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What You Can Expect From Your Charleston Personal Training Program At Shaping Concepts


From: Shane Doll CPT, CSCS
Founder, Shaping Concepts
Charleston, SC

Hi, this is Shane. I created this page to help educate you about what you can expect from my personal training programs. I have found the more our clients understand the process, the better their results.

The strategies I'm going to share with you have already helped hundreds of local residents just like you change their shape and get in the best shape of their lives.

Shaping Concepts has grown since our humble beginnings in 2004 to become South Carolina's premier personal training studio with locations in Charleston and Bluffton-Hilton Head.

I tell you this not to boast, but rather confident convey to you that our systems have already been proven to deliver results. You simply have to follow the blueprint.

Imagine yourself in a leaner, toner, stronger, more fit body in only 12 short weeks. You can do it if you simply commit to following the strategies I've outlined for you on this page.

The four main components to a successful body transformation

The reason that traditional diet routines, pills, weight loss shakes and other so called “solutions” fail to deliver long-term results is because they don’t focus on how the human body functions.

When you start putting all four of my components together in a "lifestyle change" program you’ll begin seeing the results you’ve always wanted.

1. Completing Regular Cardiovascular Exercise
2. Developing Lean Muscle Through Resistance Training
3. Stabilizing Hormonal Balances With Supportive Nutrition
4. Using Proper Progression

Key component #1: cardiovascular exercise

Individuals just starting an exercise program will want to develop an “Aerobic Base” by completing low-moderate intensity cardiovascular exercise. You can accomplish this by simply walking (5) days per week for 30 minutes.

Walking is one of the most overlooked and effective activities you can perform early on in a fat loss program. The higher intensity cardio routines (interval training) are the real dynamos for fat loss but they can only be effective once you’ve developed an adequate cardiovascular base.

Key component #2: concern for muscle (resistance exercise)

Your one-on-one sessions with a trainer will be focused on developing lean muscle. We’ll start with functional exercise and build to weighted resistance movements once you’re ready for the increased intensity.

When it comes to burning fat it’s important to remember that the more lean muscle you have the more efficient your body becomes at using fat for energy.

Developing lean muscle will also help your body absorb more oxygen during respiration allowing you to complete cardiovascular exercise at higher intensities and thus burn more fat.

Key component #3: supportive nutrition

This is the “eat right” part to the weight loss equation. The foods you eat and how often you eat them will determine whether your body is in a “fat burning” state or a “fat storing” state.

The strategies you’ll learn from us come from a principal called "supportive nutrition." It is very important that you stick with these principals and not attempt to “fix” your program by drastically cutting calories.

If you would like additional assistance with your diet you can schedule a nutritional consultation at any time.

Key component #4: proper progression

The fourth component is proper progression which is nothing more than changing up your exercise routine in a way that creates a new stimulus in your cardiovascular and neuromuscular systems.

Your body will adapt to any given workload over time. In order to see the best results you must change the intensity of your workouts.

The most effective fat burning routines will eventually incorporate higher intensity exercise. While each individual is different, our objective will typically be to progress you into burst training routines that call upon more “fast twitch” muscle fibers.

There are numerous benefits to higher intensity training routines but the type of training you complete will depend on your goals, health issues, fitness level and other factors.

Your trainer is educated on providing you with the appropriate strategies according to your unique needs. Feel free to question your trainer about what phase of training you’re currently in and why?

There are no shortcuts to achieving long-term weight loss...

There must be a commitment to healthy lifestyle changes that include proper nutrition and exercise. I bet in your heart you already knew that.

It has been my goal from the start to build a business that differentiates itself by providing personalized solutions and not just a “one size fits all” program. That’s the Shaping Concepst difference I know you're going to love.

If at any time you're not getting the personalized attention and care you deserve please let me know. Exceptional personal service and a sincere interest in our clients are mandatory requirements I've set for my staff. I've set the bar high and expect nothing less than the staff to over-deliver in these areas.

You'll be receiving frequent "how are we doing" surveys and response forms requesting your feedback. Please give me your thoughts when you see one of these forms. I'd really appreciate it and yes I read each and every one.

Alright let's briefly review some FAQ's.

What can I do about muscle soreness and how long does it last?

Although discomforting, the muscle soreness and pain you experience after your first few workouts is completely normal. The muscle soreness often referred to as “DOMS” or (delayed onset muscle soreness) is due to micro trauma or small tears that occur on the muscle fibers.

The best treatment is simply ibuprofen or some other anti-inflammatory to reduce the discomfort. Your body will adapt to the new demands of your resistance training and the soreness will go away after your first few workouts.

Periodically through your program when your trainer introduces a new stimulus you will be sore again for a day or so. This is part of your normal progression and should be expected.

However, if you continue to be sore after every workout it’s an indication that something is wrong. You may be over training and/or not receiving adequate nutrition and rest for recovery.

Please consult with your trainer if you’re experiencing persistent soreness and/or joint pain.

How fast will I lose weight and how much can I expect to lose?

This will vary from individual to individual so it’s impossible to give you an exact number but here’s what you should expect. Remember this is not a “quick-fix” program but rather a “lifestyle change” program where your goal is to lose body fat (not just weight) and keep it off for good.

There’s only ONE way to effectively lose body fat and keep it off. That’s with supportive nutrition dieting along with cardiovascular and resistance training exercise.

We use these techniques to stabilize the hormonal systems in your body and help put you in a physiological state where your body can begin accessing stored fat for fuel.

Everyone responds at different rates because of their unique body make-up (this is called bio-individuality). Remember, your metabolism is directly related to the balance of the hormonal systems in your body. For many people their hormonal balances can be optimized with the proper nutrition and exercise.

For other individuals, even the BEST diet and exercise will NOT be enough. We will do a very thorough job of helping you to identify any potential hormonal imbalances that may exist during our evaluation and questionnaire process.

We will also help refer you to physicians and specialists that can providing testing and treatment. The decision to seek testing and treatment from there is up to you. It is important you understand that we are using the MOST effective nutrition and exercise strategies I’ve seen work to optimize the hormonal balances of the human body so fat loss can occur...

But there may be some conditions (hypothyroidism, adrenal fatigue, etc) that will REQUIRE medical treatment along with your diet and exercise prescription in order to see results.

Contrary to what some people would like to have you belief there is NOT a supplement to correct every problem. A good example of this would be thyroid imbalances.

When you first start your program the increased physical activity of the exercise will increase your metabolism and may result in weight loss of a few pounds. However, some individuals may find they actually gain a pound or two in the first week. Relax, don’t freak out if this happens! This is completely normal.

When you first start doing resistance training and your muscles get sore, they’re actually suffering from inflammation. Your body responds by having your muscle cells hold more water to aid in the repair and rebuilding process. The water weight gain is only temporary and will go away after a few days.

Don't buy into the 2 1/2 pounds per week idea...

Most of the mainstream weight loss and diet books (many written by MD's) recommend a weight loss of 2 ½ pounds per week as being realistic. They’re wrong! This is not to say that some people won’t do this (it all depends on your body make-up and how much weight you have to lose). But for most individuals this is an unrealistic goal. Here’s why…

For every 3 lbs of weight you see lost on the scale from traditional dieting during a one week time period you’ll more than likely have lost 8-12 ounces of muscle right along with it. This is not good for many reasons as most everyone knows it’s much harder to get muscle back than it is to lose it.

Remember, we're ONLY concerned with fat loss. This is what we’re after, the FAT. If you want to lose weight and have no concern over energy levels, your health, physical performance or mental clarity then go get on a traditional diet or quick fix routine.

But on the other hand, if all those things are important to you follow my blueprint and be patient with your body. You didn't gain all the body fat you want to lose in a month so don't expect get rid of it that fast either.

A decrease in 1-2% of body fat in the first 4 weeks is VERY good. It’s been my experience that the majority of people see the most significant body fat losses between weeks 8-12. This is because it simply takes that much time for your body to get really optimized on all levels to access and burn fat efficiently.

My personal recommendations for success in our programs...

#1. Evaluate your progress early on by how your clothes fit and use the mirror instead of the scale.

#2. Set goals of decreasing body fat 1-2% per month instead of focusing on a scale weight.

#3. Know that weight loss rarely comes linearly (steady 1-2 pound per week) but rather it will come in drops when the conditions are right in your body. Be patient and stay the course.

#4. If you remain in a plateau for (4) weeks or more you’ll need to take a much closer look at where the imbalance(s) might be. Your trainer can help you evaluate your next move.

How much time do I need to commit to exercise if I want to see results?

For maximum results you'll want to complete physical activity 5 days a week. Your resistance training can be completed in thirty minutes, three times a week but you’ll still need to do cardiovascular exercise.

If fat loss is your goal you’ll want to complete cardiovascular exercise preferably 5 days each week with approximately 30 minutes committed to each workout.

You’ll NEVER need to block out more than 1 hour a day for exercise to reach your goals. You’ll spend more time exercising in the beginning of your program and then as you progress to higher intensity routines you’ll actually spend LESS time!

Anyway you do it simply plan your exercise just like you do other activities in your schedule. You must schedule exercise if you want to create an effective routine. If you block out an hour for exercise five days a week you’ll be on your way to seeing great results.

How often will my progress be evaluated?

We assess each client's progress the during the first week of each month. At that time your trainer will complete a follow-up assessment during your workout. You'll have the opportunity to choose how you'd like to measure your progress according to your individual goals and preferences.

For example, not everyone is comfortable with having their measurements taken and that's ok. We simply want to continually assess how we're doing and evaluate your progress towards the RESULTS you're looking for. You choose what you'd like to track and we'll focus on helping you see improvements on those specific areas.

Listed below are the measurements of progress we use at Shaping Concepts:

Body fat %

Weight (scale weight)

Strength increases (example: push-up's, pull-up's, bench press, squat, etc)

Inches lost (circumference measurements)

Cardiovascular endurance (example: 500/1000 meter row, 400 meter run, etc)

General heath and wellness (no measurements above apply to your goals)

What should I do if I reach a plateau?

Remember true (fat) loss happens in phases according to the physiological changes that are happening in your body. Your body will always look to achieve a sense of homeostasis or balance.

If you’ve reached a plateau that means you need to adjust your number of calories, quality of calories, exercise progression, or examine your hormonal balances or caloric needs through testing.

The most common mistake people make is failing to increase their calories as they progress to higher levels of intensity with their workouts. Remember, calories are nothing more than fuel. You must provide your body with enough fuel to keep your metabolism on high and effectively burn body fat.

A metabolic profile assessment is an extremely valuable and effective tool in times when you’ve reached a plateau. You can learn exactly how many calories you need to consume for fat loss and then have your trainer help you design a specialized meal plan to get there. For more information check out our services and rates page.

Do this and see maximum results from your Charleston personal fitness program...

1. Eat something every 3-4 hours for proper hormonal balances
One of the most important steps in getting your body to release fat for fuel is stabilizing pancreatic hormones, specifically insulin. Eating small meals frequently throughout the day helps provide a consistent supply of energy signaling to your body that it no longer needs to store fat.

2. Do cardiovascular exercise 5 times a week
The majority of your weight loss especially in the beginning will come from doing aerobic exercise like walking. The most successful clients start with aerobic exercise for 30-45 minutes each day for a minimum of five days per week. The intensity needs to be low for aerobic exercise, that’s why walking is so effective. You don’t want to start performing higher intensity cardio routines until after an aerobic base is established.

3. Drink plenty of water to help with fat oxidation
This is an absolute necessity. You'll find it extremely difficult losing weight without drinking a minimum of eight glasses of water each day. This is a minimum requirement. Multiply your bodyweight by .55 to determine your "target" water intake in ounces. It's ok if you don't hit that exact amount, just look to increase your water intake. Carry a water bottle with you everywhere you go and sip on it throughout the day.

4. Minimize your alcohol consumption
The cold hard truth is alcohol is nothing more than empty calories made up of sugar that can stop fat burning in its tracks! There’s plenty of research showing the numerous benefits of a glass of red wine daily to your health, but the key is moderation.

If you’re going to drink alcohol, do so with a meal and limit your intake. The choice is yours but remember your decision on how much alcohol you consume will always affect your results.

5. Decrease your consumption of saturated (animal fats) while increasing unsaturated (omega-3) fats
The latest research is showing that one of the biggest problems with the American diet is that we’re not eating enough unsaturated fats. These are the “good fats” typically found in cold water fish and plant sources. I recommend you supplement your diet with flax seed oil. My favorite choice is Barlean’s® cold processed flax seed oil found at Whole Foods supermarkets and other health food centers.

Regardless of the brand you choose make sure to purchase a product that is refrigerated. The cold processed varieties have the highest amount of beneficial nutrients. The benefits to your overall health and waistline of only 1-2 tbsp daily are so numerous that I consider it a “super food.”

6. Look to eat more fruits and vegetables
I’m sure this is not breaking news to you but eating more fruits and vegetables really is essential to your success. You must make a conscious effort through your meal planning and grocery shopping to incorporate more fruits and vegetables.

It’s difficult for most people to get in the recommended 9-13 servings of fruits and vegetables each day. That’s why I highly recommend a whole food supplement like Juice Plus®. I take the product every day myself and firmly believe in the numerous benefits it has on your overall health. Ask us for details.

7. Provide your body with adequate rest
If you’re not getting 6-8 hours of sleep each night you’re significantly limiting your ability to lose body fat and develop lean muscle. Not getting enough sleep will cause a stress response in your body and raise cortisol hormone levels. This will make it very difficult to release store body fat and allow for muscle re-growth and recovery.

8. Eat plenty of fiber
This is a big time secret for successful weight loss. Eating plenty of fiber in your diet will have a bigger impact on your ability to lose weight than probably any other nutritional strategy. Look for foods like cereals and bread that have a minimum of three grams of fiber per serving. Eating fiber will keep you from feeling hungry, improve your digestion and help you reduce your waistline fast!

9. Create regular diet & exercise routines
When it comes to making changes in your diet and exercise the most important thing you can do is work on creating routines. Successful change comes from the repetition of certain acts over and over again. Remember you’re making lifestyle changes not just going on a short term diet. Go grocery shopping at the same time each week, prepare your meals for the next day and schedule your time for exercise just like you do any other appointment. I cannot stress how important this is.

You don’t have to be perfect in the beginning nor should you expect to be. Simply work on creating better routines every day and you’ll soon find healthy eating and exercising to be second nature.

10. Be ready and willing to make sacrifices
You probably already knew this but it’s essential to your success. It’s easy to make excuses for why you can’t eat healthy or find time for exercise. The reality is we all have 24 hours to use each day. It’s up to you to decide how you’ll use the time. Take an honest look at your lifestyle and habits right now and decide what’s most important.

Here’s some straight talk on what you need to do. If there’s any person, activity, or habit that is not positive or supportive towards your weight loss goals they’ve got to go! The most successful people have the guts to do this and their results show it. Go and do likewise.

11. Know your caloric requirements!
You cannot get your body to release stored fat unless you provide it with an energy balance. Calories are simply energy and if you’re not eating enough to support your resting metabolic rate plus daily activities you put your body in a fat storing mode.

Most people have no idea how many calories they should be eating for weight loss and thus they struggle with seeing results. This is a vital piece of information to your success. The reality is your metabolism is unique and experience has shown us that it’s very ineffective to estimate your caloric needs. The majority of people who start our programs are surprised to learn they’re actually not eating enough calories to lose weight!

I highly recommend you complete a metabolic profile assessment if you’re serious about making a body transformation.

12. Set your goals in writing
The practice of goal setting makes everything seem to fall in place. However, you must set goals that can be measured. Set a number to the percentage of body fat or inches you want to lose. This way you can measure your progress. Write your goals down on an index card and post it someplace like your bathroom mirror where you’ll see it at least twice daily.

This is an extremely powerful technique. You become what you think about so fill your subconscious thoughts with your goals as much as possible. Your body really does follow your mind. Tell your mind over and over what you expect and the results will amaze you.

13. Eliminate processed and refined foods from your diet
These foods are big time culprits for hindering weight loss. You think you’re doing well by eating “low-fat” or “no-sugar” diet foods but in reality these foods are part of the problem.

Three words you should look to avoid on food labels are “hydrogenated, high fructose corn syrup, and enriched.” These are just a few of the indicators that the food has been processed, refined or chemically altered. The further you get away from whole foods the harder it is to lose weight.

Eating fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, nuts, fish, legumes, etc is the secret to slimming your waistline and improving your health. There are no magic pills, diets or other shortcuts that will work like eating whole foods and exercising.

Alright, I hope you enjoyed reading this page and found the information to be helpful. Check out our frequently asked questions page for more questions and answers about our programs.

If you have any specific questions please also feel free to contact me and I'll be happy to help answer any specific questions you have and help in any way.

I look forward to seeing and hearing of your success.


Shane Doll
Shaping Concepts Personal Training Studios
1009 Anna Knapp Blvd #101
Mt. Pleasant, SC 29464
Phone: 843-971-8665