Notes and Narratives goes “On the Record” with personal trainer Tony Bunn

by: Cathy Foreman

 Tony Bunn has the look of determination when it comes to his business,  All N Fitness . | Image by: Cathy R. Foreman Tony Bunn has the look of determination when it comes to his business, All N Fitness | Image by: Cathy Foreman

Men and fitness seem to be two words that are synonymous with one another. For the longest time, it seemed as if fitness was geared more towards men than women. Was that because men tend to lose weight more rapidly than women or was it the idea that men don’t want to be with muscular women, which meant women should stay out of the gym? Oh yeah, then there was the myth that black women don’t work out because we’re too worried about our hair. Well whatever the reason, that is no longer the case and fitness is steadily moving from a fad to a way of life.

Fitness is not so much about building muscle as it is weight loss, toning and just plain old healthy living these days. It seems that everywhere I turn, one of my friends is in workout mode. More and more people are posting on social media about their work out sessions and there are so many different diets, ways to help you get jump started and don’t even get me started on the apps … it’s pretty insane. Enter Tony Bunn.

I met Tony through one of our team here at Notes and Narratives. She brought him to our attention because he’s a local business owner and we want to highlight locals as much as we can. Now I’m not going to sit here and lie to you because we are about transparency. When she pulled out her phone to show us a photo, we instantly became tongue-wagging dogs. I mean it was really bad. As hard as she tried to reign us in, it took more than a few minutes before we could pull ourselves together. Once we were pass all of that and able to behave like the business women we are, it was just that … all about the business. How can we get him in front  of the camera and interview him? So she texted him and badabing, we were on.

For our photoshoot, Tony invited one of his friends who is also into fitness, Krystal Jones, a Zumba Instructor. We worked with them individually and together. While working with Krystal and hearing of her journey, I became intrigued. She had amazing results… losing over 150 lbs in one year. So for me, what started as a “let’s put this guy in the spotlight” soon turned into a personal story resulting in my getting to know Tony, and hiring him to personally train my mom and I.  You can read more on Krystal’s story by teammate, Shumara Thomas.

 Tony Bunn with Krystal Jones | Image by: Cathy R. Foreman Tony Bunn with Krystal Jones | Image by: Cathy Foreman

My mother and I started working out with Tony in late May. We are keen to reap the benefits of the hard work he’s had us put in. I’m even out here trying to get my run on.

Tony is a good guy and a dedicated instructor. He’s a great communicator and motivation to his clients. Meeting us at 6:30am two days a week and then continuing with clients through the rest of his day until sometimes 9 or 10p. It’s dedication and a genuine desire to see his clients succeed that drives him.

At 27 and a graduate of East Carolina University, Tony has been in business for a little over a year. He double-majored in Health Fitness and Sports Management. Before starting All-N-Fitness, Tony worked as a personal trainer at Lifetime Fitness. He quickly realized that making money for someone else was not they way he wanted his life to go, but he really enjoyed fitness and the one-on-one interaction with people. So he set out to do what he knew and enjoyed. There’s something to that old adage, do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.

When working with Tony, I throw in a few questions here and there to help me get to know him. You can’t spend personal time with people and not feel compelled to know more about them. As a business owner I’m always curious to know what obstacles you face and how you overcome them. There tends to be some commonalities across businesses. So I wanted to know was it easy for Tony to make the leap. He told me, “Not at all… but I’ve learned a lot and I’ve been fortunate to have some really great clients. I’ve seen my business grow. I’ve learned how to manage different personalities and I’ve become more confident in my training style. And I’ve also come out of my shell a lot.” That sounds like a win for everyone involved. It’s hard trying to carve your own space in an inundated field such as this. I can totally relate …can you?

 Tony Bunn | Image by: Cathy R. Foreman Tony Bunn | Image by: Cathy Foreman

So let’s go on the record and find out a little more about Tony and what drives him:

N&N: What is the meaning, the idea behind All In Fitness?

TB: All N Fitness takes a lifestyle approach to fitness that encompasses all aspects including nutrition, exercise and mental strength.

N&N:  It’s your job to motivate others so how do YOU stay motivated? What drives you?

TB: Looking the part of a personal trainer is very important which keeps me motivated to stay in the gym.  Also fitness never stops, there is always room for improvement.

N&N: What is your background; where did you grow up? Were you into fitness/sports during your youth?

TB: I have a degree in health fitness and sports management from East Carolina University.  I primarily grew up in Raleigh, NC. I have always been an athlete from the time I was 5 all the way through college. So transitioning into fitness was very natural for me.

N&N: How do you feel about social media and the effect that it has on us with regard to body shaming and how the correlates to their self-esteem.

TB: I think social media can be used for motivation, however I feel that it is terrible with regards to body shaming.  A lot of people up there use illegal drugs or do surgery and in turn sell false hopes. Also understanding that between filters, photo edits, and angles, pretty much everything on social media is not what it seems.

N&N: As a trainer, what pressure do you feel to keep yourself toned and in shape?

TB: Yes I feel pressure, but also motivated. At first glance people are more likely to train with someone who looks like they live the fitness lifestyle.  So it helps me hold myself accountable.

N&N: What are two exercises you feel anyone and everyone should be doing right now and why?

TB: Squats and Deadlifts.  They engage so many muscle groups at once, and most importantly are key for building core and overall strength.

N&N: What’s the best piece of advice you’d give a person just getting started with fitness and exercise?

TB: To start small, and set process goals.  Don’t focus to much on the end goal but focus on the small things you can do each day.

N&N: What does your fitness routine consist of?

TB: My fitness routine is mainly centered around clean nutrition and weights.  I try to keep things fresh in the gym with progression and constantly adjusting my workout splits.  I do cardio sparingly because I’m on my feet sometimes 12+ hours a day.

N&N: Do you have cheat day/meal? What does that look like?

TB: Never have a cheat day! That’s just a bad idea, but yes I’ll usually go out to a restaurant to have a nice pasta or steak and potatoes 1-2 times a week.

 Tony Bunn, the power is in your hands | Image by: Cathy R. Foreman Tony Bunn, the power is in your hands | Image by: Cathy Foreman

I don’t know about you, but it’s much easier when there is accountability. If you are looking for a personal trainer, you can book a consultation with Tony… he’s taking new clients.