Publicity is Publicity Right?
Love it or hate it, media is here to stay. And as the CEO, Head of Marketing, Sales Director, Accountant, Writer, Designer, Web Master, Trainer, Coach and Cleaner of a new business, I couldn’t pass up an opportunity to be featured in a special sports edition of a locally produced magazine. I’ll admit that I was disappointed when they wanted me for ice hockey and not kettlebells. Sure I play hockey, but my livelihood and passion is fitness coaching with the “iron balls with handles”. But publicity is publicity right?
Well that’s sort of what I thought. The photo shoot was really fun. A great photographer coaxing a threatening look after having sprayed me with a liter of water which gave me the giggles. I could barely keep my eyes open for the camera and was overheating in all that gear. Thankfully, like an awesome professional, he got the shot he needed very quickly. Good thing I showered and washed my hair before? Eh, not really.
In addition to a short bio of myself that expanded on my relationship with hockey, I sent a full listing of my fitness and training credentials to the photographer.
Assumption Versus Reality
Now I knew another person was to be highlighted as a kettlebell athlete. Having worked high level marketing for an investment bank for years, I know how THAT game is played and get why it wasn’t to be me. But being the first and only SFG II & CK-FMS in Dubai let alone the Middle East, a female and sole entrepreneur – I figured that one of those facts could have been interesting to the publication. Nope. What the author/editor/whoever glommed onto was Vinyasa, TRX and ACE. All good qualifications, but none of which in the areas that give me as much hockey related benefit as kettlebell training. And this is the problem with media. You don’t ever really know what they are going to say, omit or even infer.
3 Media Takeaways
I went in knowing full well that it was not to be an article about me. It was an expose about women in sport in the UAE. And I’m certainly not completely turned off by the idea of media coverage. This is simply an example of what can happen when you do not have full control over the message that is being broadcast about your or your business. And it applies to any business without a strong Public Relations effort massaging and managing your brand in the public eye.
Since few of us can afford that type of PR effort, here are three takeaway lessons for fitness business owners wanting to market their business through media attention…so you can come a little nearer to the message that YOU want portrayed.
- Media is a business. They may be all “nicey-nicey”, but are not your friend. Don’t overshare.
- The goal of reporting is not to bring facts to readers/listeners, or even the news. It’s to sell advertising space on their platform. You are a tool for them to do that.
- Don’t give them any information you really don’t want focused on. Keep it short, to the point.
ABOUT KULT Fitness
Want to get fitter, stronger, leaner and move better? KULT Fitness can help. With over 19 years of fitness industry experience, coaching young, old, fit, unfit, athletes, couch potatoes, healthy, injured and everything in between, I’ve helped thousands of people change their lives and bodies through fitness. Why kettlebells? Let’s face it, life’s busy. And in properly trained hands, kettlebells deliver one of the most effective and efficient cardio, strength, fat burning and mobility sessions you can get, in less time than traditional workouts.
KULT is Dubai’s only specialized kettlebell training studio. Personally trained by Pavel Tsatsouline of StrongFirst and formerly the RKC, I bring expert kettlebell and bodyweight coaching to personal training students, group training and to instructors looking to prepare for advanced kettlebell certifications.
Martine Kerr, StrongFirst II, Certified Kettlebell Functional Movement Specialist, RKC, CrossFit Level 1 Trainer, Mobility and Kettlebell Trainer, TPI Certified, TRX I and TRX Sports Medicine, Primal Move National Instructor, Vinyasa Yoga, ACE Certified and MBA.
firstname.lastname@example.org | 050 849 1101
KULT Fitness – Powered by StrongFirst
Before StrongFirst, many of the world’s most talented and respected strength and fitness coaches, instructors and athletes sought out the RKC for their specialized kettlebell instructor skills. Less interested in competing in kettlebell or girvoy sport, they sought to learn ‘hardstyle’ training for it’s prioritization of force production over energy conservation and it’s strong carryover to athletic performance. And it was Pavel Tsatsouline who popularized hardstyle kettlebell training in the early 2000s with the original RKC and since 2012, with StrongFirst.
The entire premise behind StrongFirst is that it is a strength system based upon training that is: simple, but not easy; heavy, but consistently achievable; that builds people up, instead of breaking them down; and that should result in people being stronger next year, and the year after that, not just tomorrow.
“If you want entertainment, go watch a movie.”
Training should be about results, not entertainment. Results are fun. They are also what makes challenging sessions, whether they be punch the clock, grease the groove, grit and everything in between style, worthwhile. Sure there’s a time and a place for lighthearted fun and entertainment in your fitness pursuits. These times are extremely well suited for active living and recreational physical activities. But at the end of the day, if you are ready to shift emphasis towards results, the StrongFirst system, and people who follow it will prioritise the outcome.
StrongFirst is a Strength System
As a system, StrongFirst is not about kettlebells. Nor is it about barbell or bodyweight training. StrongFirst is about building strength – and how different tools like kettlebells, barbells and bodyweight training help you achieve it. But don’t mistake the pursuit of strength to equal building size or bulking up. Sure for some, they are synonymous. But for far more of us, training strength is to get more out of what we have. Probably even more importantly, training physical strength also builds mental strength, discipline, commitment, grit, sticking power and spirit. Because strength is a skill with tremendous spill over. It is also an attitude. Being strong brings with it a whole new perspective towards challenges. StrongFirst is also about following a plan. Too many people get caught up in workouts that appear like work, without actually getting anywhere. They indulge in ‘flavor of the day’ or random acts of variety (see entertainment above), rather than sticking to a well designed, structured plan that takes them towards the outcome that they want to see. They sacrifice what they want more for what they want now.
Results come from making a plan and executing it. Decide and do. People who prioritize results win at sport, games, and at life. Sure some plan-less people get lucky occasionally. But most people without plans will endlessly spin their wheels without progress or eventually fall flat on their face.
Without a goal or a plan, anywhere or nowhere will do.
Training that Builds Rather than Destroys
At StrongFirst, we aren’t after new records every day or even every week or month. The human body is not designed to go, go, go. Instead, we consistently “put money in the bank” towards our goals, truly appreciating that consistency and recovery are critical parts of longevity, resilience and the pursuit of lasting improvement. Master SFG Mark Reifkind describes the common cycle of training heavy, heavier, heavier, damage something, rehab and then start again. People repeating this cycle often find that their lifts, health, and quality of life have travelled in the wrong direction. Instead, StrongFirst suggests we borrow a page from how old time strongmen trained, because they needed to perform several times a day and couldn’t afford the luxury of several days of muscle soreness or of getting hurt. Most people working to support their family, taking care of children and trying to enjoy hobbies – even sporting ones – can appreciate training that leaves them unhindered, feeling great and knowing that they are improving. The fact that they lose body fat, sculpt muscle, boost their cardio endurance and improve health markers in the process are added bonuses.
“Strength Has a Greater Purpose.” Let’s Change The World
Finally, StrongFirst is about changing the world around it. Most people’s main goal isn’t to be ridiculously strong. For us, “strength has a greater purpose.” It’s not about getting strong for strength’s sake. It’s about getting strong enough, and moving well enough, that you are unlimited in what you can and want to do, achieve and pursue. Whether that is to keep up with your active children/grandchildren, dance long into the night, have a better slapshot or golf drive, carry your groceries with ease, stay fit and healthy, ward off middle age spread, build a better body, enjoy walking through hilly towns in Europe or simply lift progressively heavier things. Regardless, strength will help make it happen.
KULT Fitness weaves StrongFirst’s strength training principles into all of our programs because they get results. Period. Want to burn fat? Get stronger so you can use more force. Use more force, burn more calories. Burn more calories, lose more fat. What about improving your endurance? Build strength so you have more of it to endure not to mention learn how to move better so you endure better. Look better naked? Shapely muscles that give your skin something to hang on and a kettlebell butt that always trump a flat backside, though there is no accounting for taste. I could go on for any other goal you have.
If the idea of moving well and being strong appeals to you, and you can stomach ideas such as training for results rather than to get just sweaty or sore, and following a plan rather than prioritising entertainment, then KULT Fitness is here to help. Apply for your free personal training consultation so we can get to know each other better. Risk free.
This article was influenced by our friends over at www.qldkettlebells.com “Why We Chose StrongFirst”.
Updates on the KULT Blog
Just a few housekeeping issues to expand on today…
Firstly, I need to apologize on my blog silence over the past few weeks. My good friend passed a way last week and I found it hard to find my voice.
Secondly, I’ve gotten valuable feedback from trusted friends and clients about what materials they want me to write about. Interestingly, and almost unanimously, most thought that although the weekly roundup was interesting, they preferred MY voice and opinions to that of others. And since I usually forward great reads as I get through them through facebook, the time I was spending selecting those to include on a short list could be better utilized writing my own articles. Thanks to this feedback, I’ll be working on a resources page with great sites I often source for their sound advice and thought provoking articles. I’ll let you then judge whether you want to spend some time on their pages.
Thanks ever so much for sharing your ideas and suggestions. I’m all ears to your feedback!
No Good Life Was Built on Excuses
My apologies. I have been back from California for almost an entire week but between jet lag and a nasty cold, I just haven’t been able to get my head on straight to finish any writing. With three drafts underway – my weekly good reads, a review of the cool things I learned at the Titleist Performance Institute and World Golf Fitness Summit and a technique review piece, I’ve put them all aside today to share some very sad news that has left me shaken.
Many moons ago, I left the safety and comfort of living at home for the adventures of doing my MBA at McGill University in Montreal, Canada. While I was young (in hindsight wayyyyy too young) to be taking an advanced degree usually reserved for people with more than 5 years of solid work experience, I met a group of amazing friends in similar situations – all young, living away from home, looking to jump start a career with an MBA. We became each other’s support system and extended family. Over our two year degree and for many more afterwards, we studied, celebrated and travelled together. Even though life has taken us in vastly different places and to remote corners of the world, we continue to stay in touch with visits, email and even tried to organize a reunion a few years ago. So it was a huge shock that we learned earlier this year that one of our group, a very handsome, fit, smart and funny guy was stricken with cancer. Over the months that followed, he kept us in the loop with regular updates on his life and treatments. Just six weeks ago we exchanged emails about my crossing the pond for a visit since Emirates now has a direct flight to Boston, where he moved with his expecting wife and daughter after his diagnosis. I didn’t think anything of it when no update came in October. Perhaps that’s why I feel so very sad – head too far up my own ass to see anything was amiss. But two things happened today. First, I met with a potential client who took close to 45 minutes telling me why she really didn’t have time to exercise and that I’d have to be available for her to make it work. Then I hear that my friend has in fact taken a turn for the worse and has been given about a month.
Now I’m not trying to be a downer here, even though I feel very down at the moment. I’m simply wanting to underline that our health is a GIFT. We need to cherish it, protect it and defend it. Eating well and exercise all do that. Excuses simply allow your status quo to continue. Nothing was ever created with an excuse. If it is important – and your health should be important – then DO IT. Even if it’s not important to you (why?) what about the influence you have on your children and loved ones? Don’t you want them to have fighting chance to stay healthier? Stop making excuses. Start finding reasons. Honor the gift of your health. So for my friend who I can only remember as being strong, athletic, fit and healthy and who would give anything for more time with his family, I was sorely tempted to tell this potential client just where she could take her busy schedule. But then it occurred to me. Maybe she was sent to me as a test. Or as a gift. As an opportunity to help someone discover inner strength to make tough tradeoff choice. And to embrace fitness for the gifts that it can bring her. I’ll take that challenge. For you AC. And for me.