When Dolvett Quince took the ULS stage Monday evening, his opening words to the crowd were to get out of their seats and onto their feet as they welcomed him.
Quince, best known for his role as a personal trainer on weight-loss reality show “The Biggest Loser,” spoke to a room of 219 students about the difficulties he faced growing up and how he didn’t receive much support from his foster family about his goals.
“I was so talented as a kid,” Quince said. “Singing, dance, art, all of it. Everything I wanted to do was pushed down. It was pushed back. It was never elevated… and the more that happened to me, the more I tried to get them to believe and support me, but that just didn’t happen.”
Quince, 40, said he made things happen for himself while his family life remained difficult.
When his family told him he couldn’t play sports because they didn’t have the money, he did it anyway.
“You have to have a voice,” Quince said. “Troubles are going to come, people are going to doubt you… and behind me were my brothers and sisters telling me ‘we can’t do that, we’ll get in trouble.’ But I had to do it anyways. I had to find out. My voice empowered me, even at this age.”
Because he was able to develop a voice that instilled personal encouragement at such a young age, Quince said he has been able to use that voice to motivate those he trains — both on and off-screen.
Quince’s family later moved to Atlanta, where he took on odd jobs and got his start in personal training.
Inspired by the atmosphere of the gym setting, Quince got his start as a personal trainer and said he found himself training others on his technique of working with clients four days a week and empowering his fellow trainers.
He spent days networking with other trainers and clients and nights training new
As the numbers of clients he was training grew into the hundreds, Quince said he was fired by the gym’s owner and had to start from scratch.
“It gets better when it gets worse,” Quince said. “I know that makes no sense at all. It gets better when it gets worse because when you’re at your worst, that’s when somehow the best things come out of it.”
In 2004, Quince said he opened his own personal training studio, which had 15 trainers and drew in celebrity clients such as Janet Jackson.
“The best thing about training at my own personal training studio? There are no egos,” he said.
After working at his studio, and a brief stint as Justin Bieber’s personal trainer, Quince said he got his spot on “The Biggest Loser,” which he refers to as his dream job because it allows him to be able to do what he loves most — empower people to change their lives.
“I’ll never forget that moment because in that moment I said, ‘I have the opportunity to change the life of about 200 to 300 people on a monthly basis,’” Quince said. “’Now, I have the ability to take care of millions.’”
Quince said he believes he’s been successful as a personal trainer because he doesn’t lose focus when it’s time to work out. He said the celebrity status that comes along with being on “The Biggest Loser,” is just a sidebar and he hasn’t let his ego get in the way of his original intentions.
At the end of the lecture, students approached the microphone to ask Quince his advice on their workout habits, dieting tips and overall what can help keep them motivated.
Quince told students that in order to keep with their fitness and lifestyle goals, they must surround themselves with those who also want to live a healthy lifestyle, and to keep absolutes in their mind at all times.
“Have absolutes,” Quince said. “If you say ‘I’m not going to eat pasta after 5 p.m.,’ and stick with it, you’re going
Quince also told the crowd that if they want to see change in their habits, they must make it happen, from the inside out.
“Never start working out from the outside in,” Quince said. “Because then you don’t change your internal habits. Train from the inside out.”
Audience members said they were inspired by Quince’s words and plan to apply them their everyday lifestyle habits.
Simone King, a graduate student in the College of Business, said she has been actively working out for the past 10 years and has been told numerous times to only do cardio — advice that Quince said was not ideal.
“I loved the motivation, the story and I loved hearing people’s stories,” King said. “When you ask people what do you do when you want to lose weight, they say only do cardio, stay away from weights so you won’t get big, do this, do that. It changes all the time.”
King said she took this mixed advice for the longest time and it often confused her as to what the proper workout routine should be, and didn’t have a lot of support in her routines. 12