivating the athletes we train rests on building a relationship, which in turn builds a bond. It’s a trust that we never take for granted. We are truly grateful for every athlete that comes to train with us.

    “You must become STRONG before you can be POWERFUL.”

    –M. Rooney

    Coach J.R. Story

    The Coach J.R. Story

    The inspiration for my business.
    The origin.

    My business, Believe Elite Athletic Training, was founded on the life blessing of meeting a young man. In 2010, I was working for the Department of Homeland Security as a United States Federal Agent with the Immigration Customs Enforcement Agency. I was also pursuing my health and fitness goals and training at a local gym in my town of Monroe, New York. I saw a young boy working out with his father and not really knowing how to train properly. I went up to the father and son and gave the boy some pointers. The young boy, Vincent Vespa, was a 7th grader and a wrestler for the Monroe-Woodbury High School Varsity Team.

    Vincent’s father, Vinny Sr., asked me if I could help him gain some muscle to wrestle at a higher level. Along with being a Federal Agent, I had been a certified Personal Trainer prior to working for the U.S. Government. I told his father I would help him as much as my work schedule would permit. Vincent and I started working together and my passion for teaching and coaching started to come to life. Vincent would be my student and together we would reach all of his fitness and athletic goals.

    I knew Vincent was a “rare breed.” I knew us working together was going to be special.

    My passion for coaching started to come to life

    Our time together at the gym became something that I loved. I would sit at work at my 9 to 5 job and be thinking about workouts that I could put this young boy through that would benefit him and educate him on how to train properly. I couldn’t train him the way I was training. He was too young. I started with the basics and everything I was taught through my certification through the International Sports Science Association (ISSA). My background as a former collegiate athlete gave me the insight and experience of working with another athlete but I had to motivate a boy. I did what any good coach would do, I told him he was going to be great and do great things. When I said it, I meant every bit of it.

    Vincent believed me. I saw it in his intense look and the way he would shake his head and approach every workout. He was focused. He had big goals. He wanted to be the best wrestler in the state of New York. He wanted to be the best ever in Monroe-Woodbury history. I knew Vincent was a “rare breed.” I knew us working together was going to be special.

    The hard work was paying off.

    Our time went by fast and before I knew it he gained 20 pounds of lean muscle and was walking into his freshman year of high school as the Varsity starter and had made a name for himself in the region. His hard work was paying off and everyone was seeing it. His Monroe-Woodbury coaches saw his physical strength and gain of lean muscle and approached me about it. Along with training Vincent I was giving him nutritional guidance. I obtained another certification through the ISSA as a Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist through my time working with Vincent. I wanted to give him all the coaching and guidance I possibly could and emphasize the importance of eating healthy and living a healthy lifestyle.

    Vincent was excelling on the mats and doing well as a student-athlete. He was such a focused and driven young man. We were coming into Vincent’s sophomore year of school and there was a lot of buzz that he was one of the best wrestlers in the state. He had a productive off-season training and wrestling through the spring and summer and he was ready to accomplish his goal. The season started and Vincent was unstoppable. He was so strong for a 106-pound athlete. His strength was something you would have to see to believe when he was in the weight room or gym. His love for training showed in his confidence on the mats. He knew he was the strongest and if he didn’t I was in his corner always telling him, “Yes, you are to strong!”

    “To Strong!” We would say it if a workout was tough or a practice was pushing him. It was more of a mindset that we both developed.

    Then the unexpected happened.

    That was our motto, “To Strong!” We would say it if a workout was tough or a practice was pushing him. It was more of a mindset that we both developed. As I coached him our motto got me through my workdays as an Agent. Our relationship grew to that of brothers rather than trainer and client. I never looked at Vincent as a “client.” He was always someone who I cared for and knew I was a mentor to him. Vincent came off the mat after a match and was very winded. His mother, Lisa, and I didn’t know what was going on. He was young and physically in great conditioning. He was complaining about his throat and being itchy. His mother brought him to the doctor and gave him some medicine. He took a little time off from practice and rested to make sure he was good for the New York State wrestling tournament.

    There is POWER in believing.

    — Coach John Rahn

    We trained while he was recovering and made sure that Vincent was eating well. The tournament was here and Vincent was matched up against the best wrestlers in the state. He worked so hard for this moment. The matches started and Vincent wasn’t himself. He came off the mats after his last match and literally was gasping for air. Something was not right and I was concerned. Once home from the tournament his mother brought him back to the doctor. The season was done so Vincent was now able to rest more and take care of being ill.

    The Champion Within.

    His health was not getting better and Vincent qualified to wrestle at a National Tournament in Fargo, ND. His mother brought him to the doctor to make sure he would be ok to go. It turned out he would not be. The doctors found a 10cm mass in Vincent’s chest. He was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma stage 4 as a 14-year-old boy. I got the news and broke down. I could not believe this was happening and that was the diagnosis. Vincent was my little brother and knowing how strong he was and how great of an athlete he was becoming I could not believe he could even get something like cancer. He was admitted to Westchester Medical and that was where the battle began. I was by his bedside as much as possible. He was not fighting alone. Vincent was scared and I was too. He never said anything but I knew. I remember being next to him before one of the tests and I grabbed his hand, looked him in the eyes with tears in them and told him to, “Believe that you will beat this and that you are to strong!” I wanted him to pray, pray for health and faith that he would be ok.

    The Power of Goals.

    Vincent fought and we still worked out when we were allowed. I tried to keep his mind on his goals and getting back to wrestling. There were some hard days, especially when the chemotherapy was really hitting him. He was bald and dealing with a disease that no young child should have to take on. Vincent smiled though; he smiled and kept his faith. He was still so strong and continued to work on his wrestling. Vincent beat cancer in 3 months. He went on to compete the next season and had an incredible season. He graduated high school in June 2015 and now is attending the Hofstra University on a Full Athletic Scholarship. He is wrestling for a Division 1 program.

    Vincent beat cancer in 3 months. He went on to compete the next season and had an incredible season.

    Forever Changed and Inspired.

    My life changed because of one young man. People close to us both say we changed each other’s lives. I know that is the truth. Vincent helped me to be strong, have courage, and work for what I truly wanted out of my own life. I left my career as a Federal Agent in December of 2014. I opened Believe Elite Athletic Training in a local storefront in my hometown of Monroe, NY. I studied to receive another certification through the ISSA as a Strength and Conditioning Specialist. I start to volunteer as the Strength & Conditioning Coach for the Monroe-Woodbury Wrestling program (4 years now). I have the opportunity to work with 100’s of young athletes on a weekly basis. My business has given me the chance to impact lives, build relationships, and create an atmosphere where young kids can learn about living a healthy life. My goal is to expand Believe Elite and positively influence more youth and families in my community.

    Working with John has prepared me to compete in the highest levels of my sport, but most importantly the confidence to strive to reach the highest goals I set for myself.

    ~ Vincent Vespa


    General Questions

    We train youth athletes as young as 9 years old and our programs are based on each individual athlete. Most of our younger athletes are coached using bodyweight exercises to increase their strength and mobility. We always use professional discretion when designing workouts for all of our athletes.

    This is dependent upon a couple of key factors. We access training history and experience within the first couple of sessions. Based on our assessment, we make a prescribed routine. It is also based on whether or not your son/daughter is in a competitive season or off-season. We firmly believe that, “Great athletes are made in the Off-Season.” Athletes need time away from their sport to work on weaknesses and to make strength gains. This time away also allows them to create realistic goals and attain them.

    We get this question often and in all honesty until they are with me for at least 12 sessions we do not recommend they do any weight training on their own. The lessons we teach to our athletes are very intricate and place emphasis on; form, technique, breathing, and the mental aspect of strength training. Many of them are not going to be ready to be thrown into a “gym” and their safety may be at risk.

    Our philosophy on speed and agility is to build the strength of developing athletes through proper exercise selection and nutritional education. These lessons are advanced for most of the young athletes that walk into our facility with no experience or knowledge on these topics. Speed and agility are what all athletes want to have because they are essential to success in their sport. Building their bodies is our main goal and it is a process. We educate our athletes on all aspects of training on and off the field.

    This is the game changer. We put a lot of importance on nutrition and it’s importance in being a successful athlete. Healthy nutrition for young developing athletes/adolescents is probably the most important component of reaching fitness goals and living a healthy life. For us to not educate your children about the importance of nutrition to their athletic performance would be a disservice to them and their goals. Our coaches have the expertise in the field of fitness nutrition to help our young athletes reach full muscular potential and advance to the next level of their careers in a healthy way.