Let’s get moving! Abbie Sterling has been on a mission to help people get active and successfully so. “I get to teach people to move for a living! As a one-on-one personal trainer, I help my clients build a solid foundation for a lifetime of good health by correcting poor movement patterns, improving joint range of motion, and building strength inside and out,” Abbie says.
Abbie doesn’t just train people in person. She also has a strong online presence. And the same enthusiasm and hands-on approach she has in person, she also uses in her online teaching. “ As an online coach, I have recently committed to taking the same approach – a campaign I call, “Less #selfie, more substance.” This new direction for my online personal training brand demonstrates my commitment to treating my online following in the same way I treat my one-on-one clients – as motivated individuals looking for resources, tips and guidance on exercise and nutrition. Instagram fitness can be too focused on aesthetics, good lighting and posing at times. I don’t “inspire” my one-on-one clients with pictures of my abs. I don’t make their personal training sessions all about me. So I’m no longer doing that with my online presence, either,” Abbie explains.
For someone with so much enthusiasm for what she does, I was very interested in learning how Abbie got her start in the fitness industry. Turns out that her interest was sparked after leading a not so healthy lifestyle for some time. “I got serious about my health and wellness in 2014. I was in my mid-20s, partying a lot and not taking great care of myself. I was in a new relationship (after coming out of a string of bad ones) and just starting my communications career. My energy was low. I experienced headaches daily and got sick often. I consumed a few hundred calories a day and did a lot of cardio, but just wasn’t happy with my appearance. I decided to take a leap and learn about nutrition and weight training. In the last 3.5 years, I’ve used circuit training, HIIT, strength training and yoga to build a body that is strong and healthy. I truly believe I am in better shape now, at 28, than I was at 16, when I played competitive soccer year round,” Abbie exclaims!
Jumping into health and fitness wasn’t necessarily the biggest challenge that Abbie faced but leaving her 9 to 5 in order to chase her dreams was actually a little more difficult. “Leaving the safety and security of my 9-5 corporate career last May has been, by far, my greatest challenge. I had established a promising corporate communications career at a large entertainment company, but after five years, I felt my passions and interests pulling me toward personal training. For two years leading up to my career change, I worked tirelessly as a corporate communicator while I also developed, tested, designed, and launched six fitness eBooks through my online training business, and trained clients one-on-one part-time. Knowing that I had very little work/life balance and that I needed to make a change, I decided to leave my corporate communications career to become a full-time personal trainer and online coach. This is a decision I thought about for a long time. The job I was choosing to leave is a dream job for thousands and thousands of people, but it wasn’t MY dream job. This is a leap that so many dream of taking – and trust me – it IS scary! It IS hard! There are a lot of unknowns. I don’t have cushy benefits anymore. No group health insurance. No company-matched retirement plan. But what I stay focused on is what my heart is telling me. It’s so cliche, but it’s true – “If you love what you do, you won’t ‘work’ a day in your life.” I can truly say that I feel happy and fulfilled when I leave the gym at the end of the night. I get paid to help people feel better about themselves! And that feeling … it’s priceless,” Abbie glowingly says.
“Wanting a rewarding career is what motivated me to leave my 9-5 to be a personal trainer, and being able to help clients reach a wide array of health goals – new PRs, goal weights, low body fat percentages, higher levels of muscle definition – is by far the best part. Regardless of the goal, what makes it so rewarding for me is knowing that I have played a small part in helping someone feel stronger, more confident and happier with themselves.” -Abbie Sterling
How and when did you develop your method/s?
I began developing my personal training methods in 2016 by taking on many in-person and online clients free of charge (i.e. as willing and eager “guinea pigs!”). I’m forever grateful for these friends and family members who worked with me and gave me such valuable experience so early on. Using what I had learned through my personal training studies and my continued research, I developed a 13-week gym-based strength-training routine, the My Best Body Training Program. I worked through this 13-week program with several dozen clients and made revisions and enhancements based on their experiences and results before releasing the program for sale in eBook format at the end of 2016. In 2017, I ramped up my one-on-one training and gained even more valuable knowledge that I was able to apply in the My Best Body – Home Training Program, which I developed, tested and launched in 2017. This program, suited for clients in both gym and home settings, includes a greater focus on flexibility and core training. I believe that flexibility, core and stabilization provide a solid foundation for strength and endurance, and that all of these components are equally important in building a well-rounded, healthy body. My eBook programs include many of the same exercises I perform with my one-on-one clients and focus on all of these key areas.
What makes it uniquely effective?
In eBook format, my programs help clients build the solid foundation that is often overlooked. By experiencing three different types of training – stabilization, strength training and power training – clients build bodies that are well-rounded, healthy and strong in a variety of ways. This method also ensures that clients remain injury-free and avoid boredom or burnout.
By first addressing flexibility and areas of restriction with my one-on-one clients, I know what work needs to be done to ensure they are performing safe and effective workouts. Most people experience pain of some kind and have tight muscles or restricted joints. Identifying and correcting these issues ensures the body is ready to perform more advanced exercises and reap all the benefits without any injury.
Who is it best for?
Because I tailor my one-on-one training to meet individual needs – anyone!
Online coaching (through my eBooks) is a little different. My eBooks are best suited for healthy clients who not only want to build muscle and burn fat, but also want to actually learn the styles and techniques to continue on their own the rest of their lives.
In the gym and through my eBooks, my ultimate goal is to arm you with the knowledge you need to make it a habit for life.
Is there any specific science or psychology at work?
Absolutely! I believe in first reducing tightness and restriction and improving body awareness, flexibility and core strength so that clients are able to move in the right ways when lifting heavy or generating power. If a client is extremely tight, he will not be able to move through full ranges of motion and will not receive the full benefit of exercise. My personal training methods are a fusion of my NASM personal training studies and continued research in mobility/flexibility and strength training/cardiovascular conditioning through a functional lens. Overall, I aim to improve the quality of life for my clients. I’m working on a few new certifications this year. I can’t wait to share more soon!
“Changing careers to become a full-time personal trainer has been a wild ride, and I just want to thank everyone who has supported me, encouraged me and cheered me on. From my boyfriend, family and friends to thousands of people all around the world on social media, I have received a ton of support and love. Moving forward, I’m making continued education a huge priority. A mentor in my field once told me, “The more we learn, the less we know,” and I take this humble approach to my new path. There is so much more to learn, and I am so grateful for all the support. Thank you all!” -Abbie Sterling
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