Personal Trainer Q&A - Chris Hallaways

personal trainer kicking a punch bag in YMCA club london

In the spotlight or ring (if you prefer) this month is kickboxing specialist and movement enthusiast Chris Hallaways. A London based Personal Trainer who has been part of the YMCA Club team for the last 2 years. As a trainee stuntman you can often find Chris training in multiple disciplines whether it’s good old strength training, gymnastics, kickboxing or high diving. To find out more about what makes him tick, read our full Q&A.

1. It’s almost spring already! What are your 3 tips to help us all to keep our health and fitness on top of our list in the countdown to summer?

  • Try something new! Our bodies adapt to the same routine, change it up and open some new neurological pathways! Your body will love you for it
  • Clean eating is a must! Fresh food and lots of water will keep you running at 100%
  • Limit your sugar intake. Write down everything you eat over a week and you'll be surprised how much sugar is hidden away in everything. And remember sugar is sugar, it doesn't matter where it came from, honey, fruit or granules

2. What is your regular fitness routine?

I probably shouldn't admit this but my training is all over the place. I'm training to be a stunt man and this involves training in a several different disciplines. At the moment I've been learning and practicing high diving and gymnastics, whilst keeping up on my other skills like kickboxing, rock climbing and swimming. On top of this I have been carving out some time to try and add a new movement element to my training as well.

3. What are your proudest achievements, fitness or otherwise?

There are a few moments which really standout for me:

  • Traveling to China and doing martial arts training in a few Shaolin schools, then traveling to Thailand and fighting in a Muay Thai Kickboxing competition and winning
  • Starting work as Personal Trainer and realizing I had found my calling
  • Training to become a Stuntman and all the exciting opportunities that has given me. For example I get the privilege of working alongside some big names in the movie business and get to learn and train in a variety of different disciplines.

4. What is your favourite quote?

“Don't be sluggish and lazy. Do not be scared of hard training. From will power grows success.”

This is a quote from my Shifu (master) at the Shaolin temple I train in.

5. Share one of your personal top secrets for keeping fit and healthy?

Love your training, try to learn as many new things as possible and find new ways to move your body. For me this is key to keep fit and healthy, in both body and mind.

6. How would you describe your PT style and how do you help your clients reach their goals?

I do a lot of kickboxing with my clients, who really love it. It's a great way to improve strength and cardio and you’re guaranteed a tough and challenging workout!

I also like to focus on bodyweight movement patterns, for whole body workouts that do wonders for strength, mobility, cardio, agility and body awareness. I'm sure a lot of people have seen either me or my clients crawling across the floor! You’d be surprised by how hard it is! Ask yourself when was the last time you felt the floor with more than your feet?

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

I'm not one for Fitness apps, I only tend to use a boxing timer for training myself and clients.

If someone needs to keep track of their nutrition then there's nothing better than a pen and paper, but if it's an app they want MyFitnessPal is a good one out there.

8. What do you love about your job?

What don't I love? I get to see people become better stronger versions of themselves. Besides, being my own boss and running my own business is pretty awesome. I also get exposed to all sorts of different training disciplines.

9. What has your job taught you about yourself?

You can never stop learning, there's always something new out there. Whether it’s a new technique or a different way to improve yourself, it’s best to find it and enjoy it! You know what they say, knowledge is power.

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

I believe I am training for my dream job as a Stuntman so my doppelgänger must be an office worker sitting at a desk all day, having to travel on public transport, probably not living in London and definitely not loving life as much as me.

11. What does a good day look like?

A good day will be start at 7am when I will train my morning clients, then it’s off to see some friends for a training session of my own and then back to work in the afternoon/evening for some more clients. No day is the same but I always love what I do.

12. What is important to you?

My girlfriend, my family, my dog and my training!


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ymca | 7 March 2016