Beginnings can be scary. When we start something, sometimes all we can see is how far left there is to go. The same goes for fitness. It’s easy to forget the unconquerable giant the gym can appear to be before you begin.
When Jordan met Margarita, she was at the beginning. She had never stepped foot into a gym before, never trained in her life. A debilitating back injury dominated her day to day. She joined Third Space when the fear of living a life in pain outweighed the fear of that beginning.
They decided to do coffee first. For Jordan, understanding who a client is before they walk through the door is the most important part. There is always overlap with goals inside the gym; what sets them apart is why they’ve come. For Margarita, it was to become a mother.
“There were moments when I couldn’t get up without my fiancé’s help. I thought: how am I going to carry a child? It was a scary thought. It took me about a year to muster the courage to go.” She went on, “Jordan broke a lot of stereotypes I had about trainers.”
Margarita was expecting to be handed a program and get on with it. What she found was that Jordan really cared. He took in everything Margarita had to say. Every week, they were re-evaluating. He never forgot about her injury. He always had her why in mind.
Jordan trains clients so that one day he doesn’t have to. Agency is at the forefront of his philosophy. Margarita found the confidence very early on to come to the gym and go through the routine he was teaching her on her own.
When he would catch a glimpse of her moving a piece of equipment across the gym floor—taking up space and owning her hour—they would lock eyes and share that secret win. Sometimes he’d even sneak in a high-five. Affirmation was there in every moment.
“What really worked for us was celebrating every win along the way. Rather than the perceived end goal,” Jordan tells me. But there was one win in particular that changed Margarita’s perception of her own potential.
It was the first time they practiced a pull-up. She’d never done one before; she didn’t think she’d even be able to. Regardless of the extra help from resistance bands. But with Jordan next to her, telling her that she could, her chin went above the bar.
In this moment, Margarita’s peripheral expanded. Jordan shattered that narrow mindset and slowly dismantled the giant monster that training can appear to be. She was using three bands to get her pull-up, but she got it. “That may not seem like much, but for me, it was such an achievement.”
Margarita made contact with her own capability. Jordan facilitated that contact. That is what training should do: shatter the perception of your own limits. “I saw the stages. Next would be two bands, then one, then none.” After that session, she started considering everything she could achieve.
Jordan describes this as a coming-of-age moment. It’s the day that the client connects the relationship between goals and intensity. He explains, “When you meet your intensity and run towards it – that’s what’s going to make the change.” He went on, “That was the day I watched Margarita fall in love with her own intensity.”
They’ve been chasing that change together now for over a year and a half. Margarita has overcome her back injury. She hasn’t had a spasm since her and Jordan started training. She’s lifting, she’s surpassing limits, and making physical challenges part of her every day. “Now I’m the one who’s encouraging activity. I used to not be able to do a 15-minute walk without feeling fragile. I carry myself differently; my life has completely changed.”
Margarita has overcome a lot since starting at Third Space. She credits that to her time with Jordan. “You hear about training being transformational, but for me it actually was – and you can only understand it once you’ve gone through it yourself.”
Now, Margarita’s got her sights set on what challenges come next. She’s fallen in love with training, so much so that she’s looking to compete in the next few years. With Jordan’s background as an Olympic weightlifter, I’d say she’ll be there in no time.
So, whether it’s motherhood that’s around the corner or the prospect of a competition, one thing is certain.
Margarita is no longer afraid of beginning.