Starting From Scratch

By 19th December 2016April 23rd, 2017No Comments

Before I went ahead with starting my journey as a trainer I thought one day I may be training professional athletes, I was always looking at famous coaches wishing to be them.

When you start out as a trainer its hard to even get ONE person to come train with you, never mind a professional athlete. I’m now almost two years into my coaching life and I have found that some of my favourite people to train are absolute beginners.

I have found I get such a buzz seeing someone achieve something in the gym for the first time. I know I have seen the person use each stage of progression I have set them and they have worked hard every session.

For some people its a huge achievement just to walk into the gym for the first time, others want to lose weight, some want to get stronger or look better. People start physical training for many different reasons.

One of the classes I am most proud of is my MINI ATHLETES class, this class is for children aged 6-11 years old. Most of them couldn’t do much in the beginning, now they walk into the studio every session, pick up a rope and start skipping without being told what to do. These kids are learning all about physical training from a young age and I see them progress week in, week out.


I also coach amateur boxers, I’m proud of all the boxers we have. But I want to mention one lad as I have seen him learn right from the start. His name is Lewis Benson, he catches two buses to the gym every night then two buses to get home. He lives and breathes boxing. The boxing gym is full of coaches and we have seen this lad go from nothing, to having his first three amateur bouts.


Not everyone starts a sport from a young age, Nic decided to sign up for a charity boxing match. She contacted me and asked if I could help her train for it. I don’t think  she even owned a pair of boxing gloves at this point, and the first few sessions I had to show her how to stand and throw basic punches.

Months passed and she got really stuck into it, she had caught the boxing bug. She had her fight and won, not long after she booked another one! Raising lots of money for charity along the way. Many people saw her fight, but no one saw the hours of hard work she put in leading up to it.


Like I said, people start training for many reasons. These next three had never really been bothered for training in a gym before, but they decided they wanted to give it a go and individually all got in touch with me to help them.

The first one is Chris, his aim is to change his body shape and get stronger. I have said this before, sometimes Chris could be like my best pal in the gym, other times I think he would rather fight me outside. Over the months of him swearing at me I have seen him really progress, from struggling to do bodyweight exercises, to lifting heavy weights in the gym.

The video below is of him performing neutral grip pull ups, he could barely do one pull up when he first started training. Now he can easily be programmed to perform anywhere between 30-70 in one workout.

The next one is Adam, if I looked back through his training notes with him we would probably both laugh now, benching the bar was as good as it got. He didn’t have much strength although he was pretty fit due to his footballing background. Again, over time we worked on basic bodyweight movements to help build his strength through stability.

Here he is performing wide grip pull ups for the first time, I don’t know who was happier, me or him!!

Last but not least for this post is Nick. I call him the question, because he is full of them. ‘why are we doing this Jack, why are we doing that’ … sometimes I want to say ‘because I said so mate, I’m your trainer and I am always right’. But he has always done what I say, I have programmed things for a reason and he has stuck at everything, even if he wasn’t so sure at the start.

Here in this video he is performing a deadlift, with weight for the very first time.

Its nice to see ‘before and after’ photos, and I have used them myself with the people I train to advertise my business. I find it brilliant to see how people have changed their body shape for the better. But seeing someone perform something for the first time is something different again to me, no fancy lighting can do a pull up for you.

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