HIS BIGGEST OBSTACLE WAS OTHER PT’S HOW DID HE FIND THE KEY TO SUCESS?
Can you start by telling me a little about yourself?
“In terms of the whole fitness career type thing, I qualified as a personal trainer 7 years ago now whilst studying sports and exercise science at Loughborough, I was in my second year for that. I started doing some massage stuff as well like sports therapy and then did my degree. Finished that, moved back to London, did a Masters in sports nutrition. Got a full time job as a personal trainer in a private gym, which was alright. I was there for a couple of years and then left there to start my own business closer to home in Surrey. I have been there 3 and a bit years now I suppose.”
It seems like you have always had an interest in the fitness industry would you say that is true?
“Yes and no. I have always been sporty, I was a footballer as I grew up so I played from about 13/14 with professional teams up until the age of 19, my professional career came to an end there. As I went to Loughborough I continued playing to a decent level but I knew I wasn’t going to make it as a professional footballer. So the next step for me was to work with professional footballers, like a strength and conditioning coach or a sports scientist. That was the initial thinking whilst at Uni. Then I did work with some and realised that wasn't going to work at all because most high level professional footballers are assholes (laughs).”
“Whilst at uni to earn money I got a job as a personal trainer with normal people, in a woman’s only studio that was on my campus. I realised I preferred working with normal people. My interest grew from there onwards, working with normal people and the fitness industry. I didn't go to the gym myself until I was 21. I have only actually been in the gym myself for 5 years.”
What would you say has been your biggest professional success?
“Launching and maintaining the business I have now I suppose. My first year of growth was large. To go from nothing, to almost 60 hours a week and 70+ clients in a year and a bit. Then just still having the business now anyway, (laughs) I haven't gone bust or died a death with Covid.”
How has that affected you would you say, Covid?
“It’s not been ideal. I have probably lost 40/50% of clientele through redundancies and not really enjoying the online side of things. But it’s been alright, business is still going, so we are still delivering good services. It’s given me a good opportunity to improve the business in other aspects so its probably been positive on the whole.”
Apart from Covid what would you say has been your biggest obstacle?
“Funnily enough, the other trainers in the gym that I work with. I have a had a pretty bad run with other trainers trying to destroy me essentially. It’s just a case of at the gym i’m working people aren't particularly too keen on the working hard type of thing. So, I think where I went in with no one and within a year had more than everyone, people didn't really like that. They just do what they can to make life harder for me. But it doesn't really stop us.”
Would you find that the case with most personal trainers that there is competitive nature?
“Yes. I think there is a bit of competitive nature. However, I see nothing as a competition. There’s enough people in the world for everyone to be busy. In my opinion, it’s silly to view things as a competition because then you actually go against each other. Rather than helping the people you are meant to be helping, which is the point of doing what we do.”
How would you say you have overcome it then?
“Just by being resilient, persistent and focusing purely on myself. I have never retaliated in any way, shape or form to any of the rubbish I have had come my way. I have literally dealt with it where I've had to through meetings etc. But mainly it’s just been focus on doing my own thing, don’t really care about anyone else, if they don’t want to be positive don’t worry about them.”
What advice would you give anybody looking to join the industry?
“Find good respectable people to listen to and follow and learn from. Actually learn from them first before you start trying to make 1 million pounds a year or 100,000 pounds a month or whatever this rubbish is."
"Lift the bar is essentially a personal training development centre. They basically educate PT’s in every respect; business, actually the training, exercises, psychology etc. That’s phenomenal. I couldn’t recommend that enough. If I had to give one piece of advice it would be to join that."
"On that, I suppose its also when budget allows outsource the things that take up too much time. This is obviously why I am a part of FitPro Cookbooks. I’d like to give nutrition advice and recipes, but I am not a chef, nor have the time to develop these things.”
How has FitPro Cookbooks services benefited you or your clients?
“It benefits me in the sense that it’s an outsource they provide everything I want to a quality that I need for the business. Without me having to spend time that I don’t have doing it. It saves me a shit tonne of time. Obviously, it looks good, looks great. They’ve always looked great.”
“I’d say 25/30% of clients actually use them regularly. But then just having the option there is nice, for them to dip in and out of as and when they want. So it benefits them in the sense that they get a better service then what most people around my area deliver. It's a benefit for me as it makes me look better. A key part to running your own business is to look good (laughs).”
Finally, I would say 5 year plan but that's a little extensive , so lets say whats your 1 year plan?
“In 1 year, in a world without Covid, it would be nice to be back to being fully booked with the PT sessions.”
“The 5 year plan is a funny one isn't it really, its also quite time restrained. I don’t really have a timing schedule on what I want, but it would be nice to continue working clients but then open up or produce some sort of fitness consultancy. Where other trainers could come to us for advice and where we could help them develop their businesses in a positive manner. That’s what I would quite like to do.”
“It’s a massive rabbit hole because I have so much I want to do (laughs). The brain is always whirling. I love the whole fitness marketing and emailing writing side as well so if that would ever be a branch, I would happily write copy for people. It all kind of combines into one. Maybe some form of education company, maybe my own gym. The gym I have been looking at for a while but its proving tougher at the moment because of the (current) situation. So it will be a bit longer than a year, but in some point in time I should have my own gym.”
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