Personal Trainers > James Barcelo
Growing up as a fat kid and then morphing into a skinny teenager, James has been on both ends of the spectrum. It was through fitness that he was able to transform into the athletic individual that he is today, and it has since become a lifestyle for him. He started with running, swimming and calisthenics to lose weight but quickly discovered his love for lifting weights when he started playing rugby. As a highly motivated and competitive individual, he was hooked when he saw the growth that his body was capable of through training in the gym. Although he was initially focused on improving his physique, he was always addicted to strength and would chase numbers and milestones. In fact, the reason he got into powerlifting was because of a wager with a powerlifting friend back in 2016. Since then, James has committed himself to the sport, continuously learning how to coach and handle athletes, assisting them to win medals, earn titles and break records not just locally but internationally as well. He has even won medals himself and was appointed team manager of Singapore’s national team in 2018.
James has since progressed from just lifting an empty barbell to placing 5th in the Powerlifting Southeast Asian Cup, a competition only the top 3 from each weight class could participate in. His perspective on fitness is to focus on training sustainably. His approach to training clients is providing them with a fitness regimen that they can do. He will gradually push them to strive for bigger goals that he feels they are capable of. His reassurance and support would be prominent throughout their journey.
James has always been passionate about sharing his fitness knowledge and experience to help others become better versions of themselves, even before becoming a Personal Trainer. His goal as a trainer is to show clients that training can be fun, so that they embrace and enjoy the process, not just the results.
Tell us about one client on whom you had the biggest influence.
I had a client who first came to me for a back condition induced by a C-section. She grew up in a tiny village in the United Kingdom and had always been afraid of carrying large and heavy objects. I progressively re-built her fitness, initially targeting her back problems and progressing to encouraging her to lift weights. She is now pushing herself to lift more and is even considering competing in a powerlifting meet.
- Singapore Powerlifting Open 2019 U93kg Bronze
- Singapore Powerlifting Invitational 2019 U93kg Bronze
- Singapore Powerlifting Open 2021 U93 Bronze
- Southeast Asian Cup 2020 5th Place
Put in the work and the results will follow. Progress is not linear, so don’t be discouraged if it seems like you are stuck in a plateau.