Many gym owners open their doors and are excited at the prospect of sharing fitness with their community. In fact, many new gym owners channel their focus towards getting clients in the door and getting their business off the ground.
Somewhere down the line, a realization happens – owning a business is about much more than simply getting people in your door.
If you were like me, your direction was clear: help regular people live more enriched lives and become better versions of themselves through improving their fitness. Often times we focus on one goal and we forget about other aspects of the equation.
This is when many new gym owners realize they may be in over their heads. I know I was one of those people.
In 2011 when I opened my box with my wife, she came to the table with our entire business plan.
I came to the table with my knowledge of coaching, programming, and glute activation (lol).
At that point, my wife made me realize I had some serious holes in my game.
Soon after opening our doors, I realized I was in over my head and was basically trapped. While my wife had better knowledge of running a business than I did, we were still the blind leading the blind, so she reached out to a business mentor, Chris Cooper.
This was when we began our journey of becoming legitimate business owners.
It wasn’t easy and we had to break a lot of bad habits, make a lot of big changes to our facility, and implement more definitive roles and responsibilities.
Hopefully, if you’re in the same position, you’re looking into business coaching from someone smarter than yourself, just as you would if you were trying to improve, say, your Olympic lifts.
The point I’m trying to make here is that owning a gym is not all rainbows and sunshine. Your members probably think you just coach a few classes and then go home and take a nap. Clearly, that’s not the case.
The first thing that usually takes a backseat for gym owners is their own health and fitness. Ironically, most of your clients think you’re able to train whenever you want so realistically you should always be in great shape, but this certainly isn’t the norm.
Because you spend nearly every waking minute in your gym, when you have a free hour, usually you’d like to get outside of the gym. And training during classes usually doesn’t work. Members won’t usually recognize the fact that you’re just trying to get a workout. Many times your members will ask for coaching during a class when you simply want to put your head down and do you. I feel your pain because I’ve been there.
Moreover, because we are involved with CrossFit every waking minute, it becomes much easier to become burned out with high-intensity beatdowns. I find that people that have been doing CrossFit for 4+ years are usually ready for a break while not losing any of their conditioning or skills.
I’m going to ask you for just four hours a week of time to devote to training. You’ll have one “Recovery Day” and two complete rest days (the weekend).
Your training sessions will be concise and efficient.
You’ll be able to improve all aspects of your fitness while improving body composition.
You’ll also still retain your ability to do CrossFit when things like the Open comes up.
With this template, your recovery will be made a priority, because we know you’re already likely stressed out with your business. The implementation of high-resistance aerobic work will improve your ability to recover, as well as build your base of conditioning.
Because external loading is low with most of our conditioning work, you’ll be able to still do a CrossFit Metcon without feeling crushed; you actually may feel like you have more in the tank because you’re well recovered (I did significantly better in the CrossFit Open this year following this exact approach).
This program is derived from the Conjugate Method, but if you follow any of my work that’s not going to be a surprise. The Conjugate Method is quite possibly the best method of delivering concurrent fitness to athletes of all abilities. If you subscribe to our Affiliate Programming, then this template will align perfectly.
This intelligent approach to concurrent fitness is efficient and will never leave you feeling overtrained.
Our template looks like this:
• Max Effort Lower: Rack Deadlift: 1RM
• 2-4 Special Exercises for the glutes, hamstrings, abs
• 4-5 Rounds of Sledpull + Loaded Carry
• High-rep band work
• Max Effort Upper: Floor Press 1RM
• 2-4 Exercises for the triceps, upper back, biceps, and abs
• Overhead Carry Variation or high-rep band work
• High-rep band work
Recovery Measures or OFF Completely. If you have an extra hour take a 20-minute nap!
• Dynamic Effort Lower-Body: Box Squat + Sumo Deadlift
• 2-4 Special Exercises for the Lower-body + Abs
• Sled Variation or Alactic Work
• Dynamic Effort Upper-Body: Speed Bench Press
• 2-4 Special Exercises for the Upper-body + Abs
• Complex or GPP Based finisher
Saturday & Sunday
OFF. Spend time with your family and get outside the gym!
Overall, your time is valuable and the last thing you want to do is stress about your training session. This training will allow you to get in and get out in 60 minutes or less, which includes your warm-up.
You’ll incur gains in maximal strength, power development, and you’ll look better in a bathing suit! More importantly, your recovery will improve and you’ll likely feel less tired and stressed out.
Although I don’t own a gym anymore, I’ve been running this approach for the last 12 months and the results have been eye-opening, to say the least. More and more studies are proving that less is more with exercise and that compounded stress is a one-way ticket to overtraining.
Don’t make the mistake of putting your fitness on the backburner and don’t make the mistake of “beating yourself up” to maintain your performance. It’s simply not needed and an incredibly flawed way of thinking.