Life is looking pretty good for Steve Munro, as he shows me round his stylish home office.
Having moved house and got married in the space of just three weeks, Steve finally has time to relax with his new wife, Lauren.
But sitting back isn’t his style, and the couple’s gorgeous new pad in Balmedie didn’t come about by chance.
It has taken years of hard work and sacrifice, and Steve is now juggling DIY alongside “check in’s” with more than 70 clients each week.
It’s pretty impressive considering that Steve only had around 10 online clients at the start of lockdown, before he decided to take his expertise and build an online fitness empire.
From handy educational seminars to support and tasty meal ideas, Steve is particularly popular with busy mums.
A quick look at his social media and there are dozens of impressive transformations, where people have clearly shed the pounds under Steve’s guidance.
And yet there is no mention of the scales, measurements, or a timeline. Steve doesn’t believe in weight loss programmes, but he’s 100% committed to how his clients feel.
We caught up with the determined man behind Steve Munro fitness, to find out why online PT is firmly in the spotlight.
‘I get a massive thrill from helping people’
“I studied sports science at university, I knew I always wanted to do something in sport,” says Steve, who is wearing fitness style shorts and T-shirt, despite the torrential rain.
“I think the thing I love about sport is that whether you are doing it for fun or competitively, you feel you have achieved something. You get that buzz, and and I don’t think you can achieve that in many other activities.”
Steve is clearly a fan of setting himself a challenge, from tackling numerous tough mudders to completing 7000 squats in three hours – in order to raise hundreds of pounds for the NHS.
Fortunately he doesn’t expect quite the same resilience from his clients.
“I was working at Pure Gym on Shiprow, and I could easily do 13 hour days,” says Steve.
“I’d get up at five, start work at six and not be finished till eight. Sometimes I’d let myself have a slightly earlier finish so I could go to football training.
“Working those hours wasn’t something I set out to do. Someone would ask me if I could help them and I’d squeeze them in somehow.
“I get a massive thrill from helping people. I remember one client was so shy and she was terrified of going into the gym.
“Now she struts in like she owns the place, which is amazing to see. It’s all about that mental shift.
“There’s still people in the industry who will post a transformation picture, having starved the client for five weeks. If you can’t keep your transformation, it’s not a transformation in the first place.”
“One of my other clients has worn a bikini for the first time, she’s 42 years old.
“It’s about how you feel.”
Adapting during tough times
Gyms fell silent come lockdown however, and Steve quickly got to work to adapt his business.
Despite only “dabbling” in online training previously, Steve now has 73 clients, the majority of which are female.
“So many of my clients are mums, there’s no point in me giving people heaps of exercises to do,” says Steve.
“I’d rather start off with two 20 minute sessions per week. And then if you want to build upon that, you find yourself thinking you can fit more in, well that’s brilliant.
“I don’t set people up to fail, the main thing is the nutrition.
“Quite often a female client will have done heaps of diets, and nothing has worked.
“I get everyone to track their calories, with a calorie target and protein target.”
Steve has taken a streamlined approach, and launched his own app earlier this year.
Ensuring the right fit
He also runs a strict consultation process, to make sure he is the right fit in the first place.
“It’s as much me interviewing them, as whether they want to come on board with me,” says Steve.
“Lockdown has massively changed the fitness industry. People are working out from home and so many people have started walking as well.
“I think we now know not to take our fitness for granted.
“On the app there are videos which show you how to do each exercise, you don’t necessarily need to be in a gym.”
Staying full and fit
After endless queries as to what his own diet looked like, Steve also set up a dedicated Instagram page.
Feeding The Munros documents what Lauren cooks up each night, from creamy tomato tortellini to sticky chicken.
“Lauren is definitely the chef in our house,” admits Steve.
“We decided to set up the page because so many people asked me what I ate, or would say are you sure you should be eating that?
“I wanted to show people that I don’t exist on salads and I don’t deprive myself.
“It’s what you eat the majority of the time which counts.
“I think it’s important to know when someone needs a kick up the bum, and whey they just need a cuddle.
“Ultimately, I can help people change their life. That’s pretty amazing.”
To find out more, visit Steve Munro Fitness on Facebook.