Can exercise support personal transformation … or is it really just about heaves, grunts, and getting into a beach body for the summer? I put that question to a popular Oakland coach, Will Belew. At his business, The Fitness Alchemists, he and his business partner believe that exercise can affect transformational change that include our beliefs, our attitudes and our overall approach to life.
It turns out not only can exercise reboot your brain – it actually ‘cleans house’ as it moves through the brain tissue. Hence our positive feelings, our increased confidence, and our general mojo as we move forward from a good workout. Furthermore, exercise can teach the body new ways to adapt to life’s circumstances, whether you’re a vet who lost a limb or a middle-aged woman who needs renewed confidence.
This wide-ranging conversation touches on everything from how a really good workout routine teaches us a patience to how to overcome the natural desire to crap out on the way to the gym.
Will’s natural enthusiasm and downright passion for fitness left me inspired. I hope you are, too.
Some of the things I learned from Will:
- Why a personal trainer or a coach is such a good idea, and maybe even a critical part of self care
- Why exercise is such a great thing to do when you’re grieving or going through a major life transition
- How brain cells ‘self clean’ as a response to exercise … and what that does for you
- Whether or not we have a ‘strength set point’ or natural range beyond which we cannot stray
- Inspiring stories of where a regular exercise habit has affected the rest of someone’s life
- What to say to yourself when you’re simply avoiding going to the gym
- Why Will works with groups, and what group members get out of that
Will Belew, a Coach and Co-Founder of The Fitness Alchemists in Oakland, California, brings an “elusive combination of high EQ [emotional intelligence] and deep knowledge” to his daily interactions with clients. His background includes industry-leading certifications in nutrition and strength & conditioning, as well as over 4,000 hours of hands-on coaching. He takes pleasure in his work with people from all backgrounds, including competitive athletes, corporate executives, public-school teachers, and people with Parkinson’s disease to name just a few.
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