It was around 7 years ago now, that I secured my dream role in a big commercial gym as a self employed Personal Trainer. I felt amazing, not just because this was my first real ‘job’ but because it was in a career that I knew I was meant to pursue and I just couldn’t wait to start making a positive impact on hundreds/thousands of lives. Oh, and not to mention the fact that this gym I was about to start working in had it all… Swimming pool, jacuzzi, sauna, steam room, cosy cafe area, a huge top floor for cardio, weights and all the functional equipment you’d ever need. It also had only ONE personal trainer that I’d have to compete against compared to most other commercial gyms in the area having around 10-15!
My first couple of weeks as a PT
In my first couple of weeks as a PT, I tried everything I could think of in the gym to gain my first client. I was on the gym floor every hour of the day, I was doing gym surveys to try to get people sat infront of me for a consultation, I was offering out a free PT session to everyone I spoke to, I was helping/correcting members’ technique at every opportunity, I was doing every gym induction I could get my hands on to chat to new members, I was greeting people with a smile at the entrance every day, I made sure my ‘PT profile’ in the gym looked and was written to perfection, I even trained with my ‘personal trainer’ t-shirt on so that EVERYONE knew I was a PT in the building! After a few months of doing all of the above from 6am till 7/8pm Monday to Friday, I was starting to feel disheartened and I was losing belief in myself FAST! I felt like I was doing as much as I possibly could and I even started to question wether it was simply because people didn’t like me… I felt like a complete failure. Yes, I managed to gain a few clients within these few months but I wasn’t helping anywhere near the amount of people I set out to! I just couldn’t work out how I was so much more active on the gym floor and in the gym in general than the only other PT in the building, yet he seemed to have a full diary and was training client after client all day long, whilst I sat there like his apprentice waiting for my next unpaid gym induction.
I had blown ALL my money
By this point I had blown all of the money I had to my name on gym rent and the cost of living in general (which wasn’t much at the time as I kept my outgoings to a minimum) and was well in debt from borrowing that much money from my Dad just to survive and continue to hope and pray that things would soon pick up and all my hard work would finally pay off… I felt worthless and even worse, I felt like I’d completely let my family down. I was about ready to call it a day as a Personal Trainer and had already started applying for other jobs because I was so embarrassed at the situation I was currently in and I couldn’t bring myself to ask for any more money from my parents.
Then FINALLY, on what I thought was going to be my last Monday morning as a PT, I realised that there were so many obvious signs as to why this other guy in the gym was so successful and why NO other PT to come in after him lasted longer than 3 months before quitting. I mean this ONE PT had it all… His face was all over the building, he had his own private massage room (that he didn’t pay any extra rent for, I must add) that only he had the keys for, he was that ‘pally’ with the receptionists that every single person to enquire about personal training got passed straight over to him without a second thought! I know I sound like a jealous and bitter child here, that’s making excuses when things weren’t going his way but the cafe used this guy’s business cards as coasters he was that favoured!!
I had only 2 choices...
So, I came to the realisation that I had only 2 choices. Quit on my dream career because I wasn’t in as fortunate of a position as this other PT, just like all of the rest before me and look back whilst in a 9-5 job that I hate, thinking ‘If only I didn’t quit so soon, maybe I could have made it work’ OR Knuckle down, get back to the drawing board and come up with a strategy that would not only help me to compete in the tough fitness industry but to completely take over in my area… There’s no prizes for guessing which option I chose!
I hired a mentor immediately
I started off by seeking and hiring a mentor immediately, I got up early every day to work on and improve every part of my business, I went to bed late reading as many books related to personal training, fitness, nutrition, business, finance, sales, marketing etc as I could get my hands on and during the day I was in constant contact with my mentor for accountability, motivation and step by step guidance.
Within 12 Weeks I TRIPLED my income...
I took a look at my full business from the outside and improved every last detail where necessary and possible! I started using everything I’d learned on social media to market myself in a way that would guarantee me new hot leads EVERY month and completely FILL my diary to the point that I’d have to create a waiting list! I used unstoppable strategies to set up a brand new small group training business that was full from launch date as expected and played a huge part in my income growth whilst gaining me more free time, I organised my clients and groups around the working hours that I wanted to work rather than working around when was most convenient for them to book in, so that I had free time within my week where I wanted to but still kept the income I desired! I quickly went from being a PT struggling to make ends meet, to a PT that was in HIGH DEMAND and finally in a position to help more people make a positive change in their lives!
KNUCKLE DOWN and WORK SMARTER
Due to the choice I made to KNUCKLE DOWN and WORK SMARTER to make sure that no matter how hard things were for me at that time, I was going to MAKE IT WORK and pursue my dream career… I’m now in a position where I can do the things that make me happy such as; visit my dream holiday destinations (Jamacia, Singapore, Bali, New York, Vegas etc), drive a car that once upon a time I’d never have thought I’d be able to afford in my lifetime never mind at my age! Most importantly, I’m now able to spend more time with my friends and loved ones rather than working unsociable hours around my clients.
When I finally took the time to look back and realise I was able to grow my business with the simple but extremely effective steps I took… I knew that my next step was to help other Personal Trainers to do the same to prevent any of them being in the same position I was and have to go through what I went through.