Stronger Sundays

Dominate your fitness business with this weekly collection of strategies, tips, and tricks.
By trainers, for trainers.

June 9, 2019

Quote of the week:

"Something I’ve always told my new training clients: ‘You are the world’s foremost expert on you. Training isn’t something I do to you, it’s something I do with you and for you. The more feedback you give me, the more I can help you.'"                 

Watch for this newsletter from the Personal Trainer Development Center each Sunday.

In this issue:

  1. The ultimate career-launching guide for personal trainers
  2. A prison lesson for trainers
  3. Why you should chase your weaknesses     
  4. Find your 1% uniqueness factor
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1. The ultimate career-launching guide for personal trainers

The Wealthy Fit Pro’s Guide to Starting Your Career, Jonathan Goodman’s latest book, goes on sale Tuesday, June 11. If you’re beginning your journey in the fitness industry, you won’t find a more authoritative and comprehensive guide.

If you’re an established personal trainer, you won’t find a better gift for someone you know who’s at the starting line.

On one hand, starting out isn’t especially complicated. The moment someone hires you to train them, you are by definition a personal trainer.

But how do you get that first client? What do you need to know? Where do you want to work, and how do you get hired? And, perhaps most important, what types of clients do you want to train?

If you’re looking for those answers, or know someone who is, this is the resource you need.

Preorder today for only $9.99
--> The Wealthy Fit Pro's Guide to Starting Your Career

*Free audiobook and eBook with every order.
2. A prison lesson for trainers - Daniel Freedman

Sometimes trainers can find lessons in the most surprising places.

Consider Kingston Penitentiary in Ontario, one of the oldest and most notorious prisons in the world.

A forbidding stone complex topped with razor wire, it operated from 1835 to 2013 as a maximum-security institution for the worst of the worst.

It’s now a tourist attraction, like Alcatraz.

Brian Heffernan, one of my guides on a recent tour, worked at an institution within the penitentiary grounds for 35 years, first as an attendant and then as a psychiatric nurse.

He told stories of trying to get inmates moving, with the goal of improving their health. His efforts, he said, were often met with hostility, like the time a 78-year-old amputee swung his crutches at him.

But he never gave up and was able to help some people.

The takeaway: Get over the idea that you can transform everyone you work with. Even with your best effort, some of them simply won’t follow through. And some of those who follow through won’t get results. (The bell curve has two extremes, and somebody has to be on the wrong end.) Shoot for the highest possible success rate, but don’t beat yourself up when it falls short of 100 percent.

Go deeper: Do you consider yourself a personal trainer or a fitness coach? There’s a big difference, as Kevin Mullins explains in this article for the PTDC.

3. Why you should chase your weaknesses - Lou Schuler

My friend Michael Easter is writing a book called Into Discomfort.

And since nothing is more discomforting for me than running, I was intrigued by a recent item in Michael’s newsletter, which includes this quote from Harvard anthropologist Daniel Lieberman:

"There are a lot of people out there who love being in the gym and doing weights and dislike aerobic activity. They often pump up just how good resistance training is relative to aerobic training.

And the reverse is also true—people who do aerobics and don't like being in the gym are often dismissive of the importance of strength, right? Obviously, they're both important. 
But …I think that the balance of evidence is that humans have undergone intense selection for endurance and aerobic activity, and that strength is not as important in humans as it is in some other species.
It seems [our ancestors] had just enough strength for day-to-day tasks.

Any weight-bearing task they did was probably based on bodyweight.

There's plenty of published data that suggests hunter-gatherers are moderately strong, but they’re not like today’s gym rats in any sense.

They probably weren't as extreme as many people in the gym today. Like, where would they find a bench press?"

The takeaway: Michael’s conclusion is that most of us would be healthier if we spend a little less time doing our favorite activities, and a little more time addressing our weaknesses. So a gym rat would benefit from more endurance work, and an endurance athlete would be better off with some time in the weight room.

Go deeper: If you’re interested in why Lieberman believes humans evolved for endurance, click here to read his groundbreaking 2004 review in Nature. 
4. Find your 1% uniqueness factor - Jonathan Goodman

Consumers’ decisions are largely irrational.

They don’t buy something because of its merit. They buy because others are doing it, or because you gave them a compelling way to justify their purchase.

Consider Online Trainer Academy graduate Troy Bennett.

Rather than emphasizing the things that make him the same as 99 percent of all fitness pros like fat loss or muscle gain, he markets the 1 percent that’s different: that he’s a fan of comics, gaming, and cosplay.

He landed his first five online clients by working his contacts within the local cosplay community in Chicago. They’re all friends of friends of people he met either in person or online.

The takeaway: I’m sure Troy is an awesome personal trainer, but that’s not why those clients chose to work with him. They hired him because he gave them a reason to buy his services, and because they saw others in their community doing it.

Go deeper: I’ve been known to voice my frustration with trainers who make the same tired excuses for why they don’t have as many clients as they want. That’s why I revised and updated "How Do I Get More Personal Training Clients?", an article I originally published seven years ago.

Bonus: Find your 1% Uniqueness Factor

The framework that Tony followed is one of the most valuable things that we teach in the Online Trainer Academy. Because it's so important, we've included it in our free intro to online training course.

Get access here:
--> Free (self-paced) Intro to Online Training Mini-Course
**Thanks for reading. What to do next**

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Interested in online training?
Click here to take our free 3-day mini course and learn the core truths guaranteed to get you more clients.

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And don't forget to preorder your copy of the brand new book!

Save 33% and get the audiobook and eBook free when you preorder your copy of the Wealthy Fit Pro's Guide to Starting Your Career for only $9.99 today

Book ships worldwide June 11, 2019.

Click here to preorder for only $9.99 (save 33%)

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