Join us at The Barbell

Join us at The Barbell

Welcome to first of a new monthly feature where we interview one of our fab Personal Trainers. This month meet Martin Coles, we sat down and had a chat with the wannabe DJ to discover a bit more about what makes him tick. Without further ado here are 9 secrets, insights and top tips from our tip-top personal trainer! 

1.    What do you like best about your workspace and why? 

I’ve trained in a lot of spaces across the world and none have compared to that of the YMCA. The space and variety of equipment on offer allows you to be creative with exercise selection and the circuit combinations are almost endless! 

2.    What is the most interesting and inspiring aspect of your job? 

The variety – The YMCA attracts a large cross section of London society! I’ve trained clients ranging from busy CEOs, international students, architects, film-makers, freelancers, stage actors and seniors. No two days are the same, plus helping people to achieve great (sometimes life-changing) goals makes me feel warm and fuzzy.

3.    What are your top 3 tips to help clients to keep on going, when their ‘get up and go’ has gone! 

I.   Each session brings you one step closer to being the strongest / fittest / leanest you. Focus on what you are working towards and why you want it and your reasons to train will have a force greater than those not to. 
II.  If possible, train first thing – it’s far easier to sack off your session if you’ve have a bad day, your meetings overrun, or you’ve had a whole day to convince yourself otherwise!!
III. Drink Coffee before your workout – Caffeine is a powerful stimulant used by athletes to increase motivation and enhance performance. 

4.     Share at least one of your top secrets for keeping fit and healthy

Train smarter, not harder. Do some research, take your information from a variety of trusted (and preferably scientifically-backed) sources and question everything you read! A little knowledge in the gym (and the kitchen) goes a long way.

5.    What are your top tips for feeling good about yourself?

Develop self-awareness, explore a variety of behaviours and habits, and determine which of those are beneficial to you and which are not. Work towards repeating the good habits more frequently and systematically eradicating the bad ones. 

Be compassionate to yourself and others. 

6.    What has your job taught you about yourself? 

That I am useful member of society.

7.    Was there a time when your skills as a PT helped you achieve something completely surprising and unexpected?

Not yet, but I’m working towards the day when I might have to a lift heavy objects off people, pull myself up from a cliff face or win a lunge competition!

8.    What health and fitness app do you use to help you or your clients to keep on track? 

Myfitnesspal is a very valuable calorie counter/food database. With the right calorie / macro nutrient intake will help its users get leaner, more muscular or fuel their workouts more effectively.

9.    If you had a doppelganger living another life, in another world, what would his/her dream job be? 

When I was younger, I fancied myself as a bit of DJ – I like the idea of exploring the world with a big bag of banging tunes.


Martin is available for private one on one sessions (or one on two sessions) Monday – Friday 7am – 8pm and Saturdays 9am – 2pm.

To book Martin or to discuss your requirements, you can contact him on 07794680051 or email 

ymca | 7 October 2015