This interview seemed to fit nicely with New Years Day.
I recently had a great conversation with Garry Robinson about what he’s been up to. Garry is a bootcamp instructor, like you and ,I but has now expanding his skills by to coaching other trainers, selling his business and writing books.
Read on for some ideas of where your career could take you.
Kyle: You recently got a gig up in Coffs Harbour training athletes. How did that come about? Did you have to abandon your existing clients?
No, I didn’t abandon my clients! I sold my outdoor fitness business in 2011 to a really passionate and knowledgeable friend who wanted to expand his own training business. My assistant trainers stayed on and they are still coaching the gang. Now that I am back in Sydney I occasionally get to train with them. The business is thriving without me which is a nice legacy to leave.
I moved north with the idea to take a year off and learn by immersing myself in fitness. I was only there a few days when I met the owner of the local swimming pool who also happened to be running a Crossfit program out of the facility.
We chatted about how I could help her get more clients and I joined the coaching staff. Because they have such an awesome outdoor environment there, we ran almost all the group sessions outdoors in the gardens of the pool. It is such a beautiful setting. I learned heaps of new ideas from the other coaches and got the opportunity to develop the program that is now in BWI vol 2.
Triathlons are really popular in Coffs Harbour and a lot of athletes would come in and train with us. We also trained groups of teenagers, kids and some local sports teams. It was an awesome learning experience and one I will never forget.
Kyle: Tell us a story about one of your bootcampers that touched you.
I continue to be inspired by a man called Tony Pellicano. He joined my outdoor group in early 2009 and still trains there today. He was very overweight at that time and his health was suffering enormously. I remember he struggled to walk just 1km and found it difficult just to raise his arms above his head. He and his wife desperately wanted to have child but they knew they had to change their lifestyle first.
Tony is very determined and coachable though. He not only lost a lot of weight but he completed the Blackmores Half Marathon in Sydney in 2010, just 18 months after starting on the program. He recently had a ‘man makeover’ and now looks and feels fantastic.
He has 3 beautiful children (including twins) and is an inspiration to everyone who knows him.
Kyle: What is the process you do around planning your bootcamps? Do you schedule time, have a set ritual?
Planning is absolutely vital. I first decide on the main goal of my program and how long it will take to achieve the goal. Eg. I might run a 6 week fat loss program. These days, I would just save myself a load of time and pick one of the pre-determined fat loss programs from Popular Programs e-book, but if I wanted to start from scratch with new workouts, I would identify categories of workouts that I could use to achieve the goal.
For example, high intensity and interval training is extremely effective for fat loss and if you combine that with some strength training you have a formula for torching fat and preserving muscle.
Then I simply go to my library of workouts and choose ones that fall into those categories (I now have over 500 different workouts!). I make sure that no workouts are repeated over the course of a program – unless it a performance program where I need to baseline and measure results. In that case I might run a beep test or basic fitness test at the beginning and end.
If I didn’t have my massive library of workouts I would probably spend hours trawling the internet looking for new ideas and trying to create fun workouts from them.
But it takes me almost as long to plan a good workout as it does to deliver it, so you can imagine how much time I save by using BWI 1 and 2.
Kyle: You have some really awesome workouts in your books. How on earth do you come up with the ideas for these? Where do you draw your inspiration?
For example: Sometimes I will start with a name, or a holiday or even just one exercise that I want to include and will then build my workouts around that?
Garry: Mostly by spending time with other trainers and picking up ideas from them. The Crossfit community is made up of some very knowledgeable and experienced coaches and they are very generous about sharing their ideas. I also have friends in the military and emergency services who are fitness enthusiasts and share ideas with me too.
I invest a lot of time and money in my education – read a lot of books, subscribe to blogs (such as bootcampideas.com) and attend seminars and training courses.
Kyle: Your new book, Bootcamp Workout Ideas 2, who is this and isn’t this for and do we need a copy of BWI Vol 1 as well?
BWI 2 is for personal trainers who want to stand out from the crowd and deliver really effective group outdoor fitness programs or bootcamps. It is more than just a collection of random drills and exercises.
There is science behind creating effective training programs for groups so I included some information about that and organised the workouts into an actual program that you can follow.
If you already have BWI 1 you will find loads of brand new drills and workout ideas in the new book too and if you don’t, well, get both!
Speaking of getting both books. Don’t miss out on getting them at 50% off, today is the last day of the Kaizen Fitness Christmas Sale.