ONE DAY I GOT SICK, and I didn't get paid.
I wanted to see the World, but I knew that if I did, I wouldn't have a job when I got back.
Soon after turning 26 I decided, much to my surprise, that babies weren't weird and gross and that maybe one day I'd like to have a few. If I did want a family at some point, I knew that something would have to drastically change.
It became apparent that I had to figure out how to build a business in the fitness industry that works for me even when I'm not around and that I control.
Conventional personal training doesn't lend itself well to a balanced life. When I was in my early twenties I wanted to train 10-14 clients a day. I made a lot of money -- much more than my friends at the time -- but the hours were arduous.
By 24, I'd reached my income ceiling.
- I was charging $97/hr and booked 40hrs/wk. If a client cancelled I'd have another on call with as little as 45 minutes notice.
- I received a small salary as the senior trainer in charge of the hiring, training, and development of the rest of the team.
- I received commissions for referring new trainers to the club in addition to referring my overload of clientele to other trainers.
Things were good for a while, but then I got that itch.
I wanted to see the World and I desired to meet a girl (smart, kind, and with legs that scream, "I squat, bro"). With my schedule that just wasn't going to happen.
Something needed to change. I love the fitness industry and I loved my clients but conventional wouldn't work. Conventional training in a gym doesn't work.
Early Mornings, Late Nights, and a Lack of Control
You must avoid spending your life in a reactive state.
Reacting to things like your clients schedules, your gym's rules, and the economy.
It might seem like you're busy and I get it, there are only so many hours in the day, right?
Well the CEO of a Fortune 500 company has the same number of hours in a day as you. The difference is that he or she has better systems for making the most out of those hours. With these systems the business works for the CEO, not the opposite.
Most good trainers hit a wall. You can't possibly work anymore. Look, I get it; I've been there.
If you want to work smarter, not harder, in fewer hours, while still providing your clients with an exceptional service there used to be 2 or 3 potential solutions:
1. You Could Start Your Own Gym.
The dream right? For some, this is a good option. However starting a club is difficult. You've no idea the hidden fees. There's a reason why your gym might appear stingy or has protocols in place that you don't necessarily agree with. I'm not saying that you can't do it better. But to be a businessperson is a completely different skill-set than being a trainer.
2. You Could Rise Within the Ranks of Your Club Into Management.
The Peter Principle states that, "in a hierarchy every employee tends to rise to their level of incompetence." It goes on to state that, "employees only stop being promoted once they can no longer perform effectively." 1
Similar to starting a gym, becoming a manager sounds good at first (the power, the ego-drive, etc.) but approach the position with caution. Managing other people is an incredibly difficult job and an entirely different skill set than training and managing a client load.
3. Multi-Level Marketing or Similar.
I'll take a passage out of an upcoming book here:
"The idea is attractive but very few are actually successful. You're often forced to purchase the product yourself and it can be costly. Most people don't have the requisite hustle, network, or marketing acumen to make a legitimate go of it. Not only that, the supplements are almost always poor-quality.
Read the ingredients carefully and look for independent third-party studies. Even if the supplement is of good quality, I've found that multi-level marketing companies sell supplements that are overpriced. It makes sense, and in fact providing such an attractive commission structure requires it. Finally, you'll feel pressure to involve your close family and friends and this is not a position that I'd want my worst enemy to be in." - From The Personal Trainer Pocketbook (Due out mid 2015)
In order to be successful and live a long, prosperous life as a trainer, you must become proactive, and in order to do that, you must innovate. You need a new model.
The New Model i.e. The Best Solution That I've Found:
Imagine if there was a solution to every problem that is stopping you from turning your job into a prosperous and fulfilling career with ample freedom.
Imagine being in complete control of your schedule, to be able to charge less, make more, and offer just as good (or an even better) service.
Well it exists. But before I discuss it, I want to say something.
I'm not married to any idea. I'm about to discuss why online training or meshed online / in-person training is the best solution. When done right, it's the solution that you might be looking for.
I came into this search for a solution with an open mind looking for whatever worked best and online training hit all-important points. What followed was 2.5 years of developing, testing, tweaking, and more testing of the best systems for delivering an exceptional online training service.
Imagine creating a reliable and consistent source of income -- one that you can depend on month-to-month. Or, if you're a gym owner, imagine being able to attract and keep trainers by offering something different in addition to adding another reliable monthly income stream to your bottom line.
Online training is still relatively new and, like all new things that have tremendous potential, some have already jumped on the bandwagon without much thought.
Remember that famous Abraham Lincoln quote:
"If I had eight hours to cut down a tree I'd spend six sharpening my axe."
At every stage I've taken in feedback and improved upon the system. You are the benefactor.
But if you don't try then how is tomorrow going to be any different than today.