How to Do 763 Sessions in 1 Month

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Here is how we set up our schedule at my studio to do 763 sessions last month in less than 500 ft of fitness floor. This post will show you how to maximize your use of time and space to get the very most out of your team without anyone burning out. Plus, I’ll even tell you how we may hit 800 sessions this month!

Last month we blew away our previous record of 706 sessions by completing 763 sessions!

The best part was that one of our trainers was away for a full week and 2 others (including myself) took 2 days off.

That means we could have easily hit 800 sessions for the month if we had everyone accounted for… however, that’s not necessarily the goal. I encourage my team to work hard, but to also take time off, so as a result we’ll most likely never all be working a full 4 weeks each month at the same time.

I allow for up to 4 weeks per year of vacation, personal, and sick time.

That means everyone on my team is not only allowed, but encouraged to take 1 week off every 3 months.

What kind of owner makes that type of offer or says that to his team?!?

I must be insane, right?

Don’t answer that…

Here’s why I do it:

I want everyone to work, when it’s time to work. I also want them to know that they are working hard now in order to enjoy their time off when they want to take it. Now, not everyone takes 4 weeks off per year (usually 2 weeks + sometime around the Holidays in December), but they do know it’s always available for them.

I think this should really be everyone’s goal.

I personally work hard when it’s time to work, because that’s what I’m focused on at the time and I’m doing it be design. I know that if I don’t work and put in my time I can’t accomplish the goals I set for myself of afford the niceties in life that I enjoy (like taking exotic vacations and living in a nice home in the city).

Plus, I love my work!

However, it does help to know that I can take time off whenever I want to (usually 6-8 weeks per year = 1 week every 2 months minimum)…

Also, back in the day I use to just blow it out and work 12-14 hours a day Monday – Friday (I’ve always taken the weekends off for creative work and pleasure), but now I realize that my work and life is more enjoyable if I pace myself and outsource a lot more of the busy work I don’t need to tackle.

So here’s what my current schedule looks like:

(Assume I take 2.5 hours off each day for lunch and down-time)

Monday: 8:00am – 8:00pm (it’s my longest day and I accomplish 80% of EVERYTHING I need to do concerning the study on this day).

Tuesday: 7:15am – 4:15pm

Wednesday: 7:15am – 7:00pm

Thursday: 7:15am – 4:15pm

Friday: 8:00am – 1:30pm
(on this day I usually read a lot, organize myself for the following week, and get a massage after my workout ; )

Weekends: NO official work or client sessions
(I will read, write, practice martial arts, workout, take trips, walk my dog, and harass my wife…)

Every weekday I typically train 6-8 clients in a day as well as complete 30 minutes of my studio work (separate post on this) and I take 1 success based coaching call from my coaching clients.

This also leaves me with an hour or two for lunch to read, listen to an audio mp3, or just sit outside and relax for a bit. I believe everyone should have a break in their day where they can cool down, breathe, and “turn off” for 30-60 minutes to recharge.

Some of you will think this schedule is great. Others will think I work too much… or too little. It really all depends on where you are coming from right now and where you would like to end up.

To be honest, I’m doing exactly what I want to be doing at this moment.

I like my schedule and it works for me. ..

If I wanted anything to change, I would change it… that’s an important point because eventually you’ll realize that once you are making money you can begin to tweak your schedule and time to work with clients when you choose to and then have plenty of other time to work on other projects, hobbies, or down time.

In a future post I will share with you my ideal scheduled day and what I am working towards over the next year or so as I am creating the exact life I want to lead. In this post I’ll also want to hear what you are striving for – not just in terms of money, but in creating a balanced life.

Please keep in mind, though, that no one’s goal should be to stop working!!!

Anyone who believes they want to just spend every day at the beach sipping Pina Coladas is misguided… and they haven’t found their true calling.

Seriously, growing as a person through working towards worthy goals is what gives life zest and makes you want to wake up in the morning.

I could train clients all day long… but I’ve found that if I do that I’ll burn out too fast and my subsequent sessions will suffer due to my fatigue. Therefore, I’ve discovered that about 6 (45-minute) sessions a day is perfect for me.

You may be different.

Maybe, you’re a one and done kind of guy or girl who prefers to just do one big bootcamp class in the morning or evening and call it a day. I’m not here to tell you that is right or wrong… you should do what makes you happy and supports your lifestyle.

I can tell you this, though…

It’s really nice to know that if I do nothing else but complete my 150+ sessions a month (36 sessions per week) I’ll make at least $13,500/mo which equals $162,000 a year.

To me that’s incredible.

I get to trade 4.5 hours a day working 6 sessions (Monday – Friday only) and I make 160K+ a year!

Just writing that feels amazing… seriously, people who don’t work in our industry can’t imagine how great our work is. That’s also why I don’t want you to overcomplicate your job.

As you can see from my example I have about 17 clients I keep really happy and as a result I never have to look for new ones and I can always count on scheduling about 40 sessions for the week (where about 4 sessions will be canceled due to people out of town).

And obviously, if you’re teaching more group classes you won’t need to complete nearly as many sessions as I do. I understand this principle, but I choose to outsource my group classes to other CPTs even though I could be making even more money per session.

Why, because I like doing 1-on-1’s.

It’s what I like… and therefore, it’s what I do.

Sure, I’ll still teach clinics, corporate bootcamps, and do seminars, but I get the most enjoyment out of my private clients. I only mention this so that you can realize that you can make a great living doing whatever type of training you love the most… AND you don’t have to just gravitate towards what pays the most per hour.

Bottom Line: You don’t have to compromise.

Plus, the above example is just the tip of the iceberg. Once you get yourself squared away making money doing what you enjoy you can do what I did and hire a team.

This team is just an extension of you and your principles that you can create to help hundreds and thousands of people.

AND, if you follow the teachings I’ve outlined in the membership area posts you’ll see that you create the system first and then everyone plugs into the system (including yourself).

So, now I know I’m going to make 150-200K a year in just my client sessions, plus I’ll receive a percentage of what each of my team member’s does in training.

That’s how to take your success to the next level.

And, as you can see from my month last month where we did 763 sessions, the sky is the limit even if you have a tiny studio like I do with less than 500 ft of fitness floor.

Now, maybe 763 sessions does or does not seem like a lot, but I can tell you it DOES equate to a lot of revenue…

For us 763 sessions equals about $68,000 for that month (side note: please keep all numbers and information within this site private…).

Not bad, right?

Considering that only includes studio training…

It does not involve my outsourced in-home CPTs, online product sales, coaching calls, seminars, clinics, public speaking engagements, writing, etc.

The real point is that once you nail your core business you can expand, grow, and multiply into other profitable areas that fit within your lifestyle design.

So now let’s get to how I set up the schedule at my studio for maximum efficiency:

Since I want to keep my CPTs and their numbers private I will just use the anonymous terms:
Trainer 1
Trainer 2
Trainer 3
Trainer 4

So you will see all 4 CPTs schedules on my studio team and how they fit so there is never any overlapping OR downtime.

(Also, keep in mind how they work with my schedule already listed above)

Trainer 1:

This CPT has been with me for many years and is able to work anytime Monday – Friday. They take half days on Fridays and the weekends off since they complete 40 sessions within that time frame. Essentially they work 4.5 days from 6:30am – 7:30pm.

Trainer 2:

This CPT has also been a part of my team for many years and is also able to work  when they choose to. This CPT takes 3-4 hours off each afternoon to workout and do as they please to reenergize for the 2nd half of the day. They basically work 6:30am – 10:30am and 4:30pm – 7:40pm
 
Trainer 3:

When my last CPT went back to school I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to hire 2 new CPTs and see if I could play with their schedules and still get them to both do 40 sessions per week.

Trainer 3 works from 6:30am – 8:00pm Monday and Wednesdays. They work half days from 4:00pm – 8:00pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays (they come in after I leave) and on Friday they work from 6:30am – 3:30pm. They take the weekends off completely since they live about 45 minutes away and have a new baby.

Trainer 4:
This CPT works the opposite schedule as Trainer 3. They work full days from 6:30am – 8:00pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays and on Mondays and Wednesdays they work from just 10:00 – 1:00pm while I am out of the studio not training clients. They also work from 11:00am– 4:30pm on Fridays and from 8:00am – 1:00pm on Saturday.

If you were to draw out all these schedules on the blank weekly schedule I provide for you within this site you’d see how it’s just a simple puzzle I developed to fit everyone in to make sure that not only would there be no overlapping (we can’t fit 5 CPTs in the studio at a time), but also that we maximized every minute we were open.

I know this post turned into a little bit more of a manifesto on how to run your business in general rather than just schedule 763 sessions per month, but as a Smart Studio Systems Member I want you to know exactly how I run my operations, so that you can copy my success.

That is truly the way to ultimate success… just model what someone has already proven to be successful.

I will save how we add in corporate bootcamps, outdoor camps, clinics, and other in-home training sessions for another day, because this one post can be transferred to any time of training business.

How you train has nothing to do with your growth.

Your growth is created by a careful set of plans and systems which dictate how successful you will be.

My Final Advice: Do what you love, grow according to your goals, and make sure to take some time to enjoy your success…

If you do that, you’ll truly have it all.

Comments

Comment on this Content

  • Jason Zawodniak

    Hey Stephen,

    I may of missed it, but what are you using to track the 700+ sessions and remain organized each week? I was assuming you had an online software program to track it in a calendar.

    If it is paper where is it located, we are looking for a simple scheduling program.

    Thanks!

  • Cary Holder

    Hey Stephen,

    When a trainer goes on vacation, what happens with their clients (especially since you guys are fully booked)?

    • Hi Cary,

      Good question and during any given week each CPT most likely has 10% of his sessions out for the week due to client travel, etc. That leaves about 4 session openings per trainer and amongst the 4 of us not on vacation that leaves about 16 openings…

      Since not every one of the CPT’s clients want to train with someone else we are able to get most people in for the week.

      Also, we always try to get each interested client in 1x before allowing them to book a 2nd session. This enables more people to train at least 1x for the week.

      The last resort is that I have one of my in-home CPTs cover the sessions that are unable to be filled.

      Hope that helps!

  • David Chesser

    Stephen,
    A couple of questions about this post. With that many sessions in a small space, there must be a lot of overlap. How are you handling that? To achieve that number, are you counting each individual in small classes as a separate session?

    I also have about a 500 square foot workout space and we try to maximize profit with small group classes (4-6 people) but we bump up against others wanting personal training at that same time.

    How do you manage that?

    Thanks.

    • Hi David,

      We fit 3-4 CPTs and their 1-on-1 clients in at a time. Everyone is instructed to work in with each other if needed, but since most of our equipment is extremely versatile we never run into issues. In almost 4 years there’s been less than a handful of people who have ever said anything about there being 3-4 clients training at the same time.

      I always tell my CPTs and their clients that at any popular gym/facility it will be crowded during peak AM/PM times.

      We reserve certain off-peak times and Saturday mornings for our small groups – We used to do more semi-private, but to be honest, 1-on-1 is very profitable for us and it’s consistent… that’s the issue about small group and semi-private – it’s great when it’s maxed out, but terrible when you have only 1-2 people paying a lower price for the same time as a 1-on-1 where you could be working with 3-4 clients at a higher price.

      Something to think about… I believe in staying flaexible and that’s why we changed our model to include mainly 1-on-1.

      The 700+ sessions we do per month is all session based (45-minute) and not the number of clients we train (as in small groups), so technically we train more than the # of sessions shown…

  • By the way those 763 sessions equal about $70,000 for the month from our 500 sq/ft fitness for anyone who was wondering. (I’m not sure if I posted that number, but I figured you may want to know)

    It’s time to start dreaming BIGGER!

  • Lee Skinner

    Hi Stephen, Great site, you sure are giving it all out and that’s real cool to see how you run things. Very honest and open.

    I would like some advice if possible.

    How do you track and pay your trainers. Do your trainers fill out a session sheet at the end of the week to you and hand this to you and you then pay them that week for sessions taken. I am thinking of taking on a new trainer for home visits, outdoor training, etc.

    Do you have a video that shows how you track and pay or do you leave that to a book keeper and just hand the numbers of sessions to them and they do the rest!

    Also when you sell programme do you mention the per session rate or monthly cost. ie

    69$ per session or 552 per month for example? What do you think people want to hear??

    Thanks for your help…

    • Hi Lee,

      Thanks for your comments!

      Also, the 3 payroll sheets are listed on this site under the Business Tool Box:

      1. Session Record
      2. Daily Appointment Sheet
      3. Payroll

      You can always just do a search for those by using the search box in the top right hand corner. For example search “daily appointment sheet” and all 3 will most likely pop up.

      Those 3 posts will explain everything.

      As for talking with clients about price – I always say that what they are paying for is far more than just a session. They are buying a PROGRAM. Ths means we do a lot of work outside of their session to design their program, offer support, etc.

      We tell them the monthly breakdown and then the per session price since everyone wants to know it… however, once we explain there’s a lot that goes into it they have a different understanding.

      Hope that helps!