Running Coach Stewart Skloss Discusses His Recipe for Success in Client Management

Stewart Skloss, hailing from Austin, Texas, is a dedicated physical trainer driven by an unwavering passion for running and fitness. Throughout his career, he has tirelessly imparted his expertise and wisdom, empowering numerous clients on their transformative health journeys. Beyond the realm of achieving records, Stewart's coaching philosophy centers on aiding individuals in unearthing their inner resilience, surmounting obstacles, and embracing a sustainable, enjoyable fitness lifestyle.

Though Stewart has long retired from competitive racing, his influence within the running community continues to resonate. Leading participants in marathons, ultramarathons, triathlons, ironman competitions, trail races, and even recreational fun runs actively seek his guidance to elevate their performance and redefine their limits. Extending his mentorship beyond seasoned athletes, Skloss welcomes newcomers, encouraging them to embrace the pleasure of running and physical activity, regardless of their fitness starting point.

At the heart of his coaching lies humility, enabling Stewart to forge profound connections with each client. He attentively listens to their objectives, concerns, and aspirations, crafting tailored training programs that align with their distinctive needs. His authentic desire to witness others flourish, combined with his positive and encouraging demeanor, fosters an environment that nurtures and empowers all he guides. Stewart Skloss remains an influential figure within the fitness community, and those who train alongside him bear witness to the profound impact of his coaching.

Grit Daily: Can you tell us what brought you to your specific career path?

Skloss: My journey into the world of fitness and coaching began as a personal challenge that transformed into a lifelong passion. Years ago, I found myself struggling with my own health and fitness, feeling disconnected from my body and lacking energy.

One day, I made the decision to step out of my comfort zone. I started running. The transformation I experienced was remarkable – not just physically, but mentally and emotionally as well. This newfound sense of vitality ignited a desire within me to help others experience the same transformative power of fitness.

Grit Daily: Would you be able to share a story about a mistake you made when you were first started? What did you learn from that?

When I first started my coaching career, I was so enthusiastic about pushing my clients to achieve their goals that I sometimes overlooked the importance of individualized approaches. I remember one instance where I set up an intense training regimen for a beginner without considering their fitness level.

The result was exhaustion and demotivation on their part. This humbling experience taught me the vital lesson of tailoring programs to each individual's needs and capabilities. It's not just about achieving goals, but about creating sustainable, enjoyable fitness journeys.

Grit Daily: What makes you stand out from other physical trainers?

Skloss: What sets me apart as a physical trainer is my holistic approach to coaching. I believe in going beyond numbers and records. I focus on helping individuals discover their inner strength, overcome obstacles, and embrace a sustainable, enjoyable fitness lifestyle.

My coaching is about creating a nurturing and empowering environment where everyone, from top athletes to newcomers, feels valued and supported in their fitness journey.

Grit Daily: Is there a particular someone who helped get you to where you are? Tell us about a mentor you may have had in the past and how it impacted you.

Skloss: Early in my career, I had the privilege of being mentored by an experienced coach who emphasized the importance of empathy and listening. This mentor helped me realize that understanding my clients' goals, fears, and aspirations is essential for effective coaching.

Their guidance shaped my coaching philosophy, making it centered around forming meaningful connections with each client. This approach has not only enhanced my coaching skills but also enriched the lives of those I work with.

Grit Daily: What do you enjoy most about helping your clients?

Skloss: The most rewarding aspect of coaching is witnessing the transformation my clients undergo – not only in their physical abilities but also in their self-confidence and outlook on life.

Seeing them overcome challenges and accomplish milestones they once thought were impossible is truly inspiring. The joy and sense of accomplishment they experience are infectious and serve as a reminder of the profound impact coaching can have on individuals.

Grit Daily: Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues to help them to thrive?

Skloss: To my colleagues, I would emphasize the importance of constant learning and adaptability. The fitness industry is constantly evolving, and staying updated with the latest research and trends is crucial. Additionally, I would encourage them to cultivate strong interpersonal skills. Building genuine connections with clients and understanding their unique needs can make all the difference in helping them achieve their goals.

Grit Daily: Do you have a favorite quote? Tell our audience how that ended up being relevant to you in your life?

Skloss: One of my favorite quotes is, "The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step."

This quote became incredibly relevant during my initial struggles with fitness. Starting my journey seemed daunting, but taking that first step led to a series of positive changes that transformed my life. This philosophy resonates in my coaching as well, as I encourage my clients to embrace small, consistent steps that ultimately lead to remarkable transformations.

Grit Daily: Can you give me 5 things you wish someone told you before you got started?

Skloss: That’s a tough one. I would have to say it’s about personalization, listening, the approach, adaptability, and finally, celebrating small wins. So, to break that down:

  1. Personalization Matters: Tailoring programs to individual needs is paramount for success and sustainability.
  2. Listen Intently: Understanding clients on a deeper level fosters trust and empowers effective coaching.
  3. Holistic Approach: It's not just about physical training; mental and emotional support are equally important.
  4. Adaptability: The fitness landscape evolves, so staying open to new approaches is essential.
  5. Celebrate Small Wins: Recognizing and celebrating incremental progress keeps motivation high.

Grit Daily: Describe the best day you’ve ever had.

Skloss: The best day I've ever had was when I had the privilege of accompanying one of my clients to their first-ever marathon. Witnessing their journey from a fitness newcomer to crossing the finish line of a marathon was incredibly emotional and fulfilling. The sense of accomplishment, not just for them but also for me as a coach, was immeasurable.

Grit Daily: How do you keep yourself motivated?

Skloss: I stay motivated by setting personal fitness goals and embracing challenges outside my comfort zone. Additionally, the joy I derive from helping clients achieve their own goals and witnessing their transformations serves as a continuous source of inspiration.

Grit Daily: What was your biggest "aha!" moment?

Skloss: My biggest "aha!" moment was realizing that the pursuit of fitness isn't just about achieving physical milestones. It's about the holistic journey of self-discovery, personal growth, and empowerment. This realization shaped my coaching philosophy, emphasizing the transformative power of fitness on both the body and the mind.