April 22, 2016

Starting over...in the best possible way

Monday began my new life as a personal trainer. When I started my journey 7 months ago, I wasn't exactly sure where my career was headed. In January I started thinking about fitness. I talked to friends, family, and sought out fitness professionals for input and advice. When I finally registered for the NASM Personal Training certification, I was excited. The studying was hard. I was by myself a lot and as an extrovert, that was draining for me. When I finally passed my exam at the end of March, I grew nervous that I might not find a job or a job that was fulfilling.
Not related to starting over but a fun pic with my Chinese zodiac symbol!

I learned quickly that those fears were unfounded. Days after applying for jobs, I landed a few interviews, and happily a few job offers. Honestly, I think I got a bit lucky that gyms were willing to talk to me despite the fact that I lack a deep fitness background. I ended up taking a position at a small boutique gym that specializes in one-on-one training. 90% of the gym's offerings are training and they have some small group workouts as well.

When I arrived at work on Monday morning at 7:00 AM, I didn't exactly know what to expect. I knew that my first week would be filled with shadowing, learning, and orientation-type activities, but the structure and specifics were not terribly clear. As I tend to like structure and knowing what to expect, I was nervous.  I'm 4 days in and loving it. Yes, I'm totally overwhelmed and exhausted...there are SO many new things to learn. But the best part is that I am having a blast and really enjoying the other trainers. Fun fact, one of them trains a well-known rapper and flies all over the globe with him. I feel cool just knowing this!
The wardrobe is pretty simple and easy!
Our gym has tons of equipment (aka toys) so I have been experimenting during every free moment if there's a free exercise room. So far, I've learned the sandbag, slam balls, TRX, and tens of exercise combos I had never thought of or didn't know. My notebook is quickly filling with pages of exercises and the associated muscle group(s). I am trying to be a sponge and soak up as much as possible. It's fun, although there are moments when I feel overwhelmed by the learning curve I'm on.

Hmm what else...
- My legs are exhausted every day from being on my feet for hours. For example, I was on my feet on Thursday from 5:35 AM-2:00 PM with a 45 minute break at 11:30.
- Finding a free moment to eat is hard! There are no breaks between clients so I have been making a hearty smoothie the night before and that helps fuel me until the late morning break.
- Also...finding time for bathroom breaks is hard!
- Throwing on my personal trainer t-shirt and workout pants/shorts and sneaks is a pretty sweet deal. I have bought a few more pairs of capris because we are asked to wear black or grey and I figured I could use a few more options.
- Gyms are FREEZING when you're not working out! I often run the hallway or do a few squats or jumping jacks to warm up. Or I'll jump in on a set with a client (assuming that's ok with them) to keep warm. I'm excited to get the gym hoodie!
- Getting up at the crack of dawn isn't so bad until you do it for a few days. My shift will start as early as 5:00 but I've been in the gym most mornings at 5:30 this week. Ouch! Therefore...
- I have been getting really good at prepping everything the night before. My clothes are laid out, my smoothie is blended and in the fridge, my snacks are organized in the fridge and on the counter and I get my bags organized. It's kind of a chore but it makes the mornings so much simpler and quicker.

I know that eventually the novelty of the newness will wear off and this will feel like a job eventually. I hope that I can run around the gym with a stupid grin on my face at least a few days a week. If so, I will call that a success. Until then, you can find me in the back room of the gym testing every piece of equipment I can get my hands on...

Read more about my journey to starting over:
Where in the world is Christine the blogger?
Funemployment in a nutshell
* Reinventing Christine

Ever started a new career in a new industry? Any advice?
{Christine}

21 comments:

  1. Your schedule is sounding like mine! I am at work by 6:30, and literally on my feet all day, only down time is lunch. I do everything the night before, and I am totally exhausted. Except I work with infants rather than working people out! Good luck, I know you will be good at this!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Maggie! I know that the schedule will take a bit of an adjustment...afternoon naps are key right now!

      Delete
  2. I'm so happy to hear that you're enjoying your new job, Christine. After all that you went through to get to this point, its great that you're finding the new gig as rewarding as you are. Some of your limitations at work are very similar to mine - when to find the time to sit down, use the bathroom, etc. But when you're doing something you love, its easy to forget about those limitations.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! I am stocked to find something that makes me so happy to get up everyday. Yes, I am sure we have similar issues with breaks - will take a bit of an adjustment.

      Delete
  3. Christine, so glad you are enjoying your new job :) I started mine on Monday and enjoying the newness factor of everything (and I'm drinking the corporate kook-aid haha). I'm excited to read what you learn in your first year and how your day/life will evolve. Do you think you'll also branch out to run coaching or have a seminar (ex. beginner runners)? I know some of the trainers (including my old one) had a 6 week running bootcamp :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Congrats to you too! I've been under a rock in terms of blogging lately so I feel a bit out of touch with all my buds. Really happy for you!! :) I haven't decided on any expansion things yet...but I have a ton of ideas scribbled in my notebook and I hope to someday specialize a bit...not sure if that will be in running or in another area.

      Delete
  4. Yay, so happy for you. Although being at work at 5am does not sound fun but if it's something you like to do, I'm sure you won't mind!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you!! Yea, the hours are kind of tough but honestly, I can still manage a nap in the afternoon and still have a semi-normal life. Trade-offs! :)

      Delete
  5. Yay, glad you're enjoying the new job! It sounds tough but fun :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Starting something new is never easy but this has been really fun so far. Thanks for your kind words, Chaitali!

      Delete
  6. This sounds so exciting, Christine! I'm willing to bet it will never be "just a job", and yes, I have started over more than once.

    Sounds like you've found the perfect position.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Aw thanks Judy! So far, I feel so unbelievably lucky that I've been able to land on my feet and find something that is a great fit.

      Delete
  7. So happy you are loving your new job so far! 5am is a rough start time though. The newness factor may wear off, but I'm sure you'll still have a great time while you're there!

    I can relate, I'm a lawyer and knew shortly after I finished school I needed to do something else. I'm still in the process of "starting over" but I'm already so much happier not being in a firm anymore. Even though I'm looking for a more permanent job in a different location, what I'm doing now is so much better. I love hearing stories of people who "started over" because it's such a hard and scary process and it's nice to see success stories of people who are so much happier after!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is SO HARD. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise. Jumping out of your comfort zone is not easy, especially when it means your livelihood, fulfillment, etc. I have had plenty of days where I have thought "what are you doing, Christine" but luckily it has paid off. I'm convinced that hard work and a positive attitude can really make a huge difference when you're starting over. We'll see where this leads... And best of luck to you too as you navigate a career transition!

      Delete
  8. christine - so happy to read this. i hope you continue to love your new career even on the difficult days :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks my friend! I am so pumped that it's been such a fun time so far.

      Delete
  9. Congrats on finding a position so quickly. Hearing about your new career path is inspiring! I hope your clients are fun and I bet it will be satisfying to track their progress!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I feel so lucky that a job came so quickly....definitely blessed! It's been such a crazy time to transition and I'm excited to get settled again.

      Delete
  10. Wow! That's so exciting! Congratulations on your new job. I'm sure you'll love it since you're so passionate about fitness. Can't wait to read more about it!

    ReplyDelete
  11. This is so exciting, congrats ! Always scary starting a new job but also so many possibilities. When ever I changed jobs, I took me about 6 months to really get in the groove, feel comfortable and build credibility, but in the end totally worth the fatigue of the beginning. Can't wait to hear about how it goes.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Great Blog Christine!!! So interesting to read what a new trainer at Fitness Together thinks, and feels about our facility. We love having you, and know you're going to do very well. With your upbeat attitude, knowledge and dimples you'll be a big hit! Welcome to the TEAM!!

    ReplyDelete