Matt Hoover was born and raised in the small Iowa town of Belle Plaine. Matt became one of the best high school wrestlers in state history by winning two state championships, earning all-American status and representing the United States in international competition. Dan Gable, former Olympic Gold Medalist and University of Iowa wresting coach, recruited Matt to wrestle for the University of Iowa, the top college wrestling program in the nation.
Matt was a member of the Iowa wrestling team for four years, wrestling in the 177 and 190 pound weight classes, but he never achieved his wrestling goals. After his wrestling career ended, Matt struggled with his failure to live up to the standards that were set for him—not winning an individual national title, not competing on the international circuit, and, most of all, not competing in the Olympics. He felt as if the true physical challenges in life had passed him by and he had failed. As a result, Matt lost the motivation to stay fit, healthy, and athletic. He ultimately developed severe eating and drinking problems, became severely...
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