New Year’s Resolutioner Repellent


courtesy of Calvin and HobbesOk, so this time of year I can be a little bit of a jerk. Granted, I can be a little jerky the rest of the year too, but this time of year really gets to me. Why? Because I work in the fitness business.

And you know what happens during January in the fitness business…

New Year Resolutioners. Oh yeah. There they are… cluttering up the gym. Walking around with their mouths open, catching flies and creating drool puddles. Look at’em, plunking down their credit cards for one-year memberships when we all know that most will be gone by the middle of February

This time of year is supposed to be the “happy hunting” period for trainers. There’s lots of people in need of guidance and reeking of desperation floating around, and they’re easy pickings for trainers with sharp (or even rudimentary) sales skills. You know what? It’s never really been that way for me. I actually go out of my way to not attract those people.

Why would I do that? Why would I turn down an easy, fat January and February to ride well into the summer like most trainers I know?

Because this is my life. It’s not my job. It’s not what I trade for money. It’s my life. And I don’t choose to spend my life with people who aren’t congruent with my ideals, which in this case includes needing to make a serious change and improvement in their lives.

Now, I’m not saying that just because someone joins a gym in January that they’re doomed to failure and that they’re a waste of time. Far from it. Every year I’ve observed a few people from every facility I’ve been in join as New Year Resolutioners, say that “This is the year!” and actually mean it. They go on to become regular members of the gym, work hard, and see success. That’s a beautiful thing.

They were ready to make the change in their life.

See, that’s the difference right there. Talk to every New Year Resolutioner that succeeds (maybe 5%) and you’ll hear the same thing that you hear from other people who’ve become strong and fit after failure. They accepted and made a change. They didn’t talk about improving habits. They didn’t talk about “going to the gym more”. They didn’t come in and do the same shit they’ve done the last five Januarys. Instead they woke up that day and went about changing their life.

I see it all the time in fitness as well as performance training: People want results but they don’t want to do what they need to in order to see those results. This is usually what I hear:

“Man, I need to get rid of this spare tire, but I’m not going to give up my beer and wings on the weekends”

“Holy cow, I wish my ass looked like hers, but I’ve gotta have my bowl of ice cream before bed”

“He’s a beast! I wish I had arms like that. I’m not going to lift that heavy weight, though, I might get hurt”


If you want to earn life-changing results, then you’re going to have to do the things that produce them. Those things WILL require a life-change.

So, if you’re a New Year Resolutioner, then I wish you the best of luck. Ask me any question you like and I’ll be happy to help. However, if I see you not taking my advice, please excuse me for being a dick. I have too many people who are committed to making things happen to waste my time.

What do you think is the number one thing that keeps people from really making a change in their lives? Comment below!

Comments on New Year’s Resolutioner Repellent Leave a Comment

January 17, 2011

Trevor @ 1:30 pm #

Fear Isaac, Fear of failure and judgment. I see so many people that walk through the gym doors that are insecure with their bodies, and they are afraid that by working hard and doing what they need to do to change their lives they will stand out and be judged. This causes them do do the same shitty workouts that helped to grow their towering insecurity, and a month later they are gone.

I have dealt with way too many people like this over the past two weeks, and I have shot down five prospective clients. Because they were not willing to change their lives, or even make the attempt to work hard. I put too much of my self into what I do to deal with time wasting energy vampires.

January 24, 2011

Isaac @ 6:49 pm #

Trevor: Absolutely, man. That being said, I don’t think that most people see it as a fear of “working out hard and doing what they need to…” or standing out. In that case it’s a fear of the unknown. They’ve failed at things before. That’s why they’re fat now. Sure, they’re unhappy, but they’re sort of comfortable in their unhappiness. They don’t know that training hard, etc, is going to work for them. So they’d rather stick with the devil they know rather than face the unknown and potential disappointment. So they’ll just do the usual shit, which rarely works, but that way they’ve “tried” and can go back to their excuse list.

Right on with being selective of your clients, man. If they’re not ready, they won’t do the work. That’ll just piss you off and sour you on the whole process.

January 18, 2011

Lisa @ 8:49 pm #

Okay so I know I am girl so that might negate my right to post here but I no longer fit small shirts because I heart Isaac so much and someone I know just PRed her deadlift at 325 because she does too!!! WE LOVE HARD WORK!!!!!!

January 24, 2011

Isaac @ 6:42 pm #

Ha! You can post here as long as you keep spouting good stuff about the host! These girls are legit, guys!

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