You dont have to look like this guy to be a successful trainer.

You don’t have to look like this guy to be a successful trainer.

When I first got started in this business, I had it ass backwards …

I wanted to be like all the juiced up wannabe super-trainers, but little did I know these guys weren’t setting themselves up for their next move in the industry.  Most of them end up played-out has-beens.

If you’ve ever worked at a healthclub, you know the type.  And if you’re anything like me, you’ll want no part of their world or what they’re trying to do in it.

When you get wiser in this game, you’ll be impressed more by who people are and their accomplishments.  You’ll find that the people at the top of this game remain very humble and don’t care who knows about them.

Once of those guys is Greg Justice. I’m a big fan of Greg’s; when it comes to all of the fitness industry success principles we discuss here, he’s living proof of them.

Greg isn’t a self promoter in any way, so I had to twist his arm to come on here for a guest article.  This one will introduce you to him, and he’s sending me a follow up very soon.

Here it is:

How I Achieved Success in Spite of Myself

By Greg Justice, MA

I have spent my entire career doing everything ‘wrong’ according to the ‘experts’ and have still had great success in my businesses and my life. I agree whole-heartedly with those experts. In fact, in my fitness business coaching program I even encourage trainers to take those ‘right’ steps.

One key area that I have done all ‘wrong’ is the area of working on my business, instead of in my business.

As I coach trainers with this advice, I still train clients myself, in addition to working on my businesses. Am I being hypocritical? Am I playing both sides of the fence afraid to step over? Is it the money? Why would I still be training clients?

Here’s why. I have an incredibly supportive family. We work and play well together. I have built incredible relationships with clients I’ve had for 15, 18, 20 plus years. I have a social life with them. They have fed my business with referrals, income and support. Our families have become a special part of each other’s lives. They add something excellent and fruitful to my life and my business, regularly and deeply.

Some questions I’ve asked myself: Which clients do I choose to turn that ‘special time’ over to another trainer? Will I have to redefine my relationships with them if I am not training them? Am I ready to let go of the reins and listen to my own advice? Do I really “need” to?


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Me and Greg at a recent industry event (when I asked him to come bar hopping afterward, he humbly refused).

My life and my businesses are about relationship first. That was my plan and how I grew my business. I built incredibly satisfying relationships and they helped me to succeed. They believed in me and the service I offered. They are the reason for my success. Without them, I would just be another great trainer that no one has heard of.

Some things you must consider if you want to ‘do it all wrong’ and succeed in spite of yourself:

– Know yourself and your limitations. It is hard enough to bounce back from burn-out, and even more so from repeated bouts of burn-out. You must be able to say STOP and get away to rejuvenate yourself before you get to that point of burn-out.

– Know which relationships help nurture and support your dreams, and willingly pick up some of your slack (and you will be leaving slack if you do things the ‘wrong’ way). Nurture and embrace those relationships. They will make all the difference in your success.

– Know your direction, ultimate goals, stepping stone goals, and time frames. Create a plan for it all. Live within your means and plan your days. Work your plan faithfully until your goals change.

The earlier in your fitness business you start working on it, in addition to in it, the better your chance of developing and choosing the types of relationships that will help you build a strong and steady business and carry you into your future.