Erin Connor is one of South Tampa’s best personal trainers – and for good reason.
Not only is she a Certified Personal Trainer and Nutritional Specialist through NASM (National Association of Sports Medicine), she holds a Pilates Certification from Balanced Body University and has completed 200 hours of Hatha/Vinyasa Yoga Instructor from Kripalu.
Using all these tools and her passion for helping clients, Erin uses her 15+ years of experience motivating, coaching and guiding individuals to reach and achieve their fitness, health and wellness goals.
We sat down with Erin to get into the mind of a true health and wellness professional.
Q: Why did you decide to pursue health and wellness, professionally?
I’ve always enjoyed helping people a lot – and earlier in many different jobs and careers, I found myself gravitating towards that. I had never played sports in my life, but I was always into fitness. I ended up with a wonderful opportunity where I had several people take me under their wing and they taught me everything about working with people and the body. I had the opportunity to make it a full-time job, and then I just decided to jump on the bandwagon and move down to Florida. And now I’m a personal trainer at Bayshore Fit, working with people here to attain their health and wellness goals.
Q: What do you love about your work?
Hard to say just one single thing… I’m originally from Philadelphia, but when I came to Florida 17 years ago, it was the moment and place where I really found my passion. I enjoy just trying to find new ways and avenues to serve people the best I can. Whether it’s in wellness, or exercise, yoga, nutrition, I’m just passionate about helping people!
Q: Tell us about Bayshore Fit. Out of all the gyms in Tampa, why Bayshore Fit?
What it really comes down to is community, and how everyone here’s worked hard to establish a personal connection with everyone we come across. I worked at a large fitness facility before, and it was just like a revolving door constantly – not that that’s a bad thing, but at Bayshore Fit, we’re different. We have something to offer anybody. If you look at my clientele, I train people between their late 30’s to their late 80’s! I feel really fortunate for that, and it sets a comfort zone for anyone stepping into our gym to see that.
Q: What’s your approach to training a client? How do you start? How do you define goals together?
Most of our clients fill out paperwork first, and that’s normally where we first understand what their goals are. Everybody’s goals are different – whether they want to lose weight, get better at something, change, be more flexible – we’ll talk that through and then come up with small steps to achieve it, and not overwhelm them. At that point, making them achieve their goal becomes MY goal. I want to see them succeed – it’s a success for both of us. I want them to feel good, and always leave the gym feeling better than when they first walked in.
Q: What are some of the biggest mistakes you see people doing when they work out?
Poor form! Seeing people in poor form is very frustrating not only to see, but I know will really affect their results.
Q: What’s your take on the keto craze?
You know, keto has actually been around for a very long time, just as a different venue. It’s very similar to paleo, similar to Atkins, and still I think it’s here to stay for a while. I think it can work for some people, with the intermittent fasting, but at the same time, it can sometimes be too much fat for people. The fact is that no one-plan works for everybody, like people with gallbladder issues or cholesterol issues, keto might not be the best option for them.
Q: As a personal trainer, what challenges you the most?
I only have so much time with a client and can only get so much information about their habits during that time. We might have an hour together, but what are they doing the rest of the week? Putting in the work and being consistent are so important to getting the results we want.
Q: What’s your favorite kind of workout?
That’s a tough question – it’s hard to choose just one. If I could, I’d go on a five-mile run right now. But it’s not just cardio, or just Pilates, or just weight training. It’s all of it, the best kind of workout is a balanced one.
Q: Is there anything else you’d like to share?
People need to look at going to the gym and wellness in a different perspective… wellness can be mindful of your nutrition and walking every day. Wellness can be going to the gym every day and taking a yoga class. Every individual has to figure out what their wellness path might be, give it a shot, and continually be making changes to get at the goals they want. Not everyone can go hard for seven days in a row – maybe a 20-year-old man can, but I’d never recommend that to a 50-year-old. Taking rest days and recovering is really important too.
If you live in Tampa and you’re tired of looking for parking, waiting to use equipment, and just want a better gym experience – look no further. Sign up for personal training or a membership with Bayshore Fit – Tampa’s better gym experience. Get Bayshore Fit today!