Tag Archives: personal

What Clients Really Want From PT

Your goal as a Personal Trainer or fitness professional is to change someones life.

Chances are you’ve got your own ideas of how is best to accomplish this, and you’re probably right.

There’s only one problem them, your clients (and potential ones) don’t see it that way.

As such it can lead to many a frustration, breakdown in communication, stagnation of change and eventually contract/agreement termination.

This is roughly what most clients want based on their initial knowledge base of PT/exercise:

  • Guidance that’s easy to follow
  • To be told what they thought is correct
  • Dramatic physical/health change without dramatic lifestyle change
  • Feeling better in themselves (usually linked to a memory of a time in their youth when they were slimmer, fitter, could eat/drink anything and not have to make any effort to stay ‘in shape’)
  • Paying once, maybe twice and getting all the results they desire

The truth is that most average people don’t really understand fitness or health.

Many think they’re the same thing, and they’re not as you know people can be very healthy (from a blood/hormonal/etc test standpoint) while not being very fit, and vice versa.

This is where in your initial consultation you want to explore what their expectation is.

How does it differ from the reality you know to be most probable?

In my experience I’ve found the dissonance to be quite large, and I’ve made the mistake of correcting people in this regard which didn’t do me any favours.

Sadly you’re going to need to blend a little of telling people what they expect/want to hear, while setting up sign posts for the future that will enable them to become truly educated and make the changes that will benefit their life for the long run.

These three questions have helped me over the years:

  1. Think of ‘one thing’ you MUST achieve from this training
  2. Why is that ‘one thing’ beneficial to you?
  3. How will it make you feel and improve your life?

This can help you create an anchor point to refer back to when instilling habit/lifestyle changes.

Now this isn’t to say their one thing might not change as they gain a deeper understanding of what truly matters to them, however you need a metaphorical ‘North Star’ to guide you.

Understanding that the average person merely wants to feel less shit than they currently do is key.

You see people rarely seek change to become a better version of themselves, despite what endless social media feeds say.

They seek change because they’ve reached a point where they feel terrible enough to do something about it.

People don’t move towards pleasure, they move away from pain.

Go and read back over what has preceded this with this perspective.

You’ll start to see that it all links to the emotional driver behind the wheel.

So in essence what a client really wants from PT is this – To be heard/understood & not feel alone.

As an average person (whatever that means) it’s pretty terrifying to approach a PT/fitness professional you know. They have an inherent fear of being judged, of not being good enough and as such will immediately put themselves down, to convince themselves it’s a mistake to change and that they don’t deserve to feel better.

Try to remember a time where you felt like this.

In fact think of what hold you back from asking for help from a professional above your current level.

Make a list of what you’d want from them.
What you’d expect/want/need to hear.
How they would make you feel.
Why you would Hire them over someone else (what would be the deciding factor).

This can help because a lot of PT’s forget to see things from the clients perspective.

Go back over the above again, and feel free to fire across any questions you may have.


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Pretty Numbers

7 sets of 7.
Is there anything magic about it?
It is however something that peoples minds tends to like and gravitate towards.
Like 10×10, 5×5, 3×3 and so on.
Something about seeing them written down is please.
While you can choose almost any type of sets/reps you like to hit specific rep goals/targets, the uniform approach or even a sequential one often take prescience.
Essentially people dislike randomness.
It looks messy you see.
Take this example below, 8 sets of random reps:
A lot won’t like that because they don’t feel it makes any sense, yet it adds up to 49 reps, the same as 7×7.
You’d find the variance in loading as well would help yield more potential overload due to the rep/set variability, alas the 7×7 would win because it is more visually satiating.
Like finishing a set of rep 6,8,10 or any other even number.
Don’t get fooled by sequence.
Simply because something seems to make sense on paper that doesn’t mean it’s actually the most effective way to do something.
Same goes for loading, we shall use the rather pretty 5×5
Many would love this: 5x5x100kg
And hate this 5x 116kg, 97kg, 112kg, 109kg, 121kg
Yet the total loading would be more, and the variable load would provide quite the interesting stimulus each set.
Take a look at how you or perhaps your peers/heroes program, does it all look appealing?
Is that what draws you to that specific type of training?
It’s worth investigating because once you can become comfortable with random and perhaps messy looking programming, you’ll be leads and bounds ahead of the rest.

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Which Path to Take

Life has many worthy goals.
An axiom that has been personally long held is this:
Aim to achieve Mastery not Mediocrity.
While easy one paper, the ket problem is as follows – you can’t master everything.
At least not all at once.
This is where many perusal trainers struggle.
Oh yes, this is a post for PT’s, although the wisdom can also transfer to all life and anyone who takes the time to read my waffle.
Knowing the above comes from making the mistake of trying to master multiple things at once.
It failed, and also succeeded, yet knowing why escaped me.
Until it didn’t.
The reason for failure in multifaceted learning (be that training or academia related) was because of this simple reason – the subjects/goals were TOO DIFFERENT.
As such the successes were on the opposite side of that coin – the subjects/goals were THE SAME YET DIFFERENT.
Essentially mastering one quality and along with say 4-5 others didn’t happen because of some inhuman mastery of the elements, it came from those things being all relatively similar in their requirements.
This means that improving one to a large degree also improved the others.
For gamer nerds think along the lines of a stat boots that bring up one specific area by 8 points, and ones directly linked to/affected by it by 2 points.
Take a look at multi-sport athletes.
While all the events make indeed have very different fine motor-skills to learn, the base level of physical needs for each of them is very similar, if not the same.
This is what allows mastery of multiple things.
You see you’re mastering ONE THING and because of that any off shoots that are still close enough to the central focus will also be great strings to add to your bow.
The issue for people comes in when trying to master things that are diametrically opposed.
Example: Achieve –
Elite Level Power Lifter Total of 2600lbs
Run a Marathon in Sub 2 Hours
While not really impossible to achieve at separate times in life, it’s highly improbably.
Also, to achieve both simultaneously would require a truly genetic anomaly.
So dear trainers the take home message is this:
Make it narrow, focused and master it fully.
You’ll have plenty of things close enough to add in that won’t detract, and you’d do well to remember this from a business standpoint as well.
All you business ideas want to link together.
If you wish to have something completely different then you may need someone else to implement that side of your business as it will usually be too far outside of your realm of mastery to do well.
Please keep the above in mind.
For not doing so will have you be the same are most PT’s out there – mediocre.
After all, it’s better to be known for being the best at one thing that is for being terrible at many things.

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What’s your business soundbite?

Incase you’re not sure what one is, generally they come from a short extract from a recorded interview or speech, chosen for its succinctness or concision.
Having one of these for your fitness business is good.
You’ve potentially seen that in the past I’ve popped up posts on being able to describe your business in under a minute, or less than 10 seconds and perhaps in 10 words of less.
The evolution and shortening came from this classic:
“It is vain to do with more what can be done with less.” -William of Occam.
In the modern world yo’ve got anywhere from 5-10 seconds to grab peoples attention, given the endless flow of adverts people have to skip through you’ll need to make sure yours is one they remember.
Delving into psychology you’ll be able to find out what colours, key words or images are needed to grab the attention of your desired audience.
Just remember though that such a message wont’ appeal to everyone.
Say your business in fitness is surrounding strength & health, here might be some examples of a sound bite:
“Getting you strong so that you can live long.”
“Strong as an Ox, Healthy as a Horse & Tough like a Turtle”
“Making your strong enough so that you don’t die from a minor fall at 50.”
You get the idea.
No fuss, no beating around the bush, just a direct version of your overall message shared so that people know exactly what you’re about.
It’s also fair to say that if you fail to describe exactly what you do in a very short amount of words/time, then you might be a little unsure of what that exactly is, or that you’re trying too hard to make your business too inclusive and appealing to everyone on an individual level.
Talking of being inclusive, say that is your thing, you want everyone to be involved or feel that they have a place in what you do, then this might be a good little soundbite.
“A fitness community where no one gets left behind.”
Or simply
“No one gets left behind.”
To wrap things up there is one more consideration for you.
Stay away from making your soundbite, or your short message all about YOU. Instead make it about how the people you’re trying to reach and how THEY will fit in, write it in such a way that they can imagine themselves as a part of that tribe.
It’s the biggest mistake seen in peoples messages.
They’re always about them, instead of being about what benefit they will bring to other people.
Remember the above and apply it well, also feel free to pop a comment below if you get stuck writing yours.

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Put aside procrastination, let the dice decide.

Good Morning Y’all,

While tidying up yesterday I knocked over a domino set and a pair of dice fell out, once again igniting the fire for training ideas for people.

Given how so many always want to be doing different things, or something that is fun, whatever that is these days, I felt rolling this into your mind for consideration would be useful.

All you need is a pair of dice, well, one will do yo’d just roll it more.

There will be a few options of how the can work.


Option 1 – 🎲 – Time

You roll the pair to see how long your training session is.

It might be 2min or 12min, enjoy the randomness.

Choose two movements/lifts/exercises, this will make your total training time 4-24min (with 3min either side for WU/CD).

Option 2 – 🎲 – Time & Sets

Roll once for the time of your session, roll again for how many sets of that time you will be doing.

2-12min for either 2 or 12 sets of work/effort (4-72min of work potential).

As above choose 2 movements, etc. The WU/CD will be taken from the sets you’ve rolled.

Option 3 – 🎲 – Reps & Sets

Similar to option two, first role is your reps (2-12) and the second if your sets for the day (2-12).

Like the previous suggestions, 2 movements works well.


This style of training is quite varied, and that is one of the main reasons a lot of people will be too scared of doing it.

The fatigue chasers will love the idea of 72min of work, yet balk at 2min because it’d be pointless to them, yet if that is how the dice decide to fall then accept it and stop being an entitled child screaming for more.

Being someone who likes training and often has trained for the sake of it, I can understand wanting to do more, to do too much and it just does’t serve a purpose, not really.

If you’re someone that doesn’t like to follow a play/structure/routine (although you unknowingly & probably do based on your biases), then the dice will be very refreshing.

You can roll them everyday.

Two seconds…. I will do it now.

Here is option 2 just done off the cuff:

W/U = Mobility Flow x 3-5min
C/D = Targeted Stretches (needs based) x3-5min

Day 1 – 8min x 6sets – A1 Carry to Squat, B1 Fast & Loose
Day 2 – 11min x 10sets – A1 Single Arm Kettlebell Swings
Day 3 – 10min x5sets – A1 Movement Flow, B1 Sprints
Day 4 – 7min x 7sets – A1 Loaded Carry (3 different weights)
Day 5 – 8min x 2sets – A1 Long Cycle, B1 Mobility Flow
Day 6 – 3min x 7sets – A1 Sprint Interval, B1 Fast & Loose
Day 7 – 9min x 5sets – A1 Stretch

As you can see all decent lengths of session.

(Please be aware to achieve progressive overload you’ll need to apply waviness of loading)

So don’t panic, you can still chase fatigue if that’s what makes you happy.

Do try to think of training in this light though:

More isn’t better, better is better.

^ Focus on quality first and the quantity will take care of itself.


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Book Recommendation

You know I’m a fan of minimalistic training.

Why do more when it can be done with less?

A great book that is worth reading not only for it’s pearls of wisdom training wise, yet also it’s science is ‘The Naked Warrior’ by Pavel Tsatsouline.

It’s a great investment, and the best part is you’ll be able to understand and appreciate ow to use just your bodyweight.


You’ll find the link below –

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Have you ever said you don’t have the spare cash to invest in your health?
I’m calling bullshit.
Yep, bull shit.
What you might mean to say is that it’s not really a worthy investment or a priority for you.
Guess what, that’s cool you know, you don’t need to put aside money each month for a membership to a fitness establishment, training, or a sports club.
Honesty that’s entirely your choice not to care.
Just don’t give me some rubbish about not having the money to afford it because after spending any years working in the industry and sitting down with people to see where their money is being spent, they’ve always got the fund.
Money is rarely the issue, it’s priority.
Don’t believe me?
Be sure you’re sitting down for this.
Option 1 –
Buy 3 kettlebells* >Average cost £100-200, on off payment
With these three bells you can change your life, become fitter, stronger, healthier and happier, even if it takes 6 months of saving £5 here and there.
*Or a barbell set with up to 150kg of load.
Option 2 –
Don’t buy anything from convenience stores (lunch, snacks, etc).
You’ll easily find up to £30 a month by managing your sending habits/compulsions, more than enough for a gym membership.
Option 3 –
Go cold turkey on smoking, drinking, needless clothes shopping, or whatever your chosen poison is.
^ This can literally save people hundreds per month and thousands a year.
Try to be honest with yourself.
Unless you’re in a truly dire situation financially (barely paying the mortgage/rent/bills/food) you’ve got disposable income, you simply choose to waste it on crap you don’t need you merely want to satisfy a whim.
Of course this is your choice entirely, just be aware that pretty much everyone knows the excuse of “I can’t afford it.” is usually bollocks, they’re just too polite to say anything, or they don’t care enough to.
So my dear reader, will you continue to make that excuse?
Or will you choose a better path?
You should investigate this thoroughly.

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Business Basics

💷3 Options for PT Pricing💷
As a coach/trainer it can be hard to know how much to charge, or at least that is what many say.
It’s not hard, not really.
A lot of PT’s would rather use this as an excuse so that they can say people can’t afford it, or there wasn’t enough money in PT.
Essentially allowing for their own failure.
Good Morning ProZoners,
You’ll find these three options to pricing useful.
Other key elements to remember though are as follows:
– Your product must have value to people
– Offer solutions to clients problems for greater sales
– If no one wants what you’re offering the ask them why
– Be willing to change your product/bias/angle if needed
– A narrower client niche is better than a large one
Keeping those in mind here are the ideas for fees.
1 – Deviation from the Mean.
Say the standard rate of PT in your area is £100 per session (for ease of numbers).
To fill your diary you can offer the following:
🔱 Priority Pass +35% on standard, so £135
This gives them an ‘All Access Priority Training Pass’ meaning they get first dibs on all good prime times slots, free access to bootcamps, workshops, seminars, ongoing nutritional/lifestyle coaching and more.
You’d base your packages off of this number.
🔱 Frugal Finance -15% on standard, so £85
Unlike the all access the ‘Economy Training Pass’ will have them able to pick from off peak training hours, free classes in those times, selected access to seminars/workshops (say 4 free per year) and reduced rate supplemental fees for nutritional tweaks, lifestyle coaching and so on.
You’ll have two very different types of client, those who want it all and those who want to save some £££, both have a place.
2 – Pay Now, Save Later
You offer two options in this as well.
A 6 month agreement where you clients pays upfront, or a 12 month one.
Nothing in-between, and for this we shall use arbitrary number examples again just for effect.
📆6 Month: £6000
📅12 Month: £10,000
In each you’ll offer all the bells and whistles, the only difference is the length of time investment which saves them 2K (remember these are arbitrary examples).
Now if one person can afford this upfront then you’ve done very well, however it’s not aimed ideally at one person, it’s aimed at groups of people with similar goals.
Say you get 10 people, that’s £1000 each for an entire years worth of training, nutritional/lifestyle coaching and ongoing support, and if we put each at say 5 sessions per week (3 training, 2 nutrition/life coaching/support) that will mean potentially up to 260 session across the year.
(you could also do it with 2 people, 4 people, 7 people, etc)
£1000/260 = £3.84 (ish) per session per person.
That is an absolute bargain no matter which way you slice it.
Of course their sessions would be almost set in stone at regular times/days, that is a potential downside, yet for £3.84 a session can anyone really grumble?
3 – A Leap of Faith
This last one require guts.
When a potential client asks for your fees you respond with this:
“You pay what you feel my services are worth.”
Offering blocks of training works well with this, and you can also remember that if someone offers a fee that is an insult you can tell them as such and refuse to train them.
Oh yes, using the above and having someone say “How about £10 per session then.” – you’re fully within your rights to say that is quite insulting and shows they don’t value a high quality service and as such you don’t wish to train someone in that mindset with such disregard for investing in their own health.
Make them feel bad, a little bit of shame for them playing the fool can go a long way.
One reason this style works well is that people will area number in mind they’re wiling to pay, so why not have them pay it willingly.
There you have it, a few options for pricing.
Any questions please leave them below.

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A post for PT’s.

This message is for those of you that feel frustrated with clients.


You don’t need to train them you know.

It is your business and as such you can choose who you want to train, there is no need for this 100% inclusiveness.

Not all training is meant for all people, and that’s okay.

Bending yourself all out of shape to try and please the world and its dog will serve you no long term benefit other than that of stressing you out.

So brush that monkey off your shoulder.

Give those feelings, attitudes and mindset away.

You don’t need them anymore, you never did.


Focusing on people you want to help is a far more worthy cause for your time.

Now I can understand how people panic about not making money, then they bring up all the excuses to justify the shit state they’re in.

Tell me, for all the time you’ve done this ^^ has it ever really been anything other than a complete and utter ball ache?

You will rarely find a successful business person that works with people they don’t want to.

(Multinational corporates are the exception)

People are not worth the effort, the stress and the unhappiness they bring you, so the best way to deal with them is to simply avoid working with them.


Set your standards.

Market in a way that appeals to the people you want to train and deters those you don’t.

It’s your business, so of course you’ll run it as you see fit.

So why not run it in a way that allows you to help people while also making you happy too.

There’s nothing wrong with being bespoke or members only.

You should investigate this thoroughly.


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3 Reasons most PT’s suck at programming

As harsh as this is you’ll find it’s more true than it should be.
💪 – They make everyone program about body budding
👩‍🏫 – A lack in the understanding of data tracking/trends
🥰 – Programming what they like to program
^^ Look at any training program an you’ll find it’s not too dissimilar from what they give everyone else.
Now if all of their clients are after a goal that is in the same real, say aesthetics, then the programming will indeed be very similar.
It’s quite ironic as many of them champion the whole ‘You need to find what works for you’ and then proceed to program essentially the same thing for everyone.
As mentioned before it’s less about finding what works for you and simply finding what works.
Yes there will be differences in volume tolerances and some of the subtle nuance of builds etc, yet in the end it’s all much of a muchness.
For example,
Want to be a sprinter? Train like sprinters train.
Want to be a body builder? Train like BB’ers train.
Want to be a thrower? Ye, you’ve guessed it, train like throwers train.
The fitness industry, or rather the qualifications in it are largely based off of the influence that Arnold had in the 70’s.
Just take a look at any level 2 or level 3 course and it’s basically all body building biased, and while there is nothing wrong with this method/philosophy of training it’s not the only tool.
The longer you spend in the industry the more you’ll see past all the smoke and mirrors, the biggest one being this:
🗣People will say what sounds right because they want your approval.🗣
I have discussions about the above all the time with people who while good at putting together basic programs for beginners and novices, they come unstuck when faced with someone who is actually at or above the level of intermediate.
^^ How do we judge levels?
Sports = numbers and performance trends, are they improving because if so then what you’re doing is working.
Aesthetic sports = does the person win/place, if so then it’s working.
Health = are the objective health markers improving and is the person actually improving in regards to quality of life, if they are then congratulations because it’s working.
It’s all pretty simple really, and as such these two questions will change your life (both for PT’s and average people).
1 – Is it working?
A = Yes > Continue as you are and track/make notes.
A= No, proceed to question two:
2 – Why is it not working (be honest)?
A = All progress made from current program = change it
A = You’re not doing something you’re meant to be doing = address you behavioural issues before changing the program.
Your coach/trainer should be in contact with you on a regular basis, adjusting your program to your needs as they change.
Your program should reflect your goal, not the training of the trainer, remember this.

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