My Raison D’Etre (Reason for Being) in Fitness

February 20, 2009

After a day off from blogging, its back to business! The past couple of days have been awesome since I was able to go back to SST and talk program design as well get a lower body lift in — although that turned into a hang clean technique session :).

Anyways today’s post is not just about why I changed my blog’s name, but also why I realized I got into fitness in the first place. Sometimes I’d think about this because a couple of notable fitness experts, Alwyn Cosgrove and Craig Ballantyne, say that a) you can’t be really successful in this field until you realize you’re real innate passion and b) knowing this “raison d’etre” (reason for being) will determine the target market you should focus on if you have that drive to be an entrepreneur.

Since I started getting certified as a personal trainer 2 1/2 years ago, my own personal training goal up until recently has just been to gain muscle mass. As a result when I started to realize I had entrepreneurial aspirations, I just assumed that my niche should then be people looking to add muscle mass. (This is what I thought I would target my blog to when I first started it last May). This was more a feeling of “I think this is what drives me to train in the gym, so I guess I must focus on the identical niche if I start a business/marketing myself” — in other words, it wasn’t something that deep down I was sold on as my “reason”.

Yes, I have always wanted to gain muscle mass (in all honesty, probably some underlying body image issues there), but a couple of weeks ago it hit me that my thinking on all this was wrong. You see, I realized that I got into weight training when I was 16, because I wanted to get bigger so that I could be a better baseball player. I have never just wanted to get big for big’s sake…there’s always been an athletic reason for wanting to add size and get stronger, etc. Even now that I just play recreational baseball during the summer, I still want to improve each off-season via my training; that’s the reason that drives my own training and ends up being what I really enjoy reading/studying that is fitness-related for hours most days (this is also a avoidance strategy for studying for my university exams — I go study training…geeky I know ;)

So here’s a short paragraph summarizing my raison d’etre:

I got into the fitness industry to help athletes take their game to the next level. I want to provide my athletes with all the information they need to do that — because when I was playing for a scholarship, I have since realized that people who trained me didn’t tell me everything I needed to know to take full advantage of the training. The end goal being that I want to see the athletes I train accomplish whatever their athletic goals are.

I mentioned that strength coaches I had back in the day didn’t tell me everything. This isn’t to say they weren’t good, just that the field has progressed a ton since then — specifically that you can’t talk about strength & conditioning for improved athletic performance without addressing nutrition nowadays. There’s a reason I singled out nutrition advice in my raison d’etre statement above:

I was in the 115-130 pound range at 5’6″ my last three years of high school when I was playing baseball on a travel team. I would work hard in the gym, but always put on no more than 5 pounds (which I would lose during the season). Hindsight has taught me that I needed to know about nutrition; specifically that I needed to be told to eat more. As a teenager not immersed in learning about fitness this wasn’t obvious to me, and I was never told anything about nutrition. This was a BIG motivator for me wanting to get into the industry and help other athletes because I could use my experience to help other athletes not make the same mistakes I did!

So back to the blog — the old name “Chris Brown’s blog on strength training and nutrition” was generic; it wasn’t targeting information at anyone which is understandable since when I started this thing I wasn’t as aware of my real motivation as I am now. So the new name “Chris Brown’s blog on enhancing athletic performance in the gym” is more indicative that I want to focus on providing information on training athletes (obviously non-athlete who want to train like athletes will find benefit from the info too) since thats what I really enjoy!

Anyways here’s to the next chapter of this blog — I hope you guys will continue to come along for the ride!



5 Responses to “My Raison D’Etre (Reason for Being) in Fitness”

  1. RobFitness Says:

    Hey Man you really have a great blog going hear. Looking forward to learning some stuff through your posts and all. Not yet ready to gain muscle. Still need to lose weight I think, I mean I know, before I can even think about gaining muscle. If that makes sense at all.

  2. Chris Brown Says:

    Thanks Rob, glad you enjoy it!
    Yup it makes sense, good luck with reaching the goals you set for yourself! Keep me posted!


  3. Not going anywhere ;). Love the stuff you post and the information in it. Lots of times you read something and they don’t tell you why. Like if someone told me to stop eating french fries but without telling me why, I’d probably still be eating them. You nearly always get the why in there :).

  4. Chris Brown Says:

    Thanks for the feedback Michelle, I definitely appreciate it!!

  5. Now where’d you go! Don’t tell me college is keeping you busy ;).

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