Personal Trainer For The 1 Percent, Exercises The Best For The Rest
Brandon "Chaps" Chapoton
He’s a personal trainer for the one percent.
Not the one percent of the social strata or economic elite, but the one percent of the population who want to go for gold.
What does he do for the rest of the 99 percent?
As an in-demand professional fitness coach at the New Orleans Athletic Club (NOAC), 222 N. Rampart St., Brandon "Chaps" Chapoton helps his clients lose weight, gain strength and energy and become more productive.
His mantra? Making excuses burns zero calories per hour.
“My ideal client is someone who has a goal and who wants to achieve something without giving you any BS,” Chapoton said. “When you give me all you got, I give it right back to you.”
Chapoton, a 29-year-old New Orleans-based personal trainer, Navy veteran and former Division 1 Track and Field Coach at Southeastern Louisiana University (SLU) in Hammond, Louisiana, has an enviable clientele including celebrities and professional athletes. He’s worked with renown Bahamian runner Andre Colebrook and was the personal trainer for Chef Art Smith who appears on “Iron Chef America,” “Top Chef Masters” and “Chopped.”
Chapoton also works with executive professionals and everyday people individually or in groups, focusing on achieving sustained results through stimulating and continually varied workouts.
“How can I lose weight fast? How many days do I have to be here? How much does it cost? Those are the question I hear the most,” said Chapoton. “Of course, there is no silver bullet. If there was, I’d be rich and I would not have to train anybody because we’d all have perfect bodies with little time or energy expended. A lot of this depends on what your personal goal is and what kind of time you’re willing to commit. I can work within most budgets by creating a program that disciplined clients can do on their own with a weekly check in. So it’s flexible.”
Chapoton earned his degree in Kinesiology from SLU. He was chosen “Most Outstanding Undergraduate” by his professors and was awarded one of two graduate assistant positions available in the SLU Kinesiology Department. He holds multiple sports performance and strength and conditioning certifications from USTFCCCA and USATF and is currently working towards completing his master of science in exercise physiology.
Chapoton said his business plan is the equivalent of “shooting fish in a barrel.” At the NOAC, he lifts and planks with the work-out crowd and offers tips and pointers. As soon as someone asks Chapoton a health or fitness question they’re pumped by his knowledge, talent, humor and drive.
“Usually new clients sign up just for a few sessions,” he said. “The first is always free and after that I charge about $60 - $85 for a 50-minute session, but we always go over the time limit. We work hard, see progress and my clients end up staying clients for a long time.”
Chapoton works for himself and said local personal trainers can make between $45,000 - $100,000 a year. He’s supporting his wife Julie and his 1-year-old son Whitman and is planning to create his own LLC.
When it comes to functional training and his commitment to develop and implement innovative fitness techniques, Chapoton comes up with an individual and unique formula for all his clients. But at the core of every plan is managing what his clients eat.
“This is New Orleans and few can resist the food and endless festivities,” said Chapoton. “Discipline here may mean more than it does in Los Angeles, where a cucumber sandwich, not a po-boy sandwich, is lunch fare. Also, you are your worst enemy in the gym. People fall into routines, and they can injure themselves if they aren’t paying attention.”
Chapoton said the biggest trick to losing weight is to flex your prep skills – prepare all your food for the week on Sunday.
“When you’re busy you’re more apt to eat what’s around and make unhealthy choices,” he said. “If you prepare all your meals in advance on Sunday, then you don’t fall into that trap. Nutrition is 80 percent of the equation when it comes to losing weight.”
With more than 10 years in the fitness industry, Chapoton’s dynamic approach emphasizes strength training modalities that can be transferred from the gym to daily life, from training camp to a championship game.
“Swimming is always a great activity, especially in the summer,” said Chapoton. “Find a friend with a pool. Walk in the park before 9:00 a.m. or after 6:00 p.m. to avoid the harshest heat. Audubon Park’s canopy of oaks helps keep it cooler. New exercise stations are dotted along the track, and they are worth a try. Biking is great along the new Lafitte corridor, but stay hydrated and wear protective gear at all times. I’m starting to get back into paddle boarding and would definitely recommend it for active days outside. I currently have a client who paddle boards once a week, and she loves it!”
Chapoton’s coaching idol is track and field athletics coach Dan Pfaff who, according to freelapusa.com, has tutored 49 Olympians including nine medalists, 51 world championship competitors (also nine medalists), and five world record holders. Chapoton said one of his best success stories was training an athlete at SLU, helping him go from running a 4:31 mile to a 4:08 mile.
“It was a big achievement,” he said. “We worked at it every day.”
Chapoton said busy professionals can also see ripped results if they dedicate just a little time daily to exercise and nutrition.
“Everyone can find three hours a week to devote to some kind of heart-healthy activity,” he said. “Just that will change your life. If you do just 30 minutes a day, and maintain that intensity, you’re getting toxins out and you are setting a scenario for program success and longevity. It’s all about using your time wisely.”
Another one of Chapoton’s weight loss tricks? Using your cell phone.
“It’s called the Flash Diet,” he said. “I ask my clients to take pictures of the food they’re going to eat and text them to me. I make recommendations about their carbs, fats and proteins and it holds clients accountable for their choices. Even with this diet you get a cheat day, which is usually Saturday, and be prepared to lose weight, gain muscle and run your mile faster.”
“You see better results when you work out, but it’s all about managing food choices and your food prep,” Chapoton said. “At the end of the day I’m result oriented. I like clients who are serious and they are the best reflection of my work.”
Chapoton’s services include:
• Personal Training
– Semi-private (limited to four)
– Group/corporate (10 or more)
• Sport Performance Training
– Speed and agility
– Strength and power
– Combine training
• Weight Loss
• Endurance Training
– Road racing (5k to 100 mile ultra)
– Adventure races
• Posture Correction Training
• Muscle Development and Bodybuilding
Brandon "Chaps" Chapoton
Professional Fitness Coach