Where Do I Start My Career?: Mentorship

From Roger DeLaCruz, Campus Director

You may be wondering as a student of personal training, how do I start my career as a Personal Trainer? First of all, congrats on taking the first step on the path to your rewarding career in fitness by enrolling in the Fitness and Nutrition Trainer Program at AFNA.  

According to ACSM’s, Resources for the Personal Trainer, there are several other steps along that journey:

  1. Find your “Why”
  2. Certification
  3. Find a mentor
  4. Reading and Research 
  5. Clinics, Conferences, and Conventions
  6. Coursework
  7. The Satisfaction of Seeing Healthy Results
  8. Exceeding Client Expectations
  9. Entering the World of Lifelong Learning

Today I am going to focus on Finding a mentor.  I have had several mentors in my professional Retail Career and in my Fitness Career.  Each played an integral part in my success as a Retail Manager and as a Personal Trainer and Fitness Manager.

What is a mentor?  A mentor “invests time, energy and personal experience into another’s career development.”  Your mentor should match your interests and background and be experienced as a professional personal trainer.  Find a trainer that has “paid his/her dues.”  Someone who will honestly share their wins as a trainer, as well as their mistakes and setbacks.  From the beginning of your relationship, set clear expectations regarding the estimated time you would like to spend with them.  Will you meet weekly, monthly, quarterly?  When you meet with your mentor, be prepared with specific questions and issues you want to talk about.  In today’s electronic communication environment, utilize texting, email, Facetime or Zoom!

Meet my mentor, Laura Wouters.  She was my Fitness Manager at 24 Hour Fitness in West Hollywood.  She helped me grow from a part-time trainer, training 60 hours a month to a full-time, Asst. Manager trainer, training up to 140 sessions a month.  That transition happened in only a few months.  We focused on my Why: I wanted to help change lives through fitness.  We also found my niche market within our gym: coaching clients new to fitness and our senior population.  Laura was featured on her local NBC News Station in San Diego.  The story focused on how trainers are adjusting to the challenges of maintaining their business during the stay-at-home orders.


Contact me at [email protected] if you would like a mentor.  I will connect you with one of our AFNA graduates!