Why do so many personal trainers quit within a year? Let me help you become apart of the 20% and be awesome!
101 Trainer Mistakes
With a new class beginning at The Show Up Academy this week, I always begin with this masterpiece by Jon Goodman and Personal Trainer Development Center. This is a great article for NEW and VETERAN TRAINERS TO READ (please read and comment on your favorites and/or things you'd add or take out!) I may not agree with all, but that's the awesome thing about learning and growing as a trainer.
Here are my favorite:
#16 - Great book for every trainer to read. How to Win and Influence People. If you're a trainer and haven't read this... TISK TISK TISK.
#19 - SALES IS FUN, GET OVER IT.
#20 (SMILE! I CAN'T BELIEVE HOW MANY ASSHOLE TRAINERS I'VE SEEN AT EQUINOXES, CRUNCH & 24-HOUR'S THESE PAST 2-YEARS. IT'S INSANE.)
#24- Testimonials. I read in a book that the problem with the unemployed is they don't treat their time as if they're employed. You need to be training the hours you want to work. That means as a new trainer, offer up your time to everyone: bar tenders, baristas, bookstore clerks, actors, friends, EVERYONE! Your time isn't free. Each person you train needs to commit to 3x a week, post pictures, write a YELP/GOOGLE/WEBSITE review, and at the end of 8-weeks, send you at least one referral. If not, they'll be fired, or have to pay.
#39- IMO, A lack of confidence comes from the lack of education and shitty entry standards into the fitness industry. I'd say 99.9% of trainers who graduate from the Academy have more confidence than the average trainer.
#73- It's free advertisement. Get with the program.
#87 - SHUT UP; ask your clients questions, no one cares about your drama.
#8 Smoking during breaks. You're a trainer and you smoke (cigs; not happy smoke)? I don't see it. I'm bias because I've never smoked (guilty of drinking like an Irishman), but I've never understood the whole smoking and being a trainer thing.
#23 I don't necessary disagree with, more so would modify to, "it takes between 6-10 contacts to close a sale." Stop being transactional by trying to sell so fast. Add value first, present the options for their success, and then follow up, be consistent, offer free sessions to get them back in, send articles, happy birthday notes, and truly show that your trying to help. Eventually, a good amount will come around.
#26 Not giving homework. Who can honestly raise their hand and say they loved homework in High School or College? As a nation who's morbidly obese, the last thing we need is homework, we need challenges. When I challenge a client or student to read a book, drop bread / rice / grains for a month, or take up yoga, they take it upon themselves to subscribe when the time is right. People are naturally competitive, they want to SHOW UP to the challenge. At the end of it all, they're the ones who did it, not someone telling them what to do. To empower people is something great coaches can do.
#65 Coffee on the floor. I agree if you're holding your cup of joe with two hands, slowly sipping it, while mundanely counting out reps for your client- ya that's bullshit. Keep your coffee within eyesight, or behind the water cooler and during a rest period take a sip and then get back to coaching. It seems to be accepted that energy drinks, protein shakes or pre-workouts are OK, so why not coffee? It's all in context.
Mistakes that I see trainers make that I would add:
- Get trained by other trainers (similar to #78). If you don't invest in a trainer, how can you expect to see the value in your own services? It's like a dentist who doesn't get bi-annual cleans, WTF?
- SHOW UP EVERY DAY READY TO CHANGE LIVES.
- Investing in your clients. I think all trainers should invest 10% of what they earn back into each client. Buy them gifts, take them to lunch, happy hours, and / or events.
- Leaving your client unattended / THE FINAL DESTINATION GAME. Passive negligence is a thing. I always go through worse case scenarios. What if a client were to trip over a dumbbell, fall into the corner of a plyobox and roll into the mirror hitting their carotid artery?
-I would combine a bunch of them into= Deliberate Practice, which includes: reading at least an hour a day (nutrition, bio-mechanics, kinesiology, psychosocial development and business), going to workshops quarterly, getting trained by top fit pros, keeping up with trends by reading magazines monthly, and interning at specific interest groups e.g. physical therapy, diabetic or cancer clinics, high school strength coach, or RD's.
- Working at a gym and understanding the corporate world. I have heard so many bitter trainers leave quality gyms like Equinox because "they're taking too much from my sessions." It may seem unfair to get paid $22-30 per session when the gym is charging $110, but my question to you is, WHO THE FUCK ARE YOU? You're replaceable. You have a state of the arc facility to practice and hone your craft. I challenge every trainer to get 5- clients in a week WITHOUT using any sort of brand representation. You're not a trainer for Equinox, or Show Up Fitness, you are you. The brand is why people show up (hence #9.) I'm sorry, but you wouldn't have a clientele if it wasn't for the brand on the back of your shirt. BE GRATEFUL and you're time will come. Instead of getting bitter, learn from your experience and become better.
Overall, I love The PTDC to supplement content for The Show Up Academy and thank everyone who's ever contributed. You're the ones who trainers need to emulate. Keep on being awesome :-)
How long is it before we stop referencing scientific literature like the JSCR (Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research) and start citing MEME's? Let's pretend my grandfather were to be reading this blog post (RIP & Vaya Con Dios Gramps), and begin by defining the word MEME. MEME = a humorous image, video, piece of text, etc., that is copied (often with slight variations) and spread rapidly by Internet users- Dictionary.com.
Students, clients, and even worse, trainers, are discussing MEME's as if they're the truth. There are some great MEME's, and there's some really shitty ones, so it must be hard to tell if the information is valid. Let Show Up Fitness help you navigate through the ambiguous land of The Google and analyze the Best AND Worst fitness and nutrition MEME's.
#1 for Worst MEME:
This is not an exact replica of 5 pounds of fat vs 5 pounds of muscle; IDIOTS! This MEME is the exact replica of 5 pounds of fat vs 1 pound of muscle. At the Show Up Academy in Santa Monica, I have the replica of 5 pounds fat and 5 pounds muscle and they're pretty freaking similar. Let Mr. Contreras, aka the "Glute Hunk" better explicate in our Best Meme #1:
On his Instagram post he says, "I'm sure you've seen the images floating around the Internet showing what 5lbs of fat vs. 5lbs of muscle looks like. The replicas typically shown are a giant blob of fat next to a tiny mound of muscle, and you're inevitably left believing that 5lbs of fat takes up 5x more space than 5lbs of muscle. This is a myth! In actuality, the density of mammalian skeletal muscle tissue is 1.06kg/L, while that of adipose tissue is 0.9196kg/L. In other words, fat only takes up 15% more space than muscle. So 5lbs of fat weighs the same as 5lbs of muscle - obviously! But muscle is only slighter more dense than fat. How did this misconception arise? I do not know, but I surmise that some sleazy marketer fabricated the idea to sell a product or service by dramatizing the visual effects of getting into shape. Whatever the case, this individual clearly never chased down the science like I did. Unfortunately, these images are so common nowadays that they aren't questioned and are passed along as fact. Exaggeration is never a good idea; people deserve the truth."
- Bret Contreras @bretcontreras1
Bret knows his shit and he's what I call a "fitness bully." Most would associate this nickname negatively, but don't, it's a compliment. Bret's beyond intelligent. If you were to gather 5 of the smartest "trainers" that you know, they wouldn't be able to compete with this man's grasp of the scientific literature within bio-mechanics and kinesiology. Bullies usually use their strength to overcome weaker counterparts; Bret uses his intellect (he's also strong AF!)
Worst MEME #2:
Similar to the recent documentary, aka worst fucking film ever, WHAT THE HEALTH, by using scare tactics (Steak has more fat), it qualifies the other food source as a superior choice. First off, don't watch that documentary, it's terrible. Second, how good are you with numbers? At face value, this MEME make sense, right? Hold on for one second and lets take a look at BEST MEME #2:
The Chow Babe, as she says on her Facebook page, "Organic Living, Nutrition, Fitness...screw all of that. We're just satirizing Food Babe. She's nuts" breaks down those numbers. 100-calories of steak is not even a freaking bite, whereas 100-calories of broccoli is over half a pound. I don't know about you, but if I'm looking for a great protein source, I'll stick with 8-10 ounces of steak and add a few ounces of broccoli to compliment it. Let it be noted, we're not saying broccoli is bad, or not filled with phytochemicals (it is.) What were attacking is the idiocy of claiming broccoli is a better protein source compared to steak. If you're a vegetarian it's a great choice, otherwise, STEAK for the win.
Onto the Best MEME #3
Seriously, KERMIE MEME's can't be beat!
Back to fitness & nutrition.... Worst MEME #3
"Milk is bad, we're not designed to drink it, and we're the only other animals who drink other animals milk." When it comes to diary products, there's a ton of weird shit people come up with. Let us ponder what else humans can do e.g. go to the moon, shit on a toilet, and have ALEXA on Amazon. EVERYTHING is bad and will probably cause cancer sooner or later e.g. Drink too much water and you can die (hyponatremia), workout too long and hard and you'll die (rhabdomyolysis.) Humans have evolved to drink milk as an advantage. When we began to domesticate cattle (e.g. Northern Europe) we could survive the harsh winters by drinking cows milk. We eat everything else on a cow, but why do we demonize the milk? PUS CELLS, Antibiotics, and Bovine Growth Hormone; oh my! Pus cells are confused by the non-farmer as somatic cells. These cells (which mainly consist of white blood cells aka leukocytes) when elevated, indicate an infection in an organism. The FDA regulates the maximal allowable somatic cell count to be 600,000-750,000 cells per milliliter*. Sometimes cows can develop an infection which is called mastitis (humans can too.) This infection leads people to believe that ALL milk is filled with "pus." NOT TRUE. For all you conspiracy theorists, I'm sorry to inform you that our government ISN'T TRYING TO KILL US or are they hiding the cure for AIDS /Cancer. When a cow has mastitis, you need to, A- Massage it out by milking the cow (if you were to get this on film, it would look like a farmer is milking "pus" and then deliberately giving to consumers- NOT THE CASE. They have to throw it away,) B- the animal goes on antibiotics. The milk is then delivered to a processing plant to make sure no harmful residues are detected. CONTAMINATED MILK RESULTS IN A LARGE FINE! Do you even know a farmer? Seriously? Or are you reading a blog from David Wolff? The next time you come across a farmer, ask them to break down their job in detail. Milk is highly regulated. As with anything, there may be trace amounts of particles. If this bugs you, don't eat or drink it, and PLEASE don't bother anyone who chooses to do so. I guarantee your bathroom floor, bed sheets, and fingers are filthier than what we consume at the store.
The evidence behind recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH) is inconclusive. People freak out because cows are able to produce more milk with the use of this synthetic hormone (rBGH) which produces more IGF (insulin-like growth factor). Increases in IGF MAY BE linked to cancer. Therefore, drinking milk gives us cancer. hmmmm, not so fast, that's not Logic 101...
A = B
B = C
A = C
If that's the case, then:
A = B: You can die from an increase in blood pressure (true)
B = C: Blood pressure increases during sex (true)
A = C: If you have sex, you will die (I HOPE NOT!)
Our bodies are badass and the proteins of hormones are denatured during the digestion process. This is the reason why many anabolic hormones are not ingested, they're injected (Insulin cannot be taken orally, nor can many forms of testosterone. The active chemicals are present in the oral form, but once digested, are denatured into inactive chemicals and removed via the liver.) If you are concerned about hormones, you can pay more for the "hormone free."
I don't care if you drink milk, nor am I telling you to start; if you do, SWEET, if you don't, SWEET! As the American Cancer Society states, the evidence behind milk consumption is INCONCLUSIVE and more studies are needed. Personally, I haven't had milk in ages due to my intolerance to lactose. Recently, I began drinking lactose free milk (1-2 cartons a week) without any gastrointestinal distress. I will continue to drink milk until otherwise noted. It's frustrating hearing about the misconceptions about milk, and I care about the information being delivered to the public. Research isn't typing in "is milk good for humans?" Research done well is performed via a meta-analysis as seen below, and to date, milk (if you want to drink it), is FINE...
Speaking of detoxing, BEST MEME #4
Detoxing 101 summarized perfectly by the reliable and educated Jordan Syatt. Succinctly put, be thankful for your kidneys, liver, and lungs, they take care of everything for you. If you'd like some liver support because you drink more whiskey than an Irishman, drink more water, exercise, and supplement with some Milk Thistle.
Onto the last Best MEME #5
It doesn't matter the diet aka lifestyle, that you subscribe too. What matters is if you can adhere to the diet for your life. At the end of the day, WHATEVER works for you to be mentally and physically happy without harassing other people with your confirmation bias.
SHOW UP or SHUT UP!
By: Bret Lusis
Traits of a Successful Personal Trainer
Intro: Today in the fitness industry it is not unusual to see clients leaving their trainers within a month. Common excuses range from, “Money is a little tight,” to “Work is crazy.” Yes, clients could be experiencing certain issues, but odds are the reason they didn’t commit is that they did not see the value in your services. Imagine this….
Would you like to buy a $400-dollar cup of coffee?
What if I told you that cup of coffee will give you the best sex of your life, build confidence, and add nine-years to your life? Yes, really, nine-years…. READ HERE. Today I would like to review what I’ve dubbed the dubbed The 3 P’s to make a trainer successful.
The 3 P’s: Personalize, Prioritize, Prepare
The other day at the gym I thought it would be interesting to eavesdrop on some conversations between trainers and clients. Most of the conversations were banal with the trainer's halfhearted attempt to motivate, “Five more reps, 1,2,3,4,5” – as if the client is paying $120 for a personal counter. The conversations were very mundane, to say the least. When I train at Show Up Fitness, I always make my clients a priority and take the time to develop a relationship; no two clients are the same so why would you train them like they are (Laziness, or is the industry filled with shitty trainers?) I’ll research what they enjoy e.g. if your client loves the Seattle Seahawks, learn about them - I don’t care if you don’t watch or even like football, the sessions are not about you, LEARN ABOUT YOUR CLIENTS! Your clients notice that you’re listening and care about their interests; getting stronger or losing fat may be why they signed up, but they’ll remain a client for life if you add value by establishing a positive relationship. I enjoy my clients so much that I take them out for dinner or drinks, at least the ones who SHOW UP. They’re investing into their lifestyle and future by paying you, why not invest back into them?
Next time you are in the gym pay attention to the trainer who has 18 clients’ versus the one who has two. I guarantee the booked trainer has unique bonds with each client, as Bret Bartholomew says, “You must earn the trust of your athlete,” which he calls the BUY IN.
I still remember the first client who signed up with me. At a corporate gym like Crunch or Equinox, trainers are required to prospect and get their own clients, or if they’re lucky, sometimes be handed clients via management. At Show Up, I MAY get 1-2 assessments a month and I had to grind hard to get them (keep in mind, Show Up Fitness is a start-up personal training company who’s kicking major-ass by the way!) After going through the assessment, the female client agreed to a 12-session package at $60 per session (my commission was 50%.) $600 is minuscule compared to some of the 3K+ training packages, but think of it like this, you could lease a Mercedes CLA250 Coupe for that amount! The point is, it doesn’t matter what your client invests ($60 or $150 per session), their investment should be taken seriously. Make your clients a priority from session 1 to session 100. Having a strong reputation is essential for succeeding in this business, and it begins with getting your first client and helping them achieve their goals.
You can look at this rule from a few different angles: Mental Preparation, Program Preparation, or Facility Preparation. Let me start with the mental aspect.
Unlike a desk job, when I train, I have to inspire, motivate, and educate people at all sorts of time throughout the day. I can’t turn away from my clients like you can to a computer screen. I can’t go rage on a Sunday knowing I can avoid my boss on Monday by being hung-over at my corner desk. I challenge myself to Show UP every day FIRED UP! I focus on being positive, smiling, and asking genuine questions - because I CARE! Think of how’d you want to be treated at 6 AM in the morning? Intelligent trainers can adapt to client personalities at 5 AM or 11PM; not the other way around.
Programming my workouts is the equivalent of becoming a better writer. I’m not going lie, this took me a solid 90-minutes to write. I know with time and hard work, I’ll get better. I’d rather try something I’m not the best at than sit in my comfort zone and be mediocre or scared. As a new trainer, you need to write out your clients workouts. Early in my career, I would try to fit every exercise in the workout to try and please the client. That’s normal BUT STOP NOW. I know you want to “WOW” your clients so you keep them entertained like a dog by showing them new tricks, but you want your clients to come back right?
Results do that, not circus tricks. I agree it’s important to create enjoyable workouts, but you need to understand how results are attained. As fun as it might sound to a client to focus on certain areas (we know spot reduction isn’t possible, right?), the results come by overloading movement patterns, showing up regularly and working hard!
• Hinge (Deadlifts / Hip Thrusts)
• Squat (Back Squat / Goblets)
• Vert/Hor. Press (Military Press / Bench Press)
• Vert/Hor. Pull (Pull-Ups, Bent Over Rows)
• Carrying stuff (Farmer Walks)
• Caloric deficit (fat loss) or surplus (GAINZ)
KISS (Keep it simple shithead) and educate your clients! You can add in accessory work aka fluff by adding in exercises that you can feel e.g. clams, curls, or even burpees (don't kill me Chris), but explain to your clients a workout comprised of just these exercises, wouldn't create sufficient overload aka NO GAINZ! It's tough as trainers because we have to play the game.
We need to build relationships, but at the same time, get results and compete with all the circus acts that people "claim get results." So, I have to play the game by getting my client's glutes to burn via exercises like clams or donkey kicks, but in reality, it was heavy Deadlifts, Hip Thrusts and Winning the Week.
Gym Facility Preparation:
The last concept isn’t rocket science, keep your facility like you keep your apartment before a significant other comes over for the first time. If your place looks and smells crummy, people probably aren’t going to SHOW UP. It’s the small things that can create a pleasurable experience (fella’s, girls love a man with an impressively clean bathroom- trust me!) Next, after your done with an exercise, put the equipment back so the next trainer can use it. Also remember that your company functions as a unit, not a fraternity house- HAVE RESPECT FOR OTHERS!
As a trainer or gym owner, there are a plethora of characteristics that make up a successful trainer (read Mr. Hitchko's book here!)- we're trainers, not super hero’s, it's ok not to possess them all. The three P’s does provide a checklist of what you should be focusing on to reach your full potential. Don’t be that trainer who settles for mediocrity by staying in your comfort zone. Take pride in your job and brand, and as we say at Show Up, “90 percent of success is SHOWING UP!”
May 25th, 2017, 4:30 am Santa Monica, CA.
Chris- "Hello Amber, how are you?"
Amber (Barista at Starbucks) - "I’m good Chris; Grande or Venti?"
While I paused to look up from The Snowball Warren Buffet and the Business of Life by Alice Schroeder, I automatically replied, “Great Amber; Grande please!”
My eyes widened as I smiled.
In his book, From Good to Great, Jim Collins says,
As a regular of the 3rd street promenade Starbucks, you’d think that Amber would know what I order at 4:30 am every morning. The feller in front of me has ordered the same thing for the last 5-months. Frank and I walk in together and he has two coffees waiting for him on the counter. As for me, I change my order daily because I don’t like routine. One of my New Year’s Resolutions (yes, I keep to them) was to change my routines and get out of doing the same shit over and over again. My main resolution was to change the way I respond when someone asks how I’m doing. My trainer just walked in at 5:39 am and I asked him how he’s doing, “Good, going to get coffee.” GRUMP. Around 7:40 am when Bret comes in, it’ll sound like this, “Morning Bret, how you are doing?”
Bret – “Good, Good, Good.” Do three goods equal one great?
Good is the enemy of great; CHANGE THAT MINDSET BOY!
For me, it took over five months to automatically reply “GREAT” instead of the mundane “good.” What score would you give someone who received a 90-100 on an exam? GREAT! What about a 70-80? Good. 50-65? Shitty! I don’t know about you, but I’d rather be closer to GREAT, rather than SHITTY. What does all this mean? We need to change our mindset and expectations for CHANGE, because change TAKES TIME!
I was reading an interesting post by Show Up Fitness Academy Board of Education Dr. Layne Norton.
For change to take place, you need to recognize the behavior, EDUCATE YOURSELF, and want to change it. I'm a fitness fanatic; I may drink a keg of whiskey a week, but I still live and breath fitness. I’m highly competitive and constantly disappointed with my outcomes (we all have those inner demon voices; I let them vent, but I NEVER LET THEM WIN.) A common compliment is “you’re a very positive person.” I better be- in The Vulgar Truth Diet II, I focus on a POSITIVE FUCKING MINDSET! If it took this whiskey drinking, fitness lunatic almost 6-months to create a change, what’s a fair time frame for the average Joe / Jane? Have you been Winning the Week for over seven years (I haven't taken a week off from lifting heavy shit in that time period)? Do you carry yourself with a positive disposition? Do you LOVE lifting heavy shit? If the answer is NO, then stop beating yourself up- your fitness goals were probably too unrealistic to begin with. Let us help change that. From here on out, start by giving yourself a ton of mulligans. If you go out and get drunk, WHO CARES, start again tomorrow. If you eat a whole pizza, FUCK IT, start again tomorrow. If you miss a workout, it doesn't matter- one workout will not change your body, it's the combination of them all over the course of a year. When you talk negatively, all you do is allow those negative inner voices to take over and win. Remember, YOU'RE IN CONTROL. You need to learn to laugh at the mistakes. It’s going to take a long time to make a positive change. I tell our clients at Show Up Fitness, change will take around 6- months…if you have awesome hair like I do, otherwise, show up regularly, work hard, persevere, and in 9-18+ months, you’ll be a new you. Don’t get mad or frustrated; GET EXCITED! This is your life to own, start by recognizing the behavior and by telling people you’re GREAT, not good.
Does the way you regurgitate a meaningless reply really mean anything? Probably not, BUT, but the inner shrink in me says, why not start every day off by saying you're great?
How to look like a hunk by eating junk! Bret Lusis and I will be putting to test Zac Efron and his infamous transformation for the movie Baywatch. We calculated our numbers (BMR & AF & NEAT), working out twice a day, and being mindful of HOW MUCH we put into our body. How to become a personal trainer www.showupfitness.com/academy
How should you be Squatting?
By: Bret Lusis, CPT Show Up Fitness Santa Monica
Let me introduce you to some 90's basketball players: Manute Bol and Muggsy Bogues.
Manute is one of the tallest to play the game- 7'7, while Muggsy is 5'3, do you think these two should Squat the same way? HELL NO. Bodies are different, and in this article, I'm going to explain why people should change up their Squat.
In certain lifting communities, people are told to line up their feet a specific way (NSCA say's 10-15 degrees of external rotation), while others say parallel. What about the jacked dude with the biggest quads who says you need to squat like him? Which one is it?. In today's world with social media, if someone has success, or a ton of followers, people naturally try to re-implement that pattern to emulate what they've done. It must be that simple to do what Mr. & Ms. Tool / Toolette with 1.5 million followers says to do, right? Wrong!!!! For the most part, bodies are built differently. In this article, I will discuss three topics that should ultimately decide how your stance is going to be under the bar: Anatomy, Mobility, and Stability.
1. Anatomy is the structure of the body and the relationships to its proximal and distal joints. My femur may be longer than yours, or maybe your torso is longer than mine- we're all different. Maybe your femoral head inserts into your acetabulum posteriorly to anteriorly, while the person to your left may have an articulation that is at 90 degrees. Take a look at the following femurs, do they look the same? What do you think will happen if they are instructed to squat the same way? The important thing to understand is bodies are different. If my bone structure is built differently than yours, odds are we're going to move differently. One variable is the depth of the hip sockets (acetabulum depth varies from person-to-person.) This will determine the maximal depth before you “butt wink” and the width at which your feet are externally rotated.
As you can see, these two Pelvis's are different in width and height...
And these two femur's articulate at different angles. One is closer to a 90 degree articulation, while the other is closer to 45 degrees.
2. Mobility is the ability of a joint to go through it's optimal range of motion (ROM.) This varies from person-to-person, gender, age, and prior injuries. My mobility has never been great. I remember when I first started squatting it felt so awkward. My heels would come off the ground, my back rounded, and I damn near fell over! Unlike anatomy, mobility can potentially improve by practicing and establishing the proper motor behavior. If I would've continued to squat with those faulty patterns, I would have created poor motor behaviors. Instead, I worked on a stance and pattern that allowed me to program proper mechanics. Never compensate weight for form, this will lead to bad behaviors, and potentially an injury.
3. Stability deals with maintaining a strong and sturdy core. One thing that I learned when I attended the Show Up Fitness Academy is how to properly brace and engage my core. You know that guy in the gym who makes a loud sound when he Squats? Ya, that's me, I'm that tool who grunts when I have a ton of weight on my back, but it's for a reason. When I grunt, it's because I'm creating a large amount of pressure in my core (intra-abdominal pressure) which allows me to utilize the Valsalva Maneuver. The valsal what? The ability of my core to create a lot of pressure to stabilize my back. This fluid ball is why lifters use a belt. The greater the surface area on your front-side allows for greater protection for the lower back. I suggest to use a belt whenever you're lifting a weight above 80-85% of your 1rm. Knowing how to properly brace your core and engage other supporting muscles can be a major factor in stability for your lifts.
In the following image, we have a student at the Show Up Fitness Personal Training Academy in Santa Monica (the best personal training school EVER!) On the left, the student has around 30-35 degrees of internal rotation. After we did a few drills to activate his anterior, lateral, and posterior core, look at the increase in ROM, it's around 45 degrees (optimal ROM for internal rotation at the hip.) So this begs the question, is it mobility or stability? To me, it looks like his restriction is due to a lack of core stability. This image should challenge your mindset the next time you go to stretch some "tight" muscles. Are they truly tight, or is it a neuromechanical mechanism to protect the body from weakness in other areas? Hmmmmmm. SCIENCE :)
Not everybody can get under the bar for the first time and have great form. Shit, I Squat every week and am still learning what feels right for my body. Ask yourself what feels the best, and how much weight can you do? it’s important to take time to see where you feel the strongest, how it feels, and looks. Mobility and stability may be something you can fix, your anatomy and bone structure is something that is not going to change. If someone is squatting 135lbs with their feet shoulder width apart and then they widen their stance to hit 185lbs, why not stay there? If the force production is optimized with optimal mobility and stability, you my friend, have found your proper Squat form. Start out by experimenting with different stances (Shoulder width apart, feet externally rotated, wider stance….), whatever feels the best, and then how much you can Squat. Don’t compromise a lift just because someone says this is the way you have to Squat- CHANGE IT UP! .
Pointers for Squatting
Try to bend the bar on your back to engage the lats
Pretend theirs an orange under your chin aka neutral.
Keep your back straight.
Try to palm the floor with your feet (Ever tried to palm a basketball? Do this with your feet to the ground.)
Don't let your knees buckle inwards (knee valgus) aim to keep them between your big toe and little toe.
Brace your core as if you were going to be punched in the stomach.
Today's article is written by Show Up Fitness Personal Trainer Bret Lusis.
Why should we incorporate unilateral exercises into our workouts?
Limb Equilibrium 101
Before you read this, I wanted to mention a recent post by Eric Cressey - a top strength and conditioning coach and the go-to guy for baseball players. He agrees that a strong Squat and Deadlift can be important, but when it comes to athletic performance, athletes primarily use one leg at a time, so uni-lateral training should be incorporated into an athletes program.
Let's start off by explaining what a unilateral exercise is. Unilateral training is a form of training where you workout one limb at a time instead of two (bilateral). Rarely do you see individuals in the gym practicing unilateral exercises under-load. The main reasons being, 1) that damn ego getting bruised by not being able to lift as much weight, and 2) it takes twice as long. Ego and time aside, unilateral training can really pay dividends by helping improve your PR’s (Personal Records in the Squat by complimenting with some Bulgarians) or developing size (Single Leg Hip Thrusts alongside of Deadlifts- who doesn't want a bigger booty?) Naturally, we have dominant limbs, so the need to "balance" out the body shouldn't be a priority. As a nation, we need to stop fantasizing about being equally balanced. We aren't supposed to be equal or else we would have two livers, and two pancreases etc. Let me ask you this, do you remember lifting your first dumbbells? I'm sure the weights were moving all over the place. Eventually, this "imbalance" was fixed by performing the movement pattern over and over again. It's not rocket science folks, if my left leg is stronger than my right, and I only train bilaterally (Squats, Deadlifts, Leg Presses), the weaker leg may not catch up with the dominant leg. By implementing some unilateral exercises (Bulgarians, Step-Ups, and Lunges), I may be able to help bridge the strength gap because my weaker leg has to generate the same force production as the dominant one.
Joint and Core Stabilization
Anytime you have weight distribution on one side and not the other, your body must compensate by engaging your stabilizing muscles of the core- when you do an exercise with 1-arm or 1-leg your core has to stabilize itself by bracing the core so you won't fall over. Try this, grab a dumbbell with your right hand and start doing some unilateral Military Presses. What do you feel? You should feel the left abdominal and oblique region strongly activate. Wallah, you see the benefits of doing these exercises? It's important to note, by doing unilateral exercises, force production may be compromised. I suggest programming these exercises near the end of the workout, or on their own day i.e. Day 1 Bilateral Squat / Deadlifts, Day 3 Bulgarians and Step-Ups. Below are some of my favorite unilateral exercises I recommend to help balance out all of the bilateral movements we stereotypically do.
Common Sense is now Uncommon. Let us teach you Common Sense 101
Let’s see how well you'd do on the following quiz:
1. How many hours of sleep should you be getting every night? 2. How many glasses of water should you drink daily? 3. What should you do with your free time: a-browse social media, b-exercise? 4. Which of the following best describes what you should say after a waitress brings you a cocktail? a- About F’in time, b- What’s your number baby? c- Thank You! d- I’m stupid crazy horny!
I’d be willing to bet you aced that quiz. My question to the American society is, “Are you implementing these aspects of common sense?” I’d double down on that previous bet and say you aren’t. Today, I’m going to help you become a better person by teaching you common sense in all aspects of life.
Common Sense is uncommon. Learn basic common sense....
Fitness / Nutrition
You should be sleeping 7-8 hours a night.
You should be drinking 8-12 glasses of water a day.
Your diet should primarily consist of proteins, vegetables, and water.
If you’re on a diet, don’t tell anyone.
There isn't a one-size-fits-all diet. Experiment and find one that best suits you.
If you want a nice ass, Hip Thrust, Squat, and Hinge moderate to heavy weights 4x a week.
If you want nice arms, do Push-Ups and Chin-Ups 4x a week.
Sugar isn't bad, carbs aren't bad, fat isn't bad. It's about how many calories you consume. As with debt, if you consume too much, you will gain weight.
If you want to lose weight, monitor want you put into your mouth via a food log.
Hinge, Squat, Press, Pull, carry heavy things and repeat.
You should be able to push your body off the ground, and pull your body up to a bar.
If you experience pain during movement, stop doing that movement until the pain goes away.
Excess adipose (belly or thigh fat) isn’t healthy.
Unless you’re a Physical Therapist, BOSU ball are stupid.
Salt doesn't cause high blood pressure. Eating too much, not sleeping enough, stressing all day long, and not exercising does.
Eating six meals a day is not superior to eating three- IT'S ABOUT MOTHER F'ING CALORIES!
"Of more worth is one honest man to society and in the sight of God, than all the crowned ruffians that ever lived." - THOMAS PAINE, COMMON SENSE (READ IT).
When you open a door, look behind to see if someone else is coming in, and then hold the door for them while smiling.
When someone holds the door for you, say “Thank you.”
If you’re with someone and expecting an important text, email, or call, say the following, “I’m not trying to be rude, but I need to keep my phone out because I’m expecting an important text. When I get that call, I’ll reply and put my phone away.”
At a bar or dinner, if someone is celebrating a birthday or anniversary, you should send over a round of drinks or dessert.
If the trash is full, take it out.
If the dishwasher is full, unload it.
Whiskey, pizza, and bacon are amazing.
If there's a lady standing (she doesn't need to be pregnant or elderly) on public transportation, get up and offer her your seat.
When you walk by someone, you should smile and say, “Good morning, afternoon, evening.”
When someone say’s good morning, afternoon, evening, you should reciprocate.
If someone smiles at you, you should smile back.
If someone smiles at you, that doesn’t mean that want to have sex with you.
If someone texts you, you should reply when you open the text (People are on their phones 24/7.)
If someone doesn’t immediately accelerate at a stop light, wait 10-seconds. If they haven’t proceeded, gently tap your horn ONCE.
If something offends you, remove yourself from the environment.
If you see a piece of trash, on the ground, pick it up and throw it away.
Reading a book is better for you than watching TV.
Discussing a good book is better than reality TV.
If you want something, ask someone how you can help them first.
No means no. If asked, “are you upset?” and you genuinely are, don’t say, “No” and feaster a future blow up.
Mind readers don't exist, communicate.
If people are looking at you in a weird way, take a second to think about the volume of your voice.
If someone asks you how your day is, and it’s bad don’t tell them (unless it’s a significant other or close friend).
If you’re going to drink copious amounts of alcohol, eat food and drink water.
If you’re hungover from drinking copious amounts of alcohol, drink water and exercise for 30-60 minutes. Drinking depletes neurochemicals and feel good hormones; exercises offsets inner demons.
Send your parents hand-written cards on Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Saint Patty’s Day, Easter, and July 4th.
Do not talk on your phone at Starbucks. If your phone rings, step-outside and answer the call.
Send your Mother wine or flowers on Valentine’s day.
Send your Father whiskey or food on Father’s Day.
Random acts of kindness do not need to be shared on Facebook or with anyone for that matter. Do something out of the goodness of your heart. Telling other people that you volunteer or bought someone coffee is selfish.
Don’t affiliate with people you don’t like.
If you’re going to be late, inform the party that is waiting for you (Military saying, if you’re 10-minutes early, you’re 5-minutes late.)
When you’re invited to someone’s house for dinner, bring a bottle of wine, flowers, or an appetizer.
If you have dinner at someone’s house, take their plate to the kitchen and offer to do the dishes.
Smile at the barista and say, “Please” and, “Thank you.” Get off your F’in phone.
Do not wave down a barista, bar tender, or waitress- do not speak down to anyone, EVER!
If you have something negative to say, don’t say anything.
You’re 100% accountable for your life. Own up to your actions and take responsibility.
If you go out with 4 people, rotate buying rounds.
If a homeless person is asking for change, don’t snarl at their request. If you can help them, buy them coffee or food. If you cannot help them, SMILE and decline.
If someone takes time out of their schedule to help mentor you, offer to buy them drinks or dinner AND send them a THANK YOU CARD.
Don’t be a prick.
Relationships / Dating
Guys should open the truck door for their lady.
Girls should reach across the truck to open the door for their man.
When you go on a date, the guy should pay.
When you’re on a date and the guy offers to pay, the girl should offer to pay her share (the guy should decline.)
Buying a girl dinner or drinks, doesn’t grant you access into her panties.
Upon dropping a girl off from a date, wait in your truck until she safety gets into her house.
Don’t talk about how much money you make or the kind of truck you drive.
Eat with your mouth closed.
Stop trying to FIND YOURSELF; life in constant growth. #wanderlust = worst hash-tag ever.
Keep your phone out of site when you’re with ANYONE else.
Most guys like sports, let them watch their team play.
Most girls like to shop, let them shop. (Ready for this... let a guy watch his games while a girl shops! OMG x 10)
If you’re upset with someone, tell them. Communication is key and minds cannot be read.
Rule of thumb for guessing a girls age and weight- 10-years under any sort of educated guess, and 25-lbs under your ballpark weight guess.
Those who are confident don’t need to tell anyone about it, you show it. Walk the walk.
It’s better to be 1 for 8, then 0 for 0. You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.
During coitus, both parties should climax. (Whoopsie).
Plan date nights weekly / bi-weekly with your significant other.
Girls usually take longer to get ready, get over it.
If you ask someone out on a date and they decline, that doesn’t make him or her a douchbag / bitch.
Friends with benefits 99.9% of the time doesn’t work. Someone usually gets too emotionally attached, and your house will end up burnt down.
If someone is upset, pressing the matter will rarely work. It’s like poking an angry mama bear; let the issue settle for a few hours, get some fresh air, and then revisit the conversation with a clear mind.
If you sleep with someone on the first date, the likelihood of you two ever dating again, is extremely low. For that matter, the likelihood of them ever calling or texting you again, is extremely low.
If you want to impress a guy, cook for them.
If you want to impress a girl, cook for them.
Wearing a condom will save you a lot of hassle in the future. Kids and STD’s are expensive, nasty and/or last forever (in no particular order.)
If you stay over at someone’s house and wake up earlier than they do, quietly tip toe into the bathroom/other room. Don’t turn on the light- use your damn cellphone light you selfish bastard.
Oral sex should be reciprocated; I go, you go. OR, do 69.
Being in a relationship DOES NOT define who you are. You will not be happier in a relationship if you’re currently unhappy.
Don’t be a dickhead / hooker and cheat. If you’re unhappy, stop being a coward, end it.
Have more sex, it's fun.
Work / Finances
You should bring at least three copies of a resume to an interview.
You should arrive 30-minutes early for an interview.
You should ask questions at the end of an interview, i.e., How has this position made you a better person?
You shouldn’t eat smelly food in the office (if you’re unsure of your food smelling like dog shit, ask a co-worker, “Frank, does my salmon smell like dog shit?”)
Go to management with action plans, not ideas.
If you have a complaint, feel free to express it if you have a solution.
If you’re sick, don’t go to work.
If you have a question, ask it. Don’t complaining later.
Do not text or browse social media in class.
Keep your phone on silent.
If you start up a new company, you should have 6-months of rent saved up.
If you have a project due, sit down and schedule time throughout the week(s) to properly prepare for the deadline.
If you do not ask, you shall not receive (goes for relationships and kinky sex too!)
Wake up 2-hours before work (if you’re constantly bitching about not having enough time in the day, 2-hours before work will allow you to prepare, exercise, read, and get your mind right.)
Open an IRA (Traditional, Roth or Sep) and set aside the maximal amount ($5,500 or 50k – consult with your CPA.)
If you make 5k a month, don’t spend more than 5k a month or else you’ll accumulate debt.
Watch Office Space. Don’t be this guy…
Or this guy….
Don’t be a dickhead.
SHOW UP OR SHUT UP!
To summarize common sense:
Don’t be selfish. Hold and open doors for people. Reciprocity works wonders. Stop obsessing over social media acceptance and text messages. Read a damn book. Ask other people questions. Offer to pay your share and say please. Stop talking about your shitty life - you’re 100% accountable for everything. SHOW UP, WORK HARD, Smile, say Thank You and maintain a Positive F&^%$#@ Mindset.
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How to Deadlift
How to do a Deadlift with Variations & Bad For
Deadlifting for the general person:
The Deadlift is one of the most popular exercises. It's one of the three power lifts (the other two are Squats and Bench Press.) The pattern of movement is referred to as a hinge (look at a door and analyze the hinges, that's how it got the reference.) These brackets allow the door to sway back and forth in one direction. When performed properly, the glutes, hamstrings, low back, and back are lifting the weight off the ground. It's one of the best booty and hamstring building exercises behind the Hip Thrust. If you want to develop a booty that can bounce a bowling ball 5-feet in the air, you need to learn how to properly Deadlift.
Form: If your goals are to develop speed, explosive power, strength and an awesome backside, the Deadlift should be implemented 1-3x weekly. Before you start picking up a bunch of weight off the floor, your form needs to be pristine. Common mistakes are seen by Squatting and not hinging, rounding the lower back, the bar path is not close to the body, not maintaining an upright torso, and leaning too far back (hyperextension). At Show Up Fitness, I Miyagi the hell out of our clients by constantly stressing the hinge pattern: Golfers pick-up, band Deadlifts, Bent-Over Rows, and Hip Thrusts. I want you to be able to pick up 1.5x-2x your body weight without having to rehearse all the checkpoints, I want them to be second nature. I don't suggest doing more than 6-8 reps per set- OWN EACH REP. If implemented properly (with amazing form, and heavy weights), you'll notice changes in your booty and strength within a few months.
For proper instruction on how to Deadlift, skip the next section and watch the video, then implement the program at the end.
Deadlifting for the Personal Trainer:
The concentric action for the Deadlift at the hip is extension, which makes the Glutes the agonist at the hip and the Quadriceps at the knee (Vastus Lateralis, Intermedius, Medialis, and Rectus Femoris). The Semimembranosus, Semitendinosus, and Bicep Femoris (long and short head) are synergists and the deep abdominal stabilizers brace the core (transverse abdominals). The femoral action is extension (Gluteals), therefore the flexors are the antagonists (Psoas Major / Hip Flexors.)
To properly execute a Deadlift, the shoulders should be slightly over the bar, with the weight focused posteriorly by engaging the Lats. Make sure to lock yourself into the bar by pulling it to the shins and internally rotating the Lats - TURN THOSE KNUCKLES WHITE BY SQUEEZING! You can also try cueing, "put your scapulae's into your back pockets." The neck should be neutral as if your client is holding an orange under his/her chin. As the trainer, you'll see the following mistakes: 1- The client sets up in a Squat position (look at the angle of their shins; vertical is a Deadlift, a 45-degree angle is a Squat. Don’t let them Squat the Deadlift, 2- Their shoulders come too far over the bar – their torso looks parallel to the floor like an RDL, 3- The hips shoot up faster than the knees aka stripper Deadlift (this sounds good, but it’s not), 4- Hyperextension instead of a posterior pelvic tilt, 5- Improper breathing mechanics. Make sure they understand the purpose of a large, deep breath to brace the core, 6- Rounded lower back. Once the spinal column loses its integrity and goes from three to two curves, force is directed in the lumbar region.
If you look like the following girl, congratulations, you’re Squatting the Deadlift. There’s no fear becoming “Quadzilla” from Deadlifts as the exercise is hip dominant.
There are numerous variations to the conventional Deadlifts- this can be good and bad. It’s like teaching someone how to cook, they want to try every recipe in the world! Not so fast Chef Boyardee, I want you to own the mechanics of the hinge pattern before you start trying the variations (Miyagi the hell out of your clients!) This will take a few months to properly program in the proper motor control. After you’re deadlifting at least your body weight (ideally 1.5x), you can begin to play around with the variations. Here’s a list from beginner to more advanced:
Jefferson (1-leg over / behind bar)
Banded / Chain’s
Single Leg Deadlifts (love these to strengthen the glute med & prevent valgus)
Hack (Bar behind body)
Windmill - Checkout this video at stack.com
Hands on Weights (Wide stance / further than a Snatch, your hands are holding the rubber plates)
How to Spot the Deadlift:
NO SPOTTING- don’t be that weirdo perving out on a client by spotting a Deadlift. This is one of the few exercises that you do not spot. Teach your client to drop the weight in the case of an emergency.
A belt should be worn when the client is lifting 80% of their 1rm. Dependency on a belt could make the clients lower back vulnerable. The same goes with wrist wraps. If your grip is one of the first things to give out, implement 60-second Pull-Up hangs and Farmers Walks. These are tools to help your 1rm, don't use them as crutches. You’re only as strong as your weakest link. Listen to your body and train the weak segments.
1- Deadlift / Trap Bar (Beginners) 5 sets of 6-8 reps resting 2-3-minutes (If you're a beginner, perform 3 sets of 8-10. There’s no need to perform more than 8-10 reps. OWN THE MECHANICS TO INSTILL PROPER FORM, the likelihood of performing bad reps after 10 increase chances for injury.)
2- Kettle Bell Deadlift into Straight Legged Deadlift (RDL’s) 3 sets of 12 reps
3- Windmill Deadlift (See Article that I wrote for Stack.com) 3 sets of 10
4- Band Deadlifts as seen in beginning of Youtube tutorial 1 set of 30 AMRAP (Choose a weight that you think that you can do for 30 reps and then do As Many Reps As Possible)
Hip Thrusts are a great compliment to owning the Hinge pattern.
For more information go to www.showupfitness.com and make sure to like us HERE on facebook. https://www.facebook.com/Show-Up-Fitness-Santa-Monica-1507807282839542/
Interested in becoming a personal trainer? The time is NOW to SHOW UP! Chris teaches a 4-month personal training course which will prepare you to take the NSCA, ACSM, or NASM certification. Unlike other schools, the Academy allows you to train real people. You'll be able to enroll in an internship at Show Up Fitness and start getting your reps in training clients at Show Up Fitness. The Academy is located in Santa Monica. Chris has graduated over 700-personal trainers and will teach you how to become the most successful personal trainer with his background in Kinesiology and owning two successful personal training gyms.
How to do a Military Press with Variations & Improper Form
Military Press for the general person:
Every girl and guy wants sexy arms, but how do you get them? I'm going to speak to the general population first, then personal trainers (general peeps, you can skip the personal training section, just read the workouts and watch the video.)
The Military Press is a great shoulder exercise. Any time you press overhead, the main muscles engaged are the shoulders and triceps. Some things to be cautious of are shoulder pain. If your shoulder hurts while pressing overhead, eliminate overhead pressing for the time being. If you're an overhead athlete, I'd suggest limiting overhead presses to once per week and use lighter weights (10-20 reps.)
Form: Once your chest begins to flare upward like you're doing an Incline Press, the weights are too heavy. It's important to brace your core and have your glutes engaged- pretend like you're squeezing a magical $500 bill between your butt cheeks and someone is about to punch you in the stomach. In the starting position, bring the weights up to the front of your shoulders, and brace while you press up. On the way down (refereed to as the negative), take a breath in to prepare for the next rep. Military Presses should be placed at the beginning of your shoulder day, or if you're doing a full-body / upper-body split, place them after a back exercise i.e. Hip Thrusts, Bench Press, Chin-Ups, then Military Press OR Incline Press, Dumbbell Row, and then Military Press. In the following video, I will show you the proper form and common mistakes during the exercise. Skip the next paragraph and go to "SHOULDER WORKOUT" if you're not a personal trainer or interested in becoming a personal trainer...
Military Press for the Personal Trainer:
The agonist for the Shoulder Press aka Military Press (MP), are the Anterior and Medial Deltoids. The triceps are the synergist, and the stabilizing muscles are the rotator cuff (Supraspinatus, Infraspinatus, Teres Minor, and Subscapularis.) The humeral action is abduction (Medial Deltoid), therefore, the Latissimus Dorsi are the antagonist. The scapulae's rotate laterally aka upward rotation (middle & upper traps), while the elbow's extend (triceps). In order to properly execute the MP, the weights need to be appropriate. As the trainer, you'll see your clients flare their chest up and out which means one of three things: 1- The weights are too heavy and/or 2- the lats and thoracic region lack mobility, and/or 3- The glutes and core are not properly engaged. It's called a Military Press, not Incline Press, so make sure your client is not arching their back. I like to have our clients at Show Up Fitness stand up and externally rotate their feet in the transverse plane, this will help engage the glutes. Remember, the gluteus medius turns the hip out, which will help keep the pelvis neutral, or slightly posteriourly tilted- this is better than anterior tilted, which can cause too much pressure on the lumbar vertebrae.
Always think about creative ways to challenge your client by adding variations as seen in the video i.e. Arnold Presses, single-arm presses, or accentuated eccentrics. I also enjoy super setting MP's into lateral raises.
How to Spot the Military Press:
Unless otherwise communicated by the client, spotting occurs at the wrist. Understandably, some of your clients may be using heavier weights, so you may need to support their elbows, just make sure to quickly maneuver to the wrists to prevent elbow collapse in worse case scenarios.
1- Seated Military Press 5 sets of 6-8 reps resting 2-3-minutes (If you're a beginner, perform 3 sets of 12 resting 1-2-minutes)
2- Standing Military Press 3 sets of 12 reps
3- Lateral Raises Super Set into Face Pulls 3 sets of 15
4- Arnold Press 1 set of 30 AMRAP (Choose a weight that you think that you can do for 30 reps and then do As Many Reps As Possible)
For more information go to www.showupfitness.com and make sure to like us HERE on facebook. https://www.facebook.com/Show-Up-Fitness-Santa-Monica-1507807282839542/
There are two kinds of people, 1- Those who’ve accomplished everything and are successful because they SHOW UP, AND, 2- Cowards who stick in their comfort zone and afraid of failing.
Don’t begin by telling me that your New Year’s Resolution is to give up New Year’s Resolutions. This is your time to put all your words into action by SHOWING UP! One of the best feelings in the world (besides an orgasm), is the feeling one gets after accomplishing something that they’ve challenged themselves to do. I’m going to challenge you to sit down today (probably hungover), and write a thorough list of what you’d like to accomplish in 2017…
First off, this is a shitty NYR list...
To make your NYR work, there needs to be actionable steps...Goal #1 – Lose Weight.
Why? I want to feel better and look amazing naked.
How will you accomplish this? I need to get a gym membership on 1/3, meet with a trainer, and then every Sunday, plan my workouts for the week (Win the Week.)
Hurdles? Overwhelmed with information and diets. Not sure where to start and I have limited funds.
How will you feel when you accomplish this goal? If I could get into the best shape of my life in 2017, the year would be a success! I would feel amazing, especially when I see my ex's fatass.
How will you feel if you do not accomplish this? A worthless pile-of-shit. Another failure stacked up in my pathetic life.
Amazing vs a worthless pile-of-shit. This is your decision to make, which one shall it be?
ACTION ITEM – Post up motivation quotes and images. By implementing a Positive F&^%$#@ Mindset, I want you to tell yourself DAILY how badass you are. Go over your braggart sheet. Put your favorite country song on (or whatever y’all listen to today) and go over that list. Even if the list is small because you’re focused on the negative (NO MORE KAM’S aka Negative People), focus on that one positive thing. Maybe you’re a great listener, friend, dog-walker, have awesome hair, or can drop it like it's hot- focus on the good in your life.
Now start over with goal number 2: i.e. Stop Smoking... Why? How will you accomplish this? Hurdles? Etc.
Designing a detailed New Year’s Resolution list should take you a few hours. The more time that you put into it, the greater the likelihood of your success. I want you to be part of the 5% who accomplish their New Year’s Resolution goals. I’m going to help you by giving you a month of workouts for FREE. Remember, the goal is to WIN THE WEEK by SHOWING UP and maintain a POSITIVE F&^%$#@ MINDSET. Here’s your key to success:
Day 1: Legs: Do each exercise individually and rest 2 minutes for exercise 1, and then 1-2 minutes for the remainder exercises: Goblet Squats 3 x 12, Lunges 2 x 10, Leg Press 3 x 15, Step-Ups 3 x 12, *Walk for 30-minutes 10% incline 3.0-3.5mph
Day 2: Upper Body Do each exercise individually and rest 2 minutes for exercise 1, and then 1-2 minutes for the remainder exercises: Chest Press 3 x 12, Dumbbell Row 3 x 12, Push-Ups & Inverted Rows 3 x 10, Bicep Curls, Lateral Raises, Tricep Extensions 3 x 10 (tri-set) *Bike for 30-minutes
Day 3: Legs Upper Body Do each exercise individually and rest 2 minutes for exercise 1, and then 1-2 minutes for the remainder exercises: Goblet Squats 3 x 15, Leg Press 3 x 20, Step-Ups 3 x 15, Leg Curls & Leg Extensions OR Hip Abductions & Hip Adductions 3 x 15, Pallof’s into Planks 2 x 10 reps / 15-second max contraction holds, *Stair Stepper for 30-minutes
Day 4: Upper Body: Upper Body Do each exercise individually and rest 2 minutes for exercise 1, and then 1-2 minutes for the remainder exercises: Cable Row 3 x 15, Military Press 3 x 12, Incline Dumbbells into Bicep Curls 3 x 12, Lat Pull-Downs into Tricep Extensions, Ball Bridge with Band Pull-A-Part 1-minute & 15 reps, Push-Ups & Pull-Ups 2 x 10, *Run for 30-minutes
Day 5-7: Walk for 60-minutes daily. Take a Spin Class, buy a month of Classpass and take cardio classes; these days are to fulfill your FUN part of working out (hikes etc.) The 4-days of lifting weights are non-negotiable.
* Whatever form of cardio you enjoy if your goal is to maximize fat loss. If you wanted to do a 2-3 hour hike on days 5-7, then you could add in one more set of each exercise (4 instead of 3), and skip out on the cardio and do whatever exercises you like instead i.e. abs & thighs.
NONE. Continue to eat like you have, let’s focus on one thing at a time and not make it overwhelming. How many times have you tried a workout plan with a diet, detox, magical pills, and this stupid waist cincher? Ya, the more you pile onto your plate, the greater the likelihood of failure. I want you to WIN THE WEEK for 4-consectutive weeks and see how you’re feeling then. I will suggest to drink more water, and eat more protein. After a workout, chug down a protein shake. If you’re not eating breakfast, start by consuming 30g of protein.
You'll be successful in 2017, tell yourself that right now. Repeat it. If you want some help making some goals, send me an email or a text and I can help challenge you. We have 52-weeks to win; January is only four, so don’t get discouraged if you don’t win them all. I want you to change your thought process by looking at the big picture (52-weeks vs 1 week.)
I guarantee you if you adopt a Positive F&%$#@# Mindset and Win the Weeks by Showing UP, 2017 WILL be your best year yet. The best part? It won’t only be aesthetics, you’ll accomplish more within your profession, family, love life, and self-confidence. The key is to believe in yourself, and it all begins by SHOWING UP!
How to read lab results and a blood analysis
Howdy Show Upper's! I'm excited to have my friend and MD, Doctor Chris Perry guest blog today. He's been a great resource for Show Up Fitness to consult with in terms of contraindications for different medical issues. He's recently developed an AMAZING sports supplement for endurance athletes that our trainers and clients LOVE. Ultra 26 is the perfect recipe of caffeine, carbs, and protein to help push you through those tough workouts and/or endurance events. Check out his website here and or stop on by Show Up Fitness Santa Monica for some free samples or containers of Ultra 26.
I've always been a fan of clients getting their blood analysed every 6-12 months. It's a great way to monitor what you're putting into your body, how your heart and organs are functioning, and how exercise affects everything. It's not about how "healthy" you look on the outside, it's about how well the engine and oil levels are working inside. I challenge you to schedule an appointment to get your blood lipid profile, liver functioning, inflammatory markers, kidneys, and testosterone / hormone levels checked out. If you're approaching menopause or over 50, throw in a bone-mineral density test (BMD) to see how strong your bones are (which will only get stronger from lifting HEAVIER weights.) Doesn't hurt to get an STD / STI check as well. They say it's best to keep it in your pants, but that ain't fun, is it? So do the world a favor and make sure your juicy parts aren't jaded. Mine came back all positive which is a great thing. Wait a second, I mean NEGATIVE right? I'm kidding, you want all your results to be NEGATIVE, just as mine were. Instead of turning a blind eye, take responsibility for your actions by getting your blood analyzed bi-annually. You'll be setting realistic goals and it's a great way to CRUSH 2017. Without further ado, I want to introduce you to a qualified professional who can analyze my lab results.
Really stoked that my buddy Chris at Show-Up Fitness asked me to do a guest post for his blog. Love what he and his trainers do out there, applying sound training principles and science in helping people meet their personal fitness goals. And most of all, always emphasizing that the first and hardest step is just showing up!
Chris asked me to write about his blood work from his recent physical, in the hopes that I could further explain it. With his permission, his recent results were as follows:
Hb A1C 5.2%
Alkaline Phosphatase 60 U/L
Total Bilirubin 1.8 mg/dL
Alanine Aminotransferase 33 U/L
Cholesterol 164 mg/dL
triglyceride 92 mg/dL
HDL 80 mg/dL
LDL Calculated 66 mg/dL
Testosterone 613 ng/dL
To begin with, let’s take a look at the Hemoglobin A1c (or HbA1c for short). The HbA1c is a common test that healthcare professionals use to screen for diabetes or, if you are already a known diabetic, to see how well your diabetes is being controlled. It is useful because it gives a good idea of what your blood sugars have been running over the previous several months, as opposed to just what it is at this very moment. Sort of like a baseball player’s batting average gives a better indication of how good his season going, rather than just judging him by his last at-bat. A HbA1c below 5.7% is normal, and values between 5.7 to 6.4% are considered to be “pre-diabetic”. A value of greater than 6.5% is considered to be diagnostic of diabetes (1).
Next, let’s look at the liver tests: the alkaline phosphatase, the total bilirubin, and the alanine aminotransferase. The liver is an incredibly complex organ, so obviously these tests are by no means comprehensive. But they do act as a good screening test to alert us that something could be wrong.
Alkaline phosphatase is an enzyme found in many parts of your body, but primarily concentrated in the liver, the bones, and (for pregnant women) in the placenta. With regards to the liver, alkaline phosphatase is an important part of the biliary system, so a raised level could indicate an obstruction. Similarly, the total bilirubin also will go up if the biliary system is obstructed. However, there are many other causes of elevations in these lab values, so often they just need to be repeated or to be followed up with an imaging test, such as an ultrasound. For Chris, both levels are normal, so no issues there!
Like alkaline phosphatase, alanine aminotransferase (ALT) is also an enzyme found throughout your body but concentrated heavily in liver cells. If your liver is damaged from hepatitis or any of a number of other causes, the cells release ALT into the blood stream causing the blood levels to rise. A level above 60 is generally considered abnormal and warranting further evaluation. Chris’s value of 33 is entirely normal.
Chris also seems to be good with his lipid panel. The lipid panel is in general a very important part of our screening blood work to identify those at risk of developing heart disease. Interpreting and applying the results can depend on a variety of factors, such as whether or not you have other risk factors (e.g. diabetes or high blood pressure), but a total cholesterol under 200 and a low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol under 100 is acceptable for an average adult. Chris’s triglyceride level is also great, being well under the goal of less than 150. With high-density lipoprotein, a higher number is actually desirable, preferably above 60. So Chris’s value of 80 puts him in a low-risk category for cardiovascular disease.
Chris’s testosterone levels are also within normal range, although this represents a bit of a more controversial topic. Testosterone levels generally go down with age, leading to many of the physiological effects you normally see as you get older. As a result, many have sought testosterone replacement therapy to overcome this normal decline. However, this approach is controversial as there do exist risks, most concerning of which is a potential increase in prostate cancer (2). Granted, the topic is very controversial, but with regards to over the counter testosterone replacement, the FDA specifically directs manufacturers of such products to state these products are only approved for men with low testosterone due to known causes (3). My personal recommendation is to only consider testosterone replacement in conjunction with your physician.
Anyways, looks like Chris is okay until his next check-up. I hope this information is useful to all of you. Be sure to check out my blog at www.ultra26sports.com/blog and follow me on social media (@ultra26sports) for more of my articles and info. Happy holidays and remember to take care of yourself and keep up showing up!
Chris Perry, MD, CISSN, CNSC
Founder/Owner Ultra 26 Sports Nutrition® Products, LLC
1. Chamberlain JJ, Rhinehart AS, Shaefer CF Jr, Neuman A. Diagnosis and Management of Diabetes: Synopsis of the 2016 American Diabetes Association Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes. Ann Intern Med. 2016 Apr 19;164(8):542-52.
2. Huggins C, Hodges CV. Studies on prostatic cancer: I. The effect of castration, of estrogen and of androgen injection on serum phosphatases in metastatic carcinoma of the prostate. 1941. J Urol. 2002 Jul;168(1):9-12.
3. Nguyen CP, Hirsch MS, Moeny D, Kaul S, Mohamoud M, Joffe HV. Testosterone and "Age-Related Hypogonadism"--FDA Concerns. N Engl J Med. 2015 Aug;373(8):689-91.
How to eat during the Holidays - BE HUMAN, WIN THE WEEK, & EAT IT ALL!
What happens when you tell a kid NOT to date that girl/guy? They go ahead and date them anyway. When you tell our soft-ass society not to eat certain foods during the Holidays, what do you think they do- THEY EAT IT ALL! I’m not going to waste my time telling you how many calories are in a piece of pumpkin pie or apple cider spiced rum; I’m going to tell you what I think are the best treats to indulge in during the holidays.
I primarily write in the mornings at Starbucks between 4:30am-8am. There are a group of gentlemen in their 80’s who sit next to me daily. To them, my name is Clark. Somehow, Chris was lost in translation and Clark was born. One of the guys died this past Thursday. He had a pulmonary issue and was only getting around 40% of lung capacity. He was one of my favorite guys because his vocabulary was "colorful" to say the least. A few days ago he leaned in after our morning pleasantries and said, “Clark, It seems like yesterday I was running around chasing tail. I was one good looking kid and I loved women- still do. My body may be 85, but my mind is still young. In here (as he pointed to his skull), I’m still that young stallion running around with a constant hard on - 1952 seems like yesterday. Life’s short pal, live it while you can, because before you know it, you’ll disappear like a fart in the wind.” RIP ANU.
Why in Gods name are people going to restrict themselves this Holiday season? Do you think you’ll offset the previous 50+ weeks of eating like shit and not exercising? The answer is YOU CAN'T. Don’t be that weirdo at the Christmas party who tells everyone that they’re not going to drink or eat because they want to be “healthy.” WHAT THE HELL IS HEALTHY? I see fit guys and girls on Instagram claiming to be "healthy" by “eating clean” and exercising for hours, but are they really? To the average person, aesthetically they may look amazing, but what about the emotional constipation? It's like the movie Shallow Hall; there’s a mental aspect to being healthy that we’re not seeing on social media. Posting T&A pics only shows that you're insecure and seeking immediate gratification via a social media platform, but to everyone else, we know whats going on....
The constant search for validation via “likes” is destroying our society - what the hell is a matter with people today? As I said in my recent ChrisTalks, to be successful with your fitness journey, it’s imperative to love yourself first- HIPPIE CHRIS FOR 3! I’m going to challenge you this CHRISTMAS season to do something that few fitness professionals would dare to do. I challenge you to enroll in the “SEE FOOD DIET” - Eat everything in sight! I want you to eat this….
And this whole gingerbread house...
And three of these…
BUT NOT THIS...
I want you to grab that extra layer of fat around your tummy. You shouldn’t feel like a piece of shit because of that extra pushion-for-the-cushion. You should be able to laugh and say, “That right there, is a lot of FUN times!” That fat doesn’t define who you are. The actions that you’ve done in the past year do. How many people have you helped? How many people have you smiled at? When was the last time to held a door for someone (and not just because they were cute- GUILTY)? How many times have you gone out of your way to help someone remember that there are good people in the world? If you’re worried about your belly, DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT! The path to fat loss isn’t that hard people. If you follow these 5-steps, I guarantee that 2017 will be your best year EVER!
1- Positive F&^%$#@ Mindset is the first and most important step towards success. Understand that your capabilities are far beyond your looks. If you don’t love yourself now, you won’t love yourself with a six-pack or smaller jeans. The more selfies that you take, the weaker you are. Stop seeking validation from the universe. You’re awesome, tell yourself that daily by going over your braggart sheet. Look at yourself in the mirror. Observe your face, specifically your eyes to verify that indeed, a light is on and someone's home. On the other hand, if you don't see the light, then no one is home and you're vacuous- read a damn book! Hopefully; you can explain why you’re awesome. I may have written two books, own a few gyms, and trained over 700 personal trainers, but those INSIGNIFICANT things don't hold a candle to my Thorish-locks of awesomeness...
If you can’t see why you’re awesome, then how can any one else? It's easier to judge someone else than examine one's self - do I feel something Biblical happening here?
2- Win the Week. To change your physique, you need to lift weights four out of seven days weekly. This will build a better metabolism, increase your confidence, sex drive and energy. WEIGHTS; not cardio. Cardio is FINE, but it doesn’t count towards the four days. For someone who isn't working out regularly, four days will suffice. For those a challenge, do HIIT and LISS training on the other two days (High Intense Interval Training & Low Intense Steady-State to maximize the benefits of left ventricular hypertrophy & efficiency of your heart.)
3- SHOW UP. 90% of success begins by SHOWING UP! I’d be willing to bet the reason your 2016 New Year’s Resolutions failed are because you didn't SHOW UP consistently. Plan for your workouts, and then hold yourself accountable. Actions speak louder than words.
4- Smile and volunteer. If you're truly at a lost, smile and help someone else. Forget about your ego and focus on helping others. You'll "find yourself" sooner or later. In the meantime, who cares about your petty problems- SMILE MORE SCROOGE! .
5- Be Human. SEE-FOOD-DIET; EAT IT ALL. We only live once, the last thing you want to have on your death bed is any sort of regret.
HAPPY & MERRY CHRISTMAS Y’ALL!!!
When I originally wrote this article in May of 2012, I cited the book Nutrient Timing, by Ivy and Portman. The scientific information since then has changed. Succinctly put, there's no magical window when you have eat after a workout to maximize your #GAINZ! Even though this 45-minute window has been debunked, let's take a deeper look at the benefits of nutrient timing.
Nutrition 101. Complex carbs (whole grains, vegetables and legumes) are digested slower; therefore providing sustained energy. Simple carbs (sugars, processed snacks, white breads and some fruits) are digested much quicker providing an immediate spike in your blood glucose levels.
What to eat BEFORE your workout?
Try to eat some carbs and protein 1-2 hours before your workout (30-50g of carbs 30g of protein.) Individual's may respond differently, so play around with time frames that allow you to workout and not be full, but most importantly, be able to put in 100% effort for each set. You might try a sandwich, stir-fry protein bar or shake, some fruit, oatmeal, or eggs. If you're getting lethargic midway through the workout, add more carbs before hand or try an intraworkout meal like Gatorade with protein.
What to eat AFTER your workout?
This post-workout window is for you to figure out what your body requires to replenish the energy that you used during the workout. Think of it like driving a car. You need to figure out how many gallons of gas you just used. If your workout utilized core movements (Deadlifts, Squats, Bench, Chin-Ups) while incorporating the components for hypertrophy (Metabolic Stress, Mechanical Tension, and Damage), then your body will be starving for energy- SO FEED THE BEAST! The average 175-lb bro stores around 400g of muscle glycogen and 100g of liver glycogen- that's 2,000 calories of potential energy. If you trained properly (and most people DO NOT), you probably need to consume between 50-100g of carbohydrates. For the remainder of the day, primarily consume protein, fats, and fibrous carbs. If you eat everything after a workout because you feel you've "earned the right too" because of the workout, you'll probably gain weight. What happens if you try to put in more gas than your tank can carry? It'll overflow. The body will use the overflow as a form of fat storage.
Basic BMR calculations
1. Take your weight and multiply by 10 (male), 9 (female). This is how many calories you need to MAINTAIN YOUR CURRENT STATE. Your brain, lungs, heart, kidneys, liver, and muscles require fuel to function, this baseline is what is considered Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR). If you're not exercising and your goal is to lose weight, you need to subtract calories. I suggest a few hundred- the more you subtract, the greater the chance for a binge later.
2. On workout days, multiple your BMR by 1.2-1.5 Can you go higher? Yes, but why give an overweight nation the green light to down more calories? I suggest our clients at Show Up Fitness to multiply by 1.2 and never go hungry. At any point if you're hungry, eat some vegetables, protein, and drink water. You'll need to subtract a couple hundred calories to be in a deficit. The human body stores extra calories throughout the bodies fat stores. You'll slowly, BUT SURELY begin to lose weight in a reasonable manner. We need to think of fat loss like debt. We aren't going to magically hit the lotto and erase the years of bad habits. It takes time- like a minimum payment plan that's been developed to eventually help get you out of debt.
BMR Non-Workout Day 1,910 (subtract 210). I'm going to suggest 1,700 calories for Paul to lose weight.
Workout Day 1910 x 1.2 2,292 (subtract 292). I'm going to suggest 2,000 calories for Paul to lose weight.
BMR Non-Workout Day 1,440 (subtract 140). I'm going to suggest 1,300 calories for Julia to lose weight.
Workout Day 1,440 x 1.2 1,728 (subtract 228). I'm going to suggest 1,500 calories for Julia to lose weight.
These numbers are relative and can change. The first week will be challenging, but try to be tough. The second you get "hungry", ask yourself, is this habitual, or am I truly hungry? If you're unable to maintain the non-workout BMR, here's some rocket-science, WORKOUT MORE!
There's no easy way out y'all. I suggest all of our clients at Show Up Fitness to WIN THE WEEK- that means lift weights 4-days out of the week. I then challenge clients to do yoga, spin, hike, take a new class, or go for a walk for the other 2-3 days.
The Chris Diet. If you're looking for the best personal trainers in Santa Monica, look no further. Chris Hitchko explains what he eats on a daily basis. Carbs aren't bad, nor are proteins or fats. Learn what your body functions best on by monitoring hunger and energy levels, while enjoying the foods you love.
5-years ago I wrote this blog post, “What is the worst piece of equipment in any gym?”
The post sucks, but to date, it’s still my favorite one EVER. Why? On November 20th, 2011, I decided to go out of my comfort zone and do something that I was unsure of- write. I wasn’t a writer back then, nor am I one today, BUT I continue to practice and improve. If you ain't learning and growing, you're dying. I thoroughly enjoy writing. It allows me to be me. I can say whatever the hell I want e.g. magical poop-stain. I vent about shitty students and clients. I'm vulgar (hence my books title, The Vulgar Truth Diet: Fat Loss II.) I love to laugh at my own corny jokes and make fun of myself- the whole process It’s liberating. I’m still evolving and trying to decipher between a comma, semicolon, and eliminate the use of fillers e.g. JUST.
Throughout the years, I’ve been ridiculed and lambasted that these words will never amount to much. The negativity continues to amount, but as one of my favorite sayings goes, "2-Legit 2- Quit." Wait a second, that's not it, I meant, "sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me." Why do we choose the path of least resistance by being sooooooooooooooooooo negative (that's 19 o's)? It’s easy to talk shit about people. It’s difficult to acknowledge bravery. Look at exercise. People are still trying to find the quick fix- IT AIN’T GONNA HAPPEN! It takes hard word and SHOWING UP regularly. 30-days from now YOU WILL NOT BE IN THE BEST SHAPE OF YOUR LIFE. There’s NO 20-minute workout that’ll reverse the years of eating poorly in a hypercaloric surplus. Don’t let this imprison your POWERFUL mind. Use this as motivation to spend the next 180-360-days (that’s 6-12 months) to become a better, and healthier person.
I still remember moving down to Santa Monica, most people discouraged the move. I thank the naysayers. You’ve encouraged me to continue to grow and challenge myself to be a better person. There’s always going to be that negative butt-tard who’s trying to take you down. USE THAT NEGATIVE ENERGY TO GET FIRED UP!
Take a minute to read the article. I almost deleted it last night when I was reviewing our NEW WEBSITE (THANKS AGAIN DANIELLE, YOU’RE A SAINT AND ROCKSTAR!) After much embarrassment, I decided to write this blog post about it. My mindset has changed significantly from 5-years ago. I rarely hate on any exercises (minus pretty much anything using a stability ball- maybe this mindset will change in the next 5-years?) Abductor and Adductor machines are FINE if they’re implemented properly. If you want to use these pieces of equipment, save them as an accessory or do at the end of the workout because their single-jointed movements. I’ve dubbed these exercises “FLUFF”, as they make the client happy, but don’t do too much. So if you want to use these exercises to make you feel better, have at it. Let me help you put them into the right context….
Machine Workout: Hack Squat 3 x 6 (rest 3-minutes), Leg Press 3 x 10 (rest 2-minutes), Leg Extensions into Leg Curls 3 x 15 (rest 1-minute), END WITH Abductions and Adductions 2 x 25 (NO REST)
Free Weight Workout: Hip Thrust 3 x 6 (rest 3-minutes), Squats 3 x 10 (rest 2-minutes), Lunges 3 x 15 (rest 1-minute), END WITH Abductions and Adductions 2 x 25 (NO REST)
In the last 5-years, I’ve grown as a writer, teacher, trainer, son, and friend. I challenge you to do the same. Workout SMARTER, not HARDER. Continue to learn from your mistakes and GROW. Help others. Smile more. And who gives a rat’s ass about what anyone thinks about you- SHOW UP AND DO YOU!
Ask 100 trainers and you’ll get 100 different answers on how to be a successful personal trainer. What does it take to be a successful personal trainer? I believe it comes down to a small, yet very simple list. Here’s my list of five variables that will help you become a great trainer:
1- SHOW UP
As a new trainer, be prepared to Show Up early, and leave late. We take the unwritten oath that we train when are clients aren’t at work- 5am-7am and 5pm-8pm. A key factor in Showing Up is SHOWING UP ON TIME. In the military the saying goes, “if you are not 15 minutes early, then you are 5 minutes late.” This applies to everything in life. ALWAYS BE ON TIME. I hate people who are late, HATE. It has to do with the respect factor. Hands down, my least favorite students have ALWAYS been the ones who are late. Every time someone is late, I imagine the scene from Dumb and Dumber when he punches the sushi chef in the chest and rips out his heart. Shut up with your excuses, JUST BE ON TIME.
2- WORK HARD
As the country boy Chase Rice says, “Head Down, Eyes Up.” What is it with this shitty work ethic today? If you keep your head down, work hard, and keep your eyes on the prize, you’ll become successful in whatever you’re passionate about. We need to stop quantifying awesomeness by telling people, “If you want to be a great trainer, you need to work 10-hour days.” Or the infamous, “In order to be an expert in your field, you need to amass 10,000 hours.” Sorry to burst your bubble, but there isn’t a magical hour that’ll pass and then WALLAH, you’re awesome. You need to SHOW UP, work your ass off and keep your eyes on your goals.
Somedays you may work 4-hours, while others, it’s 18- SO IS LIFE. Work hard, be proud and strive toward your goal. I’m not going to tell you to wake up at 4 am like I do; you need to find out what time works for you! (Check out Cal Newport’s book, “Deep Work.”)
At commercial gyms, your ass better be there when the doors open (usually 5am.) Grab a cup of Joe (bring one for your boss too) and be present with a big ‘ol smile. You need to be the most inviting person in the room. If you’re a buff dude or have a ton of tattoos, your smile and energy needs to be even higher. A gym is a scary place, so if your biceps are the size of the average LA dude’s legs, you need to smile your ass off so you don’t intimidate everyone.
Your next step is to be seen training ALL THE TIME. Develop your skills by training anyone and everyone. Until your book of business is full, you need to be training all the time, e.g., coworkers, family members, friends, baristas at Starbucks, bar tenders. If you’re that ass clown who’s always sitting around, or re-racking weights, people are going to think you’re a maintenance worker, not a trainer.
Walk up to inviting people and ask them if they’d like a free workout today? Creativity calms all nerves; so ask someone what’s the capitol of California? When they correctly reply (hopefully), congratulate them with a high-five while explaining they’ve just won a free personal training session that begins right NOW.
Let me reiterate, you need to consistently Show Up early and WORK HARD to be successful. Funny how those two factors are the keys to most successes in life. Be prepared to do this for a couple years. Until you’re completely confident in training any BODY, you need experience.
3- LOOK THE PART
Luscious locks, Check. Biceps larger than mountains, Check. Beard like Zeus, Check. Do you need to look like Country Thor to be the best personal trainer? No. BUT, if you want to be a successful trainer, you definitely need to look like you practice the part. Would you go to a dentist with jacked up teeth? NO WAY. Why would you train with someone who looks like they need a personal trainer? It’s a superficial world, get over it.
I’m sorry, but I’ve never had a client come to me asking to improve his or her personality. People want to have bigger asses, ripped abs, defined arms, and to look amazing naked. You have the opportunity to be a walking advertisement for potential clients, the least you can do is look the part of a fit pro.
4- KNOW THE PART
WITH THAT BEING SAID, our industry is inundated with vacuous trainers who look the part but have no clue how the human body works. In my opinion, knowing the part (kinesiology, bio-mechanics, nutrition etc,) is more important than looking the part. The average personal trainer gets certified via a weekend course, or even online, and considers themselves a professional- kiss my ass! If you can’t name AT LEAST 14 muscles around the shoulder joint, 30 muscles around the hip, and begin an initial workout with a thorough assessment, you deserve to be prosecuted! SERIOUSLY. There’s no governing body in personal training, where is Gym Cop when you need him?
5- TALK THE PART
If you can’t show the value of personal training, aka sales, then you won’t make it in this field. We have the best product in the world that prevents cancer, builds confidence, increases sex drive, and helps us look amazing naked- it’s called lifting heavy shit properly.
If you can’t convey the value of your product to your clients, you’re worthless as a rock. You will have your NEO moment when you fire your first client, and when your clients start showering you with gifts. You know how many bottles of whiskey, country concert tickets, bikes, and Texas Longhorn gear I’ve received from clients? When you show a client that they can achieve anything, you’re priceless. This all comes back to experience. You need to train your ass off, continue learning, helping as many people as you safely can, and you’ll soon understand the value in your services.
In order to be the best of the best in the personal training industry, you need to (in no particular order): SHOW UP, WORK HARD, LOOK THE PART, KNOW THE PART, and BE ABLE TO TALK THE PART.
There are a lot of people who could benefit from the ascribed person above. You owe it to yourself to start setting the norm for personal trainers by becoming that individual who has these five variables.
So, what’s holding you back? LET’R RIP! Take chances. No regrets. POSITIVE F&^%$#@ Mindset.
You’ve got three options on How to lose 5lbs…fast….
1- Don’t eat for 10 days. If you’re an average dude who weighs 190lbs, you’ll roughly need 1,900 calories to maintain your weight (I’m not counting workouts- you’d need more calories to maintain that frame.) So, if you were to consume zero calories, it would take you roughly nine days (3,500 calories equals one pound of fat multiplied by five equals 17,500 calories~ 1,900 x 10 days = 19,000 kcals which would be close to 10 days). You’ll die if you don’t drink water, so make sure to drink lots of it. For the average lady who weighs around 160lbs, it’ll take you around 11 days. Fun Fun, get ready to starve yourself!
2- Cut your arm off. Now you gotta be smart about this one. If you use a chainsaw, it could get real messy and you don’t want to bleed out and die. So I suggest going to the nearest hospital and amputating it in the bathroom. Make sure to be drunk as hell because it’s going to hurt more than ramming a cactus up your butt (without lube).
After you pass out, you’ll need to muster up the courage and continue to cut through the bone / connective tissues – you’re not going to slice through it like fine cheese, it’s going to take some hard work. Stay strong, you got this! ORRRRRRR…..
3- Win the Week by SHOWING UP and WORKING HARD. Do you see what I’ve done here? To the average person, dieting is considered the easier method. Most people don’t want to engage in exercise because it’s difficult and takes them out of their comfort zone. The previous ludicrous examples make exercising seem like the easier route. In order to lose fat, you need to first identify the mechanism of which the weight gain came from. Eating too much? Not exercising anymore? How long did it take for you to gain the weight? Weight management comes from changing your mindset. THERE’S NO QUICK FIX OR MAGICAL PILL! The answer lies from being constant and maintaining a positive f*&^%$# mindset (PFM).
You need to implement a behavioral change that is sustainable for the course of your lifespan. FYI, you don’t need to go on a crazy diet eating tilapia and broccoli; a big THANK YOU to the bodybuilding world for spreading that crap! Weight gain is merely eating more calories than you expend. Let’s work together and find a recipe that’s best for you. The life of cancer, diabetes, or pulmonary dysfunction is WAY MORE DIFFICULT than exercising for one hour a day. I pose this question to our clients, “Can you give me 3% of your week?” When you view it from that perspective, it seems easier right? Imagine if you dedicated 5% (working out six hours a week- 6/168 total hours in a week). I’m asking for you to WIN THE WEEK, which is less than 3%. You owe it to yourself to sit down, plan accordingly, and make the time to exercise! If you’re stupid and decide not eat for 5 days, or cut your arm off, you deserve the ramifications. Of course, the answer is option number 3.
Here’s a basic workout plan that will help put you on the right path of consistency. Do the following workout 3x a week for a month:
Do 1 warm-up set of 10. Then 3 sets resting 1-minute between sets. Set 1= 20 reps. Set 2= 15 (add weight from previous set). Set 3= 12 reps. Then move onto the next exercise.
– Squats day 1 / Deadlifts on day 3 / Lunges or Step-Ups on day 5
– Bench Press
– Bent-Over Rows
– Military Press day 1&5 / Lateral raises day 3
– 3 Spot Reducing Exercises OR fluff OR Corrective Exercises OR Cardio (Whatever you want to call it).
Bicep Curls – Tricep Extensions – Crunches
Abductions – Side Band Walks – Mountain Climbers
If you want to maximize fat loss, do cardio at the end of your workout for 15-30-minutes walk/run/elliptical/stairs/bike/have sex WHATEVER!
For the fourth workout (Win the Week = working out 4 days), do something FUN- YAAAAAAAA! I know y’all obsess over that word, so make your workouts fun by adding in ONE day of a class, CrossFit, MMA, Pilates, Hike, or a sport like basketball or beach volleyball.
The bottom line is if you’re trying to lose fat FAST, IT AIN’T GONNA WORK. You need to change your mindset in order for this to work (PFM). You packed on the pounds slowly yet surely, so it’s time to take the fat off in the same fashion. Stick to WINNING THE WEEK for six months and you’ll notice a significant change. Don’t expect linear results. Some weeks will be better than others, but over the course of 6-months, I GUARANTEE you’ll be in better shape on day 180, than day 1.
If you’re interested in becoming a personal trainer, contact Chris at the bottom of the page. He’s graduated over 700 personal training students.
Let’s start by making SMART goals: specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely. A common question that I hear from trainers is how to make 100k? Here’s how to make 100k as a personal trainer in 2017. Before I do so, let’s go over my rap sheet as a trainer of 10+ years, teacher, and gym owner:
In 2006, I began working at my first commercial gym. I made 16k.
In 2008, I was promoted to Head Trainer. I made 42k.
Between 2006 – 2008 I made a lot of mistakes training e.g. wasted too much time, never planned ahead, didn’t read enough, I wasn’t writing, and didn’t think outside the box on how to help more people. If I could go back and tell myself two things, it would be to SHOW UP and WORK HARDER (get your ass up at 5am!)
In 2009, I started teaching at the National Personal Training Institute. Teachers don’t make crap.
In 2011, I opened up my first Show Up Fitness in the SF Bay Area (Dublin). In our first year, we made 16k.
In 2014, I opened up my second Show Up Fitness in Santa Monica. In our first year, we did 85k. This year we’re set to gross 150k (already clearing 100k).
This isn’t me tooting my horn (Choo Choo), but in order to give direction on how to make 100k, you sure as hell better be reading from someone who has. Let me help you make 100k by following these steps:
Step 1- Figure out your worth
In your first 0-6 months at most large box commercial gyms, you’ll be making between $20-30 per training session. Most trainers begin with zero clients and a handful of floor hours. During these floor hours, you need to be hustling the floor, making contacts, smiling at everyone, memorizing names, and making an amazing presence- people need to know who you are. Your goal should be to talk to as many people as you can. The more people you connect with, the more assessments you’ll schedule. During these assessments, you’ll be given the opportunity to show your value on why they need to hire you as their personal trainer (PS. everyone needs a trainer.) On average, for every 10 assessments, you’ll close three. Ya that’s right, trainers are like baseball players, we get paid to fail (less than 30-40% is considered awesome.) As you become a seasoned trainer, that number should go up; at Show Up Fitness, we’re north of 70%.!
In the personal training industry, 25-32 hours is considered full-time (once again, depending on location and self-drive). In order to make 100k, you need to be bringing in $8,333/ month. This is the first step in organizing your year. THIS IS PROJECTED. YOU’LL NEED TO FACTOR IN SLOW MONTHS, CLIENT ATTRITION, AND SICK TIME. In my opinion, a great trainer rarely loses clients. In the course of a year, you should see less than 10% of your clientele leave (relocation, unrealistic expectations, and financial turmoil.) Here’s what 100k looks like broken down per hour:
At 25/hour you’ll need to be training 80+ hours / week (NOT HAPPENING).
At 30/hour you’ll need to be training 70 hours / week (I smell BURNOUT).
At 35/ hour you’ll need to be training 60 hours / week (plausible especially as a new trainer, you should be hungry at every opportunity to train).
At 40/ hour you’ll need to be 50 hours / week. Have you ever worked a 50-hour work week? Ya I thought so. I’d suggest aiming to make 40/ hour to begin your conquest in making 100k a year.
At $50 / hour = 40 hours $75 / hour = 28 hours $100 / hour = 21 hours
What about small group training? (That’s another article in itself, but I’m going out on a ledge and say that it’s going to drop off around 50% in the next 5 years.) You need to do your research and find out what the average trainer is charging and their experience. As you’ll see, the more you charge, 100k seems a lot more reasonable. At a gym, the price is already set, but as an independent contractor, your rates can vary depending on location and experience. With that being said, let’s take a look at step #2…
Step #2: Experience & Branding
I’ve had one student graduate in my 6+ years teaching who was able to charge over $100 within his first two years of training. IT CAN HAPPEN, but you need to get your reps in first. What is it with today’s society and entitlement? It took me over five years to make headwind as an established personal trainer. The 10,000 Hour Rule by Malcolm Gladwell states you need to practice your craft for 10k hours to be considered an expert in your respected field. That’s 40-hours / week for 10 years. Where are you on this spectrum? The take-home message, “SHOW UP, SHUT UP, AND TRAIN.” Learn how each and every body is unique.
You need to brand yourself. You’ll never seen me in Santa Monica or Dublin without our SHOW UP logo.
Branding 101: Who are you, and why should someone train with you (read Seth Godin’s Purple Cow)? What makes you so damn special? Start writing… NOW! Don’t send me a link to someone else’s page, you need to start creating content, TODAY. Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram are a start, but I want to see you blogging on your own website (CreateSpace has user-friendly templates to get you started.) Go to Barnes and Noble and look at all the catchy titles, “How to build a butt,” or “How to TONE your arms.” You can’t “TONE” your arms, but you gotta play the game in order to get recognized. Otherwise, some douche-bag will create some stupid workout that won’t do much.
As you gain experience, get your clients to leave reviews on Yelp, Google Reviews, Thumbtack, and LinkedIn. Every person you encounter, offer to train them in exchange for a review. I’d challenge you to get at least 10 reviews within the first month. As your clients get results, document the progress, and update your website with the transformations. People love seeing people transform, not the questionable ones seen in magazines. They don’t care how ripped you are or that you’re some model (BFD);so you need normal body types because that’s your clientele.
Having “pretty” people on your website / social media may help with getting more likes, but what about ROI and ROT (Return On Investment / Return On Time)? Time is money and if you spend hours on social media without any lead generation, is it worth it? Maybe your posts suck, so get a third parties opinion, and make sure to try around with different styles. BUT, you need to have social media; just don’t spend more than five-ten minutes a day on it.
As you expand your brand and grow as a person, you’ll need the help of someone who’s been there and done that to prevent burnout. Enlist the help of others by….
Step #3: Seek Mentorship
Why not buy some of those 10k hours from people who’ve already experienced what you’re going through? My biggest problem isstubbornness. I don’t like asking for help. I want to do it all by myself; my way, and win it all. That’s the folly of Chris. I’ve learned throughout my training career that this is a stupid approach. I should have done an internship under a well-respected strength coach like Cressey, Boyle, or Verstegen- COULDA, WOULDA, SHOULDA! The world of kinesiology and dietetics is constantly evolving. If you’re not learning, you’re dying. If you bust your ass, ask for guidance, and keep a positive f’in mindset, you can realistically within seven years become that pro (five if you’re a true badass.)
If you work at a gym, go up to the top two trainers and offer to pay them in cash to train you once a week. The trainer will bite at the opportunity for some under the table cash, and you’ll be learning from the highest performing trainer at that gym. At the end of the day, you’ll be getting tips and pointers from someone who has more experience than you. I’d be willing to bet that they probably won’t charge you either. If they don’t GO OUT AND GET THEM A FREAKING GIFT! Where has the thoughtfulness gone today? When someone does something nice for you, get them a gift card or something with some thought behind it. A little thought goes a long ways.
Step #4: Positive F’in Mindset (PFM)
I adopted this term from the great Napoleon Hill and best-selling author Rhonda Byrne of The Secret. The secret ain’t special y’all, it’s believing in yourself, Showing Up, working hard, and maintaining a PFM. Of course, they didn’t drop the F-bomb, but vulgarity is more my cup of coffee. In the 20’s, Hill would’ve lost all credibility by using the F word. I wrote a book called The Vulgar Truth Diet: Fat Loss II, so it’s all good, I’m the Country Thor cool dude (right? HA). Maintaining a Positive F’in Mindset is the most important thing you can do.
How optimistic are you? When life gives you lemons, do you say, “Screw it; let’s make a whiskey lemonade?” Or are you dwelling on the “negative aspects?” Why not make everything positive? If you get fired, it’s a blessing in disguise to find your true passion. When your significant other dumps you, it means they weren’t the one for you; finding the right one will be spectacular. At Show Up Fitness, we never lose, we either WIN or Learn. It’s time for you to adopt a PFM.
If you’re training at a gym making $15 an hour, why is it that people bitch and complain that they aren’t making enough? You know what the average household in America brings home annually? Around 50k- for a HOUSEHOLD! If you’re making $15 an hour as a beginning trainer, be optimistic that you’re working. The first few years are going to define how successful you’re going to be. How about you flip that negative-Nancy mentality around and say, “Wow, I’m making 50% more than someone getting paid minimum wage!” You’ll climb the ladder at work and begin making $30-50/ session, but it takes time. My dad has a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology and charges $125 an hour. You’re a trainer with a certification that you probably got online, do you really think you are worth $100 a session? $75? Get REAL! The cash cow will begin to steamroll in after you’ve been training for 5+ years. Sit tight and be excited about the future; stop being so damn negative, KAM.
Step #5: Work harder, then smarter
The average personal trainer quits within five years. Why? In my opinion, it’s because people think personal training is a 9-5; clock in and then you’re done. In actuality, we take the unwritten oath that we train when our clients are not working, 5-9am, and 4-9pm. For the first 2-3 years, you need to GRIND IT OUT (I hate that word, but everyone seems to understand its value.) By implementing step #4 (PFM), and planning accordingly, you’ll be able to prevent burnout. I wake up between 4-5am, read, write, teach, train, workout for two hours, and then train and teach some more. Every Monday morning, I spend 30-minutes planning for the week ahead by developing my awesome vs comfort zone list.
Your first two years of training, you need to train as much as possible. I suggest every quarter attending a seminar to reignite a fire under your ass. Knowledge is power, it should make you horny, I mean hungry. Years 3+, it’s time to start working smarter. Let’s revisit the $8,333 number to make 100k. You should be charging a premium rate ($75-100 / 60-minute session) which will allow you to train less (sometimes as much as 50%). On top of your hourly rate, discover ways to supplement your monthly income such as online clients. If you had 10-online clients paying $100 a month for a program, that’s an extra grand a month (1-step closer to your goal of achieving the 100K). What about finding a protein bar, powder, or supplement to sell to your clients? If you’re a trainer, supplemental income is huge. Just ask Bill Murray from Kingpin
Write a book and sell on Amazon for $9.99? “The top 50 techniques to lose fat” – If you had a few Ebooks on your website that generate a few units per month, it’ll start adding up. On top of it all, create some sort of clothing brand that you can sell online. I’m working on some shirts that say BUFF JESUS & LET’R RIP. After watching Mathew McConaughey’s speech delivered to the Texas Longhorns. I’ve gotta make some shirts that say LET’R RIP! Ideally, you’ll have 1-2k coming in supplementally online via your website and products, which leaves 5-6k to make it through training.
By implementing the aforementioned steps, you’ll be on your way to six-figures. You need to remember why you became a trainer in the first place. To help people. If you focus on making more money, you can easily burn out. Here’s one last step to prevent burn out by…
Step #6: Continuing your education
Every day, when I wake up, I’m excited to learn more, help as many people as I can, and continue to grow. Isn’t that what life is all about? If you’re not reading at least a book a month, you’ve got major work to do. Don’t be that “YouTube trainer” who’s constantly watching flashy videos on trendy exercises. I know it’s important to increase your exercise library, but results come from Showing UP, implementing the patterns of movement (vertical push & pull, horizontal push & pull, squat, hinge, carry, and unilateral movements), and owning the mechanics!
Here are some great people to follow: Tony Gentilcore, Bret Contreras, Eric Cressey, Mike Boyle, Dr. Stu McGill, Ben Bruno, Sohee Lee, Mike Reinold, Molly Galbraith (Girls Gone Strong), Dean Somerset, Dan John, Dr. Mark Cheng, Dr. Jacob Wilson, Thomas Plummer, Tim Henriques, Robert Palka, John Berardi, Andrew Vigotsky, Brad Schoenfeld, Nick Tumminello, Mike Israetel, and John Rusin (SHORT LIST, I PROBABLY FORGOT 100’s OF NAMES.)
Here are a FEW great books to START out with (I’m in the process of developing the ultimate personal trainers start-up kit for continuing education):
Fitness (Text style): Starting Strength (Rippetoe), Easy Strength (John & Pavel), Designing Resistance Training Programs (Kraemer), Advances in Functional Training (Boyle), 2×4 (Contreras), All About Powerlifting (Henriques).
While 100k is a great starting point, I’d challenge you to aim higher. Why not 200? Why not 500? Why not a million. Or a Billion. Interested in becoming a personal trainer? Contact Chris who’s a teacher at NPTI and graduated over 700 students to learn more. 530-520-2664.