Episode 94: Pete McCall on The Business of Fitness

“We All Lift Each Other Up”

About Today’s Guest

Pete McCall is a strength coach, personal trainer, author of Smarter Workouts: The Science of Exercise Made Simple, education consultant, public speaker and host of the All About Fitness podcast. As a consultant, Pete has experience delivering education and content solutions for a variety of health and fitness organizations including the American Council on Exercise (ACE), the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), Reebok, 24-Hour Fitness, Core Health & Fitness, ActivMotion Bar, Hyperwear and Terra Core Fitness. Frequently quoted as a fitness expert in publications such as The New York Times, Washington Post, San Diego Union-Tribune, SELF, Glamour, and Shape Magazine and featured as a fitness expert for TV news outlets including WRC-NBC (DC), Fox News, Fox 5 San Diego, and NBC7 San Diego, Pete is a sought-after media resource for accurate, in-depth insights on how to get results from exercise.

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Show Notes

We begin the show by Pete reminding me that we had met in the early nineties when he was an assistant, checking presenters in at the ECA conference in NYC. This leads to us talking about the importance of creating our own opportunities, including volunteering at local conferences.

Pete shares that his fitness journey began when he was working on Capitol Hill. He grew up in the DC area and after college returned to Washington, and it was while he was working on Capitol Hill that he began working at the front desk at a local gym.

After he earned a certification from the American Council on Exercise, he eventually went on to work for ACE directly in 2008. Along the way, he got his master’s degree but the one thing that he took from politics was the power of networking and getting to know people.

Pete talks about the benefits that can come from working within a gym chain. It is here where you can get a lot of reps, teaching, and training. Pete suggests that one way to have a solid career is to work within an organization, do the most you can, work 25 to 30 hours a week and make a very good living. Then to expand your career ask your company for ways that you can expand your services, and help them by offering workshops, etc. for both trainers and customers.

We talk about the hustle and grind that has to happen behind any successful career or venture. We both discuss how it can look easy to be at the top, especially with social media but we all have to remember that there was a climb to get there.

Pete shares his thoughts on the importance of learning both within and outside the industry that you are in. He talks about the need to develop skillsets in leadership, marketing, sales, and social media. Staying on the topic of social media we talk about how to be resilient and move forward when there is so much opportunity for people to share their opinions of us on the internet.

We talk about whether to niche down in one area of expertise or to cast a wider net. Pete shares something a friend told with him many years ago when he said, “you want to be an inch wide and a mile deep.” However, at the end of the day, we both believe the most important thing is to do something and get started.

Pete talks about the importance of doing your best- daily. On bringing your best effort forward to every day, regardless of whether it’s a good day or bad one. It is when we do our best and create a positive environment for others, everything will fall into place.

We close out the conversation with Pete sharing a daily practice that we can all use to stay on track and moving toward our goals, called S.W.OT.

Strengths – look at your strengths. What are you doing well?
Weaknesses – what are your weaknesses and can you turn them into an opportunity?
Opportunities – where are they and where can you create more?
Threats – where do you feel challenged? Which elements are in your control and which are outside of your control?

So this week I encourage you to remember your strengths, look at areas where you could improve as opportunities to grow instead of signs of weakness. Explore new opportunities and follow through on existing gateways to greatness and view your threats as motivation to rise.