A serious back injury in 1998 left George Temores with limited mobility and a dark cloud of depression.
He had ruptured two discs in his lower lumbar and had lost feeling in one leg, making it no longer usable. Pills seemed to be his only comfort once all treatment options had been exhausted.
"In that particular situation, even from a medical standpoint, there was no other option and no other way out," Temores said. "I just could not convince myself that I had to have surgery. It was that day that I made up my mind that I had to get myself out of this because no one had answers. I now know the effects of what moving the body can have, not only on the body, but on the mind."
That became his philosophy as he studied the human body through books and went back to the gym, a place he had always taken comfort in since the time he was 12.
His struggle to gain his strength back helped him decide on a career as a personal trainer. Now at 41 years old, he's been training for 14 years and has opened his own gym, Prodigy Training Center, in Ahwatukee Foothills.
"I'm trying to help two different situations," Temores said. "I'm trying to help people who need help or want help... The other side is personal trainers. They want to make a living at this, but it's very difficult. If you're in a gym they take a lot of money for a lot of work. The gyms know the trainers need them to be able to work with their clients. That was one of the main goals why I wanted to open Prodigy. I wanted a place where my rent for trainers was very inexpensive. They can come here and be comfortable and feel like this is their place, too. Everybody wins from that."
Temores has two trainers renting space in his gym so far, but he's open to giving more a place to do their work as long as they meet his requirements. He's also taking clients on himself. He feels like his specialty is intuition and being able to help people understand what they need to do both physically and mentally to be healthy.
"I think, in a nutshell, it all comes down to the person I'm working with," Temores said. "It's not about me or my accomplishments, it's about them. I'm different because I am not your mainstream trainer. I take each person into consideration as the individual. I'm not a trainer for everybody and I admit that, but I get the results. What I really want to impress on people is the fact that you can overcome anything, it just depends on how bad you want to do it."
This is Temores' second gym. Years ago he had a location in Chandler, called Changin Bodies, that he was forced to close when the bad economy hit.
"I have had hard times in this industry," Temores said. "The economy has been rough. But I don't see myself doing anything else. I do this because I have to. I've thought about getting out of the industry, but any time someone asks me a question it turns into a mini seminar. I felt like I was a trainer even before I was a trainer. Is there such a thing as a calling? I guess so."
Prodigy Fitness is located at 4302 E. Ray Road, Suite 107, next to Jamba Juice. For more information, call (480) 466-5311.
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