Navy Reserve Corpsman Turns Olympic Weightlifting into a Freelance Career

Building a successful freelance business is a challenge Erick Huertas took head-on.

The Navy Reserve corpsman worked in agricultural health before deciding to focus his spare time on offering strength and conditioning coaching for everyday life, specializing in power and strength development through Olympic weightlifting.

Huertas has been freelancing a little more than a year, but his fitness journey started more than five years ago.

“I decided my junior year of high school that I wanted to join the Navy. In order to do so, I had to lose over 130 lbs. It took me about two years but I finally did it!” said Huertas. “A little later down the road, I discovered Olympic weightlifting and put up national-level numbers my first time competing. I noticed how much stronger I became and the benefits of the sport, so I made the decision to teach other people.”

The schedule flexibility freelancing affords made this move a natural transition.

“Between the military (service) and coaching/lifting it is hard to manage with a ‘day’ job,” said Huertas. However, he quickly recognized how challenging it could be to make a living as an independent fitness coach on his own as most personal trainers are aligned with gyms, community centers, or sports teams.

Navy Reserve Corpsman Erick Huertas Brings Olympic Weightlifting to Everyday People
Navy Reserve Corpsman Erick Huertas Brings Olympic Weightlifting to Everyday People

That’s when Huertas discovered Moonlighting.

“I see Moonlighting greatly expanding my advertising and helping me achieve my business goals.” Moonlighting’s website and mobile app equip freelancers and small business owners with the tools they need to start and grow their freelance businesses. Huertas built a professional profile on Moonlighting and advertises his strength and conditioning, and sports performance coaching services to people in his area.

In addition to joining a freelance marketplace, Huertas advises “anyone aspiring to be a coach to start training on the side before you commit to it full-time.” He also recommends to “get as many certifications as possible. Certifications are an avenue to learn and improve how you train (yourself) and how you train others.”

As a freelancer, Huertas is able to make an impact on the lives of other people, inspiring them to live healthier lifestyles. That, for him, is a success in itself.

“Being a corpsman attached to Marines is by far the most rewarding set of experiences I will ever have, training others and seeing people improve themselves is a very close second.”

This article was originally featured in the USA Today.

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