Personal Trainer Of The Month - Dave Graziosi!

Congratulations Dave Graziosi on being our Personal Trainer Of The Month! Dave was awarded the Bodybuilding.com Personal Trainer of the Month for his health and fitness contributions that he provides for his clients!


Vital Stats:

Name: Dave Graziosi
Age: 26
Education/Certifications:

  • Bachelors in Business, Marketing and Management
  • Level: 1,2,3 high intensity training principles from personal training institute.
  • Boot camp certified and stretch certified from personal training institute.

Location: New Hyde Park personal training institute (owner operator), Nassau County Aquatic Center personal training manager
Contact Info: davegraz57@gmail.com
Website: http://personaltraininginstitute.com/

Number Of Clients:

    150 shared clients at Personal Training Institute, and 12 personal clients at Nassau county aquatic center.

Rates: Very different for all facilities and types of training (the most I charge is $100 an hour).


Bio/Background


[ Q ] Could you tell us a little bit about your background personally and also your professional background in the industry?

    I started lifting and becoming conscious of fitness when I was an athlete in high school (captain of football, wrestling, and lacrosse) as well as my mom being a fitness instructor in my pre-teens. I went to school for physical education (as well as played college football) and then left after my final semester to pursue a career as a small gym owner.

I Became Concious Of Fitness When I Was An Athlete In High Shcool.
+ Click To Enlarge.
I Became Concious Of Fitness When
I Was An Athlete In High Shcool.

    I purchased my franchise at the age of 21 and operated it up until a year ago (5 years total) when I got the opportunity to be the personal training manger for the Nassau County aquatic center. I still own the PTI franchise and have a 150 clients there. I still oversee the implementation of their workouts as well as monitor nutrition. I have 12 personal trainers working beneath me there.

    At NCAC I have three trainers that work closely with my guidance. I have 12 personal clients there and counting. I am currently in the process of getting a fitness book published.

    I also teach a variety of fitness classes including healthy kids 2, a class for pre-teens designed to motivate and teach about fitness. Other classes are extreme conditioning as well as core and stretch. I have taught certification classes for PTI and helped other trainers reach higher levels of certification by hosting workshops and tutoring.

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[ Q ] What made you want to become a personal trainer?

    I have always been good at one thing and it was lifting a lot of weight. I felt my strength in the gym could help motivate people to become more fit. I also feel more comfortable in a weight room than anywhere else so why not make some cash while I do it.

    Every trainer says they want to help people and I feel that is cliché, because most of them are just trying to make a buck. The motivated ones are few and far between, but they are easy to spot... they are the ones you can never get an appointment with.


[ Q ] What do you feel separates you from other trainers?

    I feel my knowledge base of the human psyche and my ability to read a person and situation can help me motivate people to do anything. For some reason people either want to please me or prove me wrong so I can play that card with any trainee to make them accomplish the impossible.

    I am not tricking people into working hard, I am just finding out what gets them going and using that information to keep progressing.

I Don't Trick People Into Working Hard, I Just Find Out What Gets Them Going And Use That.
+ Click To Enlarge.
I Don't Trick People Into Working Hard, I Just
Find Out What Gets Them Going And Use That.


[ Q ] What are the most common mistakes you feel trainers make?

    Babying their clients is the biggest mistake I see with trainers. They don't let them lift to their maximum potential because they are afraid of hurting them. Intensity is the key to effective training when a trainer is apprehensive they will never push hard enough.

    Also, light weight and lots of reps just causes joint issues over time, use a lower rep range, nothing over 15, for too long of a period of time.


[ Q ] What does a normal work day look like for you?

    Start at 6 am, end at 9 pm. I have back-to-back clients from 6- 12 and then again starting at 4 usually till 9 pm. This is only if I am working both jobs. I usually workout in the middle of the day which I don't feel is ideal, but I got to get it in sometime. My shifts are changing because I am having a baby in September.

I Usually Workout In The Middle Of The Day. I Got To Get It In Sometime.
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I Usually Workout In The Middle Of The
Day. I Got To Get It In Sometime.


[ Q ] You obviously set up your clients on a workout program; do you also give them a diet to follow?

    I don't give nutrition advice, not because I am not qualified to but, because it is whole separate issue that can distract from a workout. I usually send them to my wife; she is a nutritionist.

    When nutrition advice becomes involved people always seem to struggle with that more often than the lifting so, I like to separate and compartmentalize them. I don't want to be lecturing on nutrition while someone is struggling to lift their bodyweight. I have sat down with people and helped them make better food choices, but a diet plan should be left to the nutritionists and dietitians.

I Don't Want To Be Lecturing On Nutrition While Someone Is Struggling To Lift Their Bodyweight.
+ Click To Enlarge.
I Don't Want To Be Lecturing On Nutrition While
Someone Is Struggling To Lift Their Bodyweight.


[ Q ] Do you feel more comfortable training male or female clients or does it really not matter to you?

    Doesn't matter to me, but most of my clients are female.


[ Q ] Where do you train your clients?

    I train all over Long Island, New York. Mainly in the two facilities that I work in. I have also done home training, but that is rare.


[ Q ] Do you recommend supplements to your clients? If so, what do you recommend?

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[ Q ] Do you find your clients following your guidelines to a "T" or do some of them have common mistakes along the way?

    Only one client follows my guidelines to a "T" and that is why she is the one with the most results. Everyone including me makes constant excuses, but the more excuses I get them to stop making the better they become. It's always a work in progress.


[ Q ] Motivation is a key to success. How do you keep your clients motivated?

    There isn't one way I would keep clients motivated, everyone has got there button to press. Trying to figure out who to build up and give confidence to or who to challenge to become better is what a good trainer figures out.

Everyone Has Their Button And A Good Trainer Figures Out What That Is.
+ Click To Enlarge.
Everyone Has Their Button And A Good
Trainer Figures Out What That Is.


[ Q ] Do you have a success story that you want to share with us that really means a lot to you?

    I feel everyone has a success story in some way, but the one that sticks out in my mind was a lady who told me she would never ever have a trainer tell her what to do.

    The first month she trained with me she didn't see any results then something clicked, she stopped making excuses dropped the extra 20 lbs and started making goals that would be ambitious for 19 year old. She reached them all. And I won't tell you how old she is, but she did a triathlon with me and almost beat me. People like her drive me to keep doing what I am doing. She has changed for life and will not look back.


[ Q ] If there was one piece of advice you could give to the readers, what would it be?

    Write down a reason why you didn't work out or why it was a half @ssed try. Then show it to someone who will be honest to you. Ask them if they think it is an excuse. They will almost always say it is. If you ever write anything down it is automatically an excuse. Take that paper, burn it, and then never use that reason or excuse again. Do this enough and there will never be a missed or half @ssed workout.

Write Down Your Excuses.  Take That Paper, Burn It And Never Use That Excuse Again.
+ Click To Enlarge.
Write Down Your Excuses. Take That Paper, Burn
It And Never Use That Excuse Again.


[ Q ] Would you like to thank anyone for helping you get to where you are with your career?

    My wife and mentor "Giraffe" Kat Graziosi


[ Q ] Is there anything else you would like to add to this interview that we haven't already covered?

    Don't pick a trainer because of how they look, pick them because of how you feel when you first meet them, usually someone you are comfortable with is the easiest to take advice from.


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Do you have a personal trainer that deserves to be a Bodybuilding.com Personal Trainer of the Month? Submit them to ptmonth@bodybuilding.com.