Our Personal Trainer Of The Day, Robb Evans of Studioz Personal Training (http://www.studiozpt.com.au/), shares his story from being the target of bullying to a successful owner of his own personal training business. Robb describes himself as passionate, who loves sharing his knowledge for health and fitness to other people. His dedication to his clients is admirable. Read Robb’s full interview below.
Tell us your story, who are you and how did you start in the health and fitness industry?
My introduction to health and fitness occured back in 1988. I have always been “vertically challenged” and due to that fact was often seen as an easy target for bullies growing up. By the age of 20, when I was again the brunt of some bullying, I decided that enough was enough, so I joined an awesome gym and they set me on the path of gaining some serious muscle. From my first workout I was hooked and have trained ever since. I completely changed my body composition and this had a dramatic impact on my self-confidence and ability to deal with bullying – it truly has been life-changing for me.
I guess I have a unique background. As well as being a qualified Fitness Consultant and Personal Trainer, I’m also a fully qualified Chartered Accountant who has 19 years experience working in Senior Management positions in large organisations since 1990. I now have 27 years of health and fitness industry experience behind me and in 2009 I made the decision to leave the corporate working life to follow my true passion of running my own health and fitness studio. With my fitness and business experience, I feel I bring a level of professionalism, maturity, customer service and focus that can often be missing from the fitness industry. I’ve worked with children, teens, sedentary adults, baby-boomers, seniors and world class professional athletes.
Responding to the demand from my clients, I set up “Studioz Personal Training” and “Pakenham Boot Camps For Women”. These businesses, based in Pakenham, provide advice, support and the opportunity to work out with a personal trainer in a boutique studio, but also the opportunity to work outdoors in a boot camp with other supportive women.
What were some of the biggest mistakes you made when starting out in this industry?
When I first started out I expected that all the clients that I would be training would be people like bodybuilders, power lifters and athletes. You don’t have to be in the industry too long to realise that the majority of the fitness industry is comprised of people requiring help with weight loss, so I quickly found myself finding a niche in the weight loss market.
From the very beginning I got some fantastic coaching from some fitness business experts like Net Profit Explosion and they helped set me up with the right tools and mindset to get me to where I am today.
What is the most absurd excuse you heard from a client and how did you respond to it?
The majority of excuses I get are things like I’m too old, too fat, too unfit or list off a huge range of medical conditions they have to justify why they shouldn’t really do too much exercise. Normally what I do is wait for them to finish their long list of excuses and say something like….”let’s focus on what you CAN do and not what you can’t!” I then like to educate people around the fact that the majority of their progress can be made via their nutrition plan and generally the excuses I get relate to the exercise. So they soon realise that they can achieve their fitness goals within their perceived limitations.
What makes your gym/fitness center different from others?
I would have to say my main differential relates to the work I do with my clients around their nutrition. Before I start the physical training with a client I set them up with an individually tailored meal plan to suit their needs. I do this with my personal training clients in the studio as well as my boot camp clients. These plans along with the training help my clients get those serious body transformations.
Having seen the dramatic influx of trainers into the industry over the past 5 years, it’s pretty easy to see that it’s not too difficult to be a good trainer. Just jump on youtube and you’ll be able to find a program that you can use to thrash a client. Where I feel I provide a unique difference to most is that I coach people to change behaviours rather than just “train” them. This means creating a workable plan of action that gives clients the support, knowledge and accountability that they need to achieve life-sustainable health and fitness goals. The consistent feedback I get is about the effectiveness of my program and that gives me a real buzz!
What is your greatest guilty pleasure when it comes to food?
I love a great wood-fired pizza loaded with fresh ingredients!
Describe yourself in one word.
What are some of your best exercise/workout tips?
I think people are always looking for new pieces of equipment or routines to give them the best possible results in the fastest possible time. For my way of thinking the best exercises to achieve a great, functional, balanced, physique revolve around exercises that involve the big muscles and lifting heavy weights with strict, safe form. I base my own training, and that of my clients, around these key exercises:
Depending on the person’s fitness goals, I suggest that these exercises be performed anywhere from one to three times per week, three to six sets of each for a total of six to 12 repetitions. They work every time! Track your workouts by writing it all down and keep striving to better the last PB – what get’s measured get’s done!
What are your goals or plans this year?
Studioz Personal Training is growing and we are increasing the size of our training and administration staff to cope with the increased demand for our services. It’s very exciting to be able to help an increasing number of clients from year to year. We’re expecting growth of 20 to 25% in 2015 via a number of different channels. One of our newest initiatives has been to work much more closely with our local allied health professionals. We currently work out of a consulting room at a local medical centre one day per week, on top of the studio and outdoor boot camp work. Working more closely with local doctors and medical centre specialists enables us to take a holistic approach to enhancing patient’s health and fitness. It’s very exciting to have such a positive impact on the local community. We expect this side of the business to grow dramatically in 2015.
One of my passions is food and teaching people how to make it a friend…not a foe! So this year I will be launching some new nutrition programs to go hand in hand with my nutrition app called My Nutrition Coach. We’ve got some exciting new upgrades planned for the software in 2015 and that is going to make it a very powerful tool you can carry right in your pocket.
2015 will also involve Studioz continuing to increase the free community work undertaken in the health and fitness area. Education is a key component in the work that I do. I have a nutrition program specifically designed to teach children about nutrition. The program is called “Munch It” and is delivered free in our local pre-schools, child care centres, primary and high schools. The aim of the program is to provide our children with all the tools they need to live a long, strong, happy and healthy life! Prevention is a much better option than the treatment of obesity, so let’s teach our kids now! The program is scalable from a 20 min presentation through to a detailed 8 week course depending upon the needs of the institution (see www.KidsMunchIt.com.au). Our plans are to deliver this to an additional 500 students in 2015.
I also run a competition in our local shire called Family Food Rescue (see www.FamilyFoodRescue.com.au). This program is designed to transform the lives of one family that needs help with their nutrition and improving their health and fitness. The program is free and delivers over $11k worth of benefits to the winning family. It’s a great program to give back to the community. This is an annual competition and will be run again in 2015.
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