WHAT AN AMAZING JOURNEY IT’S BEEN SO FAR..
I launched Azad Singh Fitness in April of 2015, so this post is a little late! I saw an ongoing trend of online coaching/personal training available by people mainly off of social media pages and a huge market out there. I set out with the aspiration to provide a better service than competitors and truly offer a tailor-made approach. So far it’s been an absolutely fantastic journey.
I’ve worked with people worldwide from all walks of life and achieved some great results too! To say the least, it’s been an eventful 6 or so months, I’ve learnt a lot and strive to continually progress my services and help people. Before I get too carried away going into specifics I’d like to rewind and talk a little bit about online personal training.
ONLINE PERSONAL TRAINING (COACHING)
So what exactly is online personal training?
Well I think online coaching is a better and more relevant term. The entire spectrum of buying things and getting information has shifted online. As a result in recent years people (qualified or not) have been offering training and nutrition plans online. The downside to this has been that you could get two totally different people with opposite goals reading the same eating plans. It’s certainly not an efficient way for people to hit their goals. Generic plans, to an extent just do not work. This is where the word ‘tailored’ comes in.
I take pride in a fully tailored service. I have worked with many people and can honestly say NO TWO workouts have been the same. I have worked with many siblings, gym partners, couples and friends who can all testify to this. I ask you to answer a very thorough 30 question form for me so I can get a deeper understanding of your lifestyle and all fitness related things alike. Sleep and stress play such a huge role and I couldn’t believe they were ignored in services I bought. Deluxe clients get the added benefit of a phone/Skype call so we can establish more of a personal connection. From there I create and send out tailored workout and nutrition plans as well as tips. The service is thorough with all exercise guides, some facts linked to your goals and even recipes! I then keep on top of things via email, instant messaging or phone (depending on which package). This way I am able to keep on top of progress and act as more of a coach – hence online coach is more appropriate.
Online personal training / coaching basically allows trainers like myself to have a wider outreach. It’s one thing working in a local gym where your clients will come from a 5 mile radius. It’s totally another when offering your unique services online and working with people from around the world. Social media influence plays a big role but the same marketing tools remain such as word of mouth. Results will always speak volumes – online or one to one training.
How I researched…
I started out in the early months of 2015 by assessing the market, seeing if there was a demand. Amongst the vegetarian community there definitely was. I then went on to buy services from the worlds leading online trainers (self-proclaimed and based on number of followers). It must be said I was very disappointed. They were asking me only 5 questions – my height, weight, allergies, exercises I couldn’t perform and whether I wanted to gain mass or lose. I was baffled. How was somebody able to create ‘tailor made’ plans for me, including things that I would enjoy from just these questions. That’s when I realised they didn’t.
I won’t be naming any names but it’s fair to say I was very disappointed. As a vegetarian the trainer had no idea how to approach me in terms of nutrition. I was recommended 300g TOFU and 6 slices of bread in one meal and another comical example of a meal was 6 scoops of whey protein. Just what am I supposed to do with that? I soon came to realise mine or the other 1000’s of clients interests weren’t at heart. These other industry leading trainers (who have millions of followers) were looking to churn as many people as possible with a sub-standard service.
For me that was when it hit home to aim for 1/100th of the clients but offer a quality service. For one they’re more likely to stick to me as a coach and secondly they’ll share my name and services (Azad Singh Fitness) with their knowns because of the amazing results and personal touch.
I’ve worked with people from many walks of life and below I’m going to showcase some stories 🙂 Here are some of the amazing clients I’ve worked with since April.
Being in this line of work is far more than a pretty before and after picture (why I don’t post many on social media). I’ve understood more and more the importance of them so I’ll create a TRANSFORMATIONS page on this website soon.
Manvir is probably one of the most driven and hardworking individuals I met and it’s really a dream for any trainer to work with such a person. He was hands down ready to do anything suggested to get the results desired and still puts in 110% effort. This means the sessions and activity recommended plus an hour of extra walking! I’ve never come across someone so disciplined so Manvir deserves the fantastic results. Manvir has lost a substantial amount of fat whilst increasing fitness, muscle and strength.
Here’s what he had to say…
4 months in and 13kg lighter! I’ve always found it difficult to lose fat. At the beginning, I started to follow Azad on social media. I quickly realised he was very clued up and gave the services a go. Azad hasn’t let me down! He’s an amazing PT. Very knowledgable, professional and passionate about what he does. Azad tailor-made my workout/diet plans to suit my lifestyle and work and I’m delighted with my results so far. Highly recommended! Thanks Azad.
Pardeep (Australia) was a beginner in the gym and had low confidence. Keeping this in mind I set up simple exercises where he was able to learn the movement patterns without injuring or embarrassing himself (this was a big concern for him – which is the reason I removed burpees and such movements). Pardeep was always over-thinking about technique and results so I decided to explain over a series of phone calls and Skype him in the gym to work on technique! He has made great progress in muscle mass and general health as his diet is now far more rounded compared to what he was originally consuming.
Here’s what he had to say…
Azad has always helped me in the gym and out. I live with other Punjabi guys who used to intimidate that I haven’t made progress. I wasn’t used to eating these kind of foods. Initially I put on some extra body fat as I wasn’t training properly. Azad skyped me in the gym for some sessions and we worked on technique and intense training – this is when I began to sweat! We adjusted nutrition as needed and now progress is visible. Everybody at the Gurdwara here says there’s a difference and my body fat is back under control.
Simran (Thailand) has struggled with weight training and losing fat in the past. She has some underlying hormone issues meaning it’s easy to put on fat but hard to remove. She hated weight training – especially for legs! I love legs training 😀 so interestingly we moved forward and I suggested some fun (I hope) exercises which she has been doing. She has never enjoyed fitness and the gym so much and is losing fat (around 3kg)! Being from Thailand there is a whole different food culture to consider – I was able to help and we fitted in everything she enjoyed into the nutrition plan.
Here’s what he had to say…
It was absolutely worth it, thank you so much Azad for the personalised service. I know it must have been tough for Azad to create the plans as I was so picky with exercises and our culture is different here (we eat out quite often). I love milk and also have not much time to eat between studying and college. Azad was able to offer his best insights and it works well for me. It can be hard to manage fitness with everything but Azad is always there to support. Thank you so much for the motivation.
WHAT YOU SAID. WHAT I DID
It would be arrogant of me to say I bought from other trainers, beat their services and now offer mine. Well I party did do that but I’m always looking for ways to improve my services so that myself and the clients get the most out of it.
At the three months in I took feedback from clients to improve my services. My purpose of this post isn’t to blow my own trumpet in any way, just would like to be as transparent as possible. Common negative points people mentioned was the level of communication (lacking) and that they wanted to feel more accountable. I agreed that this was an area that needed vastly improving if people were to feel like they actually had a personal trainer. I didn’t want to become like some of the other trainers and just create plans and leave them to it. Still something I’m working on till this day.
Common consensus was that the plans were well designed, intense and worked well. Nutrition has been the hardest thing for people to stick to (as expected). The below image will go into more detail. I took all these things on board and tried to offer more of a rounded service – I’ve tried to illustrate everything below.
It’s been amazing so far and I hope the next 6 months and beyond are just as rewarding. As with any startup it takes time to stand on your own two feet and establish results to then showcase to other people. I will continue in this truthful and transparent way. If you’re reading this – I look forward to working with you 😉