View Full Version : Job offer I couldn't refuse

Jay Ashman
03-14-2010, 12:16 PM
I was working for myself for a long time as a trainer, so when I saw this opportunity come up I had to go after it.

I got hired at a local gym (large gym with expansion in mind) as a trainer/director of special programs (sports conditioning and CrossFit - they are doing to put a "box" in the gym and go after that market as well and I'll be the man to have the say in programming and marketing). And trust me when I say when this CF box is up and ready, it will not be the typical "chippers and once a week strength work" box... It will be a lot better than that.

The income and advancement opportunity is amazing, of course the hours are long. M-Th I'm there 12 hours a day, F-Sat about 4 each. But they have an incredible system of generating clients for PT and the numbers are there, it isn't the typical gym where you go in and a trainer has to scour for leads, they create leads out of every member with the way they do it.

Of course now I have to train at 5AM and pack a lot of food to munch on throughout the day, and my only day I have for free time is really Saturday afternoon and Sunday. But such is life... especially living on Long Island, it isn't cheap to live here and quite frankly I can reach FAR more people working for this place than I EVER can on my own.

My website pretty much tells any local clients to stop by the gym to train with me, and a few people have so far.

The good side is that I am offline a lot more, hence I have a life. :D.

I always prided myself on doing it my own way and being independent, but this was too good of an opportunity to pass up and I can make my mark a lot better, and bigger, this way. Plus I have the 100% backing and faith from the owner. That says a lot.

Robert Callahan
03-14-2010, 01:03 PM

Seems like a great opportunity :)

Wayne Riddle
03-14-2010, 01:57 PM
Sounds like a cool gig, good luck and hope it works out for you.

Steven Low
03-14-2010, 02:50 PM
Nice. Good luck!

Jay Ashman
03-14-2010, 03:05 PM
thanks... it is a great opportunity. I'll keep you informed on what we are doing there. Right now we are building a 40 yard by 15 yard turf field, we are ordering prowlers, sleds, oly bars and bumpers for the sports training. I also have two nationally ranked 13 and 16 year old sisters (swimmers) as clients right now.

This is a challenge because my only experience in the pool is as a lifeguard, I never swam competitively so most of my training for them will focus on power, shoulder strength/power, back strength, and building lower body strength endurance and power as well. If anyone has any tips they know of, feel free to share them.

Robert Callahan
03-14-2010, 04:53 PM
Sounds like you are on the right track with strong shoulders. Most common injury for Swimmers as they get older is shoulder problems, which is similar to most overhead sports, so the stronger those shoulders can be the more protected and injury free they will be.

One thing to keep in mind is that you will get the most bang for your buck at improving swim times by improving the power you generate off your turns. A good flip turn and explosive push off the wall is what separates good and great swimmers. So nice strong and powerful squats are of HUGE benefit to swimmers!!!

Probably stuff you already knew, but thought I would throw it out there :)

Allen Yeh
03-14-2010, 05:14 PM
Good luck, sounds like a great opportunity!

Jay Ashman
03-14-2010, 05:19 PM
exactly, Robert... stuff I thought about doing was jumping squats, box jumps, lower weight high rep squats for strength endurance.

I'm doing medball overhead throws for power, walking on hands in a pushup position (back and forth, and up and down a 45# plate) as well for rotational strength. I am not a fan of cables and specific rotational exercises, I feel that by doing the hand-walking exercise you work the rotational muscles just as well, plus add strength and core strength as well from having to hold the pushup position doing them. I am adding in slam balls as well. Anything that I can use to generate upper body power, especially in the rotations.

lower body power is pretty cut and dry, they don't need lateral mobility, just plain explosive power.

they have plenty of aerobic endurance, their father works with them constantly in the pool and the youngest one can swim almost 3 laps underwater without coming up for air according to him. They are very tall girls, 5'11" and 6' tall, long and lean. My job is to make them more explosive and stronger...

I just googled the youngest daughter out of curiousity, she has been competing since she was 6 and has some impressive times. I like getting athletes like this, its a challenge and a lot of fun to watch them improve and see some tangible results in competition. I really had to sell myself to the dad to convince him that I was the best guy to train his daughters, it wasn't easy... he looked at me and had the impression that I was strictly a strength guy (I'm 6'2" 255# at 12% BF) and wouldn't know how to train a swimmer. After I explained to him exactly what I would do and why, he said, "that is the same kind of training that a lot of the top coaches recommended she do"... so its good to know that I know my shit. ;)

Thanks for the input, that is appreciated a lot.

Jay Ashman
03-14-2010, 05:21 PM
Good luck, sounds like a great opportunity!

Thanks, Allen, next time you are up on the Island, give me a shout and come on by.

Steve Shafley
03-14-2010, 06:15 PM
Congrats. Sounds right up your alley.

Robert Callahan
03-14-2010, 10:09 PM
exactly, Robert... stuff I thought about doing was jumping squats, box jumps, lower weight high rep squats for strength endurance.

Honestly it sounds like you have a pretty good plan in place :)

You are probably already doing this also but just wanted to add that I would recommend at least some higher weight lower rep squatting as well. As a swimmer you need those turns to be as explosive as possible and a strong 1RM squat will be more analogous to that then a 20 rep squat will.

And I like what you said about the walking in plank position. I think that the shoulder stability gained from that will be very beneficial. Handstands and ring work could fit in there as well if you ever had the desire or wanted variety, but it all would do the same thing :) And if they like weights, overhead press? While they may not like it as girls, the more muscle you can build up on those shoulders the less likely they are to injure it later on.

Alright enough from me, I am still a very novice strength coach. I have a long history with aquatics but still have a lot to learn about programing good supplementary strength & conditioning programs.

Jay Ashman
03-15-2010, 03:25 AM
it definitely is, Steve...

Good suggestions, Robert, thanks. I won't do handstands with them as I don't need to waste time teaching them high-skill moves but I am definitely planning to do overhead pressing with them for sure.

Jay Ashman
04-24-2010, 12:50 PM

busy as HELL with the job, training a lot of hours per week, managing the programs and doing sales as well. I am learning a lot about the ins and outs of running a training business which will only serve to help me in the future.

I have a lot of athletes as of right now.... 8 young football players (8-10), a 14 year old FB player, a 14 year old pitcher who throws 85 mph, a semi-pro FB player who plays linebacker, 2 all-state swimmers, 2 soccer players and an ice hockey winger.

I work about 60 hours a week between the two gyms and run the sports training program, so everytime an athlete comes in, he has to come through me to get assessed and worked on.

Its a damn good situation for sure....

and I am still training hard, doing my first Strongman contest in 7 years in July.

Mark Fenner
04-25-2010, 03:19 PM
8 young football players (8-10)

Out of curiosity, do you train these lads like football players or do you train them with an eye towards variety?


Jay Ashman
04-25-2010, 03:28 PM
Out of curiosity, do you train these lads like football players or do you train them with an eye towards variety?


I train them basically for bodyweight strength, basic agility, learning how to balance themselves, run backwards, simple jumping drills to get them quicker, etc. Nothing dramatic. They are kids and I make it fun for them, but the end goal is improvement on the field of play.

the stuff I do can transfer over to many sports, since most of these kids play multiple sports it works well that way.

Scott Dyck
04-26-2010, 06:10 AM
14 yo throwing 85 is going to generate some interest. Keep that stud arm healthy!

Jay Ashman
04-26-2010, 10:45 AM
14 yo throwing 85 is going to generate some interest. Keep that stud arm healthy!

oh he already has generated interest for sure....