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I love helping others find their own way’: Liberties local looks to share a weight-loss journey

Personal trainer Declan Flynn set up ‘FlynnFit boot camp’ at St James National School in January, using his own process of finding health and fitness as an inspiration. 

FlynnFitness Boot Camp at St James National School, Dublin 8 Source: Declan Flynn

“I didn’t see any boot camps happening outside of a gym setting so I set this one up,” Flynn said. “It had a great turnout with a target audience of those just looking to get started with their fitness goals.” 

The aim of the boot camp is to help people of all ages and fitness levels to reach their health targets.  

“I love seeing people enjoy themselves, feel better and energised after sessions. They may feel tired, but the feel-good factor afterwards always helps them enjoy it too,” he said. 

Being a local resident of Dublin 8, Flynn wants to get involved and help the community. 

“I’m from Dublin 8 my whole life and once more people know about my boot camps and future training sessions, I hope to inspire others to enjoy an active lifestyle,” Flynn said. 

After going through his own weight struggles, Flynn decided to use what he had learned for himself and teach others.  

“I was one that used to resist training for myself years ago. After going through my own weight loss journey and making fitness my lifestyle, I love helping others find their own way to improve their health and fitness levels,” Flynn said. 

Flynn struggled with his weight due to identity and sexuality issues, he told The Liberty.  

“I was about 83/84kg at 5 ft 3 which is classed as unhealthy. I understand now that I was emotionally eating for years as I hid my sexuality. I came out in 2011, and an emotional weight lifted off me which prompted me to make other changes and get healthier,” he said. 

He decided to join his first boot camp at the beginning of 2012 and start his process to a healthier life and ultimately to starting his own. 

“I lost my first stone within two months and did my first marathon that year also. I started going to the gym on and off for the next couple of years using it as a place of therapy too. I worked with an online coach and made big changes, reducing my weight for a body transformation photoshoot in 2019 when I dropped to 57kg,” Flynn said. 

“I lost almost 30kg in total over the years and totally changed my physique.” 

2009 – 2019 Weight Loss Difference Source: Declan Flynn

After years of consistent hard work, Flynn decided to become a personal trainer in 2020.  

“I started initially working with online coaching and some personal training work, then I started FlynnFit Bootcamp this year,” he said. 

Finding clients was initially tough for Flynn.  

“It was hard getting the word out. Advertising is expensive, so I just used social media and held a competition with the Gay Community News (GCN) magazine for two free places that helped spread the word,” he said. 

I was one that used to resist training for myself years ago. After going through my own weight loss journey and making fitness my lifestyle, I love helping others find their own way to improve their health and fitness levels

Finding the location for the boot camp was easier than advertising it.  

“I work with St James national school teaching the kids gardening and food crop production, so I was able to use their playground for my boot camp,” he said. 

“One client said yesterday that she has been to other boot camps but my one was the best she has done and she will be back for future sessions,” Flynn added. 

The FlynnFit Bootcamp starts again on March 5th in Dublin 8.

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