Rhodri Llywelyn

Personal trainer

My great passion is fitness. For me, it is not a choice, it is something I need in my life. I have experienced first hand the positive effects of healthy eating and daily exercise. It helped me overcome a number of personal issues and is about more than just keeping in great physical condition. For years I suffered with low self esteem and a lack of confidence. Exercise has played a huge part in developing my own confidence and improving my mental and emotional health. Sharing my understanding and appreciation for what our bodies and minds can achieve is something that I love. I feel very lucky to work with clients towards achieving their goals. It is incredibly rewarding and gives me a buzz. I believe that nothing is impossible and I enjoy working closely with clients to create a positive and fun experience, ultimately achieving results.

So what can I do for you?

You’re probably wondering if investing in a personal trainer is for you. After all, it’s a considerable investment which takes up your time, energy and money so it needs to bring some real, measurable benefits. Deciding to work with a personal trainer is taking that first step towards saying ‘Hey, I’m worth this!’ We all work hard, have incredibly busy lives and often neglect ourselves as a consequence. Investing in ourselves, our mental and physical health rarely takes priority – but this investment can be truly life changing. When you’re in great shape, you perform better in EVERYTHING that you do.

I love seeing people make positive changes and it is in my interest that you SUCCEED. You may already be working-out but not getting the results you would like.  I will work with you to set goals that are realistic and achievable. I will push you that little bit harder, hold you accountable, keep you motivated and more importantly make it enjoyable. The exercises, tools and techniques that I introduce will make your workouts both fun and effective.

If you’re still not convinced – booking a 4 session package is a great way to give it a try – to kick start your fitness regime. You may well decide to go it alone after that. Alternatively, you may decide to hang on for a longer journey. Either way I am looking forward to working with you to ensure your goals are not only met, but exceeded.

My services are based at Evolution Fitness Centre Cross Hands.

Certifications

QUALIFIED LEVEL 2 GYM INSTRUCTOR

QUALIFIED LEVEL 3 PERSONAL TRAINER

QUALIFIED SPIN INSTRUCTOR

Q&A

RLlywelynPT

When did you first realise that you would like to start training?

I first realised that I would like to start training at around the age of 16. I had always been very active from an early age. I played football and rugby and was willing to give any sport a try. I had always been surrounded by training as I had very active parents. My father was one of the main reasons I got in to training as he’d been lifting weights all his life. I had always been fascinated and would spend hours just watching him train in the garage. Eventually I started joining in and would try to copy whatever my father was doing (even though I didn’t have a clue what I was doing). It didn’t take long before I fell in love with it.

How did you feel when you first went to the gym? Did you go with a friend?

It took me quite a few years to pluck up the courage to go and workout at my local gym. The first time I stepped foot in to a gym was just before I turned 18. Even though I had been training for over a year, I still didn’t feel confident enough to step foot in to a gym. Luckily for me a few of my bigger friends had been training there for some time as they were all playing rugby. I remember one Friday after school my best mate had managed to talk me in to going there with him to try it out. Basically, the rest is history. I haven’t looked back since. I loved every single thing about it. I loved the look of the place, the machines, the people and the way it made me feel. I couldn’t compare it to anything else I’d experienced before. From that very first session it became my passion.

Why did you want to start training?

There are a few reasons I wanted to start training. The main reason I wanted to start training was to get bigger. Even though I had always been very fit and  athletic I was also very small for my age (I’m the tiny one in the photographs). I played rugby until around the age of 16 but I gave it up when all the boys my age were just so much bigger than me and it took the fun out of playing rugby for me. I got to the age where all my mates started going out drinking and partying on nights out. I was so small and looked so young I just couldn’t go. Partying and clubbing was just one issue. Another was girls. I was small and scrawny and my self-confidence took a battering. I would shy away from even trying to make conversations with girls. I remember getting called the word “cute” over and over. Cute is all very well who you’re 5 but at 18 it’s a disaster. We all know girls don’t go for the “cute” guy. They all go for the bigger rugby player looking guys. I distinctly remember the day that something just clicked. I had been called cute for maybe the 100th time and I knew enough was enough.That’s when I started hitting the weights and the gym like my life depended on it.

As I started training more I started watching YouTube videos on bodybuilding and fitness motivational videos and remember coming across videos of two people I’ll never forget. The first one was someone called “Zyzz”. Some of you might know who I’m talking about as he had become a fitness icon over the years. The other was a guy called Gregg Plitt. These two people quickly became role models for me. They gave me a new way of looking at life and I remember before every gym session I religiously watched their videos and it got me so pumped for the session every time.

How did you feel about yourself at the time?

Before I started hitting the gym and the weights I was a very shy and quiet person with no self-confidence what so ever. I’d be too embarrassed to do many things such as going clothes shopping with my mates as they’d all be buying clothes for men where I just simply couldn’t buy men’s clothes as I was just too small. There would be a rare occasion where I’d be able to buy the same style of clothes if they had it in a size extra small but that was very rare, even a size small was way too big for me. There were a few occasions at that age where I was at a low point because I hated the fact that I was so small and couldn’t understand how everyone else my age was just so much bigger. Obviously now looking back you realise that some people develop much sooner or much later than others but at the time I didn’t understand any of this.

It’s a hard thing to go through especially as a young boy growing up and going in to adulthood. People always sympathise over the kids/ young adults that are overweight when growing up understanding that they have self- confidence issues but it’s also just as hard for us smaller guy’s that would do anything just to be that little bit bigger just to be able to feel like they can fit in. I remember being really annoyed at one point as I felt It’s quite funny how there are so much support and information out there to help overweight people with confident issues but then when you’re going through the complete opposite as a young adult male there’s not much out there or it’s as if it’s not a serious issue.

Where did you turn to for help at the beginning? Who showed you how to use the machines?

At the very beginning when I first started lifting weight I remember turning to my father for advice and for him to show me how to do some of the exercises he was doing in his training sessions. For the first few months of training I would just stick to the same routine I used to do every night in my bedroom which would consist of some push-ups, some bicep curls using light dumbbells and some pull ups using one of those home pull up bars which you attach to a door frame.

As I got more serious about training and started going to my local gym I would turn to my friends that played rugby for advice on what I should be doing and how to do them correctly. Looking back none of us had a clue what we were doing but we all have to start somewhere.

I remember in sixth form I made a new friend called Liam who moved school to where I was going to school as he would be finishing his last few years of school with us. As we got talking he mentioned that he goes to the gym and was passionate about lifting weights and bodybuilding. This couldn’t have come at a better time for me as I had just started weight training but didn’t have a clue what I was doing so I asked if he wouldn’t mind be joining in with him. I quickly realised that he knew a lot more than I did about weight training and he had showed me a lot of new techniques and exercises. We kept training together for a good few years until we both finished school and started working full time jobs and it got hard to be able to train around the same times. We both still train at the same local gym where I happen to be working as a personal trainer so I have a lot to thank him for.

What were your ideas about food / nutrition / diet? Have these ideas changed?

With regards to food, diet and nutrition I’ll be completely honest – I didn’t have a clue. All I cared about was getting bigger. Diet didn’t really factor in my initial approach. It was all about the training. I assumed that the hard work would be enough. I was killing myself but struggling to put on any muscle. I was under eating. My understanding of the importance of diet and nutrition came later on. If I could go back and start again one thing I’d have liked to have known was the importance of nutrition and how much of a role it plays in achieving your dream physique.You just can’t separate nutrition and training. The two work together in synergy. Whatever your goal may be – gaining muscle, losing fat, competing as an athlete, it’s crucial that you get both of these right. 

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