Invest in a healthy body as you invest in a pension fund, advises Doychin Karshovski from Cincinnati.
By Aneta Nedyalkova
Doychin Karshovski is from Varna, Bulgaria. At the age of 16, he became the youngest master of the sport of sea pentathlon, combining the five disciplines of swimming, running, shooting, sailing and rowing. His university education is in three major disciplines “Sailing”, “Journalism” and “Chinese Massage”. He started working as a high school student teacher and created one of the first sea clubs “Friends of the Sea”. He also worked in the Black Sea Network for NGOs and became Director of the National Network. Later on, he founded his Mayday Foundation, which he used to apply for various projects. Almost as a joke, he won a green card for the United States and left with his family for Cincinnati. He became qualified to be a fitness instructor and started working in one of the largest clubs in town. It turned out that he was good at this profession and so Doychin then launched his own business conducting private workouts in the homes of his clients. There are currently 14 clients who he visits personally, and over 80 clients on his specially created fitness platform.
What is your “fitness philosophy”?
In the gym, things are changing a lot, there has been a quiet revolution in the last 5-6 years. I’ve never been a supporter of bodybuilding and the use of chemicals. Fitness should help you do the things you like. I always give as an example some boys in the gym in which I train – they can push at least 300kg from the bench, but neither of them can run or swim. The body is strong, but only in one direction. I advise my clients to set a complex goal – for example, to learn to surf. When you learn, you are satisfied. The building of muscles is no longer in the foreground.
What is the system you’ve developed online?
I have an online platform where I train people all over the world without even seeing them. I send them an email with the programme. Each exercise has a short video clip attached. After the customer completes a questionnaire, I create a programme that usually lasts 4-5 weeks. With beginners, I talk at least 2-3 times a week. When I notice that clients do well, I leave them to train and only give them a new programme to keep up their progress. All my clients have a platform profile and when they go on a trip, for example, I send them a programme if they want to stay in shape. So I monitor the client’s whole condition – traumas, progress, kilograms – as a single dossier of their health. On my platform there is another service, my personal brand: “WELLNESS CONCIERGE”. For my clients’ free time or even when they are on their travels, I compose a combined programme of my exercises with courses which are close to the client at the relevant day and time. This service is highly popular with customers!
And what about people who do not have home training gear nor do they have time for fitness?
80% of the people I work with do not have a gym or gear. All of the gear in the gym, in one moment, turns into an excuse, a barrier, that you cannot train. I want to make people spend a little time during the day and create a habit, like brushing your teeth, a part of your everyday life.
You published a book recently with an interesting title?
“401 K” is the US programme that helps you save money for your old age. That’s where the name comes from. “401 Fitness” – “How to save fitness for Your Retirement”. I use the logic of financial markets – small amounts, but regular savings. When you invest, it is good to diversify, so you will not go bankrupt if one of your investments fails. You have to develop your body in many directions. Imagine a man who can just run. If one day he twists his ankle, he will stop working out, which is unacceptable. The book talks about 10 activities that are fundamental to human development. My idea was to create a short programme which is feasible every day. So I got to the short 6-minute workout – 6 moves. In the book I also write about social fitness and fitness of the brain. I mean keeping up a “healthy” circle of friends with whom you can make meaningful conversations.
Do you have a story of a particular person who has been transformed?
For me, success is in the action. There is a lady who is 78, we have worked together for 5-6 years. When we started, it was after her shoulder operation, she could not lift her arm above her shoulder. Now she does yoga, and lifts weights over her head. I contact her three times a week. She is very stubborn and disciplined. I can show the “before-after” effect with each of my clients. The challenge is, when people say “I cannot because …”, to find a way to train them anyway. I have a young mother of three who finds all the time reasons not to train. I always give her something to do, something simple. This is the secret – to succeed always find time for yourself. If you do not care for yourself, everything else you do can fail at some point.