Getting To Know One Of Las Vegas’ Best Personal Fitness Trainers, Tony Cress
Being a personal trainer is hard as I could only imagine. Especially in Las Vegas. It was tough to fit this interview into his crazy schedule, but since Tony Cress is one of the best personal trainers in Las Vegas and a personal friend of mine for quite some time, I had to catch an interview to learn more about his industry and where he comes from.
1. Where are you originally from?
A little town called Coralville, Iowa, but currently reside in Las Vegas, NV.
2. What do you do for a living?
I own and operate Tony Cress Personal Training, a personal training and TRX studio in Las Vegas
3. What inspires you to be healthy?
I just love what a crazy machine the human body is. You treat it great, it treats you great. I love exploring how much potential we can achieve given we fuel ourselves with the right materials.
4. Do you feel owning a personal training business in Las Vegas is easier than if you would be in other cities considering a lot of people are health conscious here?
I think it goes both ways. Owning my studio here has it’s benefits, because this is a pretty large city, which is also pretty image based. At the same time, there are challenges because of the city we live in, with the “sin” and whatnot 🙂
5. Did you go to school or get certified to start training other people?
I got certified as a personal trainer when I was 18, but I went to school for three years. I was afforded the opportunity to open my first fitness center my junior year in college, so I jumped at the chance.
6. I would imagine the lifestyle of being healthy could ultimately be hard to maintain for a lot of people in Vegas considering most people work in the fast past lifestyle Las Vegas known for. Do you find it hard to keep people motivated because of this?
A lot of my clients are in the nightlife industry, so yes, excuses run rampant, and it’s very hard to train someone at 11am when they were out until 6am that very same morning. With all the gatherings, birthdays, and parties that happen here, a lot of people find it hard to stay on the straight and narrow, but you have to constantly remind people of what they came to see you for anyway.
7. What is the absolute best thing to eat for someone to want to lose weight? Example: are you a fan of vegetable juicing? It’s a great weight loss program.
I don’t think there is one perfect way to lose weight. A little exercise here, a little nutrition there. Juicing is great, and I think you should implement it WITHIN your nutrition program, but not use it as a sole means to lose weight. Eating REAL food, as well as juicing helps. Avoid refined sugars, and processed foods, and you should be on the right path.
8. What are some health tips you’d give someone with little to no time in their day?
5,15, or 20 minutes a day of intense exercise is better than zero minutes a day. Doesn’t matter if it’s a commercial break during your favorite TV show, or while you are waiting for a client to show up for a meeting. Most people don’t realize how much time they actually have when they REALLY break down their day to the minute.
9. Is the fitness trainer market saturated or do you find yourself with little to no completion to get business in Vegas?
There are over 2 million people here in Las Vegas. It’s our job as fitness professionals to convince and help make that population realize how important their health is. I think there is PLENTY of population to go around, no matter how many gyms, or trainers pop up.
10. How many times a day/week do you work out?
I try to do something every day. Even if by the end of the day, the last thing I want to do is work out, I do SOMETHING. I may spend 5 or ten minutes on our battling ropes, or do a TRX circuit, but I try to do a little of something every day. With that being said, I like to give my body a rest every now and then too. I would say I get about 3 “traditional” workouts in a week.
11. Many say you have the nicest abs in all of Las Vegas. What do you do to get those perfect abs and what tips would you give someone to reach that goal to look like that?
Surely there are people with better abs than a 35 year old dude here in Las Vegas! I do though, know what works for me. Through just working out, and closely monitoring my body, I know what foods will make me gain weight, I know what workouts I need to do to stay lean, so I stay with the things that work for me. Figure out what works for your body, without saying, “lifting makes me bulky” or “carbs make me fat”. That’s not true. Cake makes you fat.
12. You also dance in a male revue show. Can you tell me about that and what is it like performing in Vegas?
I no longer am a permanent part of American Storm, but I could not thank being a part of the show enough. It allowed me to meet many amazing people, as well as gave me some fun experiences I’ll never forget, friends I never would have made, and opportunities I would have never had.
13. Tell us what it’s like to dance in a male revue. Are girls turned on by this when you meet them or are they intimidated and not take you serious?
This is two sided as well. Some women just fall all over it because you are part of a show, and others think you are an idiot, with no talents other than your body. While some people live up to that stereotype, I’d like to think I differ from that.
14. What do you think you’ve done different from others to be as successful as you are in the world of fitness in Vegas?
I think part of what puts me on this end of the fitness spectrum is that I know I’m never going to be perfect, but I strive to get there. I’m always reading a new book, or doing new research on topics in the fitness industry. I’m always looking for how to make the body better, and how to make myself better. I have a goal, of being 2% better every week. It’s a small goal, and very attainable, but if you do it every week, you’ll be twice as good by the end of the year!
15. You have been single all the years I’ve known you. Do you find it hard to find a woman to take serious in Vegas? You’re a good looking guy, why are you single?
I don’t know if it’s a matter of women taking me serious more than it’s a matter of my passion for what I do. I’ve dated, and it all comes down to I don’t have enough time to make a relationship work right now. My main focus is Tony Cress Personal Training, and no one wants to not be the priority in life, so I think that upsets people when they make a connection with me.
16. What makes your fitness business different from other trainers? When someone is shopping for a trainer, what do you offer that attracts a customer to use you?
I think we all have different positive benefits as trainers. I have a few other trainers that train out of TCPT, and the dynamic range of us is what makes it work. I’m not your super cheerful, “go on girl!” type of trainer. I’m much more subdued, but we have a trainer, Gaylynn, who is exactly that, and she works for those people looking for that. I just bring the knowledge that I have, and try to give it to each one of my clients in a way that will help them. I tell them it’s up to them to change, and I can only help with that change. When it all comes down to it, I’m just one of the vehicles people use to institute change within themselves.
17. Are you friends with other fitness trainers? Is there a bond/community of you guys that hang out or do you just know of each other and say hi when you run into them? Is there a competitive side in the personal fitness world?
I believe there is competiteveness where there doesn’t need to be. There are some good trainers out here in Las Vegas. Stacy Alexander, Marc Coronel, Justin Rayner, Denny Silva, and on and on. I love all of those guys. I’ll say hello and talk a little with all of them. As for the competetive side of it, I try not to mess with it, but when you have a bunch of people who take pride in their bodies, egos get involved, and I just try to stay out of it, and train the people who believe in what I do.
18. Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
In five years, I think I’ll have at least one other studio in Las Vegas, on the Summerlin side of town, as well as maybe one in Los Angeles and I’m looking to expand into Denver as well.
19. What keeps you motivated in life?
In life, I just want to keep getting better. That’s all. I know ther is no “top” that you can stay on and rest on your laurels. I know I can always learn more. That in itself keeps me motivated.
20. What are 3 fun things people don’t know about you?
I’m obsessed with Audible.com. I love listening to audiobooks. I have a fruit and veggie half sleeve tattoo. I actually love karaoke singing.
21. What advice would you give people looking to become a personal trainer?
The one thing I tell people who are interested in this profession, is that if your passion isn’t helping people, this job isn’t for you. If you think you should make money because you love working out, go be a fitness model. This job isn’t about that. It’s about getting other people to enjoy life, and get the most out of theirs, not yours.