Monday 25th July, I should be all systems GO with a ramp-up to a new challenge, or case study or some new-fangled fitness concept designed to bring in new clients.
Instead – I’m writing this article.
Having come back from my Budokon Guru Killer 500-hour full-board live-in Teacher Training and fight camp out in Whitefish Montana for an entire month, I’m back in London, in the UK feeling somewhat…jaded.
Yes, being jaded is a somewhat standard mode for me – much to the hilarity of my clients – but this time it’s not subsiding. You see, the way “fitness” is paraded across the internet and within dedicated fitness paces never really appealed to me and still doesn’t. In fact, having been in the fitness industry for enough time to acknowledge patterns that work but are morally questionable for me as well as patterns that don’t work but are still flogged to death is part of the reason why I took a step back from it all in 2018.
On paper, I was on my way to living the lifestyle I wanted: Grossing £3-4000 per month with 12-15 clients and only working 25 hours a week in the gym (maybe 30 hours total). Unfortunately, I was intensely miserable. The way the fitness model in gyms works solely relies on the client being unhappy. The way I work solely relies on my client being happy and full of so much excitement and knowledge about what does and doesn’t work for them nutritionally, mentally and physically that they can effectively be their own personal trainer but CHOOSE to stay with me because they want to increase their knowledge or love the mental break they get by outsourcing that thinking and not having to think about “life” for 60 to 90 minutes.
I’ve been made aware that the latter part – what I do – is in fact more in line with the work of a Life Coach.
Again, observing various people from various walks of life – especially those who identify as and work as a Life Coach – has me violently adverse to being aligned with or mistaken for one of them. Do I think I’m above them? Not at all – I am not like them.
For one, the space in which I coach people utilises the very vitally human right we should all express – the capacity and duty to be fit and healthy for our short passage of existence on this spinning Earthball. What you choose to do once you’ve established a good and proper benchmark of existing is not really my concern (unless of course it affects your mental health which spirals into your physical and physiological health, then that’s my concern). I feel that most Life Coaches I’ve been exposed to tend to focus more on less physically tangible things like business life, personal relationships and other outwardly focused endeavours.
Of course there are Personal Trainers who have studied various behavioural psychology books and short courses to include life coaching qualities into their work – which is great! However, I’d be hard pressed to listen to a 20-year-old who’s never experienced an Executive level position in a corporate setting nor had the pleasure of tending to a newborn (or 3) whilst trying to balance a relationship with their partner and working either as an entrepreneur or within a corporate setting. And yet, I see claims of such coaches doing exactly that.
More power to them.
But I am not them.
So, who am I in the context of SuperBodied Performance?
I guess being the tinkerer and solution finder of things sits well with me. From chats with past clients the main takeaway about why they chose me and even stayed with me for as long s they did was that I have a genuine passion for seeing my clients “win” and they start to believe that they want to win for themselves too. Equally they know I despise the gym which makes their workouts super fun but still challenging.
From my Virgin Active Fitness Instructor days, I remember liking the idea of always trying to “Two-Plus” the client experience: If they came in and thought of the space as a 4, we needed them to leave feeling like it was a 6 at the very least. Then 2+ that with every visit until they were at a 10. Naturally that is just overblown corporate psychology but a lot of marketing schpiel these days are heavily ripped off from basic behavioural psychology tropes founded in the 70s and 80s.
If you’ve ever done or seen those NLP practitioner courses you can do over a weekend (or online) you know what I mean.
But I digress.
I took that ideology and utilise it with anyone who’ll have me as their consultant/concierge/cheerleader and engineer. It doesn’t matter if you dragged your angry ass to our PT session, it’s my sole duty to make you laugh and ensure by the end of it you’d forgotten what you were even angry about.
Taking SuperBodied into a solely online space needs to still have this factor front and centre, so I feel that live Zoom training as a 1-1, 2-1 or 3-1 session is a great way to keep that going. I absolutely have no interest in creating programmes for people unless they specifically want it. However, I feel designing 4, 6, 8 and 12-week courses would certainly be beneficial for self-starters who like who I am and how I teach but don’t necessarily need me breathing down their back online and in their pocket with pop up messages reminding them to put the cookie down!