How did Shelly & I become trainers?


It was almost last century, and I remember it like it was yesterday.  In 2001, Shelly and I were living together in Las Vegas and one spring day, we were in my truck (same truck), driving out of the parking lot of Club Sport (fancy-schmancy, high-end, fitness club that threw AWESOME parties). She had just finished teaching a kickboxing class (she was one of the best I’ve ever seen) and sitting there, she turns to me and says, “I think I want to be a personal trainer.  It’s only $200 to get certified and I really want to try it. There’s one coming up soon at the club.”  Just like a good boyfriend, what do I do?  I look at her and say, “Who in the world is going to pay someone to exercise?  That’s ridiculous.”  Oh, the irony.

Shelly gets certified as a certified personal trainer with AFFA in 2001.  Then, she got hired as a trainer with Club Sport and also as a kickboxing instructor for Laila Ali (yes, THAT Laila Ali) at Absolute Fitness. Then in 2002, we left Las Vegas to move to Portland, where I was trying to get on with the Portland Police Bureau, since I had my degree in criminal justice. When we moved here, Shelly simply transferred to Club Sport in Tigard from LV and we moved out to Hillsboro. I took a job as an underground, directional drill operator, which was the trade I picked up while applying to different police departments.  Here’s where it all ties in….

Shelly was commuting from Hillsboro to Tigard on the 217, which was NOT her favorite thing to do.  She later quit and then took a job at Bally Total Fitness as a trainer.  In the winter, I got laid off and had to start collecting unemployment.  With quite a bit of time on my hands, I tagged along with Shelly to Bally’s and just worked out while she was training clients. I also went along with her to different fitness conventions (IDEA World) and even registered and took the classes too.  When we both came back from the conventions, we’d just start working out at the gym, doing some really cool things that no one else was doing. Eventually the director of training came up to me and said, “Hey Chuck, you should be a trainer here.  I’d hire you.”

“Ha! Are you serious?  Who in the world would pay me for training?” I replied.

Want to know the rest of the story goes  I’ll tell you tomorrow in my 2/5 email. Be on the lookout for “2/5 from coach Chuck” in the subject line.

Chuck Gonzales, CSCS, FMS, USAW, CF-Coach

Founder, CrossFit Hillsboro