Episode 1 – Casey Barnette – Building Big Shoulders

Well-trained shoulders improve posture and strengthen the muscles surrounding the shoulder joints, which enhances body stability. Furthermore, building broad shoulders is attractive and makes your figure more athletic.

While shoulders might be a challenging muscle group to grow, there are some tricks and tips that could really make a difference. In this episode of Unleashed Podcast, coach Casey Barnette shares his experience with building massive shoulders and talks about the importance of consistency and healthy habits.

Casey’s body type does not have broad shoulders but he believes that genetics is not an excuse not to go after what you want. Even though the bone structure is determined mostly by genetics, shoulder’s width can be changed to a certain degree.

Here are top 5  tips to help you build big shoulders from the interview of Casey with host Yuri Diogenes.


1 – Increase the frequency of your workouts.

Casey says that training frequency is crucial for building massive shoulders. He suggests starting out with one shoulder workout per week and then building your way up to a few shoulder training sessions each week.

Furthermore, he shares that he used to do 100 reps lateral rises, every night for six months, on top of his shoulders workouts. This extra load approach was called “feeders” and was introduced by the famous bodybuilder Rich Piana.

2 – Make sure you are always in progressive overload. 

Increasing your working weights and training volume is essential for muscle hypertrophy. Casey believes that even though shoulders are a small muscle group, they still need a significant amount of weight and overload to grow.

He used pyramid weight training, where you increase the weight on each set and decrease the number of reps. This style of training allows you to have both light and heavy sets in a single workout.

3 – Train smart to prevent injuries. 

Avoiding injuries is important for staying on track with your goals, so spend enough time on warming up before hitting the heavy weights. Listen to your body’s signals and understand that you cannot train super heavy all the time.

Sometimes, your body might be too exhausted for the big weights and you should be able to spot that signal and let go of your ego. Perform a training session with more reps and lighter weights instead, in order to prevent a potential injury. It’s always better to slow down than to stop completely.

4 – Food and supplements matter. 

Focus on whole, minimally processed foods and track your calorie intake. It is important to establish your maintenance calories as precisely as possible, and then consume slightly more energy than you expand. Increase your calories slowly, week to week, based on how you are progressing.

You can also add some supplements to your nutrition plan, such as creatine and glutamine, if you feel like you need a boost in your recovery and muscle growth.

5 – Trust the process. 

It does not matter whether  you are trying to build solid shoulders, lose weight, or improve athletic performance.  Every change needs time and effort to adopt new habits and patterns that get you closer to your goal.

Focus on the big picture in the long-term and understand that big changes don’t happen overnight.

Casey shares these and many other tricks in the episode of Unleashed Podcast. Casey and host Yuri discuss other topics as well, such as the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on his coaching business and Casey’s new supplementation brand, so make sure you listen to the whole episode!

Reaching your fitness and life goals requires evolving, making progress and not giving up. The Unleashed Podcast, brought to you by Hidden Gym, aims to motivate their audience and help people unleash their hidden strength and potential. Subscribe to the Youtube channel of Hidden Gym and keep an eye on the blog, so you never miss an episode of inspiration and motivation!

Episode 0 – Greg McCoy – Introducing Unleashed Podcast

Many people struggle with self-doubt and create limitations for their goals and dreams. Even the most confident-looking person might not be aware of their true potential because of fear and uncertainty.

Unleashed Podcast brought by Hidden Gym is a source for motivation, inspiration and education. The mission of Unleashed Podcast is to help their audience find a way to unleash their hidden strength and potential.

Greg McCoy, owner of Hidden Gym and personal trainer, spends almost each one of his days at the gym. In this episode of Unleashed Podcast, he explains that he hears dozens of incredible transformation stories of strong people that deserve to be shared. These stories brought the idea for the podcast. .

The core goal of the Unleashed Podcast aligns to the goal of Hidden Gym, which is to inspire more people to believe in themselves and let go of limiting factors. The platform allows listeners to relate to other people’s life challenges and learn from their experience.

The host of the podcast, Yuri Diogenes, is a very motivational person himself. Yuri is a former client of Greg and driven by his strong will-power and Greg’s guidance, he managed to lose 100 pounds and adopt fitness and healthy eating as a way of life.

Yuri’s transformation is incredible and you can listen to this podcast episode where he shares his story. He proves that there are no impossible fitness goals and discipline and hard work are the key to achieving anything.

In this episode of Unleashed Podcast, Greg explains that evolving is a crucial part of his success as a trainer and therefore, the success of his clients. No matter how many years of experience he has, he keeps learning and improving, unleashing more and more of his potential. Here is what he recommends:

  • Read books. Books are a great and accessible way to expand your knowledge and inspire you with new ideas.
  • Surround yourself with people you can learn from. Other people’s experience and influence can help you understand and apply new approaches. People that have been  where you are can play a big role in shaping you as a professional, and point out some of your mistakes.
  • Keep learning. Greg has been a personal trainer for 12 years but he keeps gaining knowledge from different courses, signing up for two new certifications per year. In order to become an expert in a certain area, you should continue educating yourself every chance you have.
  • Try new things. Don’t get married to a single approach, explore new ways to improve and evolve. No matter if it’s about  your workout routine, your diet, or the way you do your job, take the time to experiment with fresh ideas.

Evolving is all about pushing yourself and doing new things that put you outside of your comfort zone. If you don’t want to waste your potential and you are ready to find out how far you can go, make self-growth your priority. Subscribe to the Youtube channel of Hidden Gym and never miss an episode of Unleashed Podcast.

The dedicated professionals at Hidden Gym aim to unleash the hidden potential of each one of their members. Book your free workout and take the first step towards a better you. Furthermore, even if you are not from Allen, Dallas, or Plano, now you can train with a Hidden Gym coach online! Just contact the gym and start your evolving journey today!

The Journey Back to the Stage with Greg McCoy

One of the most unpleasant things that almost every athlete faces at some point is injuries.

The event of getting hurt, while performing your favorite sport, can be really traumatic and might  trigger thoughts of self-doubt and fear after the recovery.

However, athletes have a strong mindset and know how to stay humble and push through the hard times.

In the seventh episode of Overcome, Greg McCoy shares his story and journey back to the stage after a tough injury. Greg is a bodybuilder,  personal trainer, and gym owner  with over 12 years of experience in the fitness industry.

Greg and host Yuri Diogenes discuss the rehab process and the importance of mental strength. Here are some insightful parts of their conversation.

Y.D: When I first met you in 2010, you had torn your biceps performing deadlift at a powerlifting competition. Tell us a bit more about it.

G.M: I was taking part in the SPF Powerlifting Meet. A powerlifting meet consists of three lifts, a squat, a bench press, and a deadlift. You get three attempts at each lift. Whoever has the most weight added up from their best lifts, wins their weight class or their division.

After completing the squat and bench press, it was time for the deadlift. My first lift was 530 pounds, which was a PR for me at the time.

For the second deadlift attempt, my training Greg Koffler helped me prepare the bar. He upped my PR by 10 pounds.

When he told me that the bar was 540,  I got psyched up. The previous lift was already difficult, so I got nervous about this one. I gripped  the bar and about three quarters of the way up I felt a Velcro tearing sensation inside my bicep.

I didn’t feel any pain because of the adrenaline but I knew my bicep just ripped

Y.D: I remember seeing those pictures when the blues started to come down pretty bad, horrible purple. Did you do any surgery to put that back?

G.M: Getting a good repair was important to me, so I went to the Texas Rangers and Dr. Kevin Meister was able to get me in within a week. I had a week of unrepaired bicep and a lot of bleeding.

The doctors had decided that the repair was gonna be a reattachment. However, after I woke up from the surgery they informed me that my situation was worse than they thought. My bicep tendon actually exploded.

So, they had installed an Achilles tendon from a cadaver in place of my bicep tendon.  I have someone else’s Achilles tendon holding my bicep.

Y.D: That is crazy. Wow. I never knew that this was the secret for your biceps. When were you able to train again?

G.M: First,  I was put into a brace for 14 weeks. After that, I could start lightly using the arm again. But within a month after the surgery,  I was able to start training the rest of my body, which was a big part of my successful recovery.

Y.D: What was the impact from this injury on your mental health?

G.M: The biggest mental stress for me was that the injury  happened when I just started gaining success in competing. The only reason I did a powerlifting meet was to make me a better bodybuilder. I was trying to gain size. I had just won my first overall and I was already thinking about national level competing, and then my bicep tore.

I’ve seen many bad bicep repairs, so I was questioning whether I will be a good athlete. My biggest fear was that it would impact my goals as a bodybuilder.

Y.D: The Heart of Texas was your comeback show in 2011. What do you think about your performance there?

G.M: I tore my bicep in February and I was competing and winning again in September. So, I think I did well. I got second place at that show in the light heavyweight class. I was really happy with it.

When I got hurt  I was still very dedicated to my training. I still trained all three body parts and I essentially went into a prep style diet. I knew that I couldn’t work on gaining size, while recovering, so dieted hard to be in a lean shape.

When the summer came and I was able to start training heavy, I increased the calories, so I can build muscle mass again.

Y.D: Were you concerned when you were training only one side of your upper body, while the other one is still not functional?

G.M: I knew that I wouldn’t improve the other sides of my body while I was hurt  because my training wouldn’t be as good as before. I was training to maintain the work of the other limbs.

Training is so good for your body in general. While I didn’t work directly on my left upper body, it still recovered faster because I was working out.. All the benefits that you get from training, such as stimulation, circulation and favorable hormonal environment, still applied to that arm, even though it wasn’t getting direct work. I believe this is why I was able to recover so fast.

There is always a way to overcome whatever happens to you and come back stronger. Strong will and dedication are the key to accomplishing your goals.

If you want to listen to the full podcast, you can do it on Apple, Spotify, and YouTube.

For more information about Greg McCoy,  check out his Facebook page, YouTube channel, or come for a visit at Hidden Gym.

Sidekicks Direct with Myke Jones

In the fifteenth episode of the podcast of Dallas Sidekicks, host Scott Wegener talks with veteran defender Myke Jones. He has played in the NPSL, in the MSL, in the MLS, and in the legendary amateur club North Texas Rios, and took part in a number of US Open cups.

Myke shares his knowledge and experience as a trainer at Hidden Gym, which is the official gym of Dallas Sidekicks.

Scott and Myke go through many different topics in their conversation, circling around positivity, soccer and the Central Cup Tournament.

S.W: You have an interesting instagram page. One of the things that I really appreciate about it is that you seem to have a never ending string of positivity in a world that can be so negative. Is that just the nature of who you are?

M.J: I noticed that the environment I allowed myself to be around was unbalanced, full of positivity and negativity at the same time.  Now, I’ve gotten rid of anything negative  that does not make me feel good.

I like to connect to everything that’s nature related, organic and positive. That’s what keeps me going every morning and every night.

S.W: Speaking of the mornings and your Insta page, one of the other things I noticed is that you work out in unusual hours. Most of the people go to the gym after work or during their lunch break but you’re at the gym at 3am. Why are you getting up so early?

M.J: When I go to the gym at this time there is nobody and this is really cool.I know it sounds crazy to work out at 3 – 4 am but it makes me sane and I have  the rest of the day ahead of me. I’ve even trained some people who want to get trained in the morning before they go to work and brush up. Training so early became a lifestyle and it works great for me.

S.W: One of these days I’m gonna join you for an early morning  workout at Hidden Gym. It’s right around the corner from our office here in town and it’s such a nice place to train. I love that Hidden Gym is the official gym at Dallas Sidekicks and how friendly it is. It has a very different vibe as a gym. Everybody that I’ve talked to there is so cool and sociable.

M.J: Yes, it is an amazing place to train and coach. You are very welcome to join me!

S.W: I once asked you who was the best, most famous player that you ever played with. You told me it was Thierry Henry. You played with him at the Red Bulls. What was it like playing with a guy who was an international superstar and had played in World Cups?

M.J: He is an absolute legend. Every training session, he always expected the best out of you, and when you didn’t get that he would call you out and everybody else out.

The experience with him was life changing. This guy has taught me so much about life, about the game, how to play it, and how to approach it.

S.W: I gotta say this is so cool. It’s great to hear that a guy with that kind of star power didn’t just come in and collect a paycheck from the MLS. He came in and practiced, and expected you to be on the same level that he was. I find that very admirable.

M.J: Yes, it is. There is so much about him that makes you want to get better.

S.W: I want to talk about your time with North Texas Rios. So, legendary “amateur” club, right? I say amateur and air quotes, because most of you guys that are on that team have played professionally somewhere at some point.

What was it like to be one of the premier amateur teams in all of the country?

M.J: It’s been a great experience. Honestly, I didn’t really expect to get the chance to play with them at first.

This was my seventh year in this team and we’ve been through so much together. Shout out to the head coach Tito who makes sure that we’re all grounded. We’re thankful for being a part of something bigger than just just the team. It’s like setting a family. We’ve been able to do some extraordinary things consistently.

S.W: That’s amazing!

Before I let you go, we’ll circle back to the Sidekicks now and talk about the season. I think that the Central Cup went really well. You guys had a tough loss in the first game against Kansas City and got second place.

What was it to finally get back out there in the Central Cup and play after all this time off?

M.J: The tournament was awesome. Shout out to the league for getting everything together.

You know that I usually consider second place a loss but at the end of the day, the bigger picture was the most important thing. We got our chemistry as a team, we found what we needed to do, we found what our weaknesses were, what our strong points were.

I know how hard we worked for this, so I am looking forward to the next game. We are blessed to have the opportunity to play again.

If you want to watch the full episode of Sidekicks Direct and hear the whole conversation, you can do this here.

Do you want to work out at the official gym of Dallas Sidekicks? Do you want to be trained by Myke Jones and other experienced professionals? If yes, you are more than welcome to visit us at Hidden Gym!

Keep Fighting to Overcome with Tony Mack

One of the hardest things in the lives of professional athletes is saying goodbye to their sports career. Sooner or later, this moment comes for everybody and it is never easy to handle the transition.

Unfortunately, for many athletes injuries are the reason  to end their career even sooner than they expected.

Leaving the game you love unexpectedly could be really heartbreaking and traumatic. One day you are great at something and you identify yourself with this greatness. You have goals, dreams, and plans for the future. The next  day, you cannot do this sport anymore because your body says no. How do you move on with your life from that?

In the twenty-third episode of Overcome, host Yuri Diogenes discusses this topic with former professional boxer Tony Mack.

Tony had a notable career in boxing. He was awarded a bronze medal in the USA Boxing National Championship, became  five times Dallas Golden Glove Champion and three times Texas State Champion. Tony turned pro at the age of 27 and soon after the good start in the league he had to leave boxing for good, due to a recurring injury with his eye.

In a short period of time, he had to find a new purpose in his life and go through five eye surgeries. During the interview with Yuri, they talked about the rehab process, the importance of mental toughness, and the transition from a fighter in the ring to a coach and fighter in life.

Here are some of the main aspects of their conversation.

Y.D: So, you started boxing at the age of 20, which is late compared to other boxers. What really drove you to boxing? How did you get into that?

T.M: I really wanted to be an athlete, but I’ve always felt unathletic. For example,  I thought I was unathletic to play football and not coordinated enough to play basketball.  But once I was introduced to boxing by one of my college roommates, it felt right.

The gym was an old school boxing place called PFC. Surprisingly, I managed to complete the whole workout and it was one of the best work I’ve ever had. I struggled but the coach said to me: “Man, if you keep this up, you can be a boxer.”

Since then, I’ve never missed a day of training.

Y.D: This is amazing. Sometimes people have the talent, but they are not willing to put in the hard work to go to the next level. So, hard work pays off for the most part.

T.M: It was a lot of hard work, a lot of uncertainties, a lot of blood, sweat and tears. I persevered because I didn’t want to be labeled a quitter, and I loved the self-esteem that boxing gave me. Growing up I was a chubby little kid and I struggled with gaining confidence. Thanks to boxing, people started looking at me differently and with more respect.

Y.D: This is great. Sports can be such a powerful self-esteem booster.

Tell us a bit more about your eye problem. I’m assuming that it was because of boxing. Is that correct?

T.M: The doctors said it was going to happen when I got older because of genetics, but  my profession triggered it off sooner. It didn’t come from that one punch it came over the years of boxing.

Y.D: You made the transition from a fighter to a boxing coach at Hidden Gym. You train amateurs, professionals and also enthusiastic people, who just want to get in shape. What is your motivation as a coach to know how to handle each client?

T.M: I treat everyone the same.  I treat every client like they’re my professional fighters. I invest the same energy in everybody.

I understand that not everyone is  willing to do whatever it takes as an amateur to get to the professional level. I’m aware of that but my energy is still  towards everybody.

Y.D: What are some of the attributes that you see with successful amateurs and professionals? Is it more talent, more hard work, or a combination of both?

T.M: Talent matters but it plays a less significant role. Only the most dedicated people do what it takes to be successful. Some of the amateur fighters in my gym are willing to run through a brick wall to be successful and those are the students that I really love to coach.

Y.D: Sometimes fighters have the physical strength and great cardio conditioning, but they lack  the mental toughness. How do you work with them on that aspect?

T.M: The mental toughness is 80% of the fight game. If you’re not mentally strong, you will not be successful. You must be tough enough to take a punch. You also must be mentally tough for everything related to boxing, such as losing and gaining weight, and eating right. I focus a lot on mental toughness.

I let my fighters know that I can’t want them to win as badly as they should want it. If I want it more than them, they shouldn’t be boxing.

Mental training is just as important as your physical training. Whenever a student of mine makes a mistake and becomes frustrated, I tell them to slow down. It’s all about learning and focusing on what’s next.

Y.D: I’ve seen some fights where it is obvious that the boxer is exhausted physically but he just doesn’t give up. The level of mental strength is gigantic and he continues to fight.

T.M: The fight in the ring represents all of the hard work the fighter had put in. Giving up on the fight would mean to give up on their work. This is what motivates the fighters during the fight to keep going, even when their bodies are exhausted, their minds continue.

Y.D: You’ve gained so much experience going through all those struggles. What would the more experienced Tony Mack say to the 20 year old Tony Mac right now?

T.M: Sacrifice a bit more.I never missed a workout but I remember partying until three in the morning, sleeping outside for two hours and showing up for training at  5 am.  I was trying to live a young life at the same time I was putting in work. I wish I was more disciplined and organized back then.

Do you want to listen to the whole podcast of Overcome? You can find the episode on Spotify, Apple, and YouTube!

If you want to learn more about Tony Mack or get in touch with him, check out his website, Instagram page, Facebook page , or come for a boxing workout at Hidden Gym.

Tackle Smart with Roger Wilson

In the eighth episode of Overcome, host Yuri Diogenes talks with a former professional rugby player Roger Wilson. Roger had played 350 games in his 15 years career.


He is now sharing his knowledge as a strength and conditioning coach, teaching rugby and football players how to use rugby tackling technique. Roger is a trainer at Hidden Gym and the founder of Tackle Smart.

Even though Roger was known for his durability and ability to avoid injuries, in a professional sports career, such obstacles are an inevitable part of the game.

In this interview, he shares his experience with injuries and gives more information about his tackle teaching.

Y.D: Was there any injury in particular that was harder to overcome because you had to stop playing  for a long time?

R.W: There’s a couple but the worst one was with my hamstring. I tore my hamstring right off the bone at the inserts at the top of the hamstring into the glute. This injury took really long to recover. I couldn’t play for six months.

Y.D: Wow, that’s a long time. Did you have surgery?

R.W: Ironically, it happened at the very last game of the season, before I was moving clubs. So, the doctors said that we could leave it to heal naturally. I let it rest for a couple of months and then I did three or four months of rehab, trying to get the hamstring working again as close to pain free as possible.

Y.D: Was the rehab painful?

R.W: The rehab was tough, as it always was. I’ve had a couple of rehab periods and it’s never easy.

Injuries are so vast and so diverse, they’re not always about muscles and tendons. When playing rugby you don’t have a lot of protection on you, so there are so many things that can go wrong.

Y.D: What impact did the injuries have on you, from the psychological perspective? Did they trigger doubt and fear about your future as an athlete? How did you feel during the rehab process?

R.W: It affects your feeling of belongingness. Having a long-term injury can get you feel removed from the rest of the squad, when playing in a team sport. You end up missing a lot of team meetings and become isolated from the playing members during training sessions. When you are used to being in a team, it can be lonely to do your own training sessions.

Y.D: Today, you have a company and you prepare athletes, to have a better awareness about positioning in tackle and prevent them from getting injured. You train them to become stronger physically, but does the training include mental training as well? Mental toughness is also part of the game, right?

R.W: It’s a bit of a happy medium on that. The main focus is on coaching the tackle technique.  Players should be taught to tackle correctly, how to use their shoulders and reduce the chances of getting concussions.

So, a lot of the coaching is technical based, but at the same time we emphasize on physical and mental preparation as well. We try to replicate game scenarios as much as possible. We don’t specifically focus on mental toughness but we can’t avoid it. I believe it just comes with experience.

Y.D: Do you include defense techniques?

R.W: We teach them how to fall properly and how to spread the impact. It’s important not to land on one area of the body on taking all that force at once. We emphasize a lot on this, especially when training kids.

Y.D: Do you do any specific strength training? I’ve seen some images of you doing neck strengthening exercises.

R.W: It’s scientifically proven that if you improve your neck strength, you can reduce concussion rates. The neck muscles and the surrounding muscles kind of act as stabilizers and shock absorbers. We do spend a bit of time doing that.

Do you want to know more about the tackle technique and listen to the whole podcast with Yuri and Roger? You can find it on Spotify, Apple, and YouTube!

Ready to take your tackle to the next level? Find out how on Tackle Smart and Hidden Gym!

Top 5 Tips for Competing in Bodybuilding After Pregnancy

Women’s bodies undergo many  transformations during pregnancy. Weight gain, expanding waistline and stretch marks are only some of the changes women experience in these nine months.

For some moms it might take years to get back in shape after giving birth.

Motherhood changes the life of every mother. It is like stepping into a new world full of unexpected experiences, long days and long nights.

Many women don’t know how to make time for everything and often their fitness takes the back seat. For gym lovers and bodybuilding athletes, it can be discouraging seeing their bodies change so drastically.

Kaici Galvan is a bodybuilding competitor, who proves that anything is possible. In the twelfth episode of Real McCoy Radio, she shares her postpartum journey back to the stage.

Do you want to know how to deal with motherhood and contest prep? Have you ever wondered what it takes to get back in a perfect shape, once your body experienced such huge swings in body composition? Host Greg and Kaici Galvan answer these, and many other questions in their podcast!

Kaici took part in the NPC Kuclo Classic  just 14 months after giving birth to her first child. She managed to make the most of her time and turned into a very organized and dedicated person.

Taking care of your newborn, working a full time job, and preparing for a bodybuilding show might seem impossible but Kaici set a goal for herself and didn’t give up.

Top 5 tips from Kaici Galvan  that can help anyone with a bodybuilding dream

1 – Think of your workout as an important meeting you’ve scheduled with yourself.

Don’t give yourself the chance to skip your workout. Considering whether to go to the gym today might only lead to making the wrong decision.

Plan ahead when you are going to the gym, show up there and execute your plan.

2 – Always prepare your meals for the entire day. 

Life can be unexpected sometimes, so make sure your food is not.

Cook all of your meals for the day in the morning or the night before. This way there would be no reason for you to mess up your diet.

3 – Find your strong Why. 

You should know exactly why you are doing it.

For instance, Kaici really wanted to set a good example to her son, so she developed the characteristics of a strong, devoted and goal-oriented  mother.

There will be hard days and you might not feel motivated to go to the gym or eat according to your goal. On such days, the consistency of discipline overrides the motivation. Your Why is what fuels that consistency.

4 – Time management is key. 

When days get busy, you should have strong time management skills. Being a mother with many responsibilities and preparing for a bodybuilding show can be quite a challenge.

Try to prioritize your tasks wisely and remove yourself from distractions. Follow  an organized schedule and have a clear picture of what you need to complete.

5 – Teamwork makes the dreamwork!

Make sure that the people around you have your back to that commitment.

Even if your family and friends are not into bodybuilding, it would be best if they understand and support you. Having someone to count on can make the whole process a lot easier and less stressful.

Do you want to watch the whole episode of Real McCoy Radio? You can do this here

Check out Kaici’s instagram page, if you want to know more about her and her journey.

For more information about the host Greg McCoy, check out his website, social media, YouTube channel, or come for a visit at Hidden Gym.

A Life in Fitness ft. Larry North

On the ninth episode of Real McCoy Radio, host Greg McCoy brought in the fitness icon Larry North.

Larry has been in the fitness industry for over thirty years and has transformed his love to fitness into multiple successful business ventures, including his own line of gyms, a health-conscious restaurant, nationally-aired infomercial, and a best-selling book.

He and Greg discuss gym ownership, how fitness has changed over the years, and how people’s goals develop as they age.

Lary has built a tremendous career and achieved his most ambitious goals without having a capital, or a plan at the beginning. All he had was his will to succeed and the support of a few people that believed in him.

In most cases, these things are enough when you are ready to give everything you have. Larry can say now that he made all of his dreams come true but the path was not smooth and easy.

Here are a few questions Larry answered that might inspire and motivate you to keep grinding.

G.M: What piece of advice do you have for that person, who wants to open a gym one day?

L.N: They should know that it’s not only about being the first to turn on the light and the last to turn it off.

It’s not always what you think it is. You’re also the last to get paid and to take days off. You should decide what you want to do in life and how much money you want to make. Make sure that this is what you want to do.

I think it would have been an easier question to answer 30 or 20 years ago. Now, you have to be able to raise more capital because everything is expensive.

G.M: There will always be gyms for sale. There’s always going to be equipment. There’s always going to be someone with money. What do you think is the differentiator so someone can have success in this business?

L.N: Well, here’s what I would do. If I were starting all over, I would do what you’re doing right now. I would have a podcast, I’d have cameras, I would just immerse myself in social media. I would also go and be a low cost producer.

The world’s changed. The younger generation likes  teams, competition, and the sense of community. That’s what people are looking for.

Understanding this really can make a difference in your business.

G.M: How does someone accomplish everything they want? I’m always interested in how mega successful people just spend their day.  What does your typical day look like now? What was your typical day when you had the most amount of gyms open?

L.N: I believe that persistence, perseverance, and work ethic can take you further than anything else. Nothing can beat that.

My peak was when I had a gym in South Beach, a gym in  Houston, and six gyms in the area. I had big gyms, small gyms, and books that were out. I had a golden award winning infomercial. I had a hot restaurant. I was on the move. I was trapped. I was a speaker too.

So, my days then were full of adrenaline. I couldn’t wait to wake up. I was always wondering what new thing I can do today. I believed I could do anything I put my head into. And I did.

Now, I am an older person. I focus more on my relationships with people that are meaningful.

On a typical day now, I get breakfast, work out, do a little cardio. I take notes. I have the easiest schedule and I don’t think I remember the last time I worked.

G.M: In one of the interviews I was watching with you, you said that you liked to study the great minds of our time, and some of their greatest accomplishments in the later parts of their lives. So, what is on Larry North’s agenda?

L.N: For me, it’s just enjoying life and going a little bit more inward. Finding out things about myself.

I am not big on awards, but I did win an award last year based on the desire to keep learning.

One thing you learn is that there’s no end game. When you enter your 50s, you really start learning more about yourself that you might have not been aware of, or been in denial. So,  I’m just learning how to be a better person, and do better things in a different way other than in the fitness industry.

For more inspiration, listen to the whole episode here.

If you want to learn more about Larry North, check out the following links:

If you want to find out more about the host Greg McCoy, check out his website, social media, YouTube channel, or come for a visit at Hidden Gym.

Be a Better Fitness Leader ft. Lindsay Vastola

A fitness career is a broad term and there are many possible paths in this industry. From the sidelines it might seem that personal training is only about creating workout plans but it is so much more than that.

People who pursue a career in fitness should develop self-actualization and self-awareness, in order to recognize their strengths and weaknesses, and be able to leverage these two with other individuals.

Lindsay Vastola is a fitness professional, speaker, entrepreneur, and coach. She has a lot of experience helping people improve their fitness career and be more aware of their business.

In the eight episode of Real McCoy Radio, Lindsay and host Greg talk about what it means to be a better fitness leader, and what it takes to become a professional that has a long-lasting positive impact on people’s lives.

Throughout her career, Lindsay has learnt many valuable tips, and effective ways to help her clients and followers. Here are a few of them that can bring insight to any fitness professional and improve their work.

1 – Practice the four corner exercise.

This is a visual exercise, where you can look around the room and see the reason why somebody might not agree with you, pretending there are four different people in each corner.

The four corners are the action taker, the speculator, the person who wants all the details, and the person who makes decisions based on how it will affect other people. 

The exercise is very powerful, because it allows you to take a moment to step away, and say, for example:

“I am an action taker. I take actions off and not think about the consequences. That has its strengths, and it has its weaknesses.”

Then, you realize that in the other corners, there are the speculators; the people, who want to know all of the options before they make a decision; and the people, who want all the details.

Once you start practicing this simple exercise, you develop more patience and understanding of other people’s opinions.

2 – Emotional intelligence is a game changer. 

From a business owner standpoint, emotional intelligence helps bring your systems to life. Emotional intelligence is often called EQ and there is a reason for that.

In the fitness industry, EQ refers to our self-awareness, self-regulation, empathy, how we can create community by our body language, the questions we ask our clients, the interactions, and the events we are part of.

These impact skills are 85% of what fitness professionals do, and without EQ it would be very difficult to connect with clients and have a positive impact on their lives.

Emotional intelligence helps us realize that the client is not always right but we have to make them feel like they are. 

3 – Personal leadership refers to having honest conversations with yourself. 

Leaders do not necessarily take management or ownership positions. These are  the people who are self-driven and prioritize self-awareness.

Personal leadership is about having those honest conversations with yourself, where you become aware of your mistakes and stay humble about them. It is about putting yourself around people who will help you realize your strengths and  weaknesses, and contribute to your personal development.

Personal leadership means you are constantly a student before you’re a teacher.

Personal leadership is what helps us create and validate our self-worth. Self-worth comes from a purpose and  personal sense of value, which extends from a career longevity standpoint and translates into the future.

4 – Give yourself the opportunity to work with different people. Then, choose your niche. 

After gaining some diverse experience, continue to evaluate who it is that you really love working with. Who do you feel you can impact best? These answers would help you find your niche as a trainer.

Being a general personal trainer could be challenging and not satisfying enough because you will have to work with many different people, and implement different approaches each time. Doing so in the beginning is essential, and it  helps you build a solid foundation as a coach, but after a period of time, it becomes exhausting.

Specializing in one type of clientele allows you to provide better coaching, help your clients more efficiently and understand them on a deeper level. Focus on finding your niche and make sure you become great at it.

You can listen to the full podcast, if you want to find out everything that Lindsay and Greg talk about.

Do you want to learn more about Lindsay Vastola? Check out her website.

If you want to find out more about the host Greg McCoy, check out his website, social media, YouTube channel, or come for a visit at Hidden Gym.

Transforming Your Training Revenue ft. Mathew Park

Personal training is a competitive career where it might be difficult to earn more than the average wage for your area. Trainers often get stuck in a relatively comfortable routine and forget they can do much more with their potential.

Mathew Park’s business is all about coaching trainers how to escape this rut. His mission is to help personal trainers believe in their abilities and increase their income.

In the seventh episode of Real McCoy Radio, host Greg McCoy and Mathew talk about the common struggles that personal trainers face on their path to a healthy career.

Mathew’s career journey hasn’t been easy. He moved from a small town in Alberta, Canada to California to pursue a career in personal training, when he was only 18 years old.

Like many other professionals, in the beginning, he was struggling with paying his bills and getting enough clients. Soon, he realized that with a methodical and strategic approach, he could earn a lot more, and went from $500 a month to $20,000 a month within a few years. After systemizing his approach, Mathew created his coaching plan called Trainer Revenue Multiplier.

Matthew has been grinding and working really hard to be able to appreciate his worth. Many coaches struggle with charging what they deserve, underestimate the value they can provide and doubt themselves.

During his interview with Greg, he answered a few very interesting questions. If you feel like you could take your coaching business to another level and earn more, while doing what you love, here are Mathew’s answers that can bring some insight to your ideas.

G.M: How do you take a trainer nowadays from $2,000 a month to $20,000 a month? Where do you even start to turn around someone’s business to that proportion?

M.P: First, they have to  want to make the change and be coachable. Because I can say here’s a formula, but if you don’t want to make the changes, it’s not gonna work.

Number one tip would be getting things systemized in your business. Usually, most trainers are working to save their schedule. Very disorganized. Nothing is systemized and client files are everywhere or on their computers.

Second, keep a track of how much you’re earning with each client, at each session. Then, work on charging your worth.

The third piece is increasing revenue. Trainers get mixed up if they focus on increasing revenue first. They work all this energy into this and get so disorganized  that they just fall off the wagon.

G.M: And that’s when it comes to increasing pricing. Why is that so difficult? And how do you help them break that barrier?

M.P: I think it is difficult because the industry has been taught to always go by session based fees. Instead, coaches could focus on charging per a package, or per a period of time, such as three months, six months, etc. This way they can earn two or three times more income in that process and deliver epical epic value, while working a lot less hours.

G.M: When it comes to marketing for personal trainers, I feel like many trainers fall into the trap of marketing to everyone, which often turns into marketing to nobody. How do you help trainers go for a niche?

M.P: Most trainers think that if they pick a niche, they’re going to miss out on clientele. The funny thing is, you get paid more for a niche. It’s like being a doctor. Are you a family doctor or a cardiologist?

G.M: In the previous podcasts that I recorded with Natalia Melo, we were talking about business coaches and she was somehow critical about their efficiency. So, as a business coach in the fitness industry, what is your take on that? What’s the coaching scene like right now?

M.P: Unfortunately, many business coaches in the industry haven’t actually been in the shoes of being an online coach, or a personal trainer, or owned partially of a gym. That’s a big problem, because they don’t know the system. So, before choosing a coach, you should do good research.

Listen to these and many other answers to interesting questions in the full episode of Real McCoy Radio.

For more about Matthew Park, check out the following links:

If you want to find out more about the host Greg McCoy, check out his website, social media, YouTube channel, or come for a visit at Hidden Gym.