It has almost been 5 years since I started this gym and I have gone through many changes. In hindsight I had no business opening a gym and was unaware of the responsibility it entailed or what it would take to make it a success. I thought that I would get a industrial unit cover it in mats, get a rig some barbells, some plates and some kettlebells, a fresh CrossFit affiliation and the rest would just slot into place magically, on opening day the gym would be surrounded by people. Build it and they will come or so I thought. I was wrong only a couple of people turned up and the first year was pretty dire to say the least.
I ran before I could walk and made too many mistakes to count them all. It was then I came across Andy Mckenzie and his stuff and I did learn much from him. Over the years I slowly progressed the training too focusing on strict movement too individualised CrossFit then eventually leaving them and moving over to what Andy helped program and use a ‘Combined Strength’ program from his mentorship group I was part of for 2 years. Maybe the last 3 years things started to change with going on the Foundation seminar in 2015 at GymJones in Salt Lake City and learning from Rob Mcdonald AKA Bobby Maximus and 2017 the Intermediate Seminar. What attracted me to them was their focus on individualisation and their approach to training making it about strengthening the mental state of someone as well as the physical state. Its focus on periodization, cycles, moving from a strength cycle to a power cycle to a power endurance cycle to a endurance cycle etc etc I digged it and it was the direction I wanted to take the gym. Fast forward to 2018 and I have been working with Oli Jessop at G2G Coaching to complete my Level 2 gym Instructor course and now currently completing my level 3 personal training course. Oli’s help has been invaluable to get a objective assessment on my coaching and actually getting me to coach properly and professionally eventually.
There is still a heap load of work to do but I am starting to feel comfortable on the direction of the gym and the end goal of a personalised small group training gym which feels different special in short no ordinary gym. I am not just talking about proper individualised programming and personalised small group sessions but continue to develop and maintain the culture and community of a gym that helps and supports and has a team feel where we support each other to get the best out of ourselves. When we share with each other our successes such as being able to squat our bodyweight or 2x bodyweight or just having the confidence in our bodies to be able to lift a weight safely it creates a strong bond. When we challenge each other to work harder on our Friday conditioning session and I expect a performance you don’t think is possible your team mates will you on and take you further than thought possible. Breaking those self imposed limitations and taking your performance to a level you did not think possible.
It will always be a case of continuing to repeat our message and tell people what we stand for and what this gym represents. In short this is no ordinary gym, a gym that will meet you at the level you are currently at, work with other experts in their Field like Nicholas Evans at E-physiotherapy or Colin Gordon at Performance Sport Therapy or Marc Keys of Cast Iron Strength, if you are a beginner or someone who has never really trained before we might see hardcore or daunting or intense but the reality is we will break things down go over the foundations of movement, breathing and bracing and give you the tools to achieve your goals in strength, fitness and health in an environment that will not only get you stronger physically but also mentally through the group team training aspect.
You will be surprised at how physical challenges in the gym can prepare you for unforeseen challenges in life that can sometimes blind side you and if you haven’t voluntarily exposed yourself to this stimulus then it can overwhelm or even break you down. You can feel empowered by lifting a heavy weight off the ground with good form and confidence in your body as your bracing and in the right positions and the same for squatting a heavy weight. The doubt that can sometimes go through your mind when you do something you have never done before and achieve it like a new weight on a squat or a deadlift or a certain amount of reps at a weight can be liberating. This can also be true when doing say a row for 2mins and having a goal of hitting 600m and hitting it.
So next time you come to the gym don’t just think of it as a training session but an experience a time which to clear your head focus and be present and truly change yourself for the better each day.