38-year-old Henry Torano has been all about fitness for more than 20 years.
“I basically trained myself since I was a teenager. I was always playing around with different things I read and learned,” said Torano, the owner of Aggressive Fitness in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
In 2012, he opened a CrossFit facility, but something didn’t sit right with him, he explained.
“I started to wonder things like, ‘How am I going to get better at handstand push-ups when I only work on them once every three weeks?’ That was a real-life struggle for me,” he laughed. “But heaven forbid you periodize anything. It just didn’t make sense to me,” he added.
Then Torano heard about an athlete camp OPEX founder James FitzGerald was hosting in Cincinnati in 2012. He packed his bags and flew there.
“It blew my mind. Everything that was talked about at the camp was everything I was asking myself as an athlete and a coach at the time,”Henry Torano
“It blew my mind. Everything that was talked about at the camp was everything I was asking myself as an athlete and a coach at the time,” he said.
After that weekend, Torano knew he needed to learn as much as he could from OPEX.
“I was like, ‘Here, take my money. Where do I go?” Torano said of how he started signing up for any and all of the OPEX courses he possibly could.
“I think I went to Arizona three times the next year to do all the live courses. I learned so much,” he said.
Fast forward, another year, and Torano’s involvement with OPEX grew even further when he became involved with OPEX Remote Coaching, which is now the Big Dawgs.
Today, Torano works with more than 70 remote Big Dawgs clients and also runs his own gym in Puerto Rico, where he has seven other coaches working for him. Since moving away from being a CrossFit affiliate, more and more of his 200 clients—close to 115 of them—have asked to be converted into individual program design clients in recent years, he explained.
Though he runs a self-sufficient business, Torano explained he will never be finished learning from OPEX and OPEX coaches and gym owners.
“I think the number one thing that I think separates Big Dawgs is how much we meet. I’m on three different calls a week with other Big Dawg coaches and OPEX Gym owners. We’ll do brainstorming calls and case study calls. It’s always forcing me to be better,” he said.
He added: “’And I’m continuously reading and listening to podcasts and reading studies and learning from other coaches. I think the biggest thing I get from OPEX is that I will never stop being a student.”
As a result, his clients benefit.
“I always tell my clients that they’re not just coached by me. They’re also coached by other coaches I learn from,” he said.
Torano continued: “Overall, OPEX has been a game-changer for me. I was always hungry to learn and I have always been a go-getter, but especially being in Puerto Rico, I had nobody to play with, so to speak. Nobody was doing what I was trying to do. All I saw was ’21-15-9 of this’ and ‘AMRAP of that’ so getting to work with world-class coaches has been a complete game-changer.”
And it’s also what will let him continue to have a life-long career in the fitness industry, he said.
“This is something I have given quite a bit of thought to… I do see myself being involved in fitness as a life-long career, but I see myself becoming less of a coach and more of a mentor coach in the future. I’m not ready for that yet. I think I’m good doing what I’m doing for another 10 to 15 years still before I shift to a more mentorship role,” he said.
A big reason for him to keep doing what he’s doing now for another decade or so is because he loves what he does, he explained.
“I love watching people set a physical goal and then manipulate things to reach it, and I find it really rewarding to be able to be the guide to help my clients do that,” he said. ”When a client looks me straight-faced in the eye, sometimes with watery eyes, and says, ‘Thank you,’ that’s super fulfilling to me.”
He added: “And I can’t say yes or no whether I could still get this feeling without OPEX, but I can say that OPEX and the Big Dawgs has been the biggest contributor in my coaching career.”
OPEX Fitness does one thing, educate coaches. Get an introduction to the same education that has contributed to Torano’s successful coaching career by signing up for the Free Coach’s Toolkit.
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