How To Get Your First PRO Athlete | IMPACT Q&A

In this episode of IMPACT Q&A, Todd answers two great questions:

  1. “What were your thoughts when you got your first professional client?”
  2. “If you were to write an acknowledgment for your life, who would you acknowledge, or what would you attribute, in helping you to get where you are today?”

Todd shares the story of training, now Hall-of-Fame athlete, LaDainian Tomlinson. He dives deep into the people who have shaped him into the man he is today. Todd goes beyond the physical aspect of training athletes and dives into the key attributes that leaders must have: instilling belief in those around you… and caring more than anyone else. Todd also dives beyond what he’s done right and shares how sometimes it’s ultimately the mistakes we make in business and life that shape and impact who we are today.

More on this episode:

Cam Angus of The Grind Gym in Andersonville, Tennessee asks a great question:  “What were your thoughts when you got your first professional client?” 

Oh man. What weren’t my thoughts?

Cam presents us with a GREAT question as getting to train our first professional athletes is a huge moment as a coach and trainer… one that we can feel a lot of pressure about, cause us to worry, and have us wondering, “Am I doing this right?!

I had a blast answering Cam’s question in this podcast episode because anyone who has had the opportunity to train the pros (or aspires to!) can relate. To be honest with you, I felt all of those things. I was scared and nervous when I started working with my first athlete, LaDainian Tomlinson.

LT was the first-round draft pick for San Diego Chargers in the early 2000s and when he approached me and said “Hey Todd, I want to come in and take my game to the next level”, I thought…
”What the heck am I going to do to help this guy? He’s already all-world.” 

Well, let me just tell you that my thoughts couldn’t have been further than the truth. I did possess gifts, skills, and knowledge as a coach that he needed. And what I found was that my ability to have an impact on LT went beyond his physical training (which I assure you, we dominated). To my suprise, the impact I was able to have on him was also in the way I, as his coach, inspired & motivated him to believe in himself… it was in my ability to care more than any other coach was willing to care about him- in all aspects of his life.

If you are a coach or trainer who has the opportunity to work with professional athletes or is aspiring to… I am excited for you to listen in on this Q & A. I will dive deep into the art of leadership that must accompany the physical routine of your pro athletes (and anyone you work with for that matter), and I will debunk all of that stinkin’ thinkin’ that tells you that you don’t have something to offer your athlete. Because I can assure you… YOU DO!

In the second half of this episode, Linde Sifuentes from Rochester, Minnesota asks: “Every book has an acknowledgment at the beginning. If you were to write an acknowledgment for your life, who or what would you acknowledge for where you are at today?” 

Man, I love this question. The simple & immediate answer? My family. My Dad, bless his soul as we lost him in 1992, and my Mom who’s 85 years young and thriving in Orlando, Florida are two of the biggest influential people in my life. Much of what I learned from them, I make sure to pass on to my own kids, today.

I also have seven brothers and sisters who are a huge factor in shaping who I am today.  

And then of course, without question, my immediate family. Which includes my wife Melanie and my kids Luke, Brady, and McKenna.

This is a fun question as I got to dive deep into the ways in which where and who I have come from have impacted who I am today. I also dive into all the mentors that have contributed to the growth of my mindset, business acumen, spiritual self, and life over the years. Some of these amazing mentors include Wayne Cotton, Pastor David Jeremiah, and Pastor Miles McPherson.

Between my upbringing, the mentors who have molded me, and my team at Fitness Quest 10 who share and embrace every up, down, mistake, failure, success, and celebration with me every day at the gym… I’d say the forward of the book Linde asks me to reference would be full of amazing people that leave me full of gratitude. 

Tune in to the podcast to hear just how important it is to surround yourself with the right kind of people in life. 

Make sure they are the type of people that are pouring into you and making you BETTER. Who you become depends on it!

This episode is sponsored by the Todd Durkin Mastermind,

Connect with Todd online in the following places:

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About the Author

Todd Durkin, MA, is a world-renown trainer, coach, author and motivational keynote speaker who trains dozens of elite, high-profile NFL, MLB, and MMA athletes, including two Super Bowl MVPs, one NFL League MVP, Olympic gold medalists, Heisman Trophy winners, and MMA champions. Todd is a 2-Time Trainer of the Year, the 2017 Jack LaLanne Award recipient, the 2018 Canfitpro International Presenter of the Year, a member of the Under Armour Training Team, and a Top-100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness.

Todd was a featured trainer on the popular TV show, NBC STRONG, which is now airing on Netflix. His award-winning gym, Fitness Quest 10 in San Diego, CA, is a Top-10 Gym in America, and his 3 best-selling books, Get Your Mind Right, The WOW BOOK, and The IMPACT Body Plan, have both changed thousands of people’s lives. If you would like to get motivated and inspired now, you can pick these books up at, or if you would like a signed copy, please purchase at
TD Mastermind Coaching Program for Trainers & Fit-Pros

If you are a trainer, coach, or fitness pro, you need to check out Todd’s Mastermind Coaching Program. It is designed to help you create excellence in your business & life. It consists of 2-live retreats per year, monthly coaching, access to Todd and his team of coaches, select and unique opportunities within Todd’s network, weekly motivation, and a whole lot more. This is all primarily virtual so you can be located anywhere around the globe and you can join at any time.

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IMPACT Show Podcast

Todd hosts the very successful, Todd Durkin IMPACT Show. This podcast exists for the purpose of motivating and inspiring people to live their best life, get their mind right, get their body right, and get their soul right. Check it out and subscribe today at We also have a part of the podcast where we take your Q&A, so please send us your questions through the weblink.

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