This blog and video is on my friend, Adam To, who is a fitness trainer in Orange County, CA. I connected with Adam many months back at a Starbucks. He was reading The Mask of Masculinity by Lewis Howes. That caught my attention because aside from my business friends, I rarely see anyone with the common interest in the entrepreneur/self growth space in the wild.
Never judge a book by its cover. Adam may be in a great shape now, but he dug deep and went unguarded in this talk. Adam talked about his childhood. He moved from Vietnam to the USA at age 8. He was an introvert, who faced anxiety, and depression because of the expectations put on him while growing up.
He talked about how his dad didn’t have that growth mindset so unfortunately he didn’t look up to his dad growing up. His mom was his role model since she was the breadwinner for the family.
Adam talked about having a foreign name, and having other kids making fun of him. He grew up as a skinny kid at about 128 lbs. He struggled with being thin most of his life. He lacked self confidence so he hid behind the computer screen to mask his insecurity.
He didn’t know what to do after high school so he took up going to the gym at age 19 per his best friend’s recommendation. He took it up as a hobby to work on his insecurity.
Fitness fell onto his lap because he enjoys serving others. He was still only working out as a hobby at the time, but he knew he wanted to help others. He didn’t want to go the typical 4-year college route. Instead, he went to a vocational nursing school but switched to personal training and fitness because he felt he couldn’t help people in the hospital. He fell in love with the new program.
Adam talked about how to select trainers because there is no shortage of them. A good trainer should always have the clients’ best interest at heart. The clients should be given the tools to keep the lifestyle going after their time ends.
His ideal clientele is the general public because he wants to help lower the obesity rate. He wants to educate them on tips on how to live healthier lifestyles. Some people he deals with: those who are intimidated by going to the gym alone and people coming out of injuries.
Adam puts integrity above all. He said if you didn’t gain all that weight in a short amount of time, then the reversal process will take time as well. He said if you’re looking for fast results then he isn’t the coach for you because most of the time, they will rebound. He wants his clients to keep the lifestyle going and never come back to see him again.
Adam gave tips on making small changes everyone can make such as parking farther away to walk more and calorie balancing, such as switching out your soda size and choices. Adam believes in smaller changes because drastic ones from the beginning will discourage most people to keep going with their progress.
He chimed in on how physical and mental health & wellness are connected. He gave an example of how busy people don’t sacrifice physical health because they wouldn’t be able to perform at their highest capacities. When you feel good about yourself, you’re able to think better and be more overall effective.
How can one love or care for himself or herself better? Adam weighs in by saying that it is important to be there for your friends and loved ones. You can’t force them to do certain things, but you can provide support when they are ready to reach out.
What’s the end goal? Adam said he wants to amplify his reach to help people. He wants to create a culture and team to sustainably make change for the community. The end goal is a moving target, but he wants to leave a positive impact on society.
Adam’s last words: it’s never too late to pursue what you want to! Go live your life and emerge yourself in the journey. Block out the naysayers and know your ‘why’. If your ‘why’ is strong enough, then you will get to your end goal. Aim to impact first and income will come second.
If you want to connect with Adam, here are ways to do so: