Personal Fitness Professional June 2014

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RAMP-UP YOUR TECHNOLOGY KNOW-HOW CASE STUDY: Can training your clients online really be effective?


JOURNEY TO SUCCESS Rachel Cosgrove: Changing the way fitness is done


4 checklists to get you the best deal: Part 4 of the PFP 2014 7-part special series




josh vogt | editor

lindsay vastola | managing editor

mike beacom | circulation manager

rachel spahr | president

chad griepentrog | creative director

Inspire teamwork in the workplace Get to the top of the list An integrated web strategy is critical to your business; and it is not as complicated as it may seem. Ryan Csolak, marketer and web strategist, breaks down a few simple steps to gain your presence online. By Ryan Csolak

POLL RESULTS Which factor plays the largest role in deciding which equipment to invest in? 5.1%




VIDEO Exercise of the Week Visit our website or YouTube channel to view weekly instructional videos from some of the most respected names in the fitness industry.



Personal trainers have the chemistry, skills and knowhow to inspire teamwork in the workplace; a musthave in today’s companies seeking ways to create a healthy company culture. By Greg Justice

Functionally Fit by Brian Schiff

EXTRA Training Wheels

Feedback from clients/members Budget/cost Versatility Space requirements Reviews from other fitness professionals


Career Builder by Josh Bowen

Visit: to participate


Which technology or online platform would you consider most valuable to managing your business?

a. Social media b. Website c. Client management tools


d. Email management tools

by Cabel McElderry

(i.e. online software)

(i.e. online platforms)



Who’s on your side? As a fitness entrepreneur, you need the right partners on your side.

kelli cooke | contributing writers

rachel cosgrove, sean greeley, holly rigsby, justin tamsett featured columnists

michelle blakely, greg justice, phil kaplan, jason karp, bedros keuilian and dr. michael mantell

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PFP (ISSN 1523-780X) [Volume 16, Issue 4]


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Lindsay Vastola |

Dan Ritchie |

Is it technology or professionals changing the way fitness is done? Our Journey to Success featured professional, Rachel Cosgrove, has inspired my message to you in this special digital-only issue. As you’ll read in her profile, she is committed to one very simple mission: To change the way fitness is done. I think the timing is perfect for this issue focused on the technology of fitness. Technology has changed the way we find out what’s going on in our world, how we talk to our friends and even how we communicate with our own parents. It has vastly changed our perspective of how to operate an efficient business and certainly changed how we market and sell our services. But how is technology changing the way fitness is done? One might argue that some fitness programs are only as good as a Google or YouTube search (whether searched by someone looking to get six-pack abs or by fitness professionals looking for new exercises). Others may contest, as columnist Greg Justice does in this issue, that new “tech gadgets” and tens of thousands of smartphone apps have had a real impact on activity levels and awareness of the general population. Albeit the rapid evolution of technology in our industry, has technology actually changed how fitness is done? I would argue that it has not yet changed the heart and soul of what we do as fitness professionals: connect, develop and maintain meaningful relationships. Quality relationships with clients and potential clients, with colleagues and with our communities, simply cannot be measured through Facebook friend requests or ego-boosting retweets. Technology can, however, simply exist to enhance these relationships. Use technology as you see best fit for you and the relationships you build within your business. Being authentic, with or without technology, is how you will help change the way fitness is done. My challenge to you is to find your own way to change the way fitness is done. Let’s all take this as a call to action to continue to raise the level of standards and expectations in the industry. After all, technology is ever-changing; relationships, trust and professionalism are unwavering.

Here are a few highlights of this issue: }

} }

Talking tech with the Trainer of the Year Dan Ritchie shares with us the top three technologies he uses in his business and what opportunities he thinks fitness professionals can take advantage of to increase business… Simple technologies that have worked well for us, and I know are working for others: email marketing, Facebook and YouTube. Email marketing is about being consistent with content, stories and offers. You can’t just sell all the time, no one wants to be on that email list. Provide great content, share great client success stories, share social proof, make a low-barrier offer. I have used Constant Contact, FitProNewsletter and DemandForce — all with success. Facebook is a great way to build a community, grow a loyal tribe, but also provide great content. Showcase your YouTube videos, before and after pictures and social proof. Occasionally make a low-barrier offer. The Facebook Ads program can be a powerful way to get new leads, and even for just $10 you can pretty quickly find ads that work or don’t work; put more money on the ones working and cancel the others. It also allows for targeting specific geographic and also demographic areas, gender, age, etc. I am spending $30 a day on Facebook right now for the next 10 days. Every once in a while I find an ad or two that is a home run! It may be where I spend all my marketing dollars this next year.

Not convinced online training is effective? You may be convinced of the possibilities after reading the case study of Holly Rigsby’s online training business, Fit Yummy Mummy. Measure your business success with Sean Greeley’s 7 Benchmarks of Personal Training Success. Ready to sign your lease agreement? Before you sign for your new studio, read Part 4 of our special Studio Series on successful tips on negotiating a lease that works in your favor.

Committed to changing the way fitness is done,

Trainer of the

Year 2014 JUNE 2014 | WWW.FIT-PRO.COM | 5


JUNE 2014

Ramp-up your technology know-how


OTHER Columns


08 Treadmill Talk Embracing technology By Greg Justice

09 Top-Notch Training “It’s not you, it’s me” By Michelle Blakely

10 Boost Your Business Growing your fitness business through technology By Bedros Keuilian


A woman changing the way fitness is done…one breakthrough at a time By Lindsay Vastola

10 Education Connection Riches are in the niches By Jason R. Karp

30 Be Better Passion and prosperity: the perfect pair for a promising career By Phil Kaplan



Benchmarks of a successful training business


Owning & Operating a Successful Studio, Part 4

Before you sign: Negotiating contracts, leases and agreements

By Sean Greeley

By Rachel Cosgrove


Facebook like a boxer, sting like a bee

5 checklists to get the best edge in your social media strategy


Does online training work?

Case study: Fit Yummy Mummy By Holly Rigsby



By Justin Tamsett

05 Letter from the Editor Is it technology or professionals changing the way fitness is done?

23 The Message Ben Greenfield

27 Education Trends Health coaching certifications By Dr. Michael Mantell

28 New on the Market 29 Events Calendar


Embracing technology


Multiple Profit Streams:

 Daily Workout Journals  Nutritional Suppplements  Online Weight-Management  Custom HD Video  Embroidered Apparel  Posters, Cards, Letterhead

 Value-Added Memberships  Personal Training  Weight-Management  Group Programs / Contests  Offsite Wellness  Online Coaching

It seems like technology has replaced and displaced people from normal face-to-face communication, but personal trainers can benefit from embracing technology instead of feeling threatened by it. Technology is a boon to success and growth, both in improving your relationship with clients and your bottom line. Just remember it is a synergy between trainer and technology. No matter how amazing a machine is, your clients still need that personal communication and the power of human encouragement to help them stay on track. Gadgets are in widespread use, and if they help promote a client’s commitment to self betterment, both your client’s health and your service offerings are improved. Activity trackers, also called accelerometers, measure duration, frequency, intensity, distance, calories burned, weight, body fat percentage, mapped routes and can be plugged into a computer or synced to a smartphone.


} } } } }

} } }

Here are some of the best: The Fitbit One, Nike+FuelBand, Garmin Forerunner and BodyMedia provide detailed data, track daily movements graphed and analyzed and plug into a computer or sync to an iPhone. EA Sports Active 2, has motion and heart rate sensors. Nike+Kinect Training has varied, fast-paced workouts, analyzes form and offers feedback and motivation. Google Earth is a free app to display routes and distance anywhere. Eat This, Not That helps a client make choices when eating out. Training apps and/or websites include the free, the Training Notebook app,, MotivatePT, TrainerForce, ChallengeLoop and iFitness. tracks nutrients by scanning barcodes to input food. MindBodyOnline is often used for billing and scheduling. Withings is a wifi scale that tracks weight and stores detailed client data.

The new wave in personal training combines technology and personal communication – that’s a powerful positive impact that helps you change your clients’ lives for the better … and grow your business!

Greg Justice, MA, CPT, is the founder of AYC Health & Fitness ( and the Corporate Boot Camp System ( He has been actively involved in the fitness industry for more than a quarter of a century as a club manager, owner, personal trainer and corporate wellness supervisor.



TOP-NOTCH TRAINING Michelle Blakely |

“It’s not you, it’s me” Some trainers complain about how clients treat them: frequent cancellations, late payments, poor attitude during sessions, tardiness and inappropriate behavior. The solution lies in taking the focus off the clients. Although it can be tricky, evaluate how you are teaching them to treat you. First, let’s see what the clients see: Arriving late? The clients see a trainer who doesn’t respect their time. Dressed unprofessionally? The clients see a trainer who doesn’t take training seriously. Conversations stray grossly off-topic? The clients suspect the trainer doesn’t value their investment and that they don’t have a responsibility to stay focused either. Gossiping? The clients wonder if their own life details won’t be kept private. In these examples, the trainer is unintentionally teaching clients that a professional relationship is not always given or expected. The unfortunate side effect (in addition to poor retention and missed opportunity) is that clients question their obligations. As a society, we respect individuals who are routinely fair, clear and respectful. Top-notch trainers behave in a respectful and consistent manner with all clients at all times. The key to garnering respect from clients is to always be respectful in your communication. Some problems are tougher: late payments, price-point criticism and inappropriate client behavior or boundary-crossing. The solution principle is the same: it is your responsibility to “teach people how to treat you.” In some way (again, unintentionally), the trainer has taught clients that such behavior is acceptable. Late payments? The trainer did not craft, clearly explain and consistently enforce billing policies with every client. Price-point objections? The trainer may question his or her own rates of service. Time spent quantifying the trainer’s value and expertise can build a trainer’s confidence. Market research in their field can empower trainers to respectfully respond to pricing criticism with concrete explanation. Inappropriate client behavior? A trainer might worry about losing the income and avoid addressing the problem directly. Or worse, trainers may have initially opened the door with inappropriate behavior themselves. The solution here is to have a separate conversation and restart. Begin the training process again with a new understanding of what is acceptable and enforce it. Each of these issues is a springboard for an entire article in itself, but for this discussion, I ask you to focus on the fact that clients are learning from you how you want to be treated. Be clear about the kind of experience you want to have when you show up for work every day and then be relentless in your consistency of respectful behavior. Clients will happily reciprocate and everyone will have a better experience.

Michelle Blakely is the owner of Blakely FIT, Inc., Strength Training Exclusively for Women and author of the Friday Quickie blog. She is a mother of two, wife to one and three-time Chicago Reader Best of Chicago winner. She’d love to hear from you: and




Bedros Keuilian |

Jason Karp, PhD l

Growing your fitness business through technology

Riches are in the niches

As a fitness professional, you may be focusing on things like targeting your market, building awareness, getting more clients, or even updating your skills to become a better trainer. And that’s exactly what you should be doing, however, if you’re not implementing the right technology where it’s needed then you might be wasting precious time. What’s worse, you might even hurt your business and your bottom line. With the right technology know-how, you can grow your personal training business faster, scale more efficiently, build authority in your local market and even deliver better results to your clients.

Coaching high school track and field, it’s often difficult to get kids to focus on one event. With so many options in the sport, many want to run and jump and throw. I’ve tried to convince them that it’s better to be very good at one event than mediocre at multiple events. As adults, little changes. I often hear personal trainers say that they train all types of clients – weight-loss clients, elite athletes, clients who want general muscle toning, seniors and so on. For their areas of expertise, they list specialties such as “weight loss,” “athletic performance,” “metabolic conditioning,” “senior fitness” and “post-injury rehabilitation” and obtain certifications for every specialty. First of all, no one can be an expert in all of these areas. Second, you shouldn’t even try. That’s not the path to success. It’s tempting to train all types of clients because it seems that you could make more money with a broad focus than with a narrow one. Many of my high school athletes’ parents tell their kids to do many extracurricular activities to increase their chances of getting into college. Well, their parents are wrong. Successful people are not well-rounded. They don’t do many things. Successful people and successful businesses do one thing better than everyone else. Choose a niche to specialize in and become as educated and skilled in that niche as possible. If you’re passionate about helping people lose weight, become a weight-loss expert. Read every scientific study that has ever been done on weight loss. Open a biochemistry textbook and understand metabolism and hormones and everything that affects weight gain and loss. Volunteer for weight-loss studies. Talk to scientists who have devoted their lives to researching weight loss. Learn how much, what type and what intensity of exercise result in significant weight loss. Learn the documented habits of successful weight losers. Know the role that nutrition plays in weight loss. Know the data from the National Weight Loss Registry as well as you know your parents’ names. How many trainers do you think know all this, yet still claim to be weight-loss experts? After you’ve done all your homework, become known in your community as The Weight-Loss Expert. Speak to weight-loss groups, give weight-loss tips on TV, write a weight-loss column for a local newspaper or magazine. When people ask about your services, charge a lot of money because you’re The Weight-Loss Expert and they can’t get your expertise anywhere else. Riches are in the niches.

Get seen You probably already have a Facebook account set up for your business, and if you don’t, that’s where you should start. In fact, it’s important that your business is on all the major social media sites: Facebook, Twitter and Google+. The trick is online social media managers. Services like Hootsuite or SproutSocial will give you full control over all your social media sites in one spot. You can easily schedule posts, monitor what people are saying and analyze what you’ve been posting to see what’s working. Get heard Start building email lists of your current, potential and past clients. Email marketing is the most powerful way you can drive your business forward if used correctly, meaning you’re sending your list useful tips on a consistent basis and not just pitching them on your programs. Deliver great content two or three times a week, or you can use an automated email marketing system like that also includes weekly e-newsletters with fresh articles. Staying in constant contact with your list will help you to build authority and sell more training services. Get productive Hiring an assistant is a great way to get more done in a day, but not all of us are lucky enough to afford one. One easy way to stay productive without an assistant is to hire a virtual one. Sites like TaskBullet, OntraPort and Zirtual help you to get stuff automated and done fast. Another way to increase productivity and your clients’ results is to automate the things that you once did by hand like fitness evaluations and client goals training. Online tools like automate the bulk of client goals training for you so that you can use your time in other areas of your business. With all the technology available to fitness professionals, there’s never been a better time to own a fitness business.

Bedros Keuilian is the founder and CEO of Fit Body Boot Camp. Get more free fitness business boosting tips and tactics on his blog



Jason Karp is one of the foremost running experts in America, 2011 IDEA Personal Trainer of the Year and owner of Run-Fit. As a PhD in exercise physiology, he writes for numerous running, coaching and fitness magazines, is the author of five books, an industry speaker and head track coach at La Jolla High School.

Journey to Success

By Lindsay Vastola

A WOMAN CHANGING THE WAY FITNESS IS DONE… one breakthrough at a time

“Changing the way fitness is done.” She must have repeated this 10 times in our hour-long interview. A lifelong committed fitness professional; an entrepreneurial one-woman brand; an educator, mentor and consultant; a notable speaker; a best-selling author and prolific writer; a gym owner and a wife — with no cliché attached, Rachel Cosgrove is leading a movement to change the way fitness is done. It all started when her dad took her to the gym when she was just 12 years old. A dancer, Rachel always had a deep-rooted love for challenge. She received a physiology degree and started teaching aerobics at local gyms. After college, she earned a dance scholarship in New York City. In her own words, her move to New York City from her home in Southern California was fate to “meet her husband” (Alywn Cosgrove). After two years, she talked him into leaving the east coast and moving back to California… and that was just the first step of her movement to change the way fitness is done.



“Changing the way fitness is done” After returning to California, Rachel and Alywn realized that they were frustrated with the standards (or lack thereof) in the gyms where they were working; there were no systems in place, poor customer service and little to no standards of professionalism expected of the staff. They knew fitness could be done so much better. So in 2000, Rachel and Alywn opened their own gym with a mission to provide a new solution for fitness: to change the way fitness is done. But Rachel’s mission didn’t simply stop at opening a gym that offered clients a new experience with fitness. Fourteen years after opening the gym, Rachel has rightly earned a reputation as a respected authority on fitness for women, on the business of fitness and on personal branding and empowerment. When Alywn and Rachel first opened their gym, they quickly realized how little they knew about running a business. Long, arduous days with little financial reward began to wear on them. One day, the first employee they hired

arrived at the gym boasting a brand new car. At that pivotal moment, they realized (while they were still driving a barely-running, used car Rachel’s parents had bought them), they had to make significant changes, not just to sustain the business but to support the life they knew they deserved: a principle Rachel reminds fitness professionals they need to be committed to. Alywn and Rachel made several breakthrough business decisions. First, the business model changed from a 1-on-1 to semi-private platform that effectively tripled income while offering lower rates to clients, and they moved from selling session packages to automatic monthly billing. Another pivotal change they made was implementing effective systems so the business could effectively run without their day-to-day management. They also knew that in order to build something greater than themselves, they needed to rename their gym: and so was born “Results Fitness,” recognized by Men’s Health as one of the top 10 gyms in the United States.



WHAT IS YOUR CURRENT TITLE? Owner of Results Fitness and Results Fitness University, best-selling author of The Female Body Breakthrough and Drop Two Sizes, columnist for Women’s Health magazine COMPANY NAME: Results Fitness WHAT ARE YOUR CERTIFICATIONS?: NSCA CSCS, CHEK Nutrition & Lifestyle Coach, USAW certified coach, USAT certified coach, NASM, ACE, ISSN, Precision Nutrition Certified Coach WHERE DID YOU GET YOUR EDUCATION? BS in Physiology from the University of California at Santa Barbara WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE PIECE OF WORKOUT EQUIPMENT? I have many favorite tools — free weights, TRX, kettlebells, sand bags, medicine balls. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE HEALTHY SNACK? Grabbing one of our all natural fruit and protein smoothies from our shake cafe at Results Fitness. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE QUOTE OR SAYING? There is no such thing as the perfect body except the one you woke up in! CONTACT INFO: 661-799-7900 rachelcosgrovefanpage

Today, Results Fitness employs 22 full-time employees with full benefits and opportunities for a career path, not just a “side job;” just as she had envisioned. But it wasn’t until the Cosgroves were faced with a life-changing challenge that they realized that the hard work of building systems in their business really paid off. Alywn was diagnosed with cancer which required the couple to step away from the business. Rather than being an additional burden for her to manage, the gym offered Rachel those necessary moments of escape while she supported her husband through his fight. Rachel described how empowering it was, in addition to the relief they felt that they could solely focus on his recovery; not keeping a business afloat. While Rachel Cosgove is a proven success in the fitness industry as a gym owner and coach, perhaps it is her method of creating a vision and taking action to succeed that makes learning about her journey to success most valuable. Here is a glimpse into Rachel’s vision and her commitment to changing the way fitness is done… 10 years ago she decided she wanted to be the best at training women. Rachel is now undoubtedly one of the most influential women in fitness; not only empow-



ering women to be fit, but mentoring female fitness professionals to achieve their greatest success. Rachel is crystal-clear on her path and stays focused on what she does best. She knew she would one day be published. Several years ago, she happened to sit next to an editor from Shape magazine at an IHRSA convention. Prior to that, she set a goal to be published. She took action and sent her story ideas to the editor and now is one of the most sought-after contributors for the industry’s leading publications and is a best-selling author of two books. She was confident that she would be successful at significantly impacting lives. With each evolution of her career in fitness there is one thing that remains consistent: Rachel is impacting lives in a real, significant way. As a fitness professional early in her career, Rachel changed the lives of her fitness clients by helping them breakthrough to be their best physically and mentally. A day in the life of Rachel now is committed to coaching fitness professionals to create their own breakthroughs in their careers, and as a leader at Results Fitness, she remains focused on developing the careers of her staff.

While she may not have provided me with a specific “checklist” on how she has achieved her success, these are some of the habits Rachel would likely credit to her success: } She decided early-on what would make her legendary. } She wrote down her vision, in detail. } She planted her vision in her subconscious. } She built relationships, networked and presented. } She works hard and always sticks to her path. } She surrounds herself with coaches and mentors to help fast-track her success. } She doesn’t say “yes” to everything. } She is always ready and prepared for big things to happen. While Rachel Cosgrove may have decided early-on what she wanted her legacy to be, one of the greatest and perhaps most impressionable legacy she imprints on our industry is the importance of taking personal responsibility for creating greater change. She shows us how the power of focus and purpose can be the catalyst for life-changing breakthroughs. Let’s follow Rachel’s lead and commit to changing the way fitness is done.


BENCHMARKS of a successful training business


hat’s the measure of success you’ve defined for your training business? Is it how many people you’ve helped? The impact you’ve made? How many people say “You’ve changed my life?” All of those are noble and worthy pursuits. However, you can’t pay your bills with client love and ‘thank you notes’ alone. At some point, getting up at 4 a.m. to train clients in the dark and late nights at the gym that force you to miss evenings at home with friends and family (including children if and when you decide to raise a family) start adding up. Every coach reaches a point where they must ask themselves, “Is this really worth it?” I find that when someone reaches this point, they need to step back and do two things: 1. Define their “dream lifestyle” and get clear on personal goals in all areas of life 2. Clarify what is required in engineering their business model for success Success as a business owner generally boils down to two things: A) profitability and B) time freedom. If you don’t have either of those you really don’t have a successful “business” at all, you’ve got a crappy job with bad pay and terrible hours.

MEASURE OF SUCCESS #1: PROFIT A lot of people mistakenly judge success by how many clients they have or how much gross revenue they’ve brought in the door. Neither of those matter in the end. One of the Client Success Principles I teach is that “Margin = Profitability.” Ultimately it doesn’t matter how much you make, financial success is determined by how much

you keep. With profitability you can eliminate debt, build savings and re-invest in continued growth over time. Get clear on this and don’t allow yourself to settle for anything less.

MEASURE OF SUCCESS #2: FREEDOM Profits will fund many personal goals you may have in life and give you freedom. Freedom to do things you love to do like travel, spend time with those you love, enjoy time for sports and hobbies and purchase things that make you happy. Profits also allow you to fund the building of your team. Building a team that can run the business (all clients get trained, sales are made, money hits your bank account) whether you’re there or not allows you significantly more freedom. This might be something you don’t tackle for a couple years or more, but if you’re good at what you do, and continue growing, at some point you’re going to benefit from bringing on other coaches and an administrative assistant to help you with all the work in running a successful business. Take time out to evaluate your current levels of profitability and freedom right now. Then commit to improve. Gaining more of each will allow you to enjoy what you love and continue making a difference in many lives — including your own — for years to come.

NPE CEO Sean Greeley has an unrelenting passion for supporting entrepreneurs and growing businesses. Just don’t ask him to go slow and be prepared for ‘straight talk’ when you ask him a question. Learn more about NPE at

JUNE 2014 | WWW.FIT-PRO.COM | 17

Part 4 of 7

Opening and operating a successful studio: A 2014 PFP Special Series

By Rachel Cosgrove


Negotiating contracts, leases and agreements

Fourteen years ago we negotiated our lease for Results Fitness and have since been able to stay in the same location and expand on either side; taking over four locations in the same building. We worked closely with a business coach, Thomas Plummer, whose advice has influenced some of the tips I lay out for you below. Starting on the right foot with your landlord and building a trusting relationship can make or break the long-term sustainability of your company. You are entering into a partnership and will be working together, so it is crucial that you make a great first impression. Your two biggest expenses when opening your own place will be your rent initially and, as your team grows, your payroll. Finding a location and figuring out the rent-factor will determine a lot when it comes to figuring out your prices and business plan. Check out what is available in the area where you want to open and average rates on rent. You also want to figure out if renting, building or buying is the way to go. The answer to this will ultimately depend on how much

capital you can raise to get started. If you have a wealthy investor as a client, friend or family member, he or she may be very interested in investing in real estate with you to open your gym. Because you are looking for a small space, you will most likely start with renting. Minimum square footage for a personal training studio is 1,500 to 3,000 square feet. This may also be 1,500 square feet in an existing health club. Since this is a smaller space, renting is often a great choice because you can get in for lower total cost, and money for a project that size is easier to get from banks. Start driving around to look for available space. Check out the parking situation, look in the windows and check out the neighborhood. You’ll know when you find the right spot. Don’t attempt the process alone. Having a team you can trust will give you the confidence you need to make the best negotiation. Consider hiring a business coach to help you with your business plan and also get a commercial real estate agent because they know the cli-

mate of the area, what’s available and average lease rates. They can watch out for you; partner with one who represents you, not necessarily the guy listed on the sign for the place you want. In addition, you may want to have a lawyer look over the lease before signing. Once you have found the perfect spot, have your agent or yourself call the landlord and find out the rent they anticipate asking. The landlord should have an offering sheet. Be sure to run the numbers of what kind of rent makes sense for you. Think about how many members you’ll need to train to cover your rent in addition to the rest of your overhead. Figure out the rent that makes sense and fits in with your business plan.

NOW IT’S TIME TO NEGOTIATE… As you head into negotiation, here are three things to prepare: } By now you should have called more than just the one place and have an idea of what similar places are going for

Topics covered in our exclusive 7-part studio series: (If you missed parts 1-3, access our digital issues online: Part 1 (Jan-Feb)

Part 2 (March-April)

Part 3 (Spring Buyers’ Guide)

Seven keys to open and operate a successful fitness studio A glimpse into PFP’s exclusive 7-part series

Know your numbers: The real costs of opening a fitness studio and how to get financing Financials are often the Achilles heel of most business owners. Get clear on the real and hidden costs of a new studio, understand cash flow management and explore creative ways of financing your new business.

Equipment ideal for your studio Finding the right equipment for your studio is the fun part, but make sure your equipment suits your space and that you get the most value for your investment.

negotiations — people head into the negotiation with a list of what they need, not thinking through what they have to offer the other party. Let’s think this through…






in the area. You’re looking at the cost per square foot on average to compare. Pay attention to how long the space has been available and how many other places in the surrounding area are lying vacant. Obviously if it has been available for awhile you are in a great position to negotiate. Ask if you can see the space and if possible bring a contractor with you to give you an idea of what your build-out is going to cost you. Ideally, the space is one big open room and you don’t need a lot of build-out; but if you do, you want to know upfront what the cost is going to be before you start your negotiations.

At this point you must be organized with a business plan to give to the landlord. The business plan should lay out the vision of the company but above all, make sure your business plan includes “what’s in it for the landlord.” Never forget that everyone’s favorite radio station to tune into is WIIFM — What’s In It For Me? This is one of the biggest mistakes I see with lease

The landlord is looking to rent out his space. What does the landlord need? } A trustworthy, reliable, responsible person running a successful business to pay his rent on time every month. You must show that you have a business plan that is guaranteed to succeed. If you already have a clientele built up, with existing receivables in place, even better, you are an existing business looking for a location. She/he needs to know that you are not going to cause problems. }

The landlord will usually want a personal guarantee. Let’s think about this: The landlord is about to give you, a total stranger, keys to his “house” and trust you with it and you don’t even want to personally guarantee that you’ll be successful and pay rent? It is very common to be asked to personally guarantee, especially when this is your first business. Have your lawyer look over everything and be clear on what you are signing when you personally guarantee that you are going to pay rent.

Questions that you need to ask yourself prior to signing a lease: } Do I go with an industrial space or a store front? There are pros and cons of each. Industrial tends to be less expensive but there is also usually no foot traffic and signage can sometimes be an issue. Both of these can be a good option depending on what’s available. Weigh out the pros and cons of each. } Will this space work as your business grows? Is there room to expand? } Parking? } Accessibility? Will it be easy for your members to get to? Keep in mind most clients will come from a five-mile radius of your location. Does your target market live within a five-mile radius of this location?




Ask about Triple Net as well. Triple Net includes the combination of taxes, insurance and maintenance that the landlord will add on top of your rent. Most landlords will give you 1-3 months rent free in the beginning to get your business set up, open and running and making money before rent is due. Push for this in your negotiations. Most leases are a minimum of three to five years. Ask for three (3) five-year option periods, which give you the right to stay at the agreed rate set at the time you sign the initial lease. Typically, the landlord will have a rent increase of around 3% a year. Our landlord raises the rent with the “cost of living index” which is something you can look up. Depending on how much build-out is necessary, what the rent is and how many months free you are getting, you can also ask the landlord to help with buildout. All of these are negotiation tools.

It is a good idea to have a lawyer look over the lease to make sure everything is written in your best interest. This is a big commitment, so make sure you take your time and feel good about your decision when all is said and done. A number of personal trainers who we coach have their heart set on a space and start to go through the process of negotiating but do not get the space. They’re heartbroken and upset… but a few weeks later end up finding a better spot, with less rent. This has happened more than once. Don’t be disappointed if the first space you fall in love with doesn’t work out. Trust that you will find the location that is exactly where you are supposed to be in the end.

Rachel Cosgrove and her husband, Alwyn Cosgrove, are both business coaches for a number of personal trainers from around the world through their company, Results Fitness University (www.resultsfitnessuniversity. com) where their mission is to help personal trainers

The lease itself will have the base rent which is negotiable.

turn their passion into a successful, profitable business while changing the way fitness is done.

Part 5 (July-August)

Part 6 (September-October)

Part 7 (November-December)

Your business backbone: Understanding legal and insurance regulations Understanding the implications of legal and insurance regulations is a common blindspot for businesses; know the resources and experts to consult and ensure your business is protected.

Put your plan in motion: What an entrepreneur must know Having a plan and a vision is just the beginning, now you must take action. Embrace your inner-entrepreneur and take your studio business to new levels.

Your grand opening: Marketing, driving sales and leading a team to keep the doors open You’re ready to open your studio, now we’ll dive into the marketing and sales strategies as well as the leadership skills necessary to set up your studio to be a well-oiled and profitable operation.




ONLINE TRAINING WORK Case study: Fit Yummy Mummy By Holly Rigsby There’s a difference in opinion among fitness professionals as to whether online training is effective for getting clients results. Some personal trainers believe that you can’t help someone unless you perform an in-person assessment and train the client face-to-face every session. Others believe that you can deliver great results through a virtual experience, either by individually designing and delivering a program online or by providing programs for mass consumption in the form of information products. My career as a fitness professional has actually shifted from being an in-person trainer to working exclusively online, so I’ll share my perspective. Training in-person certainly has its advantages. You can perform assessments. You can assess exercise technique. You can quickly get to know your clients and help establish specific goals. You are also in a position to provide more personalized motivation and accountability. But in-person training has shifted significantly in the past decade and many, if not most fitness professionals have moved to more group-based training. These benefits have become far less prevalent than they might have been in a one-on-one or semi-private environment. When I started my online business, Fit Yummy Mummy, it was initially in the hopes of cutting down the number of hours I was spending in the gym by leveraging the coaching that I was having success with locally and sharing it online. At that point I had a full schedule. Between one-on-one

sessions, group sessions and weight management classes, I was at the gym so much that the school bus picked-up and dropped off my oldest son, Tyler, at the gym. I began with a simple e-book, The Fit Yummy Mummy Fat Loss System. I basically outlined the very training and nutrition program I provided to my local clientele, which was made up of primarily busy moms. The workouts were realistic, effective and fit into their busy lifestyle. I don’t believe that the programming was incredibly unique, it was simply what had been most effective for my in-person, busy mom clients and was similar to programs that many of the fitness professionals I respected most in the industry were delivering. The big difference in what I was providing was the level of support. I communicated and connected specifically with moms. As a busy mom myself, I was able to deliver fitness information and resources in a way that moms connected with and related to. Over time I recognized that delivering readyto-use programs was just one piece of the puzzle if I wanted those women I was serving online to get great results and keep them. I needed to be able to provide motivation, accountability, social support and simply something bigger to connect to in order to elicit that drive and desire to achieve a higher level of results. That’s when I created my private membership community, ClubFYM. This online community allowed me to connect more deeply with the women I was coaching and provide the type of support they needed outside of the actual training program or education that was provided in the Fit Yummy Mummy product. The addition of ClubFYM not only filled a huge void, but it also allowed me to discover dozens of additional ways that I could support the women I

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was coaching in order to better serve their needs and at the same time “WOW” them. Very much like offline training businesses, my ladies really embraced the concept of “transformation challenges” where they would have more urgency to get results and a deadline that motivated them to stay compliant to the program. I was quick to realize that my ladies wanted follow-along workout videos that showed what to do, how to do it correctly, how to modify along with the experience of working out together, with cues and motivational prompts. Having more variety in workout options was a big request and this led me to add the Workout of the Month program to ClubFYM. I now design, film and share a new training program each and every month. Specific requests also led to the creation of several programs that were oriented toward specific goals and needs, such as Intervals for Busy Moms and The Trouble Spot Solution. Such changes have allowed me to better serve the needs of the ladies who come to Fit Yummy Mummy and enhance their overall experience. In the past seven years more than 20,000 women have enrolled in one of the Fit Yummy Mummy programs and I can confidently say that online training works as long as the clients do. While I don’t believe the online training experience – at least the way that I deliver it – is comparable to one-on-one or semi-private training, I do feel that it’s far superior to simply joining a health club, left to figure it out on your own and, in many ways, is similar to enrolling in a boot camp or group training program. Let me share the shortcomings of online training that I’ve personally experienced. The obvious one is the difficulty in performing a personalized



assessment. Some fitness professionals that deliver individualized programming online have clients video a self-directed movement screen and send it to them for feedback. The most I have provided is a simple self-directed screen and provide guidelines based on their results. Not being able to supervise the screen or assessment and individualize a program is clearly a limitation. The other shortcoming is the limited opportunity to facilitate client compliance depending on the level of engagement the client chooses and the number of people served. I have found that many women are super excited to begin, but unless they take the initial steps of setting up a profile online, I am unable to welcome, coach and support members until such steps are taken. While such shortcomings are important to note, there have been some amazing benefits to online training. The first being the sheer number of ladies I can reach and help. I am no longer limited by time slots in an appointment book nor limited by geography. Sure, there are some professionals that are destinations for clients to the extent that the clients will actually move to train for a period of time, but those are few and far between. For the rest of us, the people we serve are limited by geography if we train in-person. The second benefit is that the financial status of the client is much less of a factor when compared to the investment needed for offline training. I can deliver an online program that is financially feasible for a single mom who is just making ends meet, while that likely wouldn’t make business sense if I ran an offline training business. The third benefit is that I’ve been able to narrow who I serve to the specific niche of busy moms who want to be the best version of them-

selves. Most offline businesses don’t get the opportunity to narrow their focus to this degree for a variety of reasons. Because I am able to do this I have come to deeply enjoy coaching and I have the flexibility to refine what I deliver, keeping it fresh and fun. Finally, being online has allowed me to build a career that gives me more balance in my life. I have no doubt that if I had stayed in the gym doing what I was doing, I would have eventually burned out and been forced to find something else that afforded me more time with my family. Then the passion I had to help moms would have been squashed! Does online training work? I have hundreds and hundreds of testimonials that say it absolutely does… to the extent of sharing such an experience has been life-changing. Sure, there are limitations, but if you think about it, there are limitations with any training format. This approach isn’t perfect, but it’s better than many of the alternatives and certainly better than working out with no direction or not working out at all. In fact, for many of the women I serve, it’s the only option that actually fits for them.

Holly Rigsby is a busy mom fat loss expert and author of the 16week fat loss system designed exclusively for busy moms, helping moms burn the baby fat with 15 minutes workouts that can be performed at home. For more information about Holly or the fat loss programs and support she has to offer visit, or

THE MESSAGE Website: | Facebook: | Twitter: | Instagram: | Pinterest: | Youtube: | Linkedin:

Ben Greenfield is a respected coach, prolific author (including his most recent published book, Beyond Training), sought-after speaker, ex-bodybuilder and Ironman triathlete who has gained an avid, loyal following. See how he has become a trusted source and how he shares his message... My ideal client understands that slaving away in a gym is an unnecessary evil if you instead hack your environment to live ancestrally, eat real food, engage in low-level physical activity throughout the day, and focus heavily on deep sleep, de-stressing your body, living clean, making friends, giving generously and loving life. My message is you can look, feel and perform like the amazing human machine you were meant to be if you optimize your movement patterns, natural fat-burning capabilities, recovery capacity, digestion, brain function, sleep and hormone balance — and it’s easier to do than you might think. If I had only one way to share my message it would be audio. There’s a reason I have been podcasting twice a week for five years and never missed a single week: it is because the audio medium places you as a trusted voice in the ears of people who can listen while they’re working out, cleaning the house or driving the car. Plus, it is more meaningful than text, and requires far less hair and makeup than video. Successful messaging is cemented in truth, in research and in passion. Every day I read 40 to 50 articles jam-packed with the latest cutting-edge research in exercise, nutrition and health science, then figure out how to communicate that information to my audience in an easy-to-understand way that changes their lives. The only thing that gets me out of bed every morning to do that is because I love it, I live it and I care deeply about my generation and the generations to come after. People follow me because I am first and foremost a teacher and a connector. I listen to what keeps people awake at night, I listen to their pain points, I listen to their biggest problems and then I stubbornly and persistently hunt down solutions, teach people those solutions, and then connect them with the best person or method to apply the solution. I live to change lives. It’s my calling, it’s my passion, it fulfills me and it’s a heck of a lot better than handing someone a bottle of pharmaceutical pills and then walking away.


By Justin Tamsett

LIKE A BOXER, STING LIKE A BEE 5 checklists to get the best edge in your social media strategy



n 2014, Facebook will celebrate its 10th birthday. 100 hours of YouTube videos are uploaded every minute and over 6 billion hours of video is watched per month. Twitter continues to reach beyond the realm of celebrities as a tool to converse with customers. LinkedIn adds to the professional mix. All while Instagram, Pinterest and Snapchat have been added to the main platforms that consumers are using. There are so many options for fitness professionals to use that it could be confusing. In reality, it is very easy. Simply use this filter question: “Which social media platforms are my clients and potential clients using?” For example, if the demographic of your fitness business are people over 50, it would be unlikely that they would be on Twitter, Instagram or Snapchat. Therefore, why waste your time being on there for business? Once you understand your demographic and decide which platforms are ideal for the focus of your business, understand that marketers are on social media to sell stuff; consumers are there for value, not to buy stuff. The goal is to have your fans interact with your content. An interaction is defined as liking, sharing or commenting. Regardless of the platform, if your fans like, share or comment it spreads your content. The more your content is spread the more people see it, the better

for your brand and for your business. Every interaction a user has with Facebook is called an “Edge.” The more engagement a user has with your single piece of content, the stronger Edge Rank for that piece of content. This means Facebook believes that user’s interest will be in similar content and it filters their news stream accordingly. If you comment or like a friend’s photo often but ignore the same friend’s plain text status update, this means you will not see their plain text updates in your newsfeed.

Interactions include: } Status updates } Photo uploads } Liking } Sharing } Commenting Having people buy from you or click through your link is not enough — currently. You need people to engage with your content. Content that entertains sees engagement; engagement tells the social media platform (and the rest of the world) that your fans care about your business.

Here is a sample strategy you could explore on Facebook to increase engagement and your Edge Rank: 1. Question: “What is your favorite leg exercise?” Fans will answer or engage, help-

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There is no formula for cool content. Just better understand your fan base and meet their needs of social media.

Here is a checklist for you to ask yourself about your content: } Is your text provocative? Entertaining? Surprising? Too long? } Is your photo striking? High quality? } Is your logo visible? } Is your call to action too early in the strategy? } Is your content interesting in any way, to anyone? } Are you asking too much of the person consuming the content? As Vaynerchuk says in his book, ignoring your Facebook analytics is the equivalent of stepping into the ring without having watched a video of the opponent you are about to fight. You need to be looking at the numbers behind your content.

ing your Edge Rank. 2. Video: Post a 15-second video of how to do a leg exercise. Based on step 1 your Edge Rank will be higher, so you should show up in your fans newsfeed. 3. Video: Post a 15-second testimonial from a member. 4. Question: “What body part do you lack motivation to train?” Fans will answer or engage, helping your Edge Rank. 5. Ask: For referrals, purchase personal training or some other call to action in the business.

The Strategy: Post like a boxer Gary Vaynerchuck is regarded as a world leader in social media and wrote an awesome book called Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook. In his book he explains that posting on social media is a science, just like boxing. If a boxer only throws right hooks, his opponent knows what’s coming and simply avoids the punch. If, however, the boxer only throw jabs he can work his opponent around the ring until the boxer feels comfortable with the jabs and when he throws the right hook it connects for impact.



Vaynerchuck’s strategy is simple: give, give, give, give and ask. And when we give, we see our users engage, which the platforms love. Especially Facebook, which means your post will show up in more newsfeeds of your clients. On Facebook especially, the definition of great content is not the content that makes the most sales. It is the content the people most want to share with others!

Here are some tips for creating better content: } Your content must make people “feel.” You can do this by making them laugh, ponder, play a game, feel appreciated, escape or something else they can feel. } Use the correct language, culture and style for Facebook updates. Do not get confused between the multiple social media platforms’ unique language. } Your content must vary daily. } Your content must consistently answer the question “Who are we?” Your story, personality and brand must be constant.

Finally, here are your top 5 to do’s for social media: 1. Understand and create a presence in Google Plus. 2. Produce content that engage your followers. 3. Only be on platforms that your current and prospective clients are on. 4. Analyze the numbers behind your platform to see what works and what doesn’t. 5. Give, give, give, and then ask. Understand that consumers are not on social media to be marketed or sold to. So give great content. Remember, there is no individual one-, threeor six-month campaign in social media; there is ONLY the 365-day campaign during which you produce new daily content for your fans to like, share and comment.

Justin Tamsett is the managing director of Active Management and former club owner of Active Health Club & Active Fitness Centre. He’s a highly sought after speaker, sharing practical ideas that can be implemented immediately. He has presented in 15 countries and has 100s of clubs who are members of Active Management and receive monthly education to improve their businesses.

EDUCATION TRENDS Michael R. Mantell |

Health coaching certifications

Dr. Michael Mantell, senior Fitness Consultant for Behavioral Sciences for the American Council on Exercise and a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of the International Council on Active Aging, shares a few insights on the trends in health coaching opportunities for fitness professionals to explore.


How can fitness professionals take advantage of the trend in health coaching education and certifications to help grow their business or career? Health coaching is a doorway into a new and exciting way to reframe the efforts of fitness professionals who have the noble purpose of promoting optimal health and wellness, in collaborative teams with other health professionals, and in settings such as hospitals, schools, doctor’s offices, corporate wellness programs, community centers and, of course, health clubs. The first step is joining the growing ranks of those who earn a top-rated health coach certification from a recognized health and fitness organization. Then, often with the help of a fitness-health focused business coach, newly minted health coaches can learn the art and science of connecting with other health professionals; craft an array of service offerings that focus on prevention, not just management of preventable diseases; consider specializing in one specific preventable illness such as diabetes, stress or obesity; and identify opportunities for professional speaking and social media marketing.


What type of fitness professional do you think would most be interested in pursuing this certification/ continuing education? Fitness professionals who are particularly passionate about extending their value to clients, who are memorable motivators, exemplary communicators, lead by their own example and have an unrelenting commitment to promoting optimal health throughout the wellness spectrum beyond exercise and who enjoy the idea of advancing their own professional standing in the larger health community, will find the health coach certification most attractive. Of course, those interested in extending their income stream committed to a larger purpose, with a greater sense of responsibility, who value collaboration, and enjoy greater impact and influence in the marketplace, will find the health coach certification very compelling.


What questions might you suggest that a fitness professional ask themselves to see if pursuing this trend is right for them? “What is my purpose in pursuing this advanced certification and standing in the fitness-health field? Do I understand the difference between life, health and executive coaches? Do I want to learn more about goal setting, motivation, cognitive behavior coaching, positive psychology, stages of change, and how to integrate optimizing health into my exercise knowledge base and practice? Am I ready to give this career transition the time and focus it needs?”


Are there any resources you might recommend that will help give more insight on this trend?


Click here to read a recent article from WebMD on the future of fitness and health coaching ACE Health Coach information (currently the only certification with NCCA certification)


Michael R. Mantell earned his Ph.D. at the University of Pennsylvania and his M.S. at Hahnemann Medical College. He is the Senior Fitness Consultant for Behavioral Sciences for the American Council on Exercise, a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of the International Council on Active Aging, the Chief Behavior Science consultant to the Premier Fitness Camp at Omni La Costa, a best-selling author, an international behavior science fitness presenter and keynote speaker, an advisor to numerous fitness-health organizations and is featured in many media broadcasts and fitness publications.

Certification and continuing education organizations American Council on Exercise (ACE)

Functional Aging Fitness Specialist

Savvier Fitness


California University of Pennsylvania

National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA)

SCW Fitness Education

NEW ON THE MARKET The latest trends in fitness equipment

PRECOR EXPERIENCE SERIES Precor recently introduced new Experience Series treadmills for fitness operators. The next-generation equipment meets commercial customer needs through long-term reliability and operational efficiency, while also delivering a highly personalized, maximum-comfort experience for exercisers. The Experience Series redesign was based on valuable insights from an extensive Precor study of its three primary stakeholders: commercial customers (fitness centers and spas), exercisers and service technicians.

SPRI STRANDS Elastic, stretch-nylon strands provide gentle, comfortable muscle lengthening and conditioning. Use the shorter strands for limited-range upper and lower body isolation exercises, and longer strands for full-body larger range of motion moves. Perfect for active-assistive and contract-relax stretching, as well as controlled range resistance exercise. Elastic loops fit snug and secure around feet and hands. Continuous loop design provides quick range of motion and resistance level modification. SPRI Strands are available in two length and two resistance options.



Lindsay's Review: iChoice Walk A30

Portable health and fitness technology has taken the market by storm, offering individuals valuable insight into their activity levels, sleep quality and nutrition intake. iChoice has released the Walk A30 as a completely comprehensive lifestyle device. With the capability to sync directly to their mobile app, this chic and easy-to-wear technology motivates users to understand their daily lifestyle habits and achieve daily goals of healthy activity and sleep. The Walk A30 is a perfect addition for any individual, whether the goal is to jump start a healthy lifestyle or to increase performance.



PostureScreen documents postural deviations along with follow-up comparisons as well as functional movement analysis using video capture. Corrective exercises can be prescribed and securely sent to a client via PDF reports and secure emails. With a WebExercises Professional account, you can access more than 3,000 exercises and add custom exercises with custom text and videos. LeanScreen (available within PostureScreen as well as standalone application) analyzes body fat percentage, waist-to-hip ratio, BMI and BMR using photographs.

The Schwinn AD6 Airdyne Bike is a commercial grade bike that is perfect for any club or school. The frictionless fan is perfect for interval training while its display shows time, distance, RPM, calories, power, pulse and has a RevMeter gauge. Each bike has an integrated bottle holder, foot straps on the pedals for greater control, wheels for easy transport and is Polar compatible. Check out Perform Better’s 2014 catalog for more information. 800.556.7464

EVENTS CALENDAR June 2014 - October 2014

JUNE 2014 10 in ONE Level One Platform Training June 22 | Chicago, IL June 22 | Libertyville, IL

JULY 2014 NSCA 2014 National Conference July 9-12 | Las Vegas

Atlanta MANIA July 11-13 | Atlanta, GA

10 in ONE Level One Platform Training July 20 | Libertyville, IL

AUGUST 2014 IDEA World Fitness Convention August 13-17, 2014 | Anaheim, CA

Dallas MANIA August 22-24 | Dallas, TX

ECA World Fitness THRIVE 2014 August 22-24 | Delray, FL

Join our Channel

10 in ONE Level One Platform Training August 31 | Chicago, IL

OCTOBER 2014 NSCA Personal Trainers Conference October 3-4 | Washington, DC

MEGA Training 2014 October 10-11 | Orlando, FL

Midwest MANIA October 10-11 | Rosemont, IL

Club Industry Show October 22-24 | Chicago, IL

For a complete listing, see our online Events Calendar at

pfpmedia JUNE 2014 | WWW.FIT-PRO.COM | 29

BE BETTER Phil Kaplan |

Passion and prosperity: the perfect pair for a promising career Exactly one week ago I had a heart-to-heart conversation with a man 10 years my senior who has earned millions in real estate. Tate owns nursing homes, but doesn’t know the names of any of the employees. He’s evicted tenants from homes he initially helped them to hold onto when they couldn’t meet their mortgage demands. He’s raised rents at lease term to drive existing tenants out and make way for bigger players. He’s bought land for far less than it was worth from people in dire straits needing immediate money. It may surprise you, but Tate is a very nice guy. He’s not the dastardly landlord who twirls his moustache as he robs people blind. He’s a business man. In fact, whenever he’s confronted with the “How could you?” question that seeks to tap into heart and conscience he counters with two words: “That’s business.” It’s almost as if he splits himself down the middle. There’s the nice guy who cares for his family and friends with love and generosity, somehow intrinsically linked with a cutthroat moneymaker possessing very little conscience. We may think of the dichotomy as a battle between “good” and “evil,” but his perspective is far simpler than that. It’s nothing more than a flicking of the switch between “personal life” and “business.” Far be it from me to judge anyone else’s moral compass, but I’ll admit, as you, I don’t have that switch. I have boundaries, I have guidelines, but I don’t have a different set of rules for how I treat clients and how I treat loved ones. There’s a great deal of overlap. The heart-to-heart was a debate about whether caring about people you don’t know makes you weak. Tate insists it does. I insist, it is far and away my greatest strength. I’m writing this for personal trainers, so I know which side you’ll land on. You care about people. Deeply. You want to help people at the highest levels, and if we’re going to strip away the mask, you’ll have to admit, at times that has hurt you. At times you worked for far less than you deserved. You gave far more than you received. You let dreams escape or die so as not to violate what you perceived to be your ethical code. You’ve even watched others prosper with far less sweat, commitment and determination than you’ve given to your chosen path. There have been times you’ve questioned your heart and tried to get your brain to pull you out of the mud and into a realm where prosperity abounds. I get that. I so get that. But I also get this: While my heart is the heart of a personal trainer, I have to eat. I need a home. I want a nice home. I have a family. I enjoy taking my daughter to New York every summer, on an adventure every winter and surprising her with gifts or trips. I date. I entertain. I play. So, if I am to care about people, and still



find fulfillment, I have to find a harmonious blend between giving and receiving, between helping and finding just reward; it is that precise recognition that helped me to build a career that serves me with pride, appreciation and all the juice life has to offer. Tate and I agreed — we are of different breeds. His way is not right for me, my way would be crippling to him. If we are each to find success, we have to carve out the path that suits us as individuals. Is there a way to do what he does and still care deeply about people? My belief system says yes, but it’s outside the realm of what I choose to pursue. Can you care deeply about people and benefit as you deserve finding true fulfillment and career longevity? That one I can answer with authority: yes. Personal trainers often make decisions based on morals, ethics and comfort level, and they often harbor a belief that there’s something inherently wrong with doing something for the money. They usually land in a quadrant of high ethics but low profit, failing to realize there’s another quadrant where passion, morals, integrity and profit all come together harmoniously; and with that new realization, business takes on an entirely new meaning. You deserve to prosper, and there’s no greater opportunity for prosperity to meet passion than the one that awaits you as a masterful health professional in the 21st century. Yes, I used the word “health” in place of “fitness.” It’s time to look through a broader scope, to recognize that we, as health professionals, can serve as the missing link between health and dis-ease. With a slight enhancement in skill set, we can align with medical professionals and become the catalyst that moves those afflicted with chronic disease back toward their personal bests. The opportunity to turn your career into a true profession with longevity and security is here… now. You deserve to prosper in your career as a personal trainer, and I’m not suggesting it’s as simple as the replacement of the word “fitness.” You need to think greater than the industry dictates. You need to think in terms of building, not just serving. You have to think beyond helping others and establish means for prospering by bettering the lives of people you touch. Commit to a new level of excellence, seek out educational opportunities that foster career growth, and recognize that your personal training entity is more than a title on a business card. Your personal training operation is a business, and that business should serve as the source of your prosperity. With mindset shifts and actions that follow, there are no limits to how far reaching the rewards of your career can stretch. There is no greater pair of attributes you can build your career upon than passion and prosperity, and if you truly seek extraordinary reward, you should relentlessly pursue both.

Phil Kaplan will be launching a new distance learning program aimed at teaching trainers to grow without limit. Visit or send an email to inquiring about his ETC program.

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