How To Become A Hall of Fame Personal Trainer w/ AJ Mihrzad | #05

EU 05 | Personal Trainer Hall of Fame

EU 05 | Personal Trainer Hall of Fame

 

The spotlight is upon expert AJ Mihrzad, a personal trainer turned online supercoach whose journey will blow your mind. From lying dead in a hospital bed to Personal Trainer Hall of Fame inductee, AJ explains how he developed and leveraged his knack for inspiring action to build his now thriving business, Online Supercoach. Prepare for maximum action-taking inspiration and discover why AJ is officially EU Hall of Fame material.

AJ Mihrzad is the author of the best selling book, “The Mind Body Solution: Train your Brain for Permanent Weight Loss.” He studied Exercise Science and Nutrition due to his passion for health and earned a Masters degree in Psychology due to his fascination with the mindset of weight loss. His cutting edge approach to permanent weight loss insists that the key to a healthy body is a healthy brain. His clients are walking proof that this is true; there are hundreds of them!

Listen to the podcast here:

How To Become A Hall of Fame Personal Trainer w/ AJ Mihrzad

I have my interview with Hall of Fame Personal Trainer, AJ Mihrzad. When I invited AJ to be a guest on my show, I’ve been following AJ for a while. I’ve been following his stuff and there was something so unique about how he interacts with people on social media and his energy is so contagious. I knew a little bit about his backstory. I know how successful he is. I invited him on the show because I wanted him to share his journey and share his story about how he developed into literally a Hall of Fame Personal Trainer. He has incredible success. My whole goal here with Experts Unleashed is to uncover and have people explain their journey of how they were able to spot opportunities to be able to monetize their expertise. Most of the time, we never know what we’re going to be able to monetize. We dove into his background and his story. AJ literally died about ten or eleven years ago. He was pronounced dead. He went into a coma for over a week. I wanted him to hop on and I wanted to ask him how he was able to take the leap from lying in a hospital bed dead to becoming inducted into the Personal Trainer Hall of Fame. Let’s get into this episode.

AJ, welcome to the show.

Thanks for having me on. This is an honor to be on here. I appreciate this.

My audience loves hearing the opportunity journeys and the story of how the super successful got to where they are. For those who haven’t heard of you before, what do you do? What’s your business? Who do you serve as an expert?

I got started in entrepreneurship back in 2007. I celebrated my ten years of being a business owner. I started off as a personal trainer. That was a life-changing career because I transformed myself to the world of fitness and I was so inspired to help other people do that. I was a personal trainer for about a decade and then I was transitioned into online coaching and then I transitioned into my current company, which is Online Super Coach, helping personal trainers and coaches scale their online businesses. The fitness industry has given me a lot. Most importantly, the ability to transform my life and serve others at the highest level. I was inducted into the Personal Trainer Hall of Fame for being a trendsetter, bringing online coaching to the industry. I’m super grateful. I’ve been able to accomplish a lot in my dreams and help a lot of people. I have a concept that we all have an amazing superpower. We tap into the superpower, everything just flows and falls into place. We’re at our highest creativity, energy, and focus when we’re living in our superpower. The greatest thing that I’m doing right now is living my superpower, being interviewed by you and sharing all my passions.

I’ve been following you for a while now. You’re very active on social media. You share a lot of live videos and you’re very open and transparent. I remember I reached out to you because you had taken this leap. It seems like you’re always pushing the boundaries. I remember I reached out to you when you’re doing standup comedy. You had done your first standup comedy routine, I watched it and I laughed my ass off. That takes balls. It takes guts. My sister is an improv artist. I can appreciate it. I’ve always felt that a bond to what you’re doing it and I know it’s not easy to get up there and do stand-up.

My whole thing is that I always want to improve my communication. Most people don’t know this, but I literally stuttered for the first years of my life. I’m very shy and introverted and people will see me on Facebook, on videos and like, “This guy is so animated,” but in person I’m very low key. Every year, I challenge myself to a communication challenge where I go out there and I step out of my comfort zone or do something that scares me. I’ve always wanted to do stand-up comedy because I truly feel that’s one of the hardest things a person could do, to get up there, be vulnerable and tell jokes. Public speaking, that used to be a big fear of mine. I realized with public speaking, when you go up there and people laugh and they’ll clap even if you suck, you’ll get validation.

With stand-up comedy, if you suck, you feel the negative effects. People heckle at you, they boo you, they throw stuff at you. There’s a lot of fear going up there because you have to perform well. Once I did stand-up, my whole life changed because I prepared for it for a whole year and I was practicing my set. Once I got up on stage, it was this amazing moment of flow. One thing that realized that in preparing for the stand-up comedy, I not only accomplished my lifelong dream, I improved my range of communication where I feel like I’m a lot more humorous now. I don’t take life so seriously and I’ve turned my lens of humor on where I go look at everyday occurrences and find that the funny aspects of it. I feel sometimes when you’re stepping out of your comfort zone, you get a new superpower in the process.

It’s 100% true. It’s one of the irrefutable laws of being an expert, but pushing your comfort zone. Eventually, you’re going to use that skill for something else and it creates other opportunities and opens new doors. I appreciate you for being transparent. I want to take a step back because my audience is interested in the journey. A lot of my audience is just starting out as entrepreneurs. They’re just getting their feet wet and they’re trying to find, “What’s the thing that I’m meant to serve as an expert, as a leader?” Take me back to the starting journey. I want to learn how did you discover the opportunity of the personal training space and then the online personal training space before you were even close to becoming this Hall of Fame inductee? Take me back when it all started.

What got me into entrepreneurship was a very tragic experience. I had a scary near-death experience where I ingested this supplement and it was a freak accident. That ended up taking me to the ER. My heart stopped. I was pronounced dead and I was resuscitated, but in doing so, I was put in a coma for about a week. At that point in time, my whole life was in front of me and I realized, “I could’ve died that day. If I would have died, what would I have done? Born this day, dead this day. I had no legacy. I vow now to do something with my life to leave a legacy, create a change, and help others.” Getting out of the hospital, I started to just work on myself. I was working a 9 to 5 job and I was self-educating myself in the process.

I read twenty books in one year’s time. I started to journal. I started to go to seminars and it start to improve myself. In doing so, I saw this world of entrepreneurship. Previous to that, I thought owning a business was risky and you had to be so smart and so talented. I realized, “Maybe I could do this.” I set a goal for myself getting out of the whole near-death tragic experience that in the next three months, I’m going to take a risk and start a business. If this business does well, I’m going to stick to it. If it fails, I’m going to go back to my 9 to 5 job and that was the turning point of my life. Once I validated that business to work, I stuck with it and I’ve been doing it since.

EU 05 | Personal Trainer Hall of Fame
Personal Trainer Hall of Fame: When you’re stepping out of your comfort zone, you get a new superpower in the process.

You mentioned you read twenty books in a year after that experience. I asked you what was the one book that you can remember? You probably remember all of them but the one book that stood out that was like, “This is what’s causing me to explore this other world.” What was that book?

The book that stands out and until this day has changed my financial philosophy is Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki. I was so uneducated about how finances work and the moment I read that book, I understood it in a far deeper way and the greatest concept in that book is understanding the difference between an asset and a liability. I realized that a lot of liabilities in my life in order for me to be wealthy and successful, I had to start building assets, building a business, investments, real estate, stocks, mutual funds. Once I started to implement the strategies from Rich Dad Poor Dad, my whole life changed.

The assets versus liabilities, that’s awesome. You read Rich Dad, Poor Dad, a huge light bulb moment goes off. You make a commitment you’re like, “I’m going to try this.” You said you were going to try and start a business on the side because you’re still working 9 to 5. What was that first idea?

At the time, my 9 to 5 job was a teacher. I taught Health and Phys Ed. and I was doing that for three years. It was at a point where if I did in another year, I was already tenured, and I’d be locked into the system. When you’re tenured did, you could literally slap a kid across their face and they won’t fire you. You’re untouchable. A lot of teachers, once they get tenure, they just sit back and relax for 20, 30 years stay in that system until they retire. I had to make a big decision. Do I want to stay within my tenure or resign from teaching? It was a scary thing because I was given up this set income, the ability to have benefits, so on and so forth.

It was the ultimate asset, the ultimate security blanket.

Security blanket, yes, but nothing grows in their comfort zone. From Rich Dad Poor Dad, it was mentioning how you could build such wealth by putting on the hat of a business owner and an investor. As an employee, you’re severely limited. There was a great book by Brian Tracy called Maximum Achievement that I read at the time and he was saying that being a 9 to 5 employee is like being stuck in traffic. You have to go at the pace of everyone else and you don’t have a lot of control. Whereas being a business owner, you’re on this ultimate freeway. You go as fast as you want and go slow as you want and be in full control. It gave me a huge light bulb. I’m like, “I want to take the risk and get on the freeway, so I could start earning money at a far faster rate and at the same, I have control of my destiny.” That’s where I said, “Whatever it takes, at this point, I’m going to make this business work. I’m going to keep on pushing it.”

What came to me very easily was fitness because I was doing personal training part time. I was working at different corporate clubs and I decided I’m going to go full fledge, rent some space in a gym, and develop a personal training business. I was very overweight growing up. Once I lost that weight, my whole life changed. I was like, “I could change my body composition and have full control over my health.” Once I felt the confidence and the energy and the happiness, I want to give that gift to other people. I said if I have a fitness business, it’s something that I’m very familiar with. I have a lot of experience, I transformed my own body and at the same time, I could start giving it to others. The greatest thing about having an expert business coaching training is it’s so fulfilling. You can make great money, but at the same time, you’re serving others. If I can serve others, make good money and pay my bills, then I’m good to go.

Was that your first idea? The only idea in your mind was to do a fitness business or were there other opportunities out there when you first started?

At the time when I was reading a lot of these books about entrepreneurship and growing a business, I was looking at also making supplements and developing eBooks and all that good stuff. Back in 2007, it was also a lot easier to make money off an eBook and pay your bills with it. Supplements as well. It was not as populated as it is now. I thought it would be a lot easier, but the supplement business didn’t work that well. Selling eBooks at the time didn’t work that well either. I struggled with an online business initially. I was so naive. I was like if you just build a website, you can have droves and droves of people go on that website, buying your supplements, buying your books. Those things fail horribly. I lost money on those but the personal training business, that kept on growing because I could tangibly put the work in and show up and deliver. Those other businesses, I didn’t have the marketing acumen or understand how to drive traffic to a website, how to convert it, so on and so forth.

Take me back to your first personal training client. You’re hustling on the side and you set a goal for yourself. You said, “I’m going to try this personal training business and I’m going to give this a shot.” You still had your security but you’re still working the 9 to 5. How did you get your first client?

I got it from my own gym. When I joined the gym, I was very heavy. I was very overweight. I went beast mode in that first year. I had this big goal where I want to get a six pack. I never had a six pack my whole life. I was 60 pounds overweight. When I was first working out, when I first joined the gym, I don’t know what the hell I was doing. I was eating lettuce and turkey breast. I’m doing two hours of cardio a day, just killing myself but the weight started coming off. There’s a term in the fitness industry that is known as being skinny fat. You’re skinny but you don’t have a lot of muscle tone. Nonetheless, a lot of the gym members were in shock because many of them had been working for five years, ten years in and they still could not lose the weight.

There was a guy there named Joe who witnessed my transformation. He was like, “I saw you over the past year. You lost so much weight. You look great. Can you coach me?” I’m like, “I would love to do that.” I remember that first client, I was just so passionate with him. I gave my cell phone number, “Call me anytime. Text me anytime.” I served him like my life depended on it because I was like, “Someone’s giving me money to train them. What a concept.” I was so passionate about it and I was so grateful for him and I was devoted to giving him the biggest transformation ever.

You could take people on the same journey that you've already accomplished yourself. Click To Tweet

I remember working closely with him and understanding how someone else’s mind works because with me, I’m a very extreme personality. It’s like all out or do nothing. I realized with the people, they’re more balanced and they’re not going to commit to doing two hours of exercise a day and eating lettuce. I understood his point of view and I worked with him to modify the diet, to modify his exercise. Soon after, he started getting results for the first time in his life and that’s when I knew I was onto something. I was very empathetic. Being overweight most of my life, I knew that I couldn’t just put him on a robotic diet and he’s going to stick to it. I had to coach him and inspire him and make him stick to it. With working with him, it made me realize how much I love helping people and how much I had a skill of inspiring people into taking action.

There’s something awesome about that story of which after talking with hundreds and hundreds of entrepreneurs who are just getting started, they’re like, “How do I get my first client? How do I find that right opportunity?” What you said was something extremely powerful. You worked your ass off. Ultimately, you became your own best case study. People love watching the expert do what they do best and so many people don’t showcase it. You still do it to this day. You’re broadcasting everything that you’re doing. You’re broadcasting your actual work and that’s the best way. One of the best ways I’ve found to attract potential clients or potential students, whatever you’re selling, it’s to show them how you work especially in this world of online. So many people want to hide behind a computer and just send out emails and make money.

If you want to do that, fine. There are plenty of people out there that can show you how to do it but you’re jumping into a new market or your first client. You didn’t have any testimonials. You didn’t have any previous clients but you showed up. You were putting in the work. You’re showing what you were going to help other people do and you became your own best case study. That’s extremely powerful, especially for anyone who’s looking to go out there and try and jump into a new market or get new clients in a different venture. Become your own best case study and you will naturally attract people that want what you’ve got.

My students, they often come to me and they want to develop an online business and I say, “The first thing you’ve got to do is discover your target market. Who do you want to be a hero to? Who do you want to serve?” Many times, they’re very confused. They want to help everyone, but you can’t help everyone. You got to focus on a specific target market, so ask them the question, “What pain do you want to heal in the world? What do you want to eradicate? What’s something you overcame yourself?” For me, fitness, that was a very troublesome area for a big part of my life.

Once I was able to master that for myself, I had this feeling of helping others with it. It’s like a disconnect if you were trying to help people in an area that you’ve not mastered. You have a beautiful family and children and I’m a single guy with no kids. If I decided to be a coach for parents and it helped them raise their kids, I would fail miserably because I have no experience in that place and I stayed in my lane. It’s just living by example being able to live day in and day out with your principles. Living in that place where you’ve already mastered it, you’re getting better and better and then you could take people on the same journey that you’ve already accomplished yourself.

People love to go on a journey. They want to be part of a journey. They want to be part of a trend. They’d like to go for a ride. Mentally, that’s why they invest. They want to get on the roller coaster or they want to have fun and they want to do it with people, especially in the entrepreneurship world. Entrepreneurs are so lonely. That’s why live events do so well. They loved to be part of the journey and deep down internally, that’s why they hire coaches. You were your first client. You were your own best case study. Somebody witnessed you and they’re like, “I want to pay you. Help me do what you did for yourself.” You then you helped him. His name was Joe and he became your first paid client. What happened next? How did it start to move forward from there?

In a lot of the books that I read, it was mentioning the power of results-based marketing. Also, I realized that too. A great book that I read in that first year was Robert Cialdini’s Influence. That changed my whole life and he has the six powers of influence. One of the biggest elements are social proof. I knew that this guy was my first client, I’m going to chronicle his entire journey. A whole process that I have and every client that I’ve worked with is I take a before and after photo. I realized that some people are weirded out. Let’s say we discuss my rates and then we develop an investment and the moment they pay me money, I’m like, “Now, you can take your shirt off and I can take photos of you naked.”

Those people, especially if they’re overweight, they feel weirded out by that, but I also discuss a pre-frame that this is going to be a before photo. You never go like this ever again and we’re going to transform your body. Then once they say, “Okay, cool,” and they strip down, but I remembered with him chronicling his journey and even posting it on my social media and showing this guy’s results and his success. Early on, I knew social proof is powerful and I do the same thing. I believe in results-based marketing. I feel like the people that are on the top of the industry, they get phenomenal results for people because you could have the best funnels, the best sales process, but if you’re not serving at the highest level, you’re going to be found out. Good marketing is going to accelerate people understanding that you’re not following through on your promises. I realized that and from that moment on, every single person that I worked with, even until this day, I’m very big on capturing their wins, creating a case study out of them and taking their own journey and chronicling it publicly.

I don’t even know if it’s a Law of Attraction but when people watch how you work, they’re naturally attracted to you and I love the chronicling the journey, the before and the after. That’s where they are right now and where do they want to be. When you look at fitness ads, they show ripped people. Fitness ads on television or wherever. It’s like, what do they show? They show the sexy female in a sports bra and exercising and the whole nine yards or guys with their shirts off or jacked like you. It’s like, “That’s who I want to be.” How did you land your next client? You’ve got your first personal training client with Joe, were people just lining up after that with no marketing? What happened after that? Talk about your goal.

I had a simple goal that the time when I started my business and I said to myself, “If I were to able to make $3,000 a month, then I made it. I’m successful. I’m a business owner and I don’t have to go back to work.” I was teaching and as you know, teachers are not the highest paid profession. After all the taxes and all these different things, you’re left with almost nothing. I saw my expenses and everything. $3,000 a month. That was my magic number and I had a big goal that if I made $3,000 for my personal training business, then I was successful, and I can make it as an entrepreneur. Essentially, with Joe and giving him my heart and serving at the highest level, he all of a sudden saw what I did for him. He was getting results for the first time in his life and he referred me to his sister, “I have a sister and she’s been overweight and nothing’s worked for her. I would love to bring her in. Maybe we could do a little consultation and help her out.” I said, “Bring her in.”

When his sister came in, I just did the same thing with her. With women, it’s even harder for them to strip down. This woman was a tip and close to 300 pounds, and then once they sign up, I’m like, “As a part of us working together, I got to take a before photo of you.” She was like, “What?” She freaked out but then I’m very persuasive and I said, “You’re never going to look this ever again. Take your clothes off. Don’t worry, these pictures not going to go public. Only if I’m able to get your results, it will just stay on my phone.” She was able to strip down. We took the photo of her and from there, the same thing. I just took all the principles that I learned in my weight loss journey, losing the 60 pounds and having the empathy for people that are not genetic freaks. With Joe’s sister, she quickly started getting those results and she then referred me to someone else. My whole business initially was built on referrals and it was like six weeks of just getting clients and referrals that I was able to hit my $3,000 a month goal.

EU 05 | Personal Trainer Hall of Fame
Personal Trainer Hall of Fame: Make sure you deliver your service at the highest level. When you do that, you have nothing to worry about in terms of marketing.

You said something that is so powerful. Make sure that you deliver your service at the highest level because when you do that, you have nothing to worry about in terms of marketing. That’s the ultimate form of word of mouth. You also said something that was powerful. We’re connected to a lot of digital marketers and everyone wants to build a funnel that generates them clients. If you throw a paid ads or paid marketing at something, you aren’t fulfilling on your promises, it’s going to accelerate your fraudulent or you’re going to get exposed. That’s how you started. There had to have been a point where you’re booked solid, working one-on-one with clients because right now, you teach people how to become an online fitness coach. Explain that journey from when you went to physical to online. What was that process like?

Any trainer who gets results quickly finds out that it’s a very rare thing for a person to get these amazing results for their clientele and to post about it and have this amazing testimonial case study library. I started getting filled out of my hours. I was getting up at 5:00 AM. My first client was at 6:00 AM. It was like 6:00, 7:00, 8:00, 9:00, 10:00, 11:00 and 12:00. Then I had a short break in the day and then 3:00, 4:00. I was working sometimes at 8:00 and 9:00 at night. In the beginning, I was super passionate. I love helping people. I love transforming lives and I started getting a solid routine of getting their nutrition, their workout cardio dialed in, but then I started getting exhausted because in the personal training industry, you’re literally trading hours for dollars. If you do not show up for work, you don’t make money. It was this crazy hardcore schedule of getting up at 5:00 AM working until sometimes at 9:00 PM to 10:00 PM working in my business then going home, emails, customer service and billing.

For those initial ten years of building my business, I never went on a vacation because you have this business where you have to be there all the time and if you’re not there, you don’t make money. Essentially, if I were to go on vacation and this insecurity that if I came back, my clients will leave me, or they’ll find someone else. I just stayed. I was there for them all the time and that shit burned me out. There’s got to be a better way. There’s got to be a way of going about this. At the time, I had a friend who started a boot camp. He started leveraging himself and he started doing group training. I said, “Maybe I could do this. Maybe I could start to work with less hours throughout the day but have more people in those hours.”

I just made a decision and say, “Guys, I love you and I want to help you but I cannot sustain this work schedule. I need to take some time off. I need to take care of myself,” because I started to gain weight. I was getting burnt out trading time for money. Then I just offered them working together in a group setting. Instead of working one-on-one, I said we could work out in what it was called team training, four to six people at a time. You would pay significantly less but work with other people all around you in that hour. Instead of making, let’s say $100 an hour, I was making $300 to $400 an hour because I was getting people to pay, let’s say $50 for that hour and I would have sometimes even up to seven, eight people in this little group training class. I saw the power of leverage.

I was making more per hour working less but the same problem came that if I was not working, I was not making money. If I went on vacation or I got sick, I was screwed. I was not bringing any income. This was starting to scare me because the more I was doing this, the more was working. I even was able to get a female trainer to help me out. She was taking some of the hours as well, but then with her, sometimes she wouldn’t show up or she would come in late. People say, “I love you, AJ. I don’t want to work with her.” I was getting all these headaches with the business and I realized that it wasn’t sustainable. If I stayed on this path for another ten years, I’d end up being like an eighty-year-old personal trainer. This elderly dude in the gym counting reps is burning out his body, so I said, “There has got to be a better way.” That’s when I started to understand that if I take my services online, I can leverage myself even further and develop more of an automated process, so I don’t have to trade hours for dollars. I could develop a system that gives my clients results, but it can help many more people, not just locally but internationally.

After multiple efforts of burnout, which is what I loved about what you talked about is you’ve maxed out on one-on-one. You’re like, “Screw it. I can’t keep doing this or I’m going to burn out.” Then you’re like, “I’m going to do this group training over here. Let me try it here.” You instantly probably quadrupled your hourly rate. Maybe not instantly, but very quickly tripled or quadrupled your hourly rate then that filled up. It seems like you had burnout experience with that. How long did it take you to go from one-on-one to group to then tinkering with online? In my mind, I don’t know if I would ever sign up for an online personal training program just because for me as a consumer, I would want somebody in there. How did you discover this opportunity even existed?

Let’s say if I started my business in 2007, I was doing one-on-one training for about two, three years and then around 2010, I started implementing the group training model. Once they started doing the group training model, I realized that these people look at me as an authority and if I could get them results, it doesn’t matter how I get them the results, they just want the end result. If I could create something that gets them the same results that doesn’t require my time or energy, then they’ll be happy, I’ll be happy. They think there’s this misconception with experts that people think that in order for them to get paid, you have to work super hard for it, put in the hours of blood, sweat and tears and create this program with so much different factors and complexity.

People just want the damn results. If you had a magic pill that would help people lose twenty pounds, they’ll give you $20,000 for that magic pill. They don’t have to do the work for it. I said, “There’s a magic pill solution. If I could create something that gets people results, that can leverage my time, my energy, and take all the best that I could do and create a dream come true process, then it’s a win for them and it’s a win for me.” I didn’t know what the hell I was doing, especially being this trainer for so many years. I only knew the physical body and I didn’t feel like I had value on the internet.

I hired a coach. His name is Chris McCombs. At the time, he doesn’t coach anymore but he was a master at fitness marketing and really understand the online game. I remember even hiring him, I was scared because I never hired a coach before. At that time, he charged $5,000 and I was like, “This is scary. This guy wants $5,000 and I don’t even know what he’s going to do. I’m never going to meet the guy.” I’m putting my credit card on his online shopping cart. It was the scariest thing I ever did, but I knew that in order for people to take the risk in me, I had to take a risk in him. How am I going to ask people to pay me money over the internet if I can’t pay this online coach? I just put the money on the credit card and I said, “I’m throwing a Hail Mary here. If I pay this guy $5,000 and I lose my money, I look like an idiot.” Whatever he says, I am going to do.

I remember we had our first coaching call and I wrote all this stuff. I remember this huge email, “Here’s what I want to do. Here are my goals. Here are my problems. These are my strategies.” He has gotten the call and said, “You’re a smart dude but you’re too smart for your own good. What I want you to do is forget all this stuff that you know and just focus on these three things over the next week. Do these three things and then hit me back once they’re done.” I was like, “That’s it? That’s all I have to do. Hell, yeah. I’m going to do it.” I went balls to the wall, did those three things and very quickly, week-by-week, things started gaining traction and I literally started to make $2,000. Within a month’s time, I made that $5,000 back with the stuff that he taught me.

I realized, “I could have been hitting my head against the wall for a year after year not knowing how to do this.” I hired this coach and in a shorter amount of time, I learned all his strategies, all of his years of experience of being online and started to build my online business. That’s when I realized the power of investing in yourself. One of the biggest mistakes that I made when I started my business is I waited so long to hire a coach. Now, when I tell people when they ask, “How do I grow a business? Where to get started?” I’m like, “The best thing to do is to hire a coach, join a mastermind, get someone who’s already doing what you did, and it will accelerate your process as opposed to you trying to figure it out yourself.”

There are four critical golden nuggets that I want to extract just so everyone can understand what you said. This is way easier said than done. When you went from group to online life, that’s probably the ultimate leverage happened. You said something like people don’t care about the how. They don’t care about the grunt work. If you can get them a result, that’s what they’re paying for. One of my mentors, he calls this the mule versus the magician. How are you going to sell yourself? His name is Kevin Nations. He’s like, “You can sell yourself as the mule, but then everyone’s going to expect you to show up every single day and you have to be doing the work versus if you position yourself as a magician, if I waved a magic wand and the result just appeared, that’s what people want.” Your whole process explained what the mule versus magician was.

If someone is having issues with their marriage, there are two marriage counselors and one marriage counselor says, “This is going to take six months of work and you have to do a lot of therapy and you have to do a lot of your exercises. Work on this super hard. It’s going to take four or five hours a day, but we’re going to get to this goal in six months.” The other marriage therapist says, “Come to me and in one session, I will fix your marriage. You walk out within the hour and you’ll have the most amazing, loving, beautiful marriage.” What would you rather take? Everyone wants an instant solution. If you could create something that’s instant or develop faster results with less work and less time, most people rather take that.

That’s where the real work comes in is how do you, as the expert, develop that instant solution and that takes time and practice and holding of your own skill. The other thing that I wanted to point out was, especially as experts, if you want to be charging a good ticket for yourself, you better have invested in yourself, so you can understand what value truly is. If you’re afraid to invest $1,000, $2,000, $5,000, $10,000, $15,000, whatever it is but you want to be charging that, there’s going to be a lot of incongruity there. You need to be able to have faith in investing a lot in yourself if you want to provide the same type of transformation for other people as well.

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The biggest thing I learned myself in terms of hiring different coaches and joining masterminds, I realized every time I hired someone, let’s say with Chris, I’m paying $5,000 then I had the alignment that charts someone else $5,000. Shortly after that, I joined this mastermind. It was called The 25K Group. It’s a $25,000 investment. The moment I paid $25,000 to be in this mastermind, this networking group, then I can charge $25,000 from my own program because you’re literally a mirror of your actions. If you invest in yourself and you’re an action taker and you are so coachable, you’re a pleasure to work with, you’re going to attract those same people. If you’re rigid and structured and you don’t commit, you don’t invest, you’re going to start to attract people that are totally aligned to who you are as a person.

Every single time that I talked to an expert and they go through a similar story. You’re able to attract a new audience once you accomplished something. It’s like being one or two steps ahead of who you’re trying to train. The same thing with investing. Once I’ve invested $5,000, now I understand value perception and how to be able to charge $5,000. I know what I need to provide in order for my audience to pay me $5,000. As soon as I paid somebody else $25,000, I’m like, “How do I understand this value perception? Now, I can build something and charge accordingly.” I’m going to call it the lily pad or the leapfrog effect, being one or two steps ahead of your audience.

You’ve got inducted into the Personal Trainer Hall of Fame. What do you think the single biggest thing was that allowed you to get inducted? There are probably tens of thousands of personal trainers out there. As experts, we want to be the best. We want to help other people. That’s the one thing that connects every single expert, but that’s such a powerful award and recognition, especially being at the top of your game. If you could pinpoint one thing, why do you think they chose you? Why do you think you got inducted?

Internationally, there are hundreds of thousands of personal trainers, people who have been doing it for far longer than me. Why did I get picked? Why didn’t I get nominated? It’s just an honor of mine and I thought about it very deeply. I had this concept in my business called Discovering Your Superpower. The name of company is Online Super Coach. I always say that once you discover your superpower, you want to go all in and become a master at that one skill. If you look at all the greats in the world, the Warren Buffets, the Bill Gates, the Michael Jordans, they have a super power and they put all their time and energy mastering that skill and they outsource, delegate or even eliminate everything that’s outside of that, so they could focus on that core skill and day in and day put all their energy into it.

Early on as a personal trainer, I quickly found out that I was able to inspire people into taking action, to get off their ass, do their cardio, follow their nutrition, and do their workouts. I have a way of tapping into a person’s heart, making them get the energy, the focus, the accountability to make stuff happen. Now, that scale of inspiring people into action, I was able to take that into my online business, into business coaching. I do seminars here in my house. People come in here and I’m able to get them to take massive action by the time they leave and go back home. I realized that if I just go all out and developing the skill of inspiring people into action, then I could go into any industry, any career and I’ll be good at it. Understanding that early on in going all in and learning how to get people to take action, that allowed me to get the great honor of being in the PT Hall of Fame.

It might just sound so simple, “You’ve got people to take action,” but I could probably pinpoint another reason. You have been very successful with getting people to take action, but listening to our conversation, you have also mastered the power of leverage, which is not easy to do. You’ve leveraged every single step of the way. Being able to go from one-on-one to group, I’ve done it personally, it wasn’t easy. I had my own issues with group coaching and it’s not easy to do. That’s all bricks and mortar. You’re doing that in person. You were then able to take that. This is the real value. You would think it has to be high personal like work with you all the time and then you went to online group coaching, infinite scalability. That’s powerful. Being able to get those people to take action, infinite scalability. In my mind, that’s why I view you as being super successful. That is not easy to do.

We’ve had an awesome conversation. We went from where you’ve been in 2007, you made your pivot point and be like, “I want to pursue entrepreneurship.” You had a couple of failed ventures with eBooks and info-marketing, dabbling and then you discovered you had a passion for personal training. You went into your immediate network first to grab your first clients and then that snowballed because you got them the absolute best results possible. You became a master at your craft every step of the way, so that went from one-on-one to group to online to becoming inducted into the Personal Training Hall of Fame. AJ, you are a true expert. You are quite possibly one of my favorite interviews that we’ve done over the course of two of my podcasts. Where can people connect with you? How can they connect and get in touch with you?

Thank you for that. That made my day. Working hard and getting acknowledged by it, I appreciate that. I want to acknowledge you as well. I respect what you do. You’re a great friend and you’re super successful but very humble. You’re a family man, you’re a father, you’ve got a great heart, but for the amount of success you have and the people that you changed, there’s this amazing humility about you and that’s why we connect so well. This was a phenomenal interview. You asked some great questions and you dug down deep, so thank you for that. Trying to get in contact with me is super simple. My website is OnlineSuperCoach.com. On there, I have my books, my courses, my trainings and most importantly, my live events. You mentioned the power of live events and I do a series of seminars every few months. I host them here at my house in New York and I have a place in New York City that I hold the bigger ones at.

Go check out AJ. Go follow him, connect with him with everything that he’s doing. He’s also doing other things. You’re helping people become bestselling authors too. You just hit the ground running. You’re full throttle 100%. I appreciate you and everything that you’ve done and everyone, go check him out. Go hit up AJ and go follow him. Thanks for tuning in. I had a blast and I hoped you enjoyed this and make sure you stay tuned for the next episode of Experts Unleashed. Take care.

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About AJ Mihrzad

EU 05 | Personal Trainer Hall of Fame

AJ Mihrzad is the author of the best selling book, “The Mind Body Solution: Train your Brain for Permanent Weight Loss.” He studied Exercise Science and Nutrition due to his passion for health and earned a Masters degree in Psychology due to his fascination with the mindset of weight loss. His cutting edge approach to permanent weight loss insists that the key to a healthy body is a healthy brain. His clients are walking proof that this is true; there are hundreds of them!

AJ Mihrzad was recently inducted into the Personal Trainer Hall of Fame. His writing has also been featured in Entrepreneur Magazine, The Huffington Post, Men’s Fitness, and Bodybuilding.com. AJ is a keynote speaker at high-end entrepreneurial and personal development events. He is also the host of the popular podcast, the Online SuperCoach Podcast, available on iTunes. Along with inspiring the lives of the general public, he is dedicated to helping coaches create an ethical and profitable online income through his business mentorship program available at OnlineSuperCoach.com.

 

Joel Erway

Joel Erway is a digital marketing consultant to 7, 8, and 9-figure clients, sales webinar expert, podcast host, and agency owner. Joel is an expert in helping others monetize their expertise. Since 2014, Joel’s been committed to helping entrepreneurs transform their passion into 6 and 7-figure expert-based businesses. His agency, The Webinar Agency, serves coaches, consultants and small business owners with skillfully crafted sales messages and high-converting sales and lead generation webinars to generate more customers and clients. It’s no wonder why he’s the go-to consultant for many of the top performing digital marketing sales and lead generation webinars. With over 200 webinars under his belt, he’s generated 7-figure growth for multiple clients within the past two years alone. Much like you, Joel’s path to purpose was nonlinear. He pivoted several times throughout his journey, including a risky uproot from an unfulfilling career as an engineer. Eventually, he found alignment in helping others leverage their experience to grow successful businesses. Check out his Sold With Webinars podcast at http://thewebinaragency.com/podcasts/. In his spare time, Joel is an avid reader and market researcher. He enjoys traveling and spending quality time with his family in upstate NY. He is really excited to add to his services - live webinar/marketing intensive workshops! Be on the look out for the next one! Check out The Webinar Vault - a compilation of webinar critiques along with our new webinar building software, Slide Sell, here: www.soldwithwebinars.com Check out our Facebook Groups to stay connected: Sold With Webinars & Experts Unleashed

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