Level 2 Gym Instructor
Level 3 Personal Trainer and Nutritional Adviser
I have always been a sporty lad! As a child I played football, cricket and track and field athletics, particularly high jump and long jump. In my early teens I became a pretty good cross-country runner and competed for my school and briefly at Lancashire County level. Later after we moved to East Anglia in the early 80’s I became totally addicted to Rugby and again played for Club and County and had trials for Eastern Counties. So yeah… a bit of a Sport Billy you might say? To be honest it was the only thing I was reasonably good at throughout my school days!
In 1986 having left a Sixth Form College with a pair of rubbish A’ Level passes I decided any tenure at Oxbridge was probably not in my future. A brief foray into trying to become an Army Officer also nose-dived faster than a Stuka dive-bomber as apparently my broad Manchester accent (at that time) was not compatible with being an Officer and a Gentleman.
THE ROYAL MARINES...
And so it was that I walked through a recruiting office door and signed up for a career in the Royal Marines Commandos. I never did do things by halves! It ended up being a 24-year roller-coaster ride through wind and rain swept training areas in the UK, stifling tropical rain forests, scorched deserts and frozen Arctic tundra not to mention the seas and oceans in between. I experienced side-splitting laughter, bowel-loosening fear and incredible camaraderie of a kind that I know I will never experience anywhere again.
Fast forward to 2013 and having left the Royal Marines a few years before we had moved out to Southern Cyprus and I was working as a Maritime Security Guard. We were protecting merchant shipping from attacks by Somali pirates in the Indian Ocean, Gulf of Aden and Red Sea. With not much to do when off duty I got back into my fitness training in a big way. Being with a lot of guys 20 years younger than myself also gave me an incentive to keep up with the Jones’s!! We did team workouts and took turns thinking up new and devious ways to grind ourselves into the steel decks of the ships in the 40 plus degree heat of the days. I basically got bitten by the fitness bug big-style!
A NEW PURSUIT...
I soon started reading and researching everything I could get my hands on about fitness, strength and nutrition. Frankly, despite 24 years in the Marines I never realised there was so much to it! I was not a Physical Training Instructor in the Marines although did train Marine recruits for a couple of years. The fire had truly been lit! I was addicted!
My amateur fitness career began with running outdoor bootcamps in and around the lovely village of Pissouri where we lived in Cyprus. I found that the teaching skills I had learned in the Marines and my new-found passion for fitness made good partners and seemed to resonate with an ever-growing tribe of amazing friends and clients who flocked to my sessions as time went by. I called my business Pissouri Fitness.
In 2014 I decided to make it official and travelled back to the UK to gain my Level 2 Gym Instructor and Level 3 Personal Trainer and Nutritional Adviser qualifications in order to become a fitness professional. Since then, I have trained just over 200 personal training clients, run more fitness classes than I will ever be able to count and am immensely proud to say have changed a few lives along the way.
In August 2015 I did the CrossFit Level One coaching certification and subsequently worked as an instructor in 2 local CrossFit facilities near where we lived. I regularly competed in local tournaments and finished 1st in Cyprus (223rd in Europe) in my 40-49 age group.
I ran 2 of my own gym facilities in Cyprus, both radically different in location and nature but both successful, nevertheless. The second of the two I ran from early 2017 until late-2019 just before our return to the UK in April of 2020. I'm 54 years old now and still going strong! Living proof that this s**t does work!!