ADVO Group interviews Matt Roberts, Personal Trainer


Matt Roberts’ personal training service has seen him boost the fitness of some of the biggest household names including Michael McIntyre, Amanda Holden, The Saturdays and Mel C, to name a few.  The London-based personal training company has grown to become a recognised luxury service, as Matt explains “The company started two decades ago at a time when gyms were really dark, dingy and a place people didn’t generally want to be.  I could see there was no luxury, premium spaces for clients to work out so I combined training with a five star environment and fantastic service.  It hit a real nice gap in the market and has grown from there.  Today there are five clubs across London (Mayfair, Chelsea, Hampstead, City and Belgravia) and the expert in-house team offers training, diet and nutritional programming and lifestyle management”. In the latest in our interview series we discuss the most common barriers to improved fitness and how to go about realising those new years resolutions to get in better shape.

What is it that makes your personal training services unique?

We established ourselves in 1995 so are the longest running one-to-one personal training provider in the UK and one of the biggest of its kind in the world.  Over the years we have helped countless people to achieve their goals so there is very little we have yet to see.  The fact we really listen to our clients and can draw upon our breadth of knowledge and expertise to deliver those people real results it what makes us different.  It might sound simple but not many people actually achieve it.

What does your typical day involve?

My day starts with a good breakfast and into work to train my first client around 7:00am; I normally have about three to four clients per day.  Between then I am mostly in strategy meetings talking about ways to grow and develop the brand plus the normal day to day issues of running a business.  Unsurprisingly food plays a big role in my day and I always make time for lunch and then I tend to train in the afternoon.  My day finishes late afternoon after my last client and then home for time with the family around 7:30pm.

What part of your role gives you the most satisfaction?

It is two-fold; when a client hits their goals it is always really rewarding but equally seeing my team grow and develop is very satisfying.  A number of them have been with me over ten years and seeing them flourish as individuals makes me proud.

What direction or increased specialisation do you see your training taking in the future?

Training is becoming more and more bespoke simply because we have the technology and industry innovations to understand more about ourselves.  For example DNA testing is leading the way in terms of what it tells us about people and how we are able to programme specifically for that individual.  It means the time is the gym can be used with optimum efficiency so help keeps people really motivated.

Tell us more about your training work with celebrities.

There is not a great deal to tell to be honest, the boring answer I know! They are just the same as any other client walking through our doors albeit their timescales might be a little tighter if they are getting ready for a film or big event.   Discretion in this business is absolutely key so I can’t say too much more!

What do you think are currently some of the main barriers or issues preventing people from being in better shape?

Unsurprisingly it is time and motivation. We all know what it is like when you are busy at work so finding the time and motivation to exercise is difficult.  By doing something you enjoy and attacking it in small, intensive chunks can make it easier on both fronts.

People often set themselves new years resolutions to improve their fitness levels. What do you think is the best first step people could take to start this process?

Set a realistic achievable goal and where necessary take steps to achieve it.  You might have a long term goal to run a marathon but if you have never even put on a pair of running shoes before there is little point scheduling one within the next three months.  Instead break it down into smaller goals, so for example start with a 5 and 10km and gradually build up to a full marathon. Trust me you will get a great deal more satisfaction from completing a shorter distance than you will failing a long one.