A day in the life of a personal trainer
Jo is in the process of building a successful personal training business. Find out how he does it by joining him for a typical day in his life as a PT.
Compared to some PTs I've got it good. My earliest client at the moment is at 8:30am so I don't need to be up at the crack of dawn. I start with a leisurely breakfast and a quick Tweet to my followers to give them a motivating start to the day, then I'm in the car to do battle with the rush hour traffic. The rest of my day maps out as follows:
8.20am - Arrived early for my first session. Made the most of it.
I always leave an extra 10 mins travel time for sessions around 9am, nothing worse than being late for a client. Fortunately today the roads are pretty clear so I've arrived early. That gives me a chance to clear a few emails from my inbox.
8.30am - Home-based session with Debbie
The first session of the day is with Debbie, who I train at home. I meet the kids leaving on their way to school as I walk down the garden path and spot Debbie at the door in her workout gear ready to get started. She's been training with me for 2 months and is really starting to see results. We do a 40 minute exercise session using just a medicine ball and the set of free weights that I give as part of the training package she bought. The biggest challenge for me with Debbie is keeping her focused on the exercise – I've never known anyone talk so much...
9.15am - We then sit down to have a chat about Debbie's nutrition and what her goals are for the next week, before double checking the date and time of her next session.
10am - Another home-based session, this time with Brian
I've tried to coordinate clients to minimise travel costs and time so my next session is just a few miles away from Debbie.
Brian is a recruitment consultant who works from home. He needs a lot of work on his posture from being sat at a desk all day, not to mention the arthritis in his wrist. Even though I don't work in exercise referral, the knowledge from this course is invaluable for clients like Brian.
20 minutes into the session I have a heart stopping moment when I bump into the 4ft ornamental porcelain giraffe next to the fireplace and it begins to topple. An athletic dive is required and I rescue it just in time. The perils of home training...
11.30am - 5pm: Free time , but there's plenty to do!
I'm back home now for a few hours until my evening clients so it's time to catch up with a bit of admin. I have a couple of sessions to plan for later in the week and there's an enquiry come through from my website so I make sure I give them a call straight away to get them booked in for a consultation.
I've also got to update my blog and respond to an email from a local magazine who've asked me to write a monthly column; a great marketing opportunity.
2pm - Time for my own work-out. Practice what you preach.
After lunch I fit in my own workout at my local gym. It's good to chat with the trainers up there (they normally pick my brains for ideas which I guess is a compliment!).
3.30pm - Networking
A shower and a quick post-training snack later and I'm back out on the gym floor to meet a few people. There's some new faces I don't recognise so it's important to start building a relationship with them. No sales talk though, just a brief introduction and maybe a tip to help them with their workout.
4pm - Personal development & social media
I've got a free hour so take the opportunity to have a look through my Twitter feed and reply to a few messages. There's links to a couple of interesting articles on training for fat loss and squat technique which I read and make a note to research further.
5pm - Bootcamp class
I like to give my self half and hour to set-up for my 5:30 bootcamp class which takes place on the field behind the gym - whatever the weather. It started raining half an hour ago and I've just had a couple of suspiciously coincidental texts from people cancelling "because they have to work late". There might be some extra press ups for them next time.
There's still a good turn out of 14 people so with a couple of last minute changes to the planned exercises to accommodate the weather, we battle through a wet and muddy session with sweat and smiles aplenty by the end. My key aim in these sessions is that everyone has fun and I love the sense of camaraderie that develops both within a single hour and over the course of a few weeks. It's the main reason everyone comes.
7pm - Personal training at a gym with Sarah
Half an hour to dry off then it's my last client of the day. Sarah is one of my favouraite clients. Always chirpy and competitive, she throws herself into her training and I know she'll follow the programme I write for her to the letter. It's a nice balance to the challenge involved in motivating some of the others!
We have a great session in the gym, perfecting technique for some quite complicated resistance exercises (I try out a couple of the tips from the article I read earlier). I notice a few other gym members looking over, intrigued by the strange mix of emotion in Sarah's face – beaming smiles tinged with some real effort. "I didn't think exercise was supposed to be enjoyable" says one as we walk past. A potential new client in the making there...
Well it's been a long day but it doesn't feel like work so I'm not too tired. Tomorrow is a busier day though with 6 PT sessions booked in, so after tea I get an early night to make sure I'm on top form for the morning.