Feel Like You’re in Prison? These Trainers Actually Were

Feel Like You’re in Prison? These Trainers Actually Were

“In isolation is where I really learned to reflect, to think about what I wanted my life to be and what I was going to change,” Mr. Guadalupe said. “It’s where I practiced yoga, it’s where a cellmate taught me to meditate.”

Second U trainers have been discussing how prison mentally fortified them with each other, and their clients. “There are huge parallels,” said Tommy Morris, one trainer. “I’ve had people say to me, ‘I don’t know how you did it in prison, I’ve been home two weeks and it’s driving me nuts.’ The most important thing is you have to have a regimen, you have to have a steady schedule of regular things you do. And if you can, take time out every morning for prayer, yoga, meditation, whatever you do to get in tune with yourself so you know fundamentally that you are OK.”

Kerry Faherty, a founder and the chief impact officer of Faherty Brand, a clothing company, met Mr. Guadalupe when she invited him to speak about social justice at a company retreat after hearing about his work from an employee. Since then, she has joined the organization’s board and is trying to help him scale his model nationally.

“These people come out of jail with nothing,” said Ms. Faherty, 36. “They don’t have money, they don’t have a support system, many are coming from traumatic childhoods, many have been out of society for 10 to 30 years, and you have a criminal record — how are you going to get a job? What Hector is doing makes a lot of sense.”

She and her husband, Alex Faherty, also work out with Mr. Guadalupe weekly, and in the last several weeks, Faherty Brand has offered group fitness classes (normally $35 per person, per hour) for free to its employees in Zoom sessions led by trainers from A Second U. So have Bombas, the sock company, and others. Individual sessions cost $45 per hour. The screen can offer a layer of comfort on both sides.

Mr. Guadalupe is working to make sure that the coronavirus pandemic doesn’t prevent the newest class of students from embarking on a path from halfway houses and uncertainty to a making a living, and possibly building a career. Distance classes of anatomy, physiology, CPR and computer skills will begin later this month.

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