Feeling healthy and energized is key to a sales professional’s success. Bill Karalash wanted to feel healthier every day, but was confused by all the conflicting diet and exercise advice he was hearing. So he dug in, got himself certified as a personal trainer and sports nutrition specialist, and developed a course that cuts the BS and helps people understand how to lose fat and feel healthier. George talks with Bill Karalash, a sales-trainer-turned-fitness-trainer from Maverick Strength and Fitness, who shares his practical system that George has been using to be more healthy and feel like a rock star at 4AM.
Fat Loss Pyramid
In this episode, Bill goes step-by-step through each of the 5-layers of the Fat Loss Pyramid, and explains his straightforward system for losing fat that George has been using the past year. He’s agreed to share it with our listeners! Download here:
Well, coming up on this week’s episode of the “Conquer Local Podcast,” we are gonna get physical. We’re bringing in my personal trainer. His name’s Bill Karalash. He runs Maverick Strength and Fitness, and we’re gonna get Bill to talk about this amazing pyramid that he’s built, the things that you should be doing first if you want to improve your lifestyle. The other thing that we’re gonna talk about that I find really interesting is that you’re making an investment in your body and how much time do you have and where do you want to invest. We’re gonna take a look at that as well and Bill happens to be a legacy sales trainer in the car space, so we’re gonna get some of his take on what salespeople need to be doing to be successful in 2018. It’s all coming up, Bill Karalash, Maverick Strength and Fitness on this week’s “Conquer Local Podcast.”
From Salesperson to Personal Trainer
Peak performance, that is our topic today on the “Conquer Local Podcast.” Bill Karalash is on the line. Bill is the principal of Maverick Strength and Fitness and my personal trainer, and I thought what better way to help out salespeople out there than to bring on a guy that I’ve worked with over the past couple of years. It’s really helped me in coming up with the right exercise regime, the right nutrition regime. I’d love to say that I follow it all the time, but I don’t. But Bill, thanks for coming on the podcast today and let me twist your rubber arm to get you on the show.
Bill: Yeah, no problem. Thanks for having me. I really appreciate it. We’re gonna have some fun today.
George: So let’s…you know, the other thing that I think people should know is that you are a salesman and you’re a sales manager and you’re a sales trainer. And you started to get into that. Let’s talk a little bit about your career and how you ended up becoming a personal trainer.
Bill: I’ve hired personal trainers. I never really found the right fit for me. I never really understood, you know, the hows and whys of nutrition. I usually had a pretty good gym routine, but I wasn’t really getting as lean as I wanted to. So I went and did it by myself. I got certified as a personal trainer, I got certified as a sports nutrition specialist because I needed to know. I needed to crack the code. I needed to figure it out. And as I was going through this process, I kinda documented it on Instagram, people started reaching out to me and asking me to coach them. So I got my credentials, I started coaching people, and in my first year, I coached over 100 people on…mainly for fat loss. And a lot of the things that you see in here in the media just aren’t true or they’re true if you have a couple of things that they don’t mention in context, which is a huge pet peeve of mine is they don’t really dig deep, they just go for the click bait, so to speak. And people get…it can be really confusing in what to do. So, hopefully that answers the question of my journey, I’m still involved in sales and gives you an intro on how and why I got involved in personal training.
George: Yeah and I think that that might have been…you know, you and I had known each other before you really jumped in to the personal training side, but we really connected because you understood how to connect with me being, you know, it’s pretty obvious that I’m a sales guy. I actually got accused of being…somebody said the other day that, “Oh, yeah, that George, he’s pretty salesy.” I’m like, “Yeah, damn right ,I am.”
Bill: Took it as a complement.
George: It is a complement. But let’s talk about the personal training side because…and we’ll get to the sales coaching piece in a minute, but I wanna talk about the personal training side because I’m a big believer that if you are not feeling good about yourself and about how you’re feeling physically, how can you ever present yourself in a positive manner in front of clients all day long. I think it’s really closely linked.
Bill: It is closely linked and I think you really hit the hammer on that there and that’s confidence and a big part of that is just feeling good, feeling good or having a great body image, the way you see yourself. It doesn’t necessarily have to be the way others see you, but the way you see yourself even when you look in the mirror, but having that positive aura about you and having that self-confidence. And that starts with nutrition and starts with fitness, but that oozes out into everything else and especially with sales. If you’re presenting a deal to somebody, if you’re lacking confidence, like, you know the difference in your words and the way you put them together that if you’re presenting a deal that you’re not confident about, like, “Well, here’s our option, maybe you’d like it, maybe you wouldn’t. What do you think?” Well, of course, they’re not gonna take it, but if you’re confident within yourself and you’re like, “You know what, I’ve gathered all the information and I think option A or B are the best two for you. Which one would you like to go with?”
But that can start with just feeling good and by getting into the routines and I imagine, we’ll elaborate more on all this stuff, but I’m glad you mentioned confidence right off the bat.
Cardio and the Workout Return-on-Investment
George: So Bill, you made the track out to Vancouver a number of years ago, probably one of the most beautiful cities in the world. I’d like to see somebody argue me on that one that’s ever been…it’s amazing. And I know that you’re loving it because it really fits with your lifestyle where you can get out of the house and you can go walk through the parks and, you know, I wonder if people would see Bill Karalash personal trainer doing hours upon hours of cardio.
Bill: Actually, I wouldn’t and not because I’m necessarily anti-cardio, but it doesn’t fit with my goals. So, a lot of professionals and salespeople, they think that cardio is gonna have them lose a bunch of fat right away and it might for the first week or two. But what happens is, is they end up either eating less or they’re only exchanging for say that hour or two of cardio. So if you have 24 hours in a day and you’re doing cardio for one or two hours, you’re basically trading. You’re trading calories for that one or two hours, whereas if you’d lift weights, you’re doing resistance training, you’re building muscles for that, let’s say, an hour a day, well, that goes to work for you. Your muscles are going to work for you and burning fat when you’re not working out. So that works for you the other 23 hours of the day.
So if you had to pick which one you’re doing for fat loss, and the reason I’m bringing up fat loss is because North America is getting really obese and most people aren’t looking to gain weight, like, I’ve had one customer in the last year that’s looking to gain weight. Everybody else is looking to cut fat and what’s the best way to do that? Well, if your nutrition’s in order, focusing on resistance training, weight lifting, if you can get to the gym. If not, like, your body’s weight, start using it.
George: Well, I think…I’m glad that you brought that up because I noticed on your Instagram account the other day that you had about nine different exercises that I could do and I don’t ever have to walk into a gym. So spending a lot of time in hotel rooms, I found that your program’s been very effective for me to continue the gains. And, you know, I was on the road here last couple of weeks, I ran into some people I haven’t seen in a year and there is nothing better than someone saying to you after a year of them not seeing you, “Wow, what have you been doing? You’ve changed your body” Like, I’m telling you, that is a huge rush when you hear that and I haven’t been doing a lot of cardio because I’ve been listening to you about doing resistance training. And well, and I had my hips replaced so I wasn’t able to do a lot of cardio, but, you know, it was music to my ears because I’m just so bloody bored when I’m doing it and I’m able to do resistance training and I’m getting way better gains than I was getting doing hours of cardio before.
Bill: No doubt about it, yeah, it’s like I mentioned before, if you think of it as like investing your money, you’re told to invest your money, well, that’s the same thing as resistance training. You’re investing for the future, you’re gonna have bigger gains. And if you’re just trading time for money, then, like, you only have so much time in a day so you can only really make that for that amount of time, where if you can invest, like I said, it’s a good metaphor and analogy to use is that, you’re really investing in yourself when you’re doing resistance training.
The Fat Loss Pyramid: 1. Adherence
George: Let’s talk about the pyramid and I know you released the…tell me when you released the pyramid first and then let’s get in to what it is. When did you come up with the pyramid?
Bill: I’ve been working on it for over a year and experimenting with it, looking through the evidence that just came out for studies. But I came out with a pyramid that says, “Hey, step one, like, lifestyle and adherence.” There’s so many different diets out there, find one that works for you. But keep it in the context of being able to stick with it long term. You see all these cleanses, detoxes, juices, all of these things where or I’ll hear people tell me, “Yeah, I’m gonna go on this thing for the next seven days and I’m gonna lose 15 pounds,” and then what are you gonna do after that? Like, you did that for 15 days, like, what’s the expectation after? Like, you think it will just magically somehow stay off? Probably not. Like, you’re not really changing the habit. You’re just manipulating something for two weeks. So that’s what I mean by a lifestyle, something that you can stick to and chip away.
2. Calorie Deficit (The Math Formula)
Next part of the pyramid is making sure you’re in an energy deficit or surplus, I guess, depending on what your goal is, but most people are…wanna cut fat.
George: We’re gonna post the pyramid on the podcast so that people can download it and see it, but I wanna just get to that. It is only a math equation. You need to be burning more calories than you’re putting in, very simple. If you do not do that, if you are not calorie-deficient, you will not lose fat. So I just wanted to hit the nail on the head on that one because I think that was…it took me a while. I’m from Rosetown, Saskatchewan, Canada and I’m not the smartest guy out there, so that really had to sink in that, you know, if you…it’s just math. If the calories add up at the end of the week and you’ve put more in than you’ve burnt off, no wonder you didn’t lose any weight, George. So, you know, it seems like a very simple thing. Obviously, it’s not because we wouldn’t be facing the obesity epidemic that we’re facing in North America if people actually got it.
Bill: Exactly. And I think that’s in the couple of parts, advertisers are really good at advertising and selling things as something that’s healthy. But I bring that back to the context. Is it healthy? Yes, if you’re in a calorie deficit, if you’re looking to lose fat. Yes, then that’s a healthy option for you. But it’s not a healthy option for you if it puts you in a surplus. So let’s frame it back to the context of what your goal is and what you’re trying to do. So, too often, people say, “I’m on this really healthy diet. I’m eating all these whole foods,” but you’re eating too many of them. It’s great that you’re eating all these foods and you’ve made that transition, but if you’re still eating too much, it doesn’t matter.
George: Yeah, portion size is a really important piece. Let’s move on to the next piece of the pyramid.
3. Macronutrient Profile
Bill: So the next piece of the pyramid is the macronutrient profile and the main thing that you’re gonna wanna focus on with that is protein. After that, your carbohydrates and your fats can…evidence has shown that it doesn’t really matter that much how those two divide out as long as you’re still in the energy deficit. But what protein does is it really helps you build muscle. It helps with muscle protein synthesis and it doesn’t allow any spare muscle, I guess, to be lost in that energy deficit. Or I should say it allows less muscle to be lost. Now, everybody has a different reference and a starting point for their nutrition and exercise. For instance, somebody who hasn’t ever lifted weights before has a massive advantage over people who have been lifting weights for 10 years.
So if you’re just getting started, it’s the best time to get started because you can actually lose fat and put on muscle, where somebody who’s been at the gym hard for 10 years and really lifted a lot of weights, there’s a good chance that because they’re in that energy deficit, they are gonna eat away at some of that muscle.
George: So it’s interesting what you said there is as long as you get in the protein level at the macros that you’ve decided are important and it’s good to work with the nutritionist. I found that working with you on really figuring out what those numbers were to be was important. But, you know, the carbs and the fat really aren’t a big deal as long as you’re in a deficit.
Bill: That’s right. And whatever feels better for you, like, if you don’t like eating lots of carbs, then don’t eat lots. If you don’t like eating lots of fat, then don’t eat lots. I think too often we set up these rules on our own minds where we have to be so stringent. Maybe we do off to start just to get ourselves in the routine and the habit to understand where we need to go. But at the end of it, if we just chip away at it and one bad day isn’t gonna make you gain a bunch of weight just like one good day isn’t gonna help you lose a bunch of weight. It’s about straining together a good week, month, year.
George: Right, that’s really…and I want you to…if we could just hit on that for a minute because, you know, let’s say that you do go out with the client and you do maybe have the baked steak or you maybe have the baked potato.
Bill: The question I get asked most about is, what about…can I drink? Yes, if you’re in an energy deficit, you can drink. It’s easy to go over because it’s easy to consume so many calories when drinking alcohol because it’s such a social thing when you’re involved in just a business gathering or going out for a beer after work. I know you guys, I don’t know if you’re still doing it, but you had ideas on tap.
George: Well, we have been known to have the odd idea while there is a tap in the room. That is true. Producer Josh is here and he’s asked me to ask you a question, what if you just feel like eating all the time?
Bill: Yeah, and a lot of people do, but knowing that you’re in that energy deficit and you can eat all the time, you might just have to make different choices. And that’s why I think that listening to your body is a bunch of BS until you’ve either tracked what you’ve ate for a while and understood what it means to be in an energy deficit and having the right macronutrient profile for you, and you’ve done that for an extended period of time. Because for me, personally, I’ve tracked on and off for years now. And if I only listen to my body, I’d probably weigh 400 pounds. It’s telling me to eat constantly. So be aware, like, when people say, “Oh, I only eat intuitively. I only…” Well, again, add the context to that. How did you get there?
George: Yeah, I did that for the first 40 years of my life and it didn’t really serve me all that well, listening to my body because my body said, “Let’s eat pizza and macaroni and cheese.” Let’s move on to the next piece of the pyramid.
4. Resistance Training
Bill: The next piece is resistance training. So making sure that you’re adding in your resistance training and that’s the main part of it. If you have that, you’re adding muscle. To lose over a weight, I guess let’s talk about the difference between weight loss and fat loss. The difference between weight loss is, weight loss, you’re losing muscle and fat. With fat loss, if you add in resistance training, your body is more likely to only lose fat, which is what you’d prefer because the more muscle you have, the more energy it takes to sustain your muscle mass, so that means you’re burning more calories.
George: Yeah, and, you know, I wanted to talk about that because there’s this thing that’s driving me nuts right now. I’m trying to get under 200 pounds because there’s this body mass index, the BMI scale and it says that I’m…I need to be at 180 pounds for my height. Let’s talk about BMI, what’s your take on it?
Bill: I think it’s a tool in the toolbox just like a weight scale, just like everything else. But if you want it to be more accurate, I’d go with body composition. So get your body fat percentage, find out what that should be for your age, height. And that would be something that I’d follow. That’s what I follow. It’s far more accurate. My BMI, I’m obese and I’m not even close to being obese by body fat percentage. There’s just a lot of…like I said, it’s a tool in the toolbox. It can get you there, but if you know your body fat percentage, that’s far more accurate and it can keep you on task for understanding if your muscle’s growing versus if you’re just growing muscle and fat. Like, there’s a difference.
George: So, Bill, give us the last piece of the pyramid.
Bill: So it’s some cardio. It’s okay to add cardio in, like, going for walks, hikes. Some people like to run and that’s okay, too. But remember, again with the pyramid, it’s a fat loss pyramid so if you’re looking to lose fat, it will be the last thing on there. But probably the best bang for your buck is to do some high intensity interval training which is just as easy as doing some sprints for 10, 15 minutes at the gym or outside, wherever, but it’s not necessary as long as you have the other places of the pyramid in place. That was a mouthful. You don’t necessarily need it, but it can start to accelerate stuff, but again, one thing that I really want to speak to your audience is to focus on one thing at a time. So if you can find the right program that works for you, if you can get the right calorie deficit, work on those in order. Don’t change everything in your life all at once. It can become overwhelming. Do one thing at a time.
Advice for a new salesperson
George: I know that you’ve worked with a lot of salespeople over the years as well and I know you’re still working with salespeople. So, you know, this is a podcast about helping salespeople become sales professionals. So I got to ask you this, you work with a lot of millenials as well. If you were to sit down across the table from a brand new salesperson and give them some advice, what would be the first couple of pieces of advice be?
Bill: Don’t get caught up in the weeds or small stuff or what other people say, just go ahead and do it. Nothing’s ever gonna be perfect. The worst thing you can do is not take action. You’re gonna learn by making mistakes and that’s okay. You can make thousands of them, fail every day, fail all the time, but fail by doing, don’t fail by just sitting there and doing nothing.
George: Sales really is baptism by fire. I can put you through all the training in the world, but until you’re out there and you’re doing it, that’s where it really starts to sink in.
Bill: I’m a firm believer in taking massive action. So, if you’re a new salesperson and you’re just getting started, don’t be scared to fail. Make those customer calls, but get on it right away and do as many of them as you can. The other part that I see and general, like, where most salespeople fail is their pipeline isn’t full. So they’ll spend…they don’t spend enough time actively prospecting, doing business development, going out there and getting new customers. They might have a huge influx at some point because they put all this work in right off the bat and then they sit back and they give themselves a pat on the back, and they should, but then they just wait. Don’t wait. Get out there, keep hammering the phones, text, like, whatever it is in your industry that you do. Make sure you’re aggressively always filling that pipeline full of customers.
George: Yeah, I had a guy tell me something a long time ago that it always stuck with me, he said, “Moving salesperson attracts business, and the worst thing you can do is just sit there and wait for it to come in.” And I don’t even think that that’s just for sales, I think that’s for business people in general. The business owner that’s just sitting there, waiting for somebody to magically come through their door and spend money with them or book them for a consultation or whatever they might be doing. They’re not taking some sort of action to be out there in the marketplace making people aware. It’s just not gonna work out for them especially in today’s age.
Feeling good = performing well
Well, Bill, we really appreciate you jumping on the line with us today. I’ve wanted to do this one since we started the podcast because I really believe that if you’re gonna have success in today’s day and age, being fit and feeling good, and again, it’s not about the picture, and it’s not about the six-pack, and it’s not about that. It’s just about when you wake up in the morning, do you feel fantastic and you wanna attack the day or do you feel like, “I shouldn’t have eaten 4,000 calories at dinner last night and feel like a bag of you know what.” So I really appreciate you having on the show. Can we just get your…if people wanna get in touch with you and speak with you and your organization, how do we go about doing that? What’s the best channel?
Bill: Best channel is Facebook or you can reach me on my website at maverickstrengthandfitness.com. Those are the best two channels to reach me out. You can message me on my Facebook page or yeah, send me an email.
George: Great and your Instagram, let’s get your Instagram on there because it’s great.
Bill: @maverickstrengthandfitness once again on Instagram.
George: Bill Karalash, Maverick Strength and Fitness. We really appreciate having you on the show this week and we’re gonna put all of your credentials online so that people can get it through the episode recap. And thanks for joining us and thanks for helping our reps that are out there listening to the show, “Conquer Local.”
Bill: Yeah, thanks so much for having me, really appreciate it. Excited to be on the show. I hope your audience got a lot of value out of this.
We really appreciate Bill being on the show this week and I will tell you from personal experience, I’ve got about 25 pounds of fat that I do not have on my body anymore because I just followed some of his basic things. But I do wanna throw out this caveat, it didn’t happen overnight and the line to being successful when it comes to working on your body and working on your nutrition and working on feeling better is definitely not a straight line. There were many failures in there. There were many times where I didn’t feel good about myself because I wasn’t moving towards that goal. But being focused on the goal and having somebody like that as your personal trainer that you can just be straight with and say, “You know, I didn’t have a good week,” and they can help get you back on track. I found that to be very, very powerful.
But I also have to use this that I wouldn’t be where I am without Nancy, my partner, you know, she really keeps me on track and she reminds me of what that goal is. So it’s important to keep sight of the goal, but then to have an asset like a Bill Karalash or somebody that’s helping you with your nutrition that can give you some really good advice and then expect that it’s not gonna be that easy, straight line because there’s nothing about it that’s easy. That’s this week’s edition of the “Conquer Local Podcast.” It’s definitely something that I’m super passionate about. You will perform better in your career if you feel better from a physical standpoint. My name’s George Leith. I’ll see you when I see you.