King for a Day

7:12p.m local time, Las Vegas, NV., USA.

I just woke up from a short nap on my couch.   For me this is a strange thing, I don’t sleep that much.


Somewhere between pushing my two dogs off of me and a fat REM sleep stage, I had a dream that I was in charge of an exceptionally large international group of personal trainers and had to organize and motivate trainers of differing skills and abilities into a cohesive unit and model of teamwork. I was their King.

Yes…I actually had this dream…and it was pretty cool.

Truth Time.  Yes…I have also dreamed of new and exciting ways to flip large tires and of being victorious in hot wing eating battles held at the Playboy Mansion….ahem…anyhow…I had a dream that I was now King of all personal trainers. 


I believe I have found my protege’..or perhaps I have indeed traveled back in time.

As the proclaimed King of personal trainers in Slumber Land, I hereby laydown the following decrees:


“Maxing out reps with dual Shake Weights helps jiggle fat off.”


1. All trainers will be able, at any time, to state what parts of their training methodology have been proven effective either scientifically or medically and provide valid references.  If in the event their training is based on anecdotal evidence then it will be presented as such. 


Awhile back I thought that if I simply read a little per day about fitness related stuff then I would be smarter than I was at the time.    Two Years later I still maintain the same habit and haven’t looked back since.  

2. Your King studies an hour per day, so shall you.  Truthfully, this is an area where I feel many trainers are missing the mark.  We get to a point of comfort in our career, have great reliable clients, get results.  Somewhere along the line we fall off the wagon and stop learning.  The other day a young trainer asked if I had any books he could borrow on fitness…any topic…he didn’t care if they were dry or not, he told he that he just wants to get better at what he does.   I got a little choked up inside.  (P.S. Trainers, you don’t have to sit there for an hour straight, just make it a daily habit…I’m flexible about the whole 60 minute thing but have to sound commanding…so read that last statement in your internal James Earl Jones voice.)


If this is statement is true then CrossFit WOD’s have turned me into an emotional wreck.


3. You will train and educate your clients, not just exercise them.  A little over a year ago a fellow trainer told me that her view of client service was  ” Just get the client sweaty, if they think they worked out then they’re happy.”   That never sat well with me.  ANYBODY can make another person sweat if they push them hard enough.  Bikram Yoga Teachers, CrossFit Coaches and HIIT trainers are off the hook, I expect you guys to make them sweat.



Plan the Dive, Dive the Plan.

4. Have a plan, focus on the goals of the clients, slip your goals in the programming if that’s your gig, but HAVE A PLAN AND DIRECTION.


5. With all respect to #4, you will know when to bend the plan (modify a workout) or break the plan (completely switch gears and still train the client in a positive manner.)  People, like cars, do not break on schedule.


If these words come out of your mouth when a client asks you a question you don’t know then you can probably guess what my response will be…


6. If you don’t know an answer, or the full answer, to a clients question you will tell them you don’t know…then you WILL get back to them with the information they were seeking from a reputable source your King would approve. The sharper among you will seek out several sources of credible information.


MTC News – (Las Vegas)  “Personal Training Special Forces operating under the direction of King Chris assaulted a heavily fortified sugar hill today in the global war on obesity.  According to sources within the Kingdom no trainer casualties were reported.   “Powerlifting and Strongman competition operators were keys to victory in helping throw the Yoga and Spin Cycle instructors to the top of the mounds, by working together they accomplished their mission effectively.”  said King Chris, who went on to praise the trainers efforts  “The heroism and dedication shown by these young men and women brings credit to themselves and was in keeping with the highest goals of trainers worldwide in our efforts to curb obesity.”   

7.  Appreciate the differences and community of trainers.  As trainers, we are largely people persons. We have to be in order to do what we do.  Racism, Sizeism, Sexism, Ageism, Political and Religious differences are not tolerated.  Since we are largely of that character, why is it that we often cannot appreciate what other trainers bring to the table?  Gym Trainers often look down on CrossFit Coaches, CrossFit Coaches vs. Bootcamp Leaders, Functional Trainers vs. Body Builders, Sports Trainers vs. Zumba Teachers, Powerlifters vs everyone else etc etc etc.  I think we have a lot to offer each other and certainly benefit from learning what others have to teach.  As your King, I hereby decree that ALL trainers will experience at least ONE method of training that is not their own for a period not less than six months. Who knows, you might find a mentor that, although not able to offer technical advice, might prove highly valuable in other areas.  Any disputes over method superiority will be settled with a publicly held Dance Off.  


8. Thou shalt not use the client as a lab rat.  If you are DYING to try out a new technique or add a new lift to your repertoire then you will do at least one, if not all three of the following things first. (1) Practice doing it yourself first for at least 1 month, learn it inside and out.  (2) Be a student and learn the technique from a qualified source and pass his/her level of competency first. (3) Try teaching it to another trainer first, with the understanding that the guinea pig trainer is to not help you in any way, either technically or athletically.

ImageTough love has a place in my Kingdom.  Like any love, give it honestly and smartly. 

9. Thou shall know how, and when to motivate different types of people. For some trainers this is a natural talent. For others this is a learned skill.  My beliefs as your King are (1) Every person is capable of motivating themselves, some just don’t know it yet.  (2) Every person has a nugget, a little thing that motivates them, they usually know what that nugget is, you have to figure it out, (3) Every person is 100x more than what THEY think they are, including you. (4) What motivates you is not necessarily the same thing that motivates another person. (4) Belief, or Faith in oneself, and walking in the gym/box/studio, hitting the trail or taking that first step means you are already half-way to your goal.  The hardest part of training in anything is actually getting there in the first place. My beliefs are my own, form your own beliefs and methods that work for you, put your heart into it.


Pick it up…Put it down..1…Pick it up…Put it down…2


10. Thou shall not be a robot. You will have a program for every client, those programs will differ from person to person.  The odds of every client you have being EXACTLY alike are astronomically low even if you specialize in a highly select group of individuals or in training twins…and even then there will undoubtedly be some differences.

Far out there example: Would you train a pair of twin Sumo wrestlers the same if their sport coach told you one requires more hip strengthening (big requirement in Sumo) while the other has plenty strong hips, but could use push-pull strength improvement?

Theoretically you could use the same core routine (press,deadlift,squat,overhead press with goals of increasing absolute strength and power) then add specific exercises for each to address specific areas of concerns per wrestler. 

It took awhile to put this blog together, now I need to get my sorry butt to bed.


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