Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Job offer

Yeah, look at that swing and that style... (not to mention the 2 scared people in the background, keeping a safe distance from me). I am definitely personal trainer material!

Last Sunday at the gym I was working some weights when one of my trainer friends, Rocky, came up to me.

-You La, how are things?

(I don't love when people start talking to me while I am doing weights, but I am so used to it by now that I have almost stopped caring).

Once I'd finished my rep we started chatting, and soon we started talking about the what the sad economic situation was doing to us.

-Hey, if you need a job maybe you could come here and work!? Rocky suddenly said.

-Eh... work at this gym you mean?!

-Yeah! You could be a trainer! It would be great!!

-I am not sure if I could be a trainer...

-Sure you could. You love sports and training! You come here almost every day! And look at you! You're so.... tall and fit...! You could totally be a trainer. I bet there are many girls here wishing they were as tall as you are!

-Rocky, I can't really train someone to be tall?!

-Eh... nah... well....

-And we both know I am twice as wide as most Chinese girls here.

-Yeah, true... well.

-So why on earth would they want me to train them?

(Rocky thinking for a short moment)

-OK, fair enough. Even though I still think a lot of Chinese girls would like to train with a tall girl it is true that they are already smaller than you. But you can train all the laowais!

-Most laowais are already tall so what could I do for them?
(I couldn't help myself. I had to say that!)

-Well there are many fat laowais here! I bet compared to them you are fit.

Yup, and that's the story how I got offered a job at my gym: To train fat laowais and short Chinese girls. Thanks but no thanks! 

Another interesting thing that I was also told is that when you are working as a PT in China, your job is not simply to train your customers. You should also be an annoying phone stalker. As many people are too lazy to come and train every day, Rocky explained to me that it is your job to call them a few times a week day and ask them why they haven't been training lately. This is done in order to push them to come to the gym more often.

-Does this include sending text messages? I asked.

-Yeah. Text messages and phone calls, asking them why they haven't been here for one week. They need that sort of push. They need someone to tell them.

So there we go. Anyone wondering why you're getting all those phone calls from your trainers at the gym -they are just thinking about your very best! (and I've cracked yet another nut here in China). 

28 comments:

Julz said...

I think I might yell at my trainer if they called asking why I hadn't been at the gym in a week. That is if I had a trainer in the first place. And I may not yell. But I would talk to him/her about their boundary issues :)

GWENNN. said...

LOL exactly!

i stopped going to gym now,lacking of money and time make it no possible way.

Jason said...

So you are really become a trainer now?

m--e said...

You should train on playing Kubb (like in the photo.) It's so much fun! They've even starting sells sets in the US.

Jonna Wibelius said...

Julz -here u don't even need to have a PT. If I haven't gone for 3-4 days they call me and wonder if I am OK... :)

Jason -no... haha. I am def NOT becoming a trainer! I think there are plenty of people that are more suitable being trainers than I am!

Jonna Wibelius said...

m--e -yeah, I love Kubb. Sadly, I suck badly at it!! Kubb is a serious business in Sweden. Our family have yearly tournaments every summer (often at the same time as our annual Crayfish party -now THAT is great fun.. although after one too many 'schnapps' we all kind of suck at Kubb...) Funny thing is that since the rest of my family is based in Sweden they all have a whole year to practice meanwhile I just come, fresh from overseas, for the game, and always end up performing the worse. As a result, no one wants me in their team anymore!! Next time I go to China I am planning to buy myself a set of Kubb and bring to China so that I can practice too.. although I wonder what sort of audience I will get if I start playing that in a park over here... haha.

Matt Snyder said...

I've never heard of this kubb. I might have to google it. If its a game and competitive then its definitely for me.

Jonna Wibelius said...

Matt -Kubb originates from a small Swedish island called 'Gotland' (where my dad was born -they have a really cute dialect over there!). More here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kubb

flyingfish said...

Actually, you might not want to do it (for obvious reasons) but I bet you WOULD be really good as a personal trainer. You are athletic, outgoing and able to look at things from other people's point of view. I bet you'd be fantastic! But I must admit I cannot see you phone-stalking your customers . . . :)

Ramesh said...

Why do Chinese girls go to the gym in the first place - they are enviously slim and fit anyway ...

Jonna Wibelius said...

flyingfish -thanks, that's very kind of u to say. I don't know if I am that athletic though... My balance is quite off and don't get me started when it comes to flexibility or arm strength.. (I have neither!) I've just started doing weights again to mix up the running for a bit... although I think the chances of me ever getting real toned arms are quite slim. Oh well!

Ramesh -Slim yes, but not necessarily fit... None of my Chinese female friends could run for 30 min. They frown just at the thought of it.

Emil said...

Chinese girls are definatenly not fit.

The best comparison would maybe be jellyfish. Just a mass of body without any kind of muscles at all

treasurecase said...

it seems pretty annoying to me if my trainer whould call me all week asking why I didn't show up at practice. Thats a good reason to not become a trainer, for me.

The Chinese Way said...

Hi, I've just stumbled into your blog ( ie Blooger actually features your blog to follow and as I am interested in the Chinese culture I've added your blog).

Good job! Best wishes with your experiences in China and have a nice day. Thanks.

Ty1 said...

Funny story. ^^
Keep posting!! I would love to read more.

kanmuri said...

Ummm, why do they call them? Isn't it easier to make money off people who don't come??

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Johan Rusli said...

So actually where do you work at?

Jonna Wibelius said...

John -just studying a.t.m. (And writing something) Couldn't get a good job at these times anyways.

l said...

hi Janna~~ I just register a account to say hi...^_^

Dear Beijing said...

Great blog!

The Casual Observer said...

In the US, the gyms make profits from people who DON'T go. They advertise great annual membership prices in January, to get people to sign up as a New Year's resolutions. The people show up a few times, get sick of it, and stop going ... but they are still locked into the year membership.

Brilliant marketing, really.

I get secondhand exposure to the show "Desperate Housewives" (my wife watches it). One of the women in that show had her personal trainer (and the entire fitness class) show up outside her house (with a megaphone?) when she failed to show up.

M.M.E. said...

My roommate is getting married in May and going to Jamaica for her honeymoon. She's appointed me her personal yeller. I'm supposed to yell at her if she eats too much candy, yell at her if she doesn't go to the gym, and I'm supposed to prance around in my underwear so she can get jealous. (I have the lovely fortune of having the good genetics to be a small blonde lady.) I don't really like this job. I only agreed to do it if she'll yell at me to get back to my schoolwork when I'm procrastinating.

Leo said...

This might be a stupid question, but what are laowais?

Jonna Wibelius said...

Emil -Jelly fish?! LOL! Gosh, you are getting harsher by the day!!!

Kanmuri -U'd think so but no.. I guess they really take their jobs seriously here.. I think in China it is also sort of 'part of the service' to have someone at your back all the time, telling u what to do. So that u don't have to think for yourself.

Leo -there are no stupid questions... :) Lao wai = wai guo ren = foreigner living in China. Lao literally means old, meanwhile wai means 'foreign.'

MME -oh my, that sounds... stressful!! especially pacing around in your underwear in order to get her motivated! Gosh!!

The casual observer -yeah, that makes much more sense of course.

The Casual Observer said...

MME - maybe you could throw ping pong balls at her when she is eating candy. That would be disruptive to her eating, and fun for you :)

sheri amor said...

haha that's funny. What a job offer. As if u really didn't want it but being a gym instructor is great

kdobson said...

There's a guy called Rocky at my gym too. He does martial arts and is a professional bodyguard, not a boxer, but he fits the name. I sing "Eye of the Tiger" at him whenever I see him.

On a completely unrelated note, I think in "finished my rep" you mean to say 'set', not 'rep'... a rep is one repetition or motion, and there are usually lots of reps in each set (unless you are doing your 1 rep max).