The Joy Of Being A Personal Trainer
This blog post is not your typical fat loss, nutrition or exercises recommendations.
I’m sure lots of personal trainers and coaches out there who run their own fitness facility and doing their dream job to help people get better and healthier, will recognize themselves in this post.
Being a health and fitness coach is a fantastic job. I meet lots of different people from any background and walk of life.
I chose to be my own boss and opened my own fitness facility about 3 years ago in Drumcondra, instead of working for any big box gym so that I can provide great quality and results to every person reaching out to me.
Why I decided to write this?
Last year, I coached a fantastic client who has her own business and understood what it's like to run your own. By writing the behind the scenes of what a self-employed personal trainer and business owner has to do and face on a daily basis, might open up not only people's views but also for other trainers.
Things that lots of people do not realize: it’s demanding psychologically, emotionally and physically.
As my client said: “Being self-employed is very tough and most people can’t appreciate all the challenges you have to go through.”
People see and think that a trainer is “just there” to make them sweat, smash them on the gym floor and give them in record time the flat tummy or nice ass that they see in all the fancy and glossy magazines or posts from facebook and instagram.
That’s what the industry has portrayed for years and unfortunately still does.
It's really not what it is all about.
Every 5 year old kid can do that job to make you sweat and puke to feel like you did a great workout.
It's soo sooo much more than sweating people's head off.
I always remember what one of my friends and fantastic trainer told me years ago after I graduated and before I started coaching:
“ When you become a personal trainer, over 80% of your time will be like a psychologist..”
I kinda knew it and I have to say, he was so damned right.
Every person I met and consulted has their own story, their own struggles, their own injuries, as well as their own goals and motivations to get where they need and want to be.
All those backgrounds have to be taken into account when programming and coaching.
I have to listen to every person who walked through my gym doors. Some individuals are very chatty, others more reserved and some are just packed with lots of great craic. That’s what makes my job as a personal trainer quite interesting.
It’s not all roses and chocolates. Being an entrepreneur and your own boss is far from being easy.
The stress and worry about building something successful – make people feel great and happy, motivate them, provide an enjoyable experience. On top of that, write excellent programs to get them results, review and recommend nutrition, research and read a hell lot to educate yourself and help clients better, all the logistics to run behind, paying rent, tax, council rates, and dealing with “vampires” of any type...
That takes a lot of energy and sometimes left me completely drained.
Yes, I am still here...
I often hear that a trainer goes broke and out of business after 12 months.
Yes, I won’t hide it, the first two years was a nightmare financially and emotionally. There were times, I felt like a complete failure and started to doubt myself. Basically losing my own confidence,motivation, and started to question myself.
Not able to get clients, the thought of having to pay all my bills and not having a penny left to even buy a birthday or Christmas present for my partner.
I always remember what one of my mentor said to me: “If you don’t believe in yourself and in your business, how can a client believe in you?”
I love what I do and I did not give up. I changed strategies, reached out to whoever will be willing to help me and refocus on myself and what my business needs.
The fitness industry is tough and harsh to be in. Competition is higher than ever with gyms popping at every street corners charging a fiver per class and I basically “swim in a pool of sharks” as one of my friends keeps saying to me.
That’s not my business model and after investing heavily in some mentorships, I learnt to let go of all the negative people in my life, the backstabbers and the clients who were not suitable to work with me and sucked all my energy.
It’s not jolly rosy every day and there are still lots of ups and downs. There are days where I feel completely energy-less, depressed and motionless. Adding to my low state, I sometimes have a swing of blood sugar (I’m type 1 diabetic) to deal with. . It’s part of life and I’m not perfect, as so many trainers portray themself on social medias.
But the thought of going to meet and coach my students every day is the joy and passion I have for being a personal trainer and help someone move forward.
It’s a job that I love and enjoy especially when you have members who arrive in the studio with their biggest smile like Ilona who pushed and finished all her workouts with a wiggly-boogy dance afterwards, Siobhan who just simply smiles throughout the entire session even when she crawled backward into a bush or Hazel who always answers “Noo..” when I asked “are you ready?”. They are the people I enjoy working with and who truly make my day and job so enjoyable.
Helping and seeing the differences that I make to every single person working with me: making them feel better in themself, the mind and body transformation they get, the education I can provide them to become a healthier person and building back the confidence they lost long ago.
I.Simply. Love.My. Job.
... and yes, I’m still here after changing career 4 years ago to help and change people’s live for the better and despites all those lows and downs I face every day, that’s what my job, my passion, my ownership as a fitness and health professional is about.
To Your Better Health Every Day,