Celebrity Trainer Robert Palmer’s Guide to Being Exceptional

By Robert Palmer

In the gym, attitude is everything. The problem is that half of the battle is the mental will of
taking the first step, being disciplined in diet and exercise routine, pushing past the perceived
limitations of your own ability, and going the extra mile to keep you coming back for more.
Knowing that these concerns overwhelm everyone and that time waits for no one, (yet everyone
wants results now), I have developed a comprehensive and holistic approach to personal training that consistently yields phenomenal results for my clients. The Be Exceptional Fitness
philosophy has a vital lifestyle component that maintains and supports an active and social
lifestyle by providing diet hacks that substitute the commonly used unhealthy foods with
nutrient-rich wholesome alternatives. The Be Exceptional Fitness method allows you to keep up
the “work hard, play hard” lifestyle that most of my clients want to continue enjoying (in
moderation, of course).

The Be Exceptional method is not about showing your muscles or introducing intimidating
fitness routines, it is about laying a foundation for an effective fitness program based on a
thorough assessment to create personalized techniques that ensures success. All Be Exceptional
Fitness programs, in-person or virtually through our app, start with an assessment of physical
readiness, mobility restrictions, strength, injuries, and past experiences to set your goals.
I act as a real-life GPS system for my clients on their fitness journey.

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5 Ways to Be Exceptional

1) Eat Smart & Live Well

What you choose to fuel your body with can be a game changer. Planning your meals ahead of
time and plugging in healthy alternatives will trump any restrictive diet in the long run. Think differently about what you eat by finding nutrient-dense substitutes. Substituting things such as ice cream for frozen Greek yogurt or traditional pancakes with 100% whole wheat and grains are a great start. You have to consciously make healthier choices in order for your body to function optimally. There is more truth than myth in “you are what you eat.”

2) A Positive Perspective Yields Positive Results

Surround yourself with a supportive and similarly focused community. Remove yourself from
counter-productive environments. These include temptations, negativity, and unhealthy habits,
especially when you are beginning a transformative journey and establishing a new routine.
Make motivational decisions that build yourself up, such as a great gym environment, workout
music, an accountability partner, and activewear that makes you feel good.

3) Push Past 100% and Give Your Max.

When we are able to overcome our fear of failure, we end up pushing past what we thought we
were capable of, in terms of weights, distance, or intensity. The human body is made to grow and adapt when presented with physical challenges. That singular moment when you want to give up but don’t, it forces your body to perform instead of plateau. Set tangible and quantifiable goals t'es ou help you manage your progress. If you want to maintain and transform, then give your maximum effort.

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4) Lean into the Weights.

Don’t be afraid to lift heavy weights. Muscle is the best way to reshape your body’s composition.
Weightlifting creates muscle separation and definition for a toned physique. Your strength
training should be progressive and comprise of compound movements that stimulate larger areas
on the body such as rows, presses, squats, and deadlifts. The heavier loads incorporated with
these movements will help you increase bone density, muscle stimulation, and metabolism far
more effectively than isolated movements like a bicep curl or a tricep extension. The
misconception that lifting weights alone can cause weight gain has long been debunked, although old myths still linger. Strong lean muscle is the enemy of body fat and helps to increase the potential amount of calories you burn throughout the day. A great gauge for weight progression is 2.5-5% per week. This subtle increase is small enough that you will not overwhelm yourself, yet powerful enough that in a year, I have seen beginners increase their personal weightlifting best anywhere from 150-200%.

5) Don’t Skip the Stretch

After an intense workout, your body starts to repair the damaged areas. The area that you worked on will typically be sore for a day or so. Without a proper stretching and recovery protocol, frequent exercise of the same muscle group can induce pain and delay progress. One issue that most active people experience are sore joints. Bones, tendons, and ligaments lack the same blood flow that the supported muscle benefits from. Because of this, it takes far longer for our joints to recover. You can speed up the healing process and rid yourself of most instances of inflamed sore joints through stretching and other flexibility methods, such as foam-rolling. A stretching routine can keep you healthy and injury-free throughout your fitness journey. Add stretching to the end or beginning of your routine and watch as you bounce back from an intense workout.


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Robert Palmer is an NYC Fitness Entrepreneur and Founder of Be Exceptional Fitness. He has created methods and strategies for individuals and brands that help people live their healthiest, happiest life possible. As a movement expert and fitness nutritionist, he specializes in sports performance, pre- and post-natal training, strength calisthenics, and MMA strength and conditioning. He stays on top of food, fitness, and fashion by exploring current topics with his weekly newsletter, blog, and Be Exceptional fitness app, which can all be found at: