Why I Do What I Do: The Story Of Iron Paradise Fitness
I used to HATE my life. It might be a surprise to you, but I’ve not always been in the fitness industry. Far from it. In fact, Iron Paradise Fitness was born in the midst of tragedy and opportunity. And I want to tell you that story in all it's raw and emotional detail.
For the best part of 15 years I climbed the corporate ladder. Long hours in the office, tight deadlines, and unrealistic expectations from those on-high were the norm. Sound familiar?
And I actually think I did pretty well at it. From the outside, I had a life many people spend their life working towards. My successful career netted me £70k+ per year. I had the fancy car, great career prospects, and a nice house to match. No worries about paying bills or looking at my finances every week.
I could go on nice holidays and buy cool shit whenever I wanted. I was set for life.
But inside, I was unhappy.
Sometimes downright depressed.
Because I had no passion for what I was doing. Day in, day out I was going through the motions like some automaton droid.
It was like I was existing, not living.
I thought more money and more cool shit would be the answer. After all, if I had a nicer house and a better car, that would fill the void, right?
So I worked harder.
Longer hours in the office meant more time away from my family. All in pursuit of material possessions. But instead of filling the void, I became more stressed and frustrated than ever before.
Worst of all, I felt trapped.
I was fucking miserable, but I was balls deep in this career. And felt like there was no way out. I hadn’t done anything else since I left Uni, so how the hell could I feed myself and put a roof over my head if I quit? People were relying on me. And back then I really cared about what other people thought of me. If I quit now, they’ll see me as a failure.
What would my parents say? I felt like I’d be letting them down.
I just couldn’t see a way out.
But then in November 2014, tragedy meant everything changed.
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The Story Of Iron Paradise Fitness: ...And Then Tragedy Struck
I remember it vividly, like it was yesterday.
Lying on the tarmac in the middle of the road, on a cold wet November morning, literally broken. Unable to move and quickly filling with panic, I wondered what the fuck was going on. One minute I was cruising home on my bike, just a couple of miles away from grabbing a warm cup of coffee. Now I’m on the ground with blinding pain coming from my right leg.
This supposedly leisurely cycle ride had taken a turn for the worst.
Fast forward past the rescue mission by my Dad, the allergic reaction to morphine in the hospital, and 24 hours on nothing more than paracetamol, it turns out this 33 year old guy and broken his hip.
An injury normally the reserve of the elderly. But I’d managed to fuck myself right up in a very short space of time.
After being sliced open and fitted with enough metal work to warrant the nickname ‘Iron Man’ I remember sitting in the hospital bed stunned.
“What the fuck?”
“What the actual FUCK?”
24 hours ago, I was a fit, healthy, super active guy. Now I’m lying here wondering if I’ll ever be active again.
You see, fitness had become a huge part of my life. At school, I was the fat kid. Throughout my teenage years I struggled with bullying and eventually found solace in the gym. It literally changed my life. But now, all that was in jeopardy.
In the days after the operation, I sat and cried for hours.
Never in front of anyone, but on my own before I went to bed as the realisation would flatten me like a steamroller.
I was reduced to needing help getting dressed and going for a shit.
I felt hopeless. And I felt a failure.
Not only did I hate my job, but now the one thing I had control of and made me happy had been taken away.
But I decided I couldn’t let that happen…
I needed to do SOMETHING…
The Story Of Iron Paradise Fitness: Building Myself Back Up
Even though I had the support of people around me, I felt alone.
No one knew the struggle I was going through physically and emotionally after the accident. Although, I’d say I was to blame for that. I wouldn’t let anyone in. The brick wall was up and it wasn’t about to be knocked down any time soon.
During this time, I still never let on how I felt about my job either. My parents were so proud of their boy who done good. I didn’t want to let them down and leave a whole in their heart by telling them their no.2 son was miserable. So I continued to block it out. And I carried on going through the motions as best I could.
Boring as fuck presentations followed by dull as fuck spreadsheets.
Focusing on my recovery became my release.
It gave me a sense of purpose and somewhere to channel the negative emotions of the daily grind. If I had a camera crew with me, my training would’ve made an awesome motivational video. A bit like a Rocky montage… Just minus the Russians and raw eggs.
On top of training, I studied my ass off when it came to nutrition.
Previously, I’d been a victim of fad diets and the bullshit marketing of supplement companies. In fact, my lack of results was the catalyst for me switching from the gym to cycling in my late 20’s. After previously sinking thousands of pounds into shitty training programmes and worthless supplements that delivered nothing, I decided to go my own route.
My brain was filled with a new found knowledge. Over 9 months, I consistently put into practice what I’d learnt. Battling through pain and numerous setbacks, I sculpted a lean, muscular, badass body. The kind of physique I’d dreamed of when I was in my 20’s, but could never achieve.
But despite packing on about 15kg of solid muscle, I still felt broken.
A six pack and an awesome body hadn’t mended me emotionally.
Something was still missing. And now was the time to take on that beast!
The Story Of Iron Paradise Fitness: The Birth Of Iron Paradise
There comes a time in your life when the elastic snaps!
When you push yourself to breaking point and finally everything comes crashing down around you. And that moment came for me on a gloomy Monday morning commute to work.
Sat in my car, waiting for the lights to turn from red to green, I looked left and right at the two guys in their cars alongside me. I had no clue who they were or what was going on in their lives, but they too looked miserable as fuck! And in that moment I burst into tears.
“What the fuck was I doing with my life?”
The previous day, a friend at work was talking about how many years they had left to retirement. 10, I think it was.
When I did my own maths I had the realisation I had 30 years left.
30 fucking years!
30 years of making shitty presentations and worrying about whether or not I was using the right shade of grey on a Powerpoint slide. Not to mention the endless spreadsheets about stuff I simply couldn’t care less about. It felt like I’d just been hit with a prison sentence. Selling rich people expensive cars didn’t ignite my fire.
In fact, the retirement countdown stomped out any flicker of a flame that might have existed.
Sat in my car, those feelings of being trapped came flooding back. I still couldn’t see a way out. That was until I read a book called “The Gorilla Mindset” by Mike Cernovich.
In it Mike wrote (and I’m paraphrasing)… if there are people willing to ask for your advice, there are people willing to pay for it.
And it got me thinking.
Only days before, 2 different guys had approached me in the gym for advice. They’d seen my transformation over the last 9 months and wondered if I could help them do the same. Could I make a business out of helping people and doing something I truly loved?
It’s gotta be worth a shot, right?
And in that exact moment, Iron Paradise Fitness was born. But that was just the start.
There was still a long road ahead.
The Story Of Iron Paradise Fitness: Taking The BIG Leap
Looking back, I didn’t know jack shit about building a fitness business.
Armed with a Level 3 Personal Trainer qualification, a blank WordPress site, and a dream, I set about pissing in the wind for the next year. I would write dog shit articles, post selfies on social media, and wonder why I was faced with tumbleweeds rather than a flood of clients beating down my virtual door.
I didn’t get it.
Was I working hard enough? Yeah, I was definitely putting in the hours. So what gives?
Desperate to carve a way out of the corporate life and follow my passion, I was determined not to quit. So I did the only thing I knew… I worked my ass off.
Up at 5am, gym at 6am, work the day job til 5pm, home, eat, and work ’til midnight turning dreams into reality. Rinse and repeat every day. I guess that’s what they call “hustle".
I became a hermit. A recluse. Like the creepy guy kids are scared of in horror movies.
“That’s Old Man Mitchell from No. 29. He never leaves the house.”
“Some say he only goes outside to dispose of the dead bodies.”
Ok. I wasn’t quite THAT bad, but something had to give. And it was my social life that went on ice. Over the next 18 months, I barely surfaced to go and meet friends or take a break.
My dream simply meant so much to me.
I HAD to make it work. And if nights out were the sacrifice, well I was willing to pay it tenfold!
Fitness became my obsession.
I studied nutrition in more detail and learned the intricacies of exercise mechanics. And surrounded myself with coaches who were way better than me. I was like a leech, sucking information from them whenever I could. I learned about marketing, social media, copywriting, and web design. Literally EVERYTHING you could possibly think of about building a business.
There was no way Iron Paradise Fitness wasn’t going to be successful because of a lack of effort on my part.
Iron Paradise Fitness had consumed my entire life, but I loved it. It was the fire in my belly I’d been missing. The passion I needed and the reason I would love working every minute possible.
Although, it did make for some awkward conversations on Tinder dates.
“So what do you like to do in your spare time?” The innocent question would come.
“Well I’m working on building my own business right now, so that’s my main focus.”
“Ah, cool. But what do you like to do for fun?”
“Work on my business.”
“Yeah, but what about when you’re not doing that?”
“Well I’m either working on my business, thinking about working on my business, or eating.”
Trust me, I was the worst first date imaginable. Not sure that ever changed. But I didn’t care.
Why? Because helping people transform their bodies and their lives was putting me on cloud 9. To have someone tell you they’re the happiest and most confident they’ve ever been is indescribable. And it’s certainly not a feeling you can replicate with fucking spreadsheets and powerpoint presentations about car part sales.
I’ll never forget the first video testimonial I received from my client, Hannah. She said she felt better in her 30’s than she ever had in her 20’s since working with me. She felt more confident and self-assured.
Honestly, I welled up with emotion (I’m starting to realise I cry a lot…hahaha).
But I wasn’t just emotional because her results were amazing. I’d proved to myself and all those who doubted me, I could do this. It was a light bulb moment, sparking my business to go from strength to strength.
My focus was on helping people, not on chasing cash. I wanted to guide people through similar challenges to the ones I had. And after nearly 2 years of working my ass off, I was ready to make the big leap.
To move the chips all the way to the centre of the table.
It was time to go all in.
I wrote my letter of resignation and started the ball rolling.
Now, that ball could’ve been like the opening scene from The Temple of Doom. It could’ve squashed me and my dreams into the dirt quicker than I could say, “fuck you and your spreadsheets.”
But I had an unwavering belief Iron Paradise Fitness would be a success.
Fast forward to now and my online coaching programme is transforming people’s lives each and every day. Helping high performing professionals, working long hours in high pressure careers, find time to focus on themselves through fitness.
I also have one of the highest rated fitness podcasts on Spotify. And I’ve interviewed my idols and some true legends of the industry. On a daily basis I get messages from people telling me how much my advice and content has helped them finally make breakthroughs in their health and fitness.
It’s truly mind-blowing!
And while I may not have the flashy car and all the perks of my old job (yet). Life is fucking Good! Finally, the void in my life has been filled. It turns out my calling in life was to help others. So that’s exactly what I intend on doing.
Empowering people to take control of their health so they can live the life they deserve.
And I’ll do it with a smile on my face and saying FUCK multiple times per day.
What I Want You To Learn From The Story Of Iron Paradise Fitness
Iron Paradise Fitness would never have existed if it wasn't for the low points, challenges and obstacles I faced along the way. Being happy and content is about accepting both the positive and negative. It's about following your passions, desire, dreams, and goals regardless of what life throws at you.
Whether you're in the fitness industry or someone seeking to transform their body in some way, I hope you can take a few lessons from my story. The journey has not been smooth sailing. But I wouldn't change it for the world. The moments of self-doubt and struggling have taught me to appreciate what I have. And they've given me the drive to keep pushing forward.
Whatever your goal is in life, you will face hardship. You will feel like giving up. You will feel as though you're putting in the effort and not getting anywhere. But the important thing is to not give up. Sometimes the path to your goal is filled with more questions than answers. And there'll be times when you feel as though you've taken 2 steps back. But the only way you truly fail is if you give up.
So enjoy the journey, wherever you are in the process.
Me? I'm just getting started.
Here's The Next Step In Achieving Your Fitness Goals
If reading the story of Iron Paradise Fitness has resonated with you and you feel as though I might be the coach for you, I'd love to tell you more about my coaching programme.
The Lean Life Method (that's the name of my coaching programme), can help you lose fat, build muscle, and achieve the body you've been striving for. Ultimately, taking the guesswork out of training and nutrition, so you can live a leaner, healthier life for good.
Join The Lean Life Method, you’ll learn a simple, stress-free way to achieve your fitness goals. And you'll feel more confident than ever before.
And there's no need to torture yourself in the gym, avoid wine and pizza, or kill your social life in the process.
I'm guessing you've spent thousands on pills, powders, and programmes that delivered nothing. So you might be wondering what's different about me?
The simple truth is this... I get results. And I'll teach you everything you need to know, so you can maintain those results. So answer me this.
- How much precious time are you spending trying to figure out what's right, instead of making progress?
- Are you sick and tired of never seeing the results your hard effort deserves?
- How much stress and frustration is your lack of progress adding to your life?
A lack of clarity might be holding you back from living the leaner, healthier life you deserve.
Find Out More
Click here find out more about the results, people just like you, are getting with The Lean Life Method. And if you feel like my personal 1:1 coaching could be just what you're looking for, schedule a free consultation call, or just hit me up on email for a chat about coaching.
So, if you're even the slightest bit interested, click here for more information.
But for now, all I’ll say is, thanks so much for reading, keep living the Lean Life. And I’ll see you soon.