Tuesday, June 25, 2013

$70 - unlimited classes??

This entry contains comments and opinions members and personal training clients have shared over the past year.


The Power Room has been open about 13-14 months now and for the most part, it's been an extremely successful situation.  That being said, those who know me or have read my past entries, you know I don't judge success by wins and losses, dollar signs or status.  
I judge it by the experiences that take place and the feelings that are shared.  

Rewinding a bit, prior to opening, the people I worked w in boots or in the gyms, knew this was coming long in advance and they knew it was going to be good.  Pretty much everyone anticipated getting the boots back up and rolling and getting involved in power yoga, something I had been preaching for the last few years.

So we opened and things started rolling along, mostly power yoga and things were great.  
As things moved along, I could see it was time to expand a little bit, which was always the plan.  From Power Vinyasa bloomed Power Plus (BOGA), a powerful yoga flow that incorporate dumbbells.  Then came Nick's "ready, set, dance!" which will return this fall and finally came Blue Chip Bootcamp.  
And now we're on our way into transitioning again and broadening or horizons.  Next up... BC Kettle Bell Class,  more BOGA and then Spin.

4+ power yoga classes per week
1-2 BOGA classes per week
2 Bootcamps per week
1-2 Kettle Bell classes per week
Then eventually 2-3 Spin classes but we won't count this yet.
... For just $70/month.

On paper, that's around 7 extremely high quality training options per week, over 25 classes for $70.
People say "dude, that's cheap... It must be so so." 
Just the opposite, and I refuse to increase the rates just to "increase the value."  Yes, that makes sense.  When something has higher price tag, people assume its better.  I agree 1000% and I often shop that way myself.  
But this is personal.  
I was recently looking into a yoga retreat... Til I saw it cost $2800 for a 4 day event.  
There are yoga studios everywhere that charge $125+ for monthly unlimited classes.... How many people are taking yoga 7 days per week?
Here, we're giving you a legit training schedule that you can literally use 7 days per week.  And that's the difference, that's the value.  
Who spins 7 days per week?
Who attends bootcamp 7 days per week?
See my point?  So here, you're getting a rotation, a complete training package, for $70.
(Now, when I buy spin bikes, that rate may go up $5-$10 or I'll come up w a new package, but it will always make sense and ill communicate all changes, and that's also the value.  I'm 100% fine with you knowing the "why's," of things that go in here... Think the gym owners want to have that same conversation?  Doubt it.)

A complete training package.
One more thing and this is the part where I had to write "this entry contains comments..." at the top. 
When you are in and committed, it's not just a robotic situation where you show up, take class, go home, come back, take class, go home, repeat, no results, repeat, wasting money, see you tomorrow, come back, and on and on and on.  No,  that's not going on here.  Love it or love to hate it, there's an accountability here and you're goals are a priority, no matter what those goals are.  That bald guy that runs a few classes.... He's not letting you off the hook w 50% effort :) you're here for a reason and you're going to get what you paid for PLUS some.  PLUS some, is key.  
The PLUS some is the stuff you don't get anywhere else.  
I think there a 1,000,000 great instructors/trainers capable of running a cool class that can make you work and sweat, no doubt. But "you don't get all the benefits of a very, very legit, high end personal trainer, running classes, holding people accountable and guiding you to your goals anywhere else."

"I've taken Bootcamps all over NE Ohio, this is different.  This is training."

"I never thought could do the things they asked me to do, until I did it and now I'm training smarter and harder then ever."

Alllllll that PLUUUUS we give you money off if you lose body fat!  (As I wrote that... I thought "crap, someone's going to think I'm trying to give it away for free...").
Am I?  :)

If you're interested in getting into phenomenal shape, achieving goals, big or small, this is the place you should be checking out.  

Sunday, June 23, 2013

"To feel PHENOMENAL...

(Written July, 2009... still 1000% relevant)
Last week, a client left the gym and text "I'm not seeing any results! What is wrong with me?!" I took a minute to respond, and in that minute I flashed back to several conversations about double cheeseburgers, or drinking too much, or I'm too tired to work out or do I really have to run and I replied, "If you want to feel great everyday... and if you want to look great everyday... you have to put in great work everyday!"

Then I thought about it later and I said "great?" Sometimes great isn't good enough, we want to feel phenomenal everyday! And I placed that quote on my Boot Camp flier "Too feel phenomenal... too look phenomenal... you have to put in phenomenal work." There are no days off. Maybe a little cheat snack once or twice a week but no days off. Every workout, every cardio session, every meal, nearly every single moment adds up to something greater than the actual moment, and none of it can be taken for granted. You cant cut a run short with a weak excuse then complain about not being prepared for a 5k, just like you cant skip an important work meeting to take a long lunch... somewhere down the line, it all adds up.

I wrote "To feel phenomenal..." first for a reason. For me, its the most important thing involved in training. If the workouts don't feel "right," if they don't make you feel better inside, if the running doesn't make you feel better about yourself for pushing further, then maybe you need to re-think your strategy. The whole purpose for getting in shape is to feel good... or great... or phenomenal! So if you don't feel it, something needs to change.

"To look phenomenal..." is deep within us even though sometimes we don't want to admit it. This is #2 because without that great "feel," you wont stick with it long enough to look good or great, so never mind phenomenal. I'd say 95% of us care very much about how we look in our clothing or what type of clothes we can wear, and this is often the only motivation people need to make changes in their diets, workouts or overall training programs and lifestyles. So again, put in phenomenal work!

Make it your goal to out-work, out-run, out-perform... the old you! Never mind the next person, you compete with and for yourself.

Good luck,

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Another Step

I have this "issue," where I have troubles accepting successes, big or small.

Example, I've been involved with football for quite a few years now.  If we win, I really don't give it much attention and never take any credit for it.  I actually try to remove myself from it completely, because I'm kind of uncomfortable with it and I don't want the players to see how I react.  In a way, success is expected so it happens and then time to move on.  (I read that last line and I know it reads pretty cold and distant... I cant help it but I'm trying to figure it out.)  I was a part of a state contending team for a couple years and I really dont remember celebrating anything.  I enjoyed everything very much and I actually got a lot more of a positive feeling from practices than games.  But like I said, come game time, success is expected.
If a class is successful, I really don't attach myself to that either and I don't even try to wonder why, it just was and that's it.  I let it go and move along (observingbystander?).

On the flip side, if we lose, its the exact opposite. I try take all the blame and I'm really hard on myself.  Sometimes it probably goes too far and is borderline unhealthy.  I was also part of some teams that did not have great win-loss records and those years made me wonder if coaching was right for me. I took the blame every week, never putting it on the kids and looking back, I wouldn't change a thing.  I will never blame anyone else for coming up short, I'll take the blame for not installing the proper process to have success.  I've had classes that tanked, and that also made me wonder.  A loss on the field, a "loss," with a class, I'd wonder "Whats wrong with me?  What am I missing?  What am I not doing? How can I turn this around?" and lose sleep and it was extremely stressful.

Summary - Success, I basically ignore. Failures obsess me.

So last spring when I was building the Power Room with Scarlett and my Dad (with paint help from Jeanna and Melissa who painted the awesome symbol), some conversations went on that I basically ignored.  It was a pretty cool, but tedious process.  If you've never installed wood flooring... well, you're not missing much.
All throughout, my Dad would say "Boy this is pretty cool," and "This is going to look nice."  And I would basically ignore him.  Not because I wanted to ignore his conversation, but because I couldn't let myself see it that way.  At the time, it wasn't cool, I saw a to do list.  I saw a project that needed to happen.  Did I know it would be a nice room when finished?  Yes, but it had nothing to do with me even though I was one of the people actually working on the room... I know that sounds crazy, but I needed to dis-attach emotionally.
We finished and he said "You can smile about this, you know?" I didn't.  Maybe I was afraid to be happy for fear of failure.  If I got my hopes up and it tanked... that might have been too hard.  I just thought of that right now.

This week I finally had the time to take classes with Lindsay (Wed at 6:15) and Alex (Thurs at 6).  I was supposed to be at a concert but sold the tickets at the last minute.  Wednesday before class, I just wanted to walk in and sit down and not do anything.  No straightening, no fidgeting around trying to adjust anything, just wait on the mat like any other class and wait for class to begin... and I actually did it and had my most enjoyable class ever.  I was able to remove myself from the room and just be on the mat and with the group and it felt great.
Then Thursday came along and I was pretty much able to do the same thing, but this time I was jumping off the mat occasionally to snap a few pics.  Somehow, between something Alex said and the pics and jumping back on the mat for crescent lunges and such, I thought "How freaking cool is this?" and I smiled.  I looked at the symbol different and thought "My sister painted that... How cool is that?"  Friends and family helped build this room, my mom made the curtain... how cool is that?  I'm taking an awesome class with awesome people, awesome instructors, doing what I love to do in a room I love being in... how cool is that??  I proposed to Scarlett here... that's really cool!  And I think I had this goofy grin on face the entire second half of class.

People talk all the time about how they love the room and how comfortable it is and how they feel being there, I should be taking some pride in that.

Its not about ego... I think that might be why I've tried to disengage from successful situations and hide sometimes.  I was always so concerned with "Hey, don't look at me, they did it," when things went right.  So maybe I need to learn its OK to take a compliment and OK to smile about something that goes pretty cool.  Its OK to occasionally celebrate success... just not too much :)

Like I've said 1,000,000 times... I'm on the path too.  We;re all on the journey together.  This is something I'm definitely working on, and very glad it came to light this week the way that it did.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013


I love quotes. I use them all the time, I try to come up with my own, I read them on t-shirts and bumper stickers... if I'm somewhere and someone says something awesome, I try to write it down so I can remember it and pass it along. I was attending a clinic at Penn State probably 7-8 years ago, and I was sitting in on Larry Johnson, Sr.'s portion of the event. He's going through his defensive line drills and coaching points and he's starting to wrap up so he turns off his overhead projector and begins walking back and forth across the stage, sharing a story about a conversation he had with some other high school coaches and a couple of their players. Repeated how the coaches missed their high school days so much and how it was the best time in their life and the "good ole days," (a phrase I now despise) and how they try to teach their kids to cherish the moments because they’ll never return and it'll never get better... ... and Coach Johnson just stood there staring at the crowd and I immediately had that crazy old feeling running through me because I knew what was coming and it actually reminded me of the way my old coach used to talk to me... goose bumps.  He said "NEVER GET BETTER THAN THIS??? THEY TEACH THEIR KIDS THAT THEY HIGHLIGHT IN HIGH SCHOOL?!?!?" From here he went on a 10 minute verbal rampage, like a preacher at his most passionate, lecturing the rights and wrongs of never looking back and highlighting every single day and being opportunistic and I remember having goose bumps and literally fighting back some tears (and even right now, thinking about it, takes me right back there.) That day, that man and that speech changed me forever. Without a doubt in my mind.

Highlight every single day.

Opportunistic... I love that word.. and I don't think it’s a real word because my auto-correct is highlighting it J  I have nights where I can't sleep because there is something I didn't get a chance to finish. I used to play video games and now I think about it and think "there has to be something better I could be doing." I had a season where I coached defensive backs (and a few coaching linebackers and calling plays) and I used to preach "be opportunistic," daily. "When that ball goes up, IT'S YOURS! Go get it!" How every single play is an opportunity to make something positive happen. HHHMMM... think that translates into real life?

Every single day, every single work day, training day, days with friends and family... or just moments! It doesn't have to be a full day at all. A moment at the grocery store where you see someone who may need a hand or to just be friendly to someone you don't even know! Sound corny? Good. Because really, the days and moments aren't all about you!  It's about us. They're about the finger prints and footsteps you leave. And it's not about being noticed or recognized either. 
Its about making a positive impact to IMPROVE. Improve lives, improve your life, improve your surroundings, improve the workplace, improve your home, improve your relationship, and improve the lives of the people you care about most. 
Otherwise, what are we doing here?  

Monday, June 17, 2013


There isn't much we do that's worth it, that's easy.  You know what I mean?  So many quotes along the lines of "anything worth having takes work."  No doubt.
I can't even begin to give a list of "Thee Most Important Things You Need To Achieve Your Goals!" because there probably isn't a clear cut #1, there's 20 #1's.
But something that's right up there at the top, is your support system, and the layers involved in that system.  
Your support system can come from all over.  It can be your significant other, a coworker, a friend, a family member, workout partner, anywhere.  I do think it's crucial to have a great support system, no matter the goal you're going for.  Getting things done takes time and patience and persistence and mistakes will be made and mini goals will be hit and through all that, you need to share and vent and communicate.   Most of the time, it's even harder when you're trying to do it on your own. 

On the flip side of the support system, is the Anti-Support System.  The negative minded, jealous, haters.  We ALL have them or we've known them... Some of us have known many.  And being around haters and negative minded people is like sitting next to a rotten garbage can, all you have to do is get up and move your seat.  If your out in the backyard, do you sit near the garage?  Nope.  So don't sit near them at work or anywhere else.  They'll only poison your mind and do everything they can to take the wind from your sails because haters only know hate and want to see people fail so they can say "I told you so."

Find a "new table," to sit at, find a new tribe.  One that fits your goals and your lifestyle.  You'll never be successful if your constantly surrounding yourself w people telling you everything you can't do or people intentionally placing obstacles in your path.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Some new, some old, the beginner, the vet and some of the middle

Finally!!! Summer is here... sort of.  For the first time in quite a while, I was able to get on out on a run in the trails behind Squires Castle.  Felt amazing!  Two reasons, #1, its an awesome trail and it feels incredible to run with all those trails around you, dirt under your feet, bushes and ground shrubs all around the trails... very comforting feeling.  #2, I was running with a very exceptional group of people.

The people around me, from downtown to Perry, from 12-68 years old, they've always been an inspiration to me.  An inspiration to do more, to create more and to train myself harder.  They've always kept me going.  And every once in a while, you meet a person or a group of people that somehow push you even further, to make you look for something better, to evolve and grow.  That's happening right now.

Sometimes its hard to tell what members/clients think about the trainer-client relationship.  I think they probably think its us (us being the trainers and instructors I work with) giving to them.  Giving them a workout, or giving them nutritional handouts or giving them homework or whatever else.  And we do, we give a lot.  But the other side of the coin... how much they give, how much YOU give, its immeasurable.  I've said this time and time again, I cant really put into words how much it all means to me when people show up and absolutely bust their ass and take it to another level they never even thought they had... when they take it to tears and pain, when they take their bodies to the limit... and then they wipe it all away and keep it moving.  How can I not strive to continue to help find new ways of training and to evolve the yoga room and continue to make Blue Chip the absolute best training option?  Its impossible.


We went through a bit of breakthrough session and I came away with this thought:
Accepting the grind isn't just about breaking out of habits and a comfort zone, its about burning those old habits and that old comfort zone to the ground.  It's about smashing that thing into complete extinction  burning that bridge that leads to lazy habits and non-living.  
Imagine that land... A place where fast food and the couch is an awesome moment... imagine that land where super sized cokes and pepperoni pizzas... Imagine the where we don't run, we barely walk, we don't talk, we eat crappy packaged foods, and our minds are numb and we're barely present.  
now imagine viewing that land from afar... from across the wooden bridge.  Now burn it.

Imagine that crazy land.  The land where texting replaced talking.  Where fast food nuggets became a once per week meal for kids.  The land where your "support," team guilt you into poor decisions that hurt you.  The land where kids ride motorized jeeps and play handheld games instead of a bike, baseball bat and glove.    The land where people no longer say hi in the parks or the street, where people cut you off in a car or a grocery line.  The land of speed and immediate pleasure and satisfaction, no matter the cost.
We/you don't have to live there... you can burn that bridge too.  


As we're running through the woods, someone on the run said "I need an oxygen tank."  I had to bite my tongue soooo bad.  Not because what I wanted to say would hurt anyone's feelings, but because my response sounded so... maybe pompous?  i dont know, but I wanted to say "Its all around us."  That smartass crap might've gotten me tossed right over the edge, but its true, and i think thats why I love running in there.  It smells so clean and fresh.  The air feels new on your skin and the sweat you build through the trails, the ups and downs, lefts and rights... you just go and go and before you know it, your shirt is soaked, your feet are dirty and you have MORE energy!
How did that happen?


I posted:
It's taken me a long time to accept it, but this style of training that we offer just isn't for everyone. 
It's for people w heart and goals. It's for people on a mission. It's for people "who want to succeed as bad as they want to breathe." It's for people who know it's about more than just getting a "sweat in." 
It's about training your mind, body & soul for life. 

I'd like to elaborate a bit, line by line.
First line... nothing to clarify or elaborate.
Second line... eh... not really there either :)  Is that me saying "if you're not here, you have no heart"? Not really. Like I said, some people like Pop music, some people like Rock, it what it is.  But I know people who have come in.... and they're gone.  They thought they were on a level, the "acted," committed, but left.  And that was my conflict.  I thought "jeez, maybe I need to tone things down... maybe its too hard... maybe i need to build a beginner class."
Then I thought, actually it just finally settled on me, the thinking actually messed things up... this doesn't have to be for everyone.  This doesn't have to be easy.  This can be more intense and different and that's awesome.     And its not even about the "physical beginner."  Its about the mental beginner.  If you're a physical beginner, you'll be just fine here.  if you're a mental beginner... talk to me and I'll help you find the other bootcamps, no hurt feelings.  Everyone should find their groove and a place they feel like its their training "home."
I know that might read a little harsh or cocky but read it again with a different tone, its not.  I just cant and don't want to bring it down a notch.
Remember, Rule #14Don’t ask to be deprived of tension and discipline. These are the tools that shape success.

I heard a quote "Its a great mistake to think you've arrive when you haven't."
Pretty simple and to the point.  Very fitting too.  If you think you've made it... you haven't.  If you're shaking your head thinking "nah... I kinda have." You're wrong.
Now its just my opinion, do what you like.  For me, we never "make it."  :)  Its an evolving, always changing "thing."  Whatever your thing may be.
Remember   "The arrogance of success is to think that what we did yesterday is good enough for tomorrow."
Read http://observingbystander.blogspot.com/2011/09/public-enemy-1.html


Its your life, be the director AND cast yourself as the star!  Not an extra.
You have a power within you far greater than anything you've ever believed.  Dig inside, pull it out, and go after every single one of your goals.  Every decision you make should have a goal attached to it, otherwise, what are you even doing?
For myself, my goal list is getting lengthy.  From far back, it might look like a to-do list.  But for, its my grocery list of life.  And I'm loading up the cart!



Monday - Power Vinyasa with Carl at 6
Tuesday - BootCamp with Jason at 6:30
Wednesday - Power Vinyasa with Lindsay at 6:15
Thursday - Power Vinyasa with Alex at 6

Saturday classes beginning in July!

Monday, June 3, 2013


(C'mon, not every blog can be about working out)

I grew up listening to a few different styles but all had similar attitudes.  I listened to Nirvana, Pearl Jam and the entire grunge scene, to Wu Tang Clan, Eminem and 2Pac to The Doors, The Who and Jimi Hendrix.
They hated pop and anything "manufactured."  Anything fake was offensive. 
They hated "rules," and marketing themselves.  They hated the pressure to change for the sake of sales or popularity.  Nearly every band listed above heard something along the lines of "Can't you make your first album again?"
I hated Puff Daddy.. What a stupid name.  I hated nsync, i hated TRL... Were there even other bands outside of Seattle in the early 90's?
(I could stop this blog now and those who know me would say "alright, I know where he's going, makes sense.")

They were genuine and real.  What they did, how they were, the music they made, couldn't have been anything other than what it was.  Real.  It was all truth, all heart.  No bullshit.  

It's not rare or weird for music to inspire us and even assist in teaching some lessons.  Thinking of lyrics by Curt Cobain, Pete Townsend, Eddie Vedder, and Jim Morrison bring back some nice thoughts.  I could point to those names/groups and say "they taught me this, this group taught me that," and so on.  During many conversations, someone says something and in the back of my head, I hear the guitar riff that gets it going. 
"Is something wrong, she said..."

The point is, the music was my example of what to I wanted to be and not to be.  Just as they despised "pop," I see that in fitness industry and feel that passion.  
I know an engineer who never stepped into a gym, knows nothing anout training or fitness, yet bought a chain and now getting rich off of it.  An insurance agent buying a bootcamp company and basically outsourcing the training for a fraction of the cost, making a lot of money off of the trainers.  I don't dislike those people but I wish they would've bought a subway instead.  
People see a gym or center and trust it just because its a known name and has big marketing.  When inside, it's just "pop."
Instructors and trainers who flip their opinions and stances as soon as they change "uniforms."  Thats offensive.  
Phony breeds phony.  
Anyone know how crazy top heavy the finances are at a couple local chain gyms? I do.  
At one end, I think "hey, settle down... Plenty of classes and training for everyone... Be nice."
On the other side, I think "Nah, this means too much to sit back and watch wannabes post their crap all day."  
Money or no money, I'll be doing to exact same things, will they?  

We don't run "pop," classes or change our minds based on money or popularity.  
We don't run programs or give coaches favors in exchange for contracts.
We run what we run and train how we train because its great.  And we don't need to buy into a chain or start kissing another companies ass to do it.  
We're looking to continuously develop awesome training packages for people, to serve and help people, not win a popularity contest, not see our names in print, not make a million dollars.  

I don't care if you never know my name or who I am when we meet, I care that you trust the logo will never steer you wrong.  

I read "You do not need to defend the truth.  Set it free, it will defend itself."

This Is Blue Chip