Hey There, I'm Coach Thiago aka Your Biggest Cheerleader
“Fitness professional Thiago Santos will get you to your fitness goal. You will move better, look better, and feel better.
Moving, looking, and feeling good is an arm’s reach away. If you are searching for the sort of one-to-one training that will put you on a healthy and effective path to being fit, consider training at TSANTOSFIT.
Talk to Thiago about what approach works best to support your personal circumstances. Whether you choose private training, small group classes, or nutrition coaching, Thiago will make it work for you as he has done for so many others.” Let's get started.
How I Went From Scrawny To Brawny
I was first introduced to the weight room freshman year in high school. I never thought that stepping into the gym would have any significant influence on my life, but that year a seed was planted. Prior to basketball tryouts, the gym was open for students to participate in some general strength and conditioning. From what I can now remember there was no specific routine. I just recall banging out some bicep curls and struggling to bench press the 45-lb Olympic bar with 10 lbs. on each side.
Despite my efforts, I did not make the basketball team. I had the passion and the athletic ability, but a low basketball “IQ” since I had never played organized basketball. I grew up playing 2-on-2 basketball, and on occasion when we gathered enough kids we would play a little 3-3 over at my neighbor Drew’s house on his lumpy driveway. I was disappointed but hopeful: even Michael Jordan was cut from his freshman team! I was still convinced that I would grow another couple of inches. Then it was sophomore year, and it was crucial to make the team because there was a slim chance to make it as a junior. A few weeks prior to tryouts, I got into a fight over a girl that I was dating. A certain individual was going around saying that he had slept with her, but my girl claimed he was lying. I hate to even classify the event as a fight. I didn’t even get into a defensive fighting stance. All I remember is waking up to “Are you okay? What's your name? Can you tell me what day it is today?” Besides a busted-up lip I was physically fine. The only thing that hurt was my pride and manhood. Even if I had the chance to stand toe to toe with this individual I didn’t stand a chance. This kid was built like Mike Tyson and apparently had a haymaker like him, too.
After that “fight” I wanted so badly to make the team and redeem some of my wounded manhood. During tryouts, I played my heart out. I chased every loose ball and was physical underneath the boards. I was optimistic that my name would be printed on the roster and felt a crushing sense of defeat when it wasn’t.
I could have stayed defeated, but instead, I used that pain as motivation. I never wanted to feel that vulnerable again. I immediately got serious about lifting weights. I really didn't have a clue what I was doing in the weight room, but I didn't care. I was at the YMCA five to seven days a week. My primary goal was to look like one of those bodybuilders in a magazine. With that physique, I would look imposing. No one would mess with me--and the ladies wouldn’t mind, either. I can remember asking some of the bigger guys in the gym “What’s a good exercise to hit my tricep, how many reps and sets do I do?” The typical protocol in those days for most exercises was to perform one warm-up set followed by three sets of 10 reps.
After about a month of hard training consisting of working my biceps and pecs-- the major glamour muscles--people began to take notice. Man, did I enjoy and appreciate the positive feedback! I was in the gym banging out countless reps and sets. There were days that I spent 60 minutes just training arms. The response made me work out that much harder. I started to develop a real passion for “bodybuilding,” and started to learn more. Every month I would read the latest copy of Muscle and Fitness magazines. Ultimately, I would be persuaded to buy the latest supplement from Muscletech. They always had a colorful three-page spread that looked like something out of an organic chemistry textbook, claiming their products were backed up with “scientifically proven results.”
When I first started working out I made every mistake in the book. Even today I’m still learning and evolving in my practice. My passion and enthusiasm led me to earn a Bachelor's Degree in Kinesiology. I’m now blessed and thankful to have the opportunity to be able to make a living helping others discover the joy of effective, transformative exercise. I urge all my clients not to let their past setbacks control them. Use failures to fuel your drive. Take that first step. You never know where it will send you in life.
Coach Scott Gilbert
Scott began fitness training in the US Air Force in 2008 where he prepared Airmen for physically demanding training courses and fitness evaluations. He left the Air Force and continued training out of gyms in Tampa, Florida. He worked with clients at all phases of their fitness journeys in individual training and group classes.
Scott lives in Barrington with his partner and their two young daughters. His two high school sons live in Indiana where Scott travels monthly along with their school break visits.
Scott finds time to enjoy camping, the local bike trails, visiting breweries and paddle boarding!