I can’t lie, I love Pho soup. This wasn’t always the case though, when I was a teenager hamburgers always sounded like a better idea, fact is I was in a hurry to eat and soup just took too long to cool.


After being maybe kinda sort of beat up in high school I started going with my Uncle to take Jujitsu in Renton. We lived in Gig Harbor and in traffic hour we could drive for two hours before getting there. It was a huge time commitment but my Uncle was the coolest guy on the planet to me so secretly I loved just spending time with him in the car. We had a lot of adventures on those drives, one time the gas was so low we could hear the gas literally being sucked out of the tank as we rolled up the gas station, thankfully we made it.

The adventures weren’t as cool as this…but close

Genetically my uncle was in shape! He was 155 pounds at about 5-9 and sported abs almost year round. His workout consisted of mostly pushups and no weight training. An early lesson I learned was not everyone has the same genetics. I could do all the pushups and situps like he did but my body never looked the same. Even with close blood lines it just wasn’t happening.

From time to time my Uncle would stress moderately clean eating, depending on your standards, so I’ll never forget the first time he took me to get Pho in Renton after a Jujitsu practice. I was pretty hungry so soup wasn’t going to do it for me.

” I love Pho” he said, “It’s like healthy fast food”. I’m not sure I would make that statement today but if my Uncle said it I believed it at that point.

Pho was too hot for me, especially after practice so I opted for a salad noodle bowl, though I didn’t absolutely love the salad the fish sauce it came with made the flavors for me, sweet and slightly tangy so I didn’t mind eating Pho with him from time to time.

Last year I ended up eating Pho, long story short my girlfriend fed me some of her broth with Siracha and Hoison( I think that’s what it’s called) and I was hooked.

The secret to great PHO! And possibly Ulcers!

So much in fact that I found myself having Pho yesterday despite it being a billion degrees outside.

What You Need To Know About Pho

No Pho is perfect, most Pho places don’t have a great atmosphere, they’re usually family owned but you wouldn’t want them to be somewhere too nice where you paid 12 dollars a bowl. I’ve been to some like that and the food is meh…

The average pho shop looks like this. Barred windows…yes

The Pho’s that have really good Vietnamese Sandwhiches usually don’t have the best soup or the don’t do the salad rolls right. The Pho I go to does the soup right, I’ll get the salad roll most of the time anyway but I always catch myself thinking…dang…I wish they just made their salad rolls better then this place would be PERFECT!

I’ve come to the conclusion that if they were perfect they probably would be a huge franchise making bank…bottom line…it’s not happening.

But the Pho I eat at makes the best SOUP! The most important part of Pho is well…the soup!

So the rolls and the little chicken sandwhiches aren’t that big of a deal, you can take them or leave them if it bothers you, the soup has to be the best! PERIOD. NO ARGUING.


This isn’t going to be the best soup, nothing about the best is INSTANT!


Hey, we aren’t all perfect. But we can decide there are certain things about ourselves that we need to have excellence.

These are “CORE COMPONENTS” are like the soup and the broth of your Pho shop, this is why people are going to come back.

A few core components that you’ll need no matter who you are to sprinkle in your soup for any task:

1. Goal Oriented

I find that the people who never seem to make progress in one aspect of their life or another do not have GOALS.

Sadly, most people aren’t even sure what a goal is compared to an IDEA.

Get more sleep is an idea, in bed by nine pm and up at six am is a goal.

We can get even more detailed with this, I see many people doing workouts or the same workouts, if you are trying to reach a goal there needs to be a training session GOAL each time. It doesn’t mean you have to set a record in every lift of every session but what is the goal of today’s training session?

2. Consistent

You must be consistent, ¬†how many times a week should I be working out? That’s a common question and a common answer is it depends. Depending on your goals ( see why it’s important to have them) your answer is going to be different.

The intensity and the quality of your workouts make a big difference too, if you come in tired every workout and put forth half the effort and aren’t able to move at the proper pace that work out isn’t going to be as valuable is it?

Any more than if I had you spend three hours trying to read ” The Art of War” after you got off an international flight. Chances are you probably aren’t going to be able to focus #braindead.

3. The Right Supporting Players

All the help I get everyday, I appreciate!

I’m extremely lucky to have such great people in my BeFit Team. My team checks in with clients, runs programs, makes phone calls to people with questions so I can write blog posts like this on Pho soup and write training programs.

Just like I have an important team of people that help me you need a team of people to help you. People that will keep your nutrition focused, encourage you to get the right sleep, make sure you’re coming to workouts.

This is like having the little onions in the soup broth, the bean sprouts, the basil! These things make all the difference for the BEST SOUP!

If you need help getting the core three to become the best you send me an email at befittacoma@gmail.com



One Response to Tacoma Personal Trainer- You Make The Best Soup

  1. Nancy August 20, 2014 at 9:26 pm #

    Isaac, you’ve done it again – so simple, so direct, so true! I’ll be looking at my workouts and my Pho more meaningfully from now on.

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