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Liz Montalbano

When and why did you become a trainer?

I got certified in 2009. I was a music business executive throughout most of my 20’s and 30’s. I had a lucrative and full career, however, as the business began to change, my passion for it changed as well.  I needed a change. It was the premature death of my mother that propelled me into action. I was bored with my career, and very depressed over her death. She died of lung cancer at the age of 60. She lived a very unhealthy lifestyle, both physically and mentally. I didn’t want to go down the same path. I was living a very unhealthy lifestyle as well at the time, drinking, eating and smoking anything and everything to numb the pain and boredom. I wanted to change myself. I had to. And I wanted to help other women who were in the same predicament. I needed to make a difference.

What are some adjectives your clients would use to describe you?

Lol. This is easy. Scary. Tough. No-Nonsense. Dedicated. Professional.

What made you choose IFPA?

To be honest, I just asked a trainer in the gym that I went to at the time what certifications he had and he pointed me to you. I never looked back or sideways. I just went for it. I’m pretty much like that with everything I do. Once I have something in my mind, I just go.

 How do you keep your clients motivated?

It’s a daily, hourly thing. I never leave their lives. It’s a continual “session”. They have free range to text me or call me at anytime (or hour – rethinking this one 😉 of the day. I am their friend first. Coach second. So, I am always present. Whether it is when they are cooking dinner, running on the treadmill, or going food shopping. I’m either getting texts from them showing me or I’m texting them back showing them. It consumes me actually. But I don’t mind. It’s the commitment I make to each and every one of them when they sign up with me.

If you have taken more than one course, what has been your favorite certification course?

Another easy one. Sports Nutrition. Hands down. I am an NPC Figure Competitor, so I already understand it. But it was nice to brush up on my knowledge  and get a couple of new tips to utilize in my nutrition program that I’ve designed for clients.  I’m all about eating clean on and off season. I encourage my clients to follow “The Program”, a nutritional program that I’ve designed. And I have a 95% success rate of weight loss from all, if they follow my direction. Nutrition is 50% of any solid weight loss program. And trainers who are not knowledgeable or scared to guide their clients with this, is doing them a severe disservice.  Just my opinion of course ;).

What is your best success story?

This is a hard one now. Because I have so many.  I’ve gotten 80lbs of fat off of one. And put 15lbs of muscle on another. Most of my clients succeed and reach their goals. I make sure of it. I also make sure to not take on a client that is not committed to the process. So believe it or not, I screen them as much as they do me. I refuse to waste my time and their money. Point blank. So if you are going to work with me, you can be sure to get results.

What qualities set you apart from other trainers?

Well, firstly, my commitment to my clients. I am not a “trainer”. I’m a coach. And more importantly, a friend. I know most of my clients family members, as they do me. I make sure I integrate into their lives so that the partnership is effective. I spend 24/6.5 days a week working in some capacity, whether it is physically training someone, answering texts regarding food choices and giving encouragement constantly through texts and social media. Secondly, I really understand the science of fat loss and muscle gain. And I can apply it to almost anyone. Thirdly, since I used to live the busy life of an executive in my past life, I understand and can relate to the daily challenges and constraints of one. So I can effectively coach a banker who is flying all over the world and eating through his/her business meetings, as well as a litigator who thinks it’s impossible to eat within a 6 hour span due to meetings and calls. I get it. I lived it. I know how to work around it.

How do you envision growing your personal training business?

I have effectively built a local business the past three years that I am very proud of. I’ve used my marketing and promotion skills that I’ve acquired in the music business to capitalize on the success of my company today. The next step for me is to create products to sell on line. Generating income without showing up. This is in the works for 2014. I am also  working on some personal goals with regards to my own physique. I’d like to go Pro as a Figure Competitor as well as lock in an agent in fitness modeling. I’m working towards both currently.

What is your best advise too someone just starting in the business?

Do it because you love it. Be honest and care. This is a very personal business we’re in, as we’re dealing with many people who have deep rooted issues like food disorders and such. Most of which derive from psychological ones. Be genuine and you will succeed. Don’t just move people around. Have a plan for them. And if you don’t know how to create one yet, don’t be afraid or too proud to ask for help.

FEB 2014 Pic 1IFPA Certs: Personal Trainer, Sports Nutrition, Pre/Postnatal

Location:  NYC/NJ

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Facebook: Liz-Montalbano-Athlete

Twitter: @lizmontalbano

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