Name: Eric Fleishman
Education/Certification: ACE, New York Sports Club - Master Trainer, Apprenticed under Nick Kane (Vince's Gym), Frank Zane, and Don Howorth, Mr. America 1967
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Number Of Clients: Between 200-300
Rates: We have a sliding scale, including plenty of pro bono work. But we also work with celebrities too. $0.00 - $1500.00 per session
[ Q ] Could you tell us a little about your background - personally and professionally?
I grew up on a farm in the woods of Maine. It was cold outside, and rather economically depressed. People in my town ended up either working as woodsmen for the paper company or working in a local factory making shoes, so there wasn't an emphasis placed on physical beauty. From an early age I learned to look within a person to find their beauty. It's a skill I've based my entire career upon.
[ Q ] When and why did you become a trainer?
I was a small, weak, kid growing up, and to make matters worse, I was short too. Being a "late bloomer" runs in our family, but it doesn't help when all of the girls in your class who you want to make out with look like they should be your babysitter! When I finally grew during college, I went to the local gym to try to fill out my lanky physique. I guess I never left.
[ Q ] What is your training style? What methods do you use?
I am a gender specific trainer, meaning the methods of fitness and diet that I recommend for men is nearly the polar opposite of the methods and diet I recommend for women. There is very little overlap.
For men we employ classic bodybuilding technique in the gym, focusing on weights and accented by functional movements. For women we use no equipment ever- no weights, no machines, no bands, no medicine balls, just their bodies on a mat. And neither gender are encouraged to do any classic cardio. It wastes away the very energy used to power physical change. Most of our clients are actors and actresses. In general, the men end up looking like Tarzan, and the women end up looking like Jane.
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What I Recommend For Men Is Nearly The
Polar Opposite Of What I Recommend For Women.
[ Q ] Do you have examples of success stories from clients using your methods?
In the world of fitness, success has different meanings for different people. That's what keeps it fresh and interesting as a career. When a young actress seeks us out and comes for her first visit in the gym, there's a lot at stake. If my methods work and she looks amazing, her income may exceed one million dollars this year, starring in a film or TV series. But if she doesn't stick to her diet, get enough sleep, or workout hard enough, she'll end up making $23,000 this year waiting tables.
I came to LA from NYC nearly 15 years ago, and during that time I've happily been part of the waiter to movie star transition many times. I also have worked with law enforcement including LAPD, CHP, SWAT, and have been teaching at the Sherriff's academy for the past few years. To assist in making a nervous new cadet into a confident, strong officer is an honor I am proud of. Their level of fitness often translates into their ability to save lives.
[ Q ] Who are some of your most notable clients?
The best trainers in Hollywood never kiss and tell, but I've been working with movie stars, television stars, and famous musicians ever since I arrived here from NYC. My clients have won Oscars, Emmys, and Grammys too. I even trained a movie producer to run the Ironman triathlon in Kona, HI, but as you can imagine, the need to be "red carpet ready" is something I deal with constantly.
Recently I've been traveling a lot and had the chance to work with the Saints in New Orleans, UFC star Tito Ortiz at his training camp in Big Bear, CA, and even consult musicians from around the world at the Latin Grammys in Las Vegas. We also train members of the US Sumo team at our facility. Their fitness needs obviously differ greatly from our bikini model clients, so it's a great challenge.
[ Q ] Can you please you give me an example diet and training program you put together for your clients.
We align their exercise, diet, and sleep program based upon their individual fitness goals.
[ Q ] What are the most common mistakes a client makes?
Not sleeping enough.
Sleep is the most important part of any fitness program because it's when the body changes and grows. And not blending functional movements along with weights is a mistake for men. I try to lead by example - Last year I did 40,000 pushups to celebrate my 40th birthday, including 1,000 live on TV. It was awesome!
[ Q ] What are the most common mistakes you believe a trainer makes?
Not caring enough. Being a trainer isn't a job, it's an adventure! If trainers treated their clients with the love and care that they would give to members of their own family, there wouldn't be as much turn over. Show that you care, and the clients will stay there.
[ Q ] Do you set your clients up with a full diet and training plan for them to follow by themselves?
We do, but most choose to work with me, or with one of my trainers who I personally instructed in my methods. We're like the United Nations - very diverse! Shannon's the Canadian ETT, David's the Cuban ETT, Ivan's the Mexican ETT, and Alysia's the Japanese ETT. She's also the best Pilates instructor in the world! Then we also have Rick, our PGA golf instructor, Nick our combative weapons instructor, and Sandy, our Thai massage therapist. We're a full service fitness company who recently set a record for gathering items for the 2009 Muscle Beach Toy Drive.
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We Just Recently Set A Record For Gathering
Items For The 2009 Muscle Beach Toy Drive.
[ Q ] How do you keep your clients motivated?
Are you kidding? I love fitness the way most guys love their wives -- endlessly! If you've ever spent time with someone who loves what they do, it's a world of difference from the norm. The gym is my world, and I'm happy to share it with them.
[ Q ] Do you train a male client differently to a female?
Yes, more than anyone, ever.
[ Q ] How have your changed your approach to clients over the years of experience?
Fitness is like medicine- It's constantly changing and evolving forward. Some of the things we did a decade ago we know are not recommended. Keeping an open mind is important. My knowledge base and methods are constantly expanding.
[ Q ] How do you start a client on a new program? Do you do some kind of assessment?
I ask, "In a perfect world, what would we accomplish?" Then make that your short-term goal.
[ Q ] Do you prefer to train male or female clients and why?
They're both challenging - I know how to train a man because I workout constantly. But nobody trains women better than we do.
We've figured it out!
[ Q ] Do you feel just as much like a psychologist as you do a personal trainer?
I feel more like a magician.
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