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Name: Bob Parsons
IFPA Certifications: Personal Trainer, Sports Nutrition Specialist, Group, Senior, Tai Chi and Pilates Instructor (2014 – Lifestyle Fitness Coach 1)
Location: Broken Arrow, OK (2014 – Carlton Landing, OK)
Contact Info: www.chifitnessstudio.com
When and why did you become a trainer?
I was the fat kid! At 10 years old I weighed in at 150 pounds. I blame Mom. She was a fantastic mother and cook, who cooked and baked everything from scratch. Homemade everything using Crisco, butter, bacon fat, sugar, salt and the list goes on. And of course we had to clean our plates because there were children starving all around the world. And yes my eyes were always bigger than my stomach.
Within a year of leaving home at 18, and being away from mom’s cooking, the weight came off fast. I was now skinny but with no muscle tone. So at 21 I joined my first gym and began the on again/off again process of trying to build muscle. For awhile I was looking pretty darn good. Well the off again usually won out and the weight returned over the years.
In my 50’s I reached my highest weight of 225 pounds with a body fat percentage of 25. It was either get a grip on your eating or get fatter. I entered a lean body competition in 2007 and won first place in my age group, over 50. I entered a second time and won again. I was now down to 175 pounds and 9% body fat in less than a year.
Then I fulfilled a dream. I got my personal trainer certification and I was on my way. But as an approaching senior myself and a senior fitness instructor, I looked for something other than aerobics for seniors. I didn’t want to have to call 911 during a senior aerobic class. How embarrassing and frightful. I discovered Tai Ji Quan and Qigong (Chi Kung).
Both have become my passion over weight training even though I still do both. As weights got more challenging for seniors I became certified in Pilates studying the BASI method by Rael Isacowitz.
How do you keep your clients motivated?
Variety! Muscle confusion is the key. Don’t let the muscle or the client get comfortable with a routine. Plus as a warm up I used 10 Pilate basics movements or mat work. For cool down, Tai Chi for relaxation. On off days I suggest bicycling, jogging, walking, swimming, etc. for cardio.