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When and why did you become a trainer?
I became a trainer in 2001. When I first started, I didn’t really have any idea of what I wanted out of being a personal trainer (I was 19 years old). When I got my first real PT job, I decided that I wanted to be a student of the game. Instead of training people right away as I felt I wasn’t totally ready, I studied as much as I could and learn from as many veteran trainers as I could. So in the beginning I spent A LOT of time shadowing trainers and learning all aspects of what it really meant to be a Personal Trainer. I saw some really amazing trainers and I saw some really horrible trainers. I started to distinguish what it meant to be a good trainer as oppose to a bad one. I eventually chose a mentor who I can fully say really helped me on my way to becoming a great trainer. I learned so much from him, and he was so knowledgeable. I said that is what I want to be and how I want to train people, in order to get the clients the best results possible.
What are some adjectives your clients would use to describe you?
I have been called bubbly lol, very caring, cheerful, motivational, positive, supportive, diligent, detailed, knowledgeable, personable, fun, and friendly. I have also been called the “best part of the day” which I like a lot
What made you choose the IFPA?
I chose the IFPA because of the stellar reputation they have. I actually can’t say enough great things about the IFPA, the fitness by the bay conference was probably one of the best experiences of my life and I hope the IFPA does it again because I would love to do it again. Dr. Jim Bell who is just such an amazing positive motivational guy, Athena Bell who is fantastic , Naibel Fernandez who is extremely helpful and sweet and Nyisha Ortiz who is also very helpful and nice have all been so great and supportive it really just shows how wonderful the whole IFPA is and what amazing employees they have.
How do you keep your clients motivated?
I work with my clients day and night, they are able to contact me (and they do lol) any time they want for information, for motivation to stay on their nutrition program we outlined, to help with cardio and weight routines when they work out on their own. So I try to make myself as accessible as I can be to always let them know they can count on me. When it comes to the training, I always change things up to keep it fun, exciting, new and fresh. I use various pieces of fitness equipment besides the usual weight machines and free weights (resistance bands, trx, Battle ropes, Boxing, kickboxing, Ropeless jump rope, Parachute, agility latter, glider discs etc) to always give them a nice change and a great workout.
If you have taken more than one course, what has been your favorite certification course?
I honestly don’t know if I could pick one because they have all played such a huge role in my education and I apply everything I learned from all of them into my routines and fitness programs. The sports medicine certification was very useful, as well as the youth fitness instructor which I think is a necessity when or if you are training young adults or adolescents. The sports nutrition certification was also very important to learning proper nutrition and how to apply it for the clients. The strength and conditioning certification was also very important for when I am training my athletes especially when I have to do sports specific training.
What is your best success story?
My best success story was training this woman who was in very bad health, blood work wasn’t good. She had type 2 diabetes and was on lots of medication. She was just always sick and tired. So we spent a year together and she was extremely dedicated. You could tell she wanted to get healthy and fit very badly for her children and grandchildren. After a year together with proper training and a nutrition program she lost about 70+ lbs and was no longer taking about 100 pills a day and was no longer a type 2 diabetic and her blood work dramatically changed. So in essence (as she put it) we saved her life. I say “we” because it was a team effort we made together. I could not have done it, unless she was as dedicated as she was. To this day we still speak from time to time, unfortunately we don’t train anymore as we live very far from each other now, but I still help her with her training and nutrition whenever she needs it.
What qualities set you apart from other personal trainers? Education? Experience?
I think what separates me from other trainers is my true love for helping people, and my attention to detail. I have been in every position the Fitness industry gyms have to offer, PT, Sales, GM, PT director all of it and the one thing I have learned is no matter what your education is, no matter how many certifications you have, if you do not truly love what you do and love to help people it will all be for nothing. Also if you can not apply all that you have learned to everyday situations with clients… again all your education and certifications will mean nothing.
How do you envision growing your personal training business?
It’s not necessarily my business that I want to grow as much as I would love to find a way to help all people on a massive world wide scale.
What is your best advice to someone just starting in the business?
Take your time, LEARN as much as you can. Be a student of the game, don’t be in such a rush to make money that you forget what Personal training is all about, because if you do all of that and you truly love what you do, the clients and the money will be there, but if you don’t learn, and don’t take the time to really care about people and their goals, no matter how hard you work it just wont happen. People essentially trust you with their lives, and their hard earned money and if you can’t give them the results they desire and need, then they will move on without you and they will not refer any of their friends and family to you. If you work in a gym setting, other people will not be interested in training with you. I have gotten all the clients I have by referrals and by people watching me train and watching my clients transform before their eyes. They can feel and see how much I truly care about my clients and helping them reach their health and fitness goal. Again just love what you do, and learn as much as you can, be patient and it will come.
Name: Justin Tarica
IFPA Certifications: CPT, Sports medicine, Sports Nutrition, Resistance band specialist, C.S.C.S, Youth Fitness Instructor (and I plan on getting more especially the two at once when that black Friday deal comes lol)
Location: Fort Lee, NJ
Contact Info: JustinTarica1981@gmail.com