Cut the Fitness Industry Confusion and Learn the True Systems for Having a Great Life and Career as a Trainer


Personal training is a great career, but the burnout rate is so high because most trainers don’t know the simple, everyday things they can do to make their lives better while also producing a better training product. If you’ve been wondering about how to do that, Strength Faction is what you’ve been looking for…


Get for yourself what you give to your clients…




Hey there fellow trainer!


It’s Todd, one of the Strength Faction co-founders.


By now you know that training is a great job that earns you money and is a lot of fun, but there’s more to it than just writing up a workout every day you see your client.


In fact, it’s that ‘more to it part’ that helps us generate success and live the life we want in the fitness industry.


But even though we all have a sneaking suspicion that there’s more to training than knowing exercises and writing workouts…no one has ever put together a comprehensive coaching program to help trainers fill in all the gaps that lead to fitness industry success.


Here’s the crazy thing…we’re all essentially facing the same problems!


And that’s why we created Strength Faction!


Earlier in my career I was working like crazy and not taking care of myself like I should have been. I was so committed to trying to fill my schedule that I completely disregarded my own training. My partners, Chris Merritt and Mike Connelly, worked themselves right into the same problem. All of our own health and fitness started to suffer.


We needed systems for every part of our careers—keeping ourselves organized, writing programs, coaching our clients, and expanding our reach to build our business—and we needed them badly.


So, we started creating them. And it took YEARS.


But since we did, we’ve been able to grow businesses while also having more time for ourselves and living a better quality of life as trainers.


(And now we have a system that lets us program for ANY kind of client…and get them results.)


We saw the void in our industry…no one was helping other trainers put all of the pieces together, so we had to share what we were doing.


And that lead to Strength Faction…





Discover how to create the life you want while learning the skills to accelerate your career as a trainer


Get the goods on…


  • Personal development (and how to actually do it)
  • Programming for any type of client
  • Coaching that creates client buy-in and lasting relationships
  • Expanding your career with writing, video, podcasting, etc…



You’re going to learn how to fit all the pieces of the modern personal training puzzle together.


You just need the guidance and education to build on what you’ve already been doing to create a successful personal training career.


I’m sure that you are taking action to improve all of those things, but probably not at an industry-leading level like you will be as a member of Strength Faction.


When you understand how to fit all of the personal training pieces together, you’ll watch your life and career transform like crazy.


From being able to get your mindset in the right place to connecting with clients and programming for each individual in a way that gets them their specific results, you’ll have the tools to see the big picture, create the career you want, and be a go-to trainer.


And you’ll learn what you need to do that as a Strength Faction member.


It’s YOUR Life and YOUR Career


I have no doubt that you’re a great trainer…that you’re deeply committed to your clients, to your career, and to your life…if you want the best possible life and career you can have you need to develop yourself, and the programming and coaching systems, and you have to do that with a purpose.


I’m sure you’ve had success up to this point, and Strength Faction will help you improve upon and sustain that success with proven systems that teach you each component that you need for a successful personal training career.


You’ll learn how to do the things necessary to live your best life in the fitness industry…and get support from a great community in the process.


And once you start implementing the Strength Faction lessons into your life, you’ll see a dramatic transformation in yourself and in your career.




What’s included in each Strength Faction Membership?

Strength Faction is an online personal and professional development coaching program for personal trainers. Throughout the 17-week semester you’ll receive written lessons, training programming, coaching, video QnAs, and be a member of a great world-wide community of personal trainers. You can log on and access your Strength Faction dashboard from any device that connects to the internet—and uses Facebook. During each month-long module you’ll learn a specific aspect of the Strength Faction coaching system and how you can apply it:


Module 1- Your Success

Organized and actionable personal development for personal trainers

Prep Week: All of the movement and mindset lessons to start your Faction journey on the right foot
Week 1: Getting started with your Faction training program and the lessons that set you up for training success
Week 2: Getting deeper into personal development and simple nutrition lessons to accompany your training
Week 3: Training and personal continues and gets deeper!
Week 4: Training, nutrition, and personal development lessons that build to keep you making progress


Module 2- Programming Systematization

Having great programming systems saves you time and helps you get results for any type of client. We teach you how we’ve developed ours…and gotten results for clients from all walks of life.

Week 5: Meet your new client—a case study introduction to start your programming learning
Week 6: New member intake, assessment, and orientation
Week 7: The Big Program Design Presentation! (You see all the pieces put together!)
Week 8: You finish your case study and present (if you want to)


Module 3- Coaching in the Fitness Industry

Great coaching requires understanding our clients and using practical coaching methods to build relationships and apply simple, effective cueing on the training floor.

Week 9: Psychological Foundations of Fitness coaching (video lectures that lay the coaching foundation)
Week 10: Goal setting for short and long-term progress
Week 11: On the floor coaching, building cues, and our four-part coaching paradigm
Week 12: Semi-private, one-on-one, and group coaching and how to thrive in each environment


Module 4- Professional Expansion

We can’t just live in a bubble of training X and O’s anymore and expect to have a successful training career. We need the little skills like writing and video to educate our clients and build a name for ourselves.

Week 13: Writing and content development
Week 14: Filming and editing video, and creating your own podcast!
Week 15: Guerrilla branding and a strategy for applying your personal development
Week 16: Faction Veteran Members teach you how to use all of the Faction lessons


… and that’s not all that’s included in your Strength Faction membership.



Your Strength Faction program follows the “seasons of lifting”…borrowed from Dan John. Not only do you get to follow great training programs designed to get you results for different goals (fall= get jacked and strong, spring=get lean and conditioned, summer= live life while keeping your training kicking ass), but it also teaches you how to program for different types of clients and different types of goals. And this ain’t no one-size-fits-all programming—you’ll go through a simple assessment and then you’ll be guided into the appropriate training group.  And even from there, as you can see in the screenshot above (that’s a portion of a phase of the Summer ’18 program), we have choices within each movement category, making this program adaptable to just about anyone.



You’re also going to have direct access to Pete Dupuis for business lessons and business QnAs—one of the fitness industry OGs that built Cressey Sports Performance from the ground up to the training mecca and business that it is today. 



Psychologist, Dr. Lisa Lewis, also has her own QnA series during each Faction semester to talk about all those difficult client cases we have, and how to navigate the psychological world of the fitness industry. 



And you’ll also have two regular Strength Faction QnAs per weekWednesday afternoons 2pm eastern time and Thursday evenings 9pm eastern time, that feature special guests every month. You get to ask industry leaders direct questions—past guests include folks like Dan John (pictured above) and Eric Cressey, and you’ll even get access to the past 3 years of recorded QnA archives! Besides the guests, you get to connect with other Faction members from all over the globe and build relationships that seriously turn into friendships—while also having access to a whole lot of brain power to help you answer any questions that you may have and solve problems that you’re facing.



Spring ’19 Strength Faction Runs January 7th – May 5th

(Four payments of $169)

See cancellation policy in the Frequently Asked Questions section below





Your Strength Faction Coaches:

Chris Merritt, Mike Connelly, and Todd Bumgardner


As a team, we have over 30 years of experience in the fitness industry, working in just about every setting the industry has to offer. We’ve had to figure out this fitness gig multiple times over…figuring out the right career fit for ourselves, building businesses, and training clients from all walks of life to get results. We walked some seriously tough roads, but now we’re living the lives we want, working the way we want to, and enjoying the hell out of it all as we do it.


We’ve taken the lessons that we’ve learned over our careers and built them into the Strength Faction curriculum—helping hundreds of trainers from all over the world to improve their quality of life in the fitness industry while also sharpening their skills to get better results for their clients.




The Strength Faction Mentors:

Hailing from New York, Philly, and the Chicago burbs, they’re quite the group of fine humans.

My government name is Wesley Showalter but most call me Wes or Show-Dub, I started training with a personal trainer at the age of 12 to help improve my performance and body composition. Once sports started picking up steam for me training became a means for me to try and make up for my lack of natural athletic ability. Training became more and more intriguing to me as I got older but more so the process itself and the results that came with it. In my teen years the weight room became my sanctuary during some difficult times because it helped me relieve stress/anger and I loved being around others with a passion to get better. I Wrestled and played rugby through high school and ended up playing Rugby at Penn State while I got my B.S in Kinesiology. I love using scientific training principles as well as experience to help people achieve goals and improve quality of life. One of my largest interest in the fitness industry is educating the ill-formed on bull shit versus reality. I don’t have all the answers despite my attempts my never ending attempt at mastery, but if I can help make an uneducated individual even slightly more informed on some “fitness truths” than I’m happy as a pig in mud. I currently live in Philly with my wife Nancy and 1,000 cats, and coach out of Warhorse Barbell Club. I believe training, nudity, monster energy drinks, and super hero’s are all staples of a happy life. Aside from my wife my favorite things outside of fitness rhyme; cools shoes, good booze, and fun tattoos. Make sure to look both ways before you cross the street. Show-Dub over and out.


I’m Steve “Coach Fury” Holiner. Friends call me Fury. You’re a friend now, so go for it.
I got into fitness to be a strong dad. I eventually quit my gig as a Senior Visual Effects Producer so I can share the glory of strength with people. I got my start at Five Points Academy and moved to Mark Fisher Fitness in 2014. I recently left MFF to go out on my own. In addition to being a Strength Faction Mentor, I’m also a Master RKC, Master DVRT Instructor, Original Strength Lead Instructor and a big Godzilla nerd. I program FURY THURSDAYS for the Faction as well.
I’m married to wonderful woman with more tattoos than I, have two super kids and sweetheart of a pitbull named Ramona Flowers.
I’m excited to be in the Faction with you.
Hugs or high fives? It’s your call.

Hi—I’m Ross!  My journey in Strength began by researching training methods for myself while competing in wrestling and MMA.  At the same time I built a unique coaching/communication skillset working as a Special Olympics Program Coordinator and Coach. For the past decade, I have coached both athletes and adults – going from a trainer in large, commercial style gyms/facilities, to having a small (tiny) personal training studio, to opening RC Training & Fitness, a semi-private training gym in Oak Park, Illinois (just outside of Chicago). I work with High School, College, and National Team athletes, but get just as much joy from teaching an adult member how to do their first kettlebell swing or push-up. I absolutely have the best hair out of the entire Strength Faction crew, and I love being a part of the leadership team, because they all make me look gorgeous by contrast. I also smile a little too much for everyone’s comfort level—you could call me a pro at making a room full of people feel super awkward. I’m excited to work with the entire Faction, and find how their unique experiences can become their greatest assets, both as coaches and human beings.  Strength Faction has improved every facet of my business & life, and I want to help pass that sweet, sweet goodness along to all of you! Outside of the gym, I enjoy cooking for my wife, Michele, and daughter, Lucy, as well as hunting with my dog, Moose, and getting on the mats for some jiu-jitsu training.

– Ross




Want to hear more about what goes down for Strength Faction members? Click the video below.

Spring ’19 Strength Faction Runs January 7th – May 5th

(Four payments of $169)

See cancellation policy in the Frequently Asked Questions section below





Don’t just take our word for it—check out what these badass Strength Faction members have to say:


Because of the support I’ve gotten both online and in person so far, I am much more comfortable and confident I can succeed and take my career to the next level.” –Keiran H.


The programming is great, and fun, and I can use lots of it with my clients, and my beefiness factor has gone up since starting, but…that’s small in comparison to the big picture. The real value is how I’ve evolved tremendously as a coach in the past four months.”Paul L.


Not only did I gain strength physically, but mentally it’s been amazing. I have a lot more confidence training people- the daily lessons and the tips on cueing have been gold for me.” – Yadi E.




“But what if Strength Faction doesn’t work for me?”


Then we’ll refund your money.


We know what we teach in Strength Faction works—we’ve watched it help personal trainers improve their crafts and their lives many times over. But at the same time, we understand you may still have some doubts. That’s totally ok. So, we’re doing everything we can to make this a low-risk choice for you.



So, here’s the deal. Try Strength Faction for the first month, and if at any time during that month you decide Strength Faction isn’t for you, we’ll refund 100% of your money and you can cancel your membership.


We stand behind Strength Faction and what it’s done for trainers all over the world…we truly believe it’s the best program of its kind in the industry. But if for some odd reason it doesn’t work for you, we won’t hassle you, we’ll give you a refund and let you move on.


Want to have the best life and be the best trainer you can be?


You could spend the next 10 years trying to figure it out on your own, or you could get the guidance and education that helps you accelerate the process.


  1. Get everything you need to improve your life and career in one place.
  2. Lean on the guidance and support of your Strength Faction coaches and fellow members.
  3. Start implementing and getting results immediately]
  4. Do all this completely risk-free with guaranteed results.




Spring ’19 Strength Faction Runs January 7th – May 5th

(Four payments of $169)

See cancellation policy in the Frequently Asked Questions section below





Frequently Asked Questions


Q: What is Strength Faction and why has it helped so many personal trainers?


Strength Faction is a professional and personal development coaching program for fitness industry coaches…that cuts out the fluff and gets down to business with what trainers really need to be successful in this industry. It’s an online, experiential coaching program that’s supported by a great community format. It’s 17 weeks long and covers four main modules—personal development, programming, coaching, and expanding on all of the other skills the modern personal trainer needs like writing and video.


Q: I’m an experienced trainer, can I still benefit from being a Strength Faction Member?


The short answer—yes. We know that you’re after what works, not some information that’s supposed to be “cutting edge.” And what works is what matters for every experience level. We take practical knowledge from our “in the trenches” work and use it to build the Strength Faction curriculum…giving you real, immediately applicable information that you can use in your setting.


The Strength Faction community is also a great way for experienced coaches to expand their network and learn from other folks that are in the trenches every day.


Q: What if I’m new to personal training? Is Strength Faction for me?


It sure is! The Strength Faction curriculum is designed to meet members at their current experience level. And, to make sure you’re thriving in the Faction, you’ll be assigned a  Strength Faction mentor—an experienced coach that’s thrived in applying the Faction to their careers—to guide you through the Strength Faction process and help you navigate any issues you might be having in your own training or in your career. Joining the Strength Faction community early in your training career will provide you a solid, and seriously connected, network to answer your questions, cut the confusion, and help you earn success.


Q: I’m a commercial gym trainer, can I benefit from Strength Faction?


Absolutely! In fact, one of your Strength Faction coaches, Mike Connelly, is a fitness director at a commercial gym in Chicago and would be a great guide to help you. (We’re also working on a commercial gym specific curriculum.) Besides that, the personal development, programming, coaching, and professional expansion lessons that you’ll experience as a Faction member aren’t specific to any setting—they are principle-based so you can apply them in your world and with your clients.


Q: I’m a gym owner, I’d like to sign my staff up for Strength Faction, can I do that?


Yes! And we’ll even offer you a group rate for you and your staff.


Q: What if Strength Faction isn’t the right fit for me?


If during the first month of the Strength Faction semester you decide that the Faction isn’t for you, we’ll give you a 100% refund and let you move on.


We know the Faction changes peoples lives, we’ve seen it happen time and time again. But if for some weird reason it doesn’t seem like the right thing for you, you’ll get your money back. No hoops to jump through, just a quick and polite refund.


Q: What’s the Strength Faction cancellation policy?


During the first 30 days of your Strength Faction membership you can cancel at any time and receive a full refund for your purchase and be removed from monthly automatic billing. After the first 30 days, you are enrolled in the current Strength Faction semester until the end and will be billed each month until the completion of the semester. You may, however, at any time notify that you will not be continuing on past the current Strength Faction semester.


At the completion of each Strength Faction semester you are automatically re-enrolled unless you notify that you do not want to continue as a member. It’s set up this way because most folks choose to do more than one round of Strength Faction (we have some folks that have been members for three years) and we want to make the process easier for you.


To notify us of cancellation, you must email Todd Bumgardner directly at before the close of business on the final day of the final week of the current Strength Faction semester.


The 30-day cancellation policy renews at the start of each Strength Faction semester no matter how long you’ve been a Strength Faction Member.




Spring ’19 Strength Faction Runs January 7th – May 5th

(Four payments of $169)

See cancellation policy in the Frequently Asked Questions section above



In 2010, two dudes Chris and Todd, started the business that would eventually become Strength Faction.

You know how they say the rest is history? Well, it’s not.

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