Four years ago, I was thirty years old with the back problems of someone twice my age. A sedentary writing job in the least ergonomic chair in the country didn’t help. Stress (and sympathy eating) around the birth of my first child didn’t help either. When it came to food, I was the most sympathetic father-to-be on the planet. I was in pain all the time and honestly wondering how I was ever going to be a fully functioning father once my kid could actually walk on two feet. I went to chiropractors but found them to be little more than a sink hole of money. This is where Doug Murphy permanently changed the trajectory of my life. I needed emergency help to drop the weight, strengthen my core, increase flexibility, and end the daily physical pain that was affecting the quality of my life on every front. It was an absolute necessity. Over the last four years, I’ve dropped 40 pounds, and been able to do far more things professionally. But even more importantly, the pain has stopped. Back pain just isn’t part of my daily routine anymore and for that, I owe Doug Murphy a tremendous debt.
For years, I have struggled every day to remain active in my career and socially, despite having to contend with an atypical form of arthritis that attacked my shoulder joints, wrists, hands, and occasionally knees. About a year ago, I began working with Doug to strengthen my weakened and painful joints and to increase my stamina. Before I began to work with him, fear of further injury had prevented my exercising. Doug has guided me in a highly sensitive, patient, intelligent, flexible, and careful way to produce benefits that far exceeded my expectations. In fact, the last time I saw my rheumatologist, he was both surprised and impressed with the striking improvements in my joints, particularly my shoulders. I highly recommend Doug to anyone who has suffered from conditions similar to my own, and who has been afraid to initiate or restart an exercise program.
Theresa V., Washington, DC
When I first met Doug eight weeks ago, I was out of shape and my energy level was at an all time low. Basically, I thought I would learn the basics about a good workout routine, as well as gather some facts about my nutritional habits. Well, I got that and more. After an intense eight week session, Doug helped me gain 1% in size on both arms and legs while correcting the muscle imbalances on both sides of my body. I gained 5lbs of muscle and reduced my body fat from 13.7% to 11.7%, while improving my strength. I continue to use all of his techniques during my own workouts. If you are seeking a good personal trainer to help you transform your body, then Doug is your man.
Marco H, Washington, DC
I have been working with Doug for a little over a year and I have been very pleased with my results. Because I have permanent nerve and strength deficits from a long-ago car accident, I needed to find a trainer who knew how to work with someone with special physical needs. Doug has been wonderful- he constantly pushes me to improve, but not outside my capabilities. Since Doug has been training me, I am in the best shape of my adult life. I lost weight and have dropped sizes. The best part is that when I went shopping last weekend, I felt good about how the clothes fit. Ultimately I felt good about myself!
LF, Washington, DC
In the past, I’ve worked with personal trainers and have not always had a great experience with all of them. Since the only reference for Doug I had beforehand was his website, it was a crapshoot when I signed him on as my personal trainer just over a year ago. I can’t tell you how hot the table has been for me since. First, I am a long distance runner. I suffered from piriformis syndrome (aka sciatica) that left an irritating pain deep in my right buttock when I ran hard or sat on it for too long. Doug immediately focused on my core work, not just the abdominals, but the lower back as well. He likes to call it balance Within a couple months, the pain completely dissipated and has not returned since even in subsequent marathons. Also, my running pace has improved significantly. With the consistently tough leg workouts that Doug has me doing, I’ve achieved a personal record in runner speak in many of my last races.

I would also be remiss if I failed to mention that Dougs constant need to push me hard also saved my life. On a recent trip to St. Lucia, I decided to join a friend and climb the unsanctioned, very steep Petit Piton. It was a straight up climb that took nearly an hour and a half. About half way up, we began using ropes to help us climb. With no safety harnesses on and no vines to hang onto, the ropes were our only means of pulling ourselves up. On one rope climb, the rope slid to the side of the round rock I was climbing, leaving me dangling 300+ meters above the nearest treetop. Fortunately, in the year that I have been training with Doug, he has gotten my petite frame and slender biceps curling 21 lbs. I was able to use my upper body strength to hold on to the rope without fear that I’d fall and break every bone in my body until my friend and hiking guide were able to rescue me.

Furthermore, Doug is not only a very experienced and knowledgeable trainer, he is also very patient and makes the training fun. I have to admit that I like to whine “ particularly when he increases the weights. But somehow he turns it around, and I end up laughing or smiling when I’m going for fifteen or fatigue. I must be neurotic, but for some reason, I enjoy going to the torture chamber. Perhaps it’s because I have an awesome personal trainer, or perhaps it’s because I relish in the fact that all my exes now do a double take of my smokin body. You decide.

Alice J., Washington, DC
In the spring of 2009, I had a modest goal of losing 10lbs. Working with Doug twice a week has enabled me to accomplish my goal while simultaneously building muscle. I feel better than I have in years and have Doug to thank. He is an amazing trainer and motivator!
David Catania, DC City Council, Washington, DC
Years of running have given me strong legs, but little upper body strength, which became important when I picked up sculling as an alternate sport.Everyone needs a little luck‘ that phone call to Doug during the New Year holiday break a few years ago was one of the best things I have done for myself.With Doug as my trainer, I have since learned the value of consistency in strength training, witnessing my body fat index improve, and felt my muscles firming up.
M Wei, College Park, MD
I started training with Doug in 2007 and have always been pleased with the results I get following his workouts. This year I decided to compete in grappling at the Gay Games, and knew I needed to have more endurance to get me through my matches. I discussed with Doug what my goal was, and what I thought was needed to accomplish it. From one session to the next, he completely revamped my training to work on endurance, and really pushed me through the next month. Result: I had the strength and endurance from my workouts with him to take home the gold. It was a great experience, made all the better for having the stamina to enjoy it.
Dick S, Washington DC
I live with a chronic severe pain problem that affects all parts of my body (fibromyalgia). My joints are usually in pain as well as major muscle groups. Doug has enabled me to rebuild my body. Doug knows an immense amount of exercises that can help certain parts of the body strengthen without placing undue stress on areas where pain or weakness may reside. I started with only stretching since my muscles were so tight. I have moved on from using resistance bands to using free weights, in an aggressive workout plan that has added two inches of muscle to my chest and made my shoulders broader and more noticeable. Doug presented me with a complete health plan of muscular development, aerobic exercise, and diet. He pointed out what proved to be empty calories in my diet, and I have substantially changed what I consumed compared to the past. The way Doug communicates makes a difference. He is not talking down to me but explaining choices. I am taking weight off, and have evidence of a six pack emerging. The results are getting me charged to do more. I needed a plan and Doug provided me that. I strongly suggest you take the time to talk to this guy with a rather dry wit that makes working out entertaining.
Steve S., Washington DC
When I started training with Doug, I was physically quite weak, had no endurance to speak of, and in my mid-40’was rapidly becoming a butterball. In addition to losing 20 pounds and 3-3/4 inches from my waist and 4 inches from my hips, I have even lost 4% body-fat! My bad cholesterol has gone down, too. The weight loss has been great, and people are telling me I’m looking slim. The best thing for me, personally, is that I’m getting very strong! At first, I couldn’t even do one bent-knee pushup. Now I can do 20 regular push-ups in a row. And I’m getting good at wide-grip pull-ups, too. For the first time in my life, I can hoist those heavy carry-on bags over my head and into the airplane storage bins with no trouble. I even help some men with their bags. In addition, Doug’s strength training regimen really helped when doing alpine hiking last summer. Hiking is much more fun when I can call on all parts of my body to help and don’t have to stop every five minutes to catch my breath. What an ego booster!
Linda R, Washington DC
Okay, I’ll admit it working out hasn’t been something I’ve loved since I played basketball in high school. As I have gotten older (and I’m not that old!), I’ve found it easier to make excuses and use my work schedule and travel schedule as a reason for not working out. But when I decided I needed to make an investment in me having the commitment of the triple D (Doug, Dag and Damien) match the commitment I was trying to make in myself is a path toward success. They have each been willing to accommodate my crazy schedule and not let me get off the hook when I have whined, and believe me I have. Overall, Doug, Dag and Damien have worked with me to gain strength, recover from a pretty bad broken ankle, learn to love bear crawls (well not quite) and actually get that sense of accomplishment after an hour of working out. The team has come to my 600 square foot apartment and worked out in my living room, met me at my office gym, and I have worked out at Doug’s studio once you are in with the Triple D¦ you are in, they are not letting you go! In all seriousness the willingness of these guys to be accommodating and work around my schedule to help me realize the goals I’m setting by making the investment in myself is why I stick to it and why I stick with them. Not only am I committed to it ‘but they are committed to me, and what else can you ask for? Well except for three great guys to work out with not much else.
Glynda Becker, 24, Rock Star Washington, DC (Glynda has quite the sense of humor and may have fudged a little on her age and occupation!)
After 20 years of running, marathon training soccer I found myself at age 36 with back problems, sciatica, muscle soreness and nagging injuries. Kareem has a genuine interest and devotion to figuring out what’s wrong and helping you solve it through his solid understanding of how the body works. He gets it.
Neal. W, Runner / Desk jockey
I’m thrilled with my new physique I’ve never changed so much so fast! Sure I feel stronger and better balanced. Sure every movement is easier. But it’s the change in my appearance that I’m most pleased with. Six months with Kareem and people I haven’t seen for a while don’t recognize me! Three cheers and thank you!
Durnetta T
In 2008, at the age of thirty, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. For a year and a half, I under went chemotherapy and several surgeries which finally ended in a bilateral mastectomy and chest reconstruction. Throughout this time, I was unable to exercise, I was experiencing limited mobility in my left arm, where the doctors had removed tissue and my lymph nodes, and I gained 10 lbs. Two years later, at the recommendation of a friend, I decided to get help from Doug Murphy, who assessed my situation, and paired me up with Dag. I’ve been working with Dag since January 2010 and things couldn’t be better. Before I talk about results, first, let me tell you a little bit about Dag. Dag has an easy going and very upbeat personality; which can probably be attributed to exercise endorphins. I’m still assessing. I can tell he really enjoys his job and likes working with people. As an added bonus, he has a great sense of humor. However, don’t be fooled. Despite his laid back demeanor, there is a true drill sergeant inside. He takes exercise and nutrition very seriously and never lets me slack off. He’s constantly pushing me and is impervious to my whining ¦ which there is plenty of. Within just 5 months, I’ve experienced noticeable results from his total body workouts. Most importantly, I’m feeling great about myself and I no longer feel restricted physically. If I want to go on a rigorous hike with friends or on a long run, I know my body is up to the task. I’m in better physical shape now than I’ve ever been. When I was in my twenties, I only did aerobic exercises, mostly running, and didn’t pay any attention to improving my upper body, core strength, or flexibility. Now, I think I’m getting it all. Plus, I finally lost those pesky 10 lbs I’d put on a couple years ago!
June L, Washington, DC
After losing a lot of weight through dieting alone, I found that as years passed, I needed to continue to lower my calorie intake just to maintain my weight loss. And even so, I noticed the weight beginning to creep back slowly. I got to the point that I was maintaining my weight on only 1000 calories a day and my metabolism was a mess. I knew I was going down a very unhealthy path, and I needed to begin incorporating exercise into my daily life to fix the problem. Because I hadn’t really exercised before, I sought professional assistance to help me get started and get healthy. This is when I turned to Doug Murphy.
I told Doug upfront that I knew I couldn’t commit to getting myself to a gym, so I asked him to design a program I could do in my own home. As if that wasn’t enough of a challenge, I work in two cities and have two homes, so I needed a a plan I could do in both places. And due to my hectic schedule, I could only meet with Doug once a week to get started.
Despite all of the obstacles I presented, Doug put together a great program for me that made me work harder than I could have imagined but gave me the results I needed. In three months, I lost a total of 13% of my bodyfat. I feel leaner and fitter than ever, and most importantly, my metabolism is finally back to normal. Thank you, Doug!
Anne B, Washington DC and Philadelphia, PA
Targeted, thorough and proven results are a few words to describe Dag’s techniques. I look forward to my sessions and I’m enjoying the benefits of a healthier life and toner body.
Brenda M, Washington DC
At the age of 24, I moved to Washington D.C. from California. Until that point in my life I had a normal diet and never exercised- I was 30 pounds overweight. On the first day that I met with Doug, I set my weight and training goals. My goal weight was 175 pounds by Christmas, a total loss of almost 20 pounds in four months. After meeting with Doug two or three times a week, I have reached my goals. When I saw my friends and family for Christmas, they could not believe how good I looked. Doug and I work hard trying to make my body strong and healthy, and can I see and feel that it is paying off. My body fat has dropped and I shaved three inches off of my waist. Doug has motivated me to achieve my goals, eat properly, and enjoy working out.
Trainer’s note: John continued to lose weight after the holidays, and took off a total of 31lbs for an ending weight of 160lbs in March. The final tally was 5’³ off the waist, with a reduction in body fat from 25.7% to 16.2%. Great job, John!
I received an email from John recently:
Hi Doug, How are you? I hope that things are going well. I just had a major accomplishment that I wanted to show you, because it was your training that helped me. About 2 years ago I picked up a sport called Breath Hold Spearfishing. I have advanced quickly by putting in a lot of time in the ocean, I have averaged over 15hours per week for over the last year. This specific fish that I have been hunting for the past four months is called a White Sea Bass and it is one of the most prized catches in Southern California. Here are some pictures of the 30lbs beast that I caught.
John H., Washington DC
Doug Murphy has helped me to not only lose 44 lbs so far (YAY!) but also to increase my fitness level significantly. When I started seeing Doug I could not walk up a flight of stairs without being winded but now I can complete a 1+ hour kickboxing class by Frank B and cardio classes by Harold Sanco at Results Gym. Doug gives intense workouts that have increased my stamina and have reshaped my body. If you are serious about losing weight and getting fit, see Doug, you will not be disappointed.
GP, Silver Spring, MD
After 2 kids and years of not exercising I didn’t think I could ever get back in shape. I’ve tried gyms and diets’¦.nothing really worked. After 4 months of working out with Doug I’ve not only lost 20 lbs, but got muscle definition to show off. I now weigh and look like I did when I was 18 !!! I am a believer !!!
I have very limited time to allocate to working out, so Doug helped me set up a home gym with a minimum up-front investment. I now have everything that I need for working out at home for less than $500. Doug is very professional and knows his stuff. When I started with him initially I was only interested in getting my lower body in shape. In a non-pushy way he made me work out every muscle in my body rather than just certain spots, and now I am very grateful for it. I look forward to my workouts because I know they bring results !!
T. Rosenbaum, Potomac, MD
I am someone who never worked out on a regular basis my entire life and I don’t particularly like exercise. I am the person who paid for the gym membership and never used it; and felt guilty about it! With a demanding job and two young children, there never seemed to be time to work out and I wasn’t that motivated to make the time. I finally realized that if I was going to exercise, I needed someone there to see me through it, and to think for me. Last thing I want to do is have to focus on remembering all the exercises in the correct order and the correct amount of weight. I think too much on my job. So working out with Doug has been great. He does the thinking for me. I do what he says and the results have been incredible. I actually have abs! Burgeoning muscles in my arms. I feel strong and I know I am really taking care of myself (at least this is one small thing I am doing for me). I even work out at 7:30 am and I am NOT a morning person. Doug has a great personality and a good sense of humor. He’s not one of those excessive cheer leaders; just supportive, a great temperament and constantly adapting the workout to produce results. Thanks Doug. You have made a difference and everyone is noticing it!
Emily G, Rockville, MD
Doug Murphy has worked with me in the past few years, and I feel as though I know him and his personal trainer expertise very well. Before we had our first sessions, it came as a pleasant surprise that he wanted to know many specific details about my physical condition, medical history, age and current activities, and everything was put in writing. Only then would he begin the exercises. It was a very professional and concerned attitude which one could only respect and appreciate. His subsequent training proved to be as caring, patient and expert as one could wish. As a result, I am now in better shape than I was several years ago, thanks to him.
Sumter B ‘“ age 92, Washington, DC, Washington, DC
A former client sent me this email:
Friday, August 31, 2007
Hello Doug, I was looking over my appointment book from last year and noticed that this is just about the time I started seeing you for some training sessions. What a difference a year has made! Thanks to your joint-strengthening and back routines (which I do religiously), I have not suffered any back problems, and my elbows and shoulders are also doing much better. Since I am doing more landscaping than ever, having a strong, pain-free body has really been a blessing. So I am definitely one of your success stories, and I really appreciate the advice and guidance you offered.
Sam N, Glenn Dale, MD
A former client sent me this email:
Friday, August 31, 2007
Hello Doug, I was looking over my appointment book from last year and noticed that this is just about the time I started seeing you for some training sessions. What a difference a year has made! Thanks to your joint-strengthening and back routines (which I do religiously), I have not suffered any back problems, and my elbows and shoulders are also doing much better. Since I am doing more landscaping than ever, having a strong, pain-free body has really been a blessing. So I am definitely one of your success stories, and I really appreciate the advice and guidance you offered.
Christel W, Miami
Dear Doug:
I would like to express my gratitude to you for having completely changed my attitude toward working out. It has been a pleasure to be trained by you for a year, and I am sorry you are leaving Miami as it will be very difficult to replace you.
When I first contacted Doug I was skeptical about working out. I had been swimming for the last 3 years on an almost daily basis, and I never felt at ease around machines and weights. Gyms were not my favorite places and I had a hard time with the attitude of most personal trainers. Doug was able to change my mind about that, as he developed a specific workout for me. I did not want to lose flexibility for my swimming, but still was interested in adding some muscle. I met Doug twice a week and sessions were always different and effective, using not only machines and free weights, but many types of equipment.
He succeeded in making my swimming more competitive, as I would have more energy and endurance. At the same time my body changed, adding more muscle volume. For those skeptical guys out there like me, I suggest trying Doug’s style of training- he will make the difference for you.
Thanks again
Fabio P., Miami
Hire Doug Murphy. I am a professional dancer so I feel like I know something about being in shape and training. I went to Doug to get new information, to get out of my workout rut and with some specific goals in mind. Doug succeeded on every count. I can’t recommend him too highly. He is thorough, knowledgeable, dependable, motivational and demanding ‘“ not to mention in excellent condition himself which serves as a testament to his expertise and makes him a great role model. I have worked over the years with several professional trainers and Doug is the best.
L. Alexander, Chicago, Illinois
Three months under the guidance of personal trainer Doug Murphy has produced some pleasant results. I haven’t looked this good since- well, never. And to think, Doug worked this miracle in three short months, taking up only three hours a week. I have pecs now, along with bulging biceps and a trim little waist- with just a hint of a washboard stomach.
John Smith, Chicago Free Press - April 19, 2000
Hiring a personal trainer is right for anyone at any fitness level,’ says Doug Murphy (www.dougmurphy.com), a certified personal trainer and fitness consultant. Murphy stresses customized programs noting that what works for your co-worker or friend may not be the best program for you.
‘œPersonal trainers have access to the latest techniques and health information, which saves you time and allows for a safe workout. What you did in high school or college now may be deemed unsafe or counterproductive,’ says Murphy, who also is a contributing writer for several health and fitness magazines and will begin offering online advice, photos and demonstrations via his Web site.
Like most trainers, Murphy performs a fitness evaluation and gathers a health history for new clients so that a customized program can be developed based on the client’s goals and physical limitations. ‘œHiring a personal trainer makes your time at the gym much more efficient. You won’t waste time on machines that don’t help you meet your goals or find yourself not knowing where to start,’ says Murphy.
The Baltimore Sun, January 7, 2004
I started working with Doug Murphy about 20 months ago at the age of 61. During the four previous months, I was the principal care giver for someone dying of cancer. With little to no upper body strength, care giving tasks were difficult. My goal was to become stronger and Doug helped me achieve that goal. Doug is on-time, friendly and flexible to accommodate my work travel schedule. He pushes me to do more yet knows my limits. I’ve been diagnosed with cervical dystonia so most importantly, Doug carefully tailors my exercises so they do not aggravate this condition. I’m achieving my goal; planks and pushups are now part of my routine and with Doug’s urging and advice, exercise is now an important part of my life.
Jeanne K, January 7, 2004
Simply put, Doug is the best. I started working with Doug when my daughter was 6 months old, and now 2 months later I can say that I look better than I did before I got pregnant. Doug somehow manages to be very friendly and positive and happy whilst kicking your butt ‘” he sounds so positive when he gives you a new move to try that you actually believe you can do it. And it turns out you can! I think his greatest talent is understanding how your strength is progressing and tailoring every workout precisely to your developing muscles ‘” every workout is challenging enough to make you wonder how you’ll get through it, yet you are able to actually do it so you always feel accomplished. It’s never so hard you can’t do any of it and it’s never so easy you think you could do it on your own. Basically, Doug makes himself invaluable to you. I see him once a week and work out 1-2x a week myself. Every time I show up and say I can now do an exercise I had previously struggled with, he says great and adds a new twist so I am always striving to meet his newest challenge. I appreciate the fact that he pays so much attention to my development so that he is continually challenging me. I feel so much stronger than I ever have in my life. I always wondered how people justified spending money on a trainer long term thinking you just go to someone, learn a few moves and then work out on your own. Now I get it ‘” even though I am a very motivated person who works out regularly, I couldn’t do this on my own because he truly has the expertise to take me to the next level. I’d make many sacrifices to keep going to him!
After Doug got me into great shape after my first pregnancy, he also kept me in great shape during my second pregnancy. I trained with Doug into my third trimester and found him to be extremely knowledgeable about the changes my body was going through. He was able to adapt my workouts so that they remained challenging yet he never pushed me too far. I was able to maintain a great level of strength that came in handy during delivery and post-partum. Every week he checked in about where I was, and could change the workout on the fly to accommodate my energy levels. I highly recommend his services during and after pregnancy!
Jen
After two successive foot surgeries in 7 weeks and four months in a cast and crutches, I felt like my body had turned to mush. I told my doctor I wanted to work with a personal trainer, not use my right foot but exercise my arms, abs etc. and I got the go ahead. I found Doug on the Internet and he contacted me the next day. I explained that I would be able to some exercises that did not involve my right foot and he said he would come up with a program. He fortunately could come to my house which made it so convenient. Doug is the consummate professional. He did not make it too easy as I told him I wanted to be challenged and I wanted results. He always made sure I was comfortable with the exercises and when I sometimes whined about it as in not wanting to do 20 repetitions but rather only 10, he gently encouraged me to go for the 20 and I was always able to do it. He was never late for our sessions and was very patient with my dog who wanted to shower him with kisses and be part of the exercise session. I can highly recommend him in all situations but especially when dealing with a layoff due to surgery.
Lesley L., Washington DC

COMMENTS FROM OTHER FITNESS PROFESSIONALS

In today’s world of health & fitness we have a growing number of fitness trainers. Many deem themselves specialists in weight loss, nutrition, strength & conditioning. Unfortunately, many lack the skills, knowledge or experience to do so. I have had the pleasure of collaborating with and getting to know Doug Murphy. I know that developing a safe and effective program for his clients is his #1 priority. He is very thorough in his fitness assessment and medical history screening, and goes out of his way to contact the client’s physician and other medical professionals (dietitian, occupational & physical therapist, etc.). Doug has a genuine love for his work and enjoys helping his clients improve their quality of life.
Read about Joe’s work with the blind:
miamilighthouse.com
Joseph Castillo, Licensed Physical Therapist & Certified Fitness Trainer, Miami miamilighthouse.com
Doug’s knowledge and expertise in fitness instruction and nutrition, along with his ability to impart that knowledge to his clients, is extraordinary. The clientele feedback whenever Doug trains is overwhelmingly positive. He will be hard to replace and sorely missed.
C. Russo and B. Halda, Owners, Mpower Project Gym, Miami mpowerproject.com