Everyone Has a Story!

July 19, 2011 by  
Filed under Health and Fitness

Is there a story here?

Earlier this year I was asked by Dr. Lin, the Staff Physician at Ford Motor Company, Cincinnati to deliver a Fitness Presentation to the employees of the company.  Thrilled to do this, yet nervous, I carefully and strategically prepared a PPP.  This proved to be difficult as the years have been packed with so many people and places and exercise trends that have come and gone.  My goal was to focus briefly on topics that may hit home with the general population.  Fortunately in this big world of exercise science, theories and prescriptions, and along with my own views on “playing” rather than the typical gym experience, it all seemed to mesh and I was well received.  Many questions and comments followed. While delivering my presentation, I deviated a bit from my PPP as some stories came to mind and spoke a little longer than what was required.  I felt very comfortable and truly enjoyed myself.    Dr. Linn’s spouse, who is one of my current fitness clients, mentioned to me a few weeks later that Dr. Lin was interested in my presentation because I don’t have a story……

Huh? I don’t have a story?

Recently while on the phone with my advertising consultant regarding a current ad for the April edition of a local magazine, our discussion went kind of like this:

Me: I need to change the line “in business for 28 years to “in business for 30 years.”  Time flew by as it’s known to do and the ad had surprisingly not been updated with this info for two years.

Advertising Consultant:  “Possibly you shouldn’t say that you have been doing fitness for 30 years.  It may make you seem old, especially in your industry.”

Me:  “Gasp!” I hadn’t thought about it that way…until now.  Suddenly I realize I’m a 53 year old Personal Fitness Trainer that has been at it since I was a springy and probably way too bubbly 23 year old “aerobic instructor.”  Some of my clients are in fact my senior with others in the 20 something range, and every age in between.   When I become a Grandmother, and I hope to, am I still eligible for re-certification as a CPT?  Ha-Ha!

Me:  “Well, it is what it is!  With Boot Camp Fitness saturating the current market, hopefully experience will be one of the factors that drive that new client my way.  Let’s run it.”

Could this be my story?

Congratulations and good health to those trainers who have displayed their own “before and after” pictures depicting tremendous weight loss obviously due to their own strategies they are implementing to whip us into shape.  Seriously, I congratulate you.  This however is not my story.  In the fitness industry for 30 years, I have never lost or gained more than 5lbs.  I understand and practice the prescription that creates this type of lifetime results.  Therefore, I educate and train my client in how this can work for them not for awhile, but for a lifetime.   If my client is at square one, well then we start there because where else is there to begin?  We are not looking for a quick fix and we get excited when the focus changes to enjoying a healthier lifestyle.  “Workout” has become a dirty word because we have discovered how to “play.”

Some trainers recommend various supplements for their clients.  This is big business and most of us have tried at least one of these heavily marketed products that promise us the body of that supermodel we tacked to our refrigerator with the local pizza delivery magnet.  You know the one.  It’s the picture you cut out of a magazine that was advertising a revolutionary fat loss and muscle building product to make all our “hard body” dreams come true.  I have experimented with supplements, and kept a watchful eye out for increased bicep size and the development of some six pack abs.  In fact, I participated in a 30 day experiment with a popular brand of muscle protein supplement and tracked the progress with the latest equipment to measure body composition.  During the 30 days I increased my lifts just a bit in both frequency and load hoping to achieve the desired results if in fact the supplement didn’t live up to my expectations.  Alas, no change.  Fat and muscle percentages remained constant. I am certain however that if I had severely increased my frequency, repetitions and load, a change in muscle mass would have occurred.  Unfortunately, this may also increase our risk of joint injury, and at the very least, burnout!  Remember, I haven’t changed my body composition of any noteworthy degree in 30 years as a result of good nutrition and good exercise habits.  I was looking for my story maybe?  No story there either.

Passionate about my occupation, I have studied, compared, experimented and literally sweat out these 30 years in an attempt to offer my clients the latest and greatest methods and the best bang for their buck. This passion develops from truly believing in yourself and your service.  With no gimmicks working for me, I may have to resist being put out to pasture until the bitter end.  Experience and years in business with a history of clients who have followed my lead and enjoyed good health, healthy weight AND tight abs for year after year holds no revelations for me or for them.  We just go on living a life with no diet and exercise worries.  Maybe because we have it all figured out.

Lot’s of good stories, but just not mine!

  • I did not lose 100lbs and become a Fitness Trainer!
  • I do not have a miracle weight loss product to guarantee you will lose weight (because there isn’t one.)
  • I do not recommend that you lose 30lbs in a month with my program.  While improbable, it is possible to achieve results such as this, but we know this sets you up for regaining the weight and sometimes more.
  • I do not have a “before and after” picture of myself because aside from aging 30 years they would look very similar.


It seems then, that I don’t have a story

…. at least not one of fascination.  How can you get any attention or recognition for eating right and exercising for 30 years, and achieving some decent results from this behavior?  How can one persuade people to follow them on a journey of daily fitness and good eating habits knowing that only perhaps 2 lbs or so might be lost per week until they reach their goal?  Not so exciting huh?  I’ve got no hype… no propaganda and no miracle weight loss supplement.  I can only offer my client 30 years of experience along with a pretty good example of retained muscle, a ticking metabolism and a healthy weight.  It seems I may now be old enough to carry bragging rights.

What is your story?  I’d love to hear about your experiences in fitness and dieting.  I’d love to hear about your achievements and even your disappointments.  Please write and share what has worked for you or how you think one can improve their lifestyle overall.

Kimberly Robinson is a Certified Personal Fitness Trainer with the American College of Sports Medicine.  She lives in Ohio with husband Greg and has a grown married daughter, Lauren, who lives nearby.  Kimberly owns and operates Friends Fitness Company and keeps her fitness business on the road….literally, and in parks, high school stadiums,  recreational facilities and in a coffee shop if everyone just wants to chat rather than sweat.  Contact Kimberly  kim@friendsfitnessco.com

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3 Responses to “Everyone Has a Story!”
  1. Katie O says:

    Kim, I am GLAD you don’t have a story. When I signed up for a personal trainer at the YMCA, I looked at all the pictures of the trainers there and tried to pick out one that might be a little similar to me in age and motivation. I wanted someone to challenge me and get me back into the shape I had been most of my life or BETTER. Someone that I could look at and say, hey, there are people my age that look this good. :-) Your reputation preceeded you because I had never seen you with any clients before but the employees and other trainers told me I would not have to worry about being challenged, Kim would kick my butt. Just what I wanted. And I have not been disappointed.

  2. Katie O says:

    Also, I would have been turned off by a trainer that peddled less than studied, questionable supplements, gimmicks, and anything other than proper eating with real foods and generally accepted healthy weight loss rate guidelines. There are too many charlatans out there promoting the next greatest gimmick in weight loss and fitness when the real answer is move, more eat less (and more of the right foods). Anything other than that tends to be quick but nonsustainable method leading to disappointment and poor health. And some of those miracle weight loss programs are downright dangerous.

  3. kimmy says:

    Thank you for those comments Katie and thank you for not only participating in, but for always recommending Friends Fitness to others. It’s both flattering and an honor to have someone of your professional stature taking part in my programs. Thanks for putting your trust in me to help you reach your healthy lifestyle goals.

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