A Look at Sand & Steel from 5 Years Ago

Aside: while doing some routine maintenance on our website, I found this old post in our 2013 archives.  It was the first article we published on our website.  I thought it might interesting to discuss Sand & Steel then and now.   Did we do accomplish what we set out to do 5 years ago?  Or did market forces and new competition like Orange Theory and Fit45 force us to change?


Top 10 Reasons to Join Sand & Steel

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Get Steel Strong Square Chalk1. Get Steel Strong™ System.

Only Sand & Steel offer the Get Steel Strong System. A trilogy of functional training, nutrition, and assessments to maximize your progress.

  1. Nutrition keyed to your workouts creates a synergy that programs cannot touch in terms of recovery speed and fat loss.
  2. Your time is valuable, so choose your fitness & nutrition program carefully. Don’t waste your time going to the gym without an equally powerful nutrition and assessment system behind your workouts. Without assessments you are working out blind, and without nutrition counseling you’re not maximizing your strength gains. That’s why we offer all three.

Update.  You know it’s amazing that we opened with the Get Steel System, and to this day we haven’t changed the formula.  Sure, two years ago, we added Mobility and Corrective Exercises to the Get Steel Strong System, but otherwise, it’s the same: 8 Personal Training, 2 Nutrition, and 2 InBody Scans.

Why haven’t we changed it?  Because it works.  Clients who have chosen the Get Steel Strong system, get 2-3 times the weight loss as compared to our standard Personal Training clients.  Why?  Accountability and the integration of mobility/nutrition into the workout programming.  It’s our signature service, and we won’t be changing it anytime soon.

2. Washington DC’s Best Coaching.

The best bodybuilders and CrossFitters in the world have a coach, professional athletes have a coach, Olympian’s have a coach – why don’t you have one?

  1. We are coaches at Sand & Steel, we inspire, motivate, and keep your butt accountable.
  2. It’s the last three reps that count, and a coach helps you get there.

“A lot of clients ask me how many pullups do I do in my sets.” I do them until my arms start to burn, and then I start counting. P. Roberts

This is the same.  Sand & Steel is all about providing quality coaching and positive coaching environment.

3. High Intensity Training

Whether it’s Insanity, CrossFit, or tabata, HIIT requires small groups and experienced coaches to monitor form and make modifications. Without an experienced coach, you’re likely to get hurt. At Sand & Steel we don’t throw you into classes. We build classes of people who are at the same level, so they can improve and work together to get stronger.
We still offer HIIT and/or CrossFit style programming, but only for select clients.  We focus more on correcting movement than driving intensity in questionable patterns.  When we balance “workout safety” vs “weight loss speed,” we tip the scale on safety every time.

4. Client Specific Programming.

Every client at Sand & Steel gets a strength and movement assessment. We evaluate your strength and weaknesses, and design a program around your goals. Whether it’s evaluation of weaknesses in muscle groups (shoulders, glutes, etc.) or power and sculpting programs – your program will be designed for you.
I was pretty happy to see this was part of our founding principles as it were.  Today, building client specific workouts is a bedrock principle of how we coach.  If you want to do Brad Pitt’s 6-week chiseled abs workout, go to bodybuilding.com.  Send me a before and after pic, and I’ll include here.  🙂  But if you want a custom workout program that is going to get you results and keep you safe, come to Sand & Steel.

5. Supplements.

Sand & Steel carries 50 different types of nutritional supplements from fat burners, to protein, to fish oil, to protein bars. We also provide free in-depth consultation services on selecting which supplement to take and what doses.  We only sell what we personally use, and we also provide free in-depth consultation services on selecting which supplement to take and what doses.

I’ve always liked bodybuilding supplements.  They make the workout experience more fun, and they do help with results.  We even sold some custom protein and BCAA’s for a while.  We stopped selling them, because of pricing pressure from Amazon.  It’s amazing how many people will come in to get information about which product is best for them, and then turn around and buy it on Amazon, because it was 50 cents cheaper.

6. Freedom from Gym Boredom.

Functional Strength Training is exciting and so are our classes. We never do the same workout twice, and workouts always get more complicated to keep your mind and body stimulated.

Our programming varies from highly technical workouts to workouts that are more grounded in results.  For example, mastering the kettlebell clean can take a long time to perfect.  A combination of the kettle bell swing and the dumbbell curl, can achieve much the same benefit.  For clients that like the challenge, we teach the clean.  For our less patient folks, we break the move into it’s constituent parts.

7. Injury Adaption.

Fitness programming designed around existing injuries to keep you in shape while improving strength and mobility. Injuries are a reality of life, but that doesn’t mean you need to stop training. We adapt your training around your injury, use muscle isolation to strengthen your muscles, and get you back in shape through acupuncture, muscle activation techniques, and orthopedic/sports massage provided by our Old Town Health Sports Network.
Designing workouts around injuries and helping repair injuries was number 7 on our list.  Today, it’s more like number 2.  I’ve dedicated thousands of hours in research and certifications to help clients move better.  Knowledge that I pass on to my coaches through our mentorship program.  See our Physical Therapy articles for more information.

8. Programs Designed for Seniors.

Seniors have special needs, from increased recovery time, loss of balance, arthritis, etc. We have specially designed programs for seniors to help improve your quality of life while minimizing risk of injury.
This one also should get a big bump up to number 3.  We have a very large and active older adult client base at Sand & Steel.  We have written over 40 unique programs to accommodate movement restrictions, arthritis, hip replacements, etc.  We understand that you need to be more careful when you get over 60, and we take that care in every exercise we have you do.
Our senior programming generally focuses on building strength and balance for functional movements.  Going up stairs, lifting objects over your head, etc.  Restoring complete range of motion and balance are hallmarks of many our custom-developed senior workout programs.

9. A Clean Gym For Safety and a Good Workout Experience:

If you’ve been to some other local boxes, you may have felt like you need a tetanus shot after. We’re the cleanest gym in town, and it’s a reflection of how we treat our equipment and the kind of our environment that’s important to our clients.

A clean gym reflects on the owners and staff overall.  A clean gym prevent infections and the spread of illnesses.  But keeping a safe and clean environment should be a joint effort from the clients as well.  Remove your shoes when you enter the gym, wipe down your surface areas, and help you coach put your equipment away at the end of the session.

10. 5 Star Service.

Sand & Steel isn’t just a gym. It’s a five star service oriented business. It’s a company that treats you like a client, listens to your needs, and provides you with the results you want.

Speaking of 5 – Stars.  Have you given us a rating lately?  Ratings help us retain new clients, so please take a moment and provide us with a review.  Link to reviews.

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About Coach Paul

Paul Bio PictureView my Bio | Email me
BioMedical Engineering - Johns Hopkins University.
Juris Doctorate - Rutgers.
M|WOD, MET, CFT, FMSII, YBT, RKC, TRX, PN.

Paul has trained over 3000 clients and more than a 100 personal trainers over his 10 years as a mobility and strength coach.  He emphasizes safety and corrective exercises in all programming (strength, weight loss, conditioning, etc.)  His practice focuses on improving flawed movement patterns to prevent injury and improve skeletal-muscular function.  Paul employs Muscle Energy techniques, FMS, Tigger Point Therapy, Yoga, and M|WOD to systematically strengthen weakened muscles and mobilize joints and muscle tissue.  Move Better... Train Better.

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