Most things that would normally drive a trainer nuts are typically things that would disqualify prospects before they become clients in my practice. Things like not being committed or constantly cancelling sessions, or not understanding that getting results takes work. This article is not about those things, this article is about the things our committed clients sometimes do that drives us nuts and the solutions to keep your trainer from being sent to the nut house.
1. When a client seems to live or die by the number on the scale
This doesn’t just drive the client bonkers, it drives us trainers bonkers too. A good trainer will (or should) promote the difference between weight loss and fat loss. What really drives us fitness trainers to madness is when we’ve tried and tried again to put it into your head that losing fat is about bodyfat percentage and not about the number on the scale. More so it’s about moving closer to your goal through your actions. When you’ve been given this knowledge and you still focus your emotions and you energy towards the number on the scale, it can become a limiting and de-motivating factor and that is primarily why we get so annoyed by this behavior, seeing our clients lose hope because of an arbitrary number hurts us too.
Throw away your scale, forget about weight entirely, instead take revealing “selfies” of yourself every two weeks, write down your actions and how you feel about the direction you are going. Ask yourself if your actions are taking you in the right direction, how do your clothes fit, how are your energy levels, are you enjoying the process? If you are a person that absolutely needs hard data, use tape measurements and get your bodyfat percentage tested. Focus on what will get you to your fat loss goals.
2. When your friend tries to sell you on the latest fad diet
Many of you have at least one friend who is always on some sort of diet or latest fitness trend. They typically get super excited about it and for a while get great results really fast. Even though by the end of the year they seem to be back to where they started, yet at the present moment it seems like they’ve found the “secret” to fat loss success and they will try to recruit you into the program. It’s tempting when you see dramatic results, unfortunately those results rarely last and typically do more harm in the end. For us trainers it’s not about losing business out to your friends latest fitness endeavor that bugs us, it’s the fact that this latest fitness endeavor is usually the same unhealthy gimmicky diet as all the other ones out there, only marketed differently to make you think that something new and amazing has come along to help you look and feel your best without really trying too hard. An ethical and educated trainer will use science and experience to coach you to get your goals while adding to your health and empowering you to take ownership of your health and keep the goals you achieve for life.
Stay focused on your journey, stay the course. While you may not want to call “bullshit” on your friends fad diet to their face (it’s still better to support them in the off chance the process of trying to change works for them) filter out their words, you have a plan of action so stick to it.
3. You didn’t tell your trainer that…
Your personal trainer is there to help you with your health and fitness. You as a client are under our care and guidance 24/7. But we can only help you if we have the right information. Now sometimes a client will completely forget to tell us something vital, and we typically find out as we probe all the time. However what drives us nuts is when a client knowingly leaves out information that we should have been made aware of in order to help you. When we see our clients struggle with getting results and can’t figure out why, neglecting to tell us that you are eating a box of cookies every night for fear of our wrath it frustrating. A good trainer will not yell or get mad, that’s not what a trainer should be doing. Instead we would take a positive approach to helping you through your struggles so you feel better about yourself not worse.
Solution: Understand your trainer will be very relieved and happy that you told them all information regarding your health and wellness. We can now be even more effective in helping you either directly or by referring you to trusted professionals.
4. When you get addicted to being sore, or the “burn”
Many clients (and trainers) can get addicted to feeling the “burn” during an exercise or feeling sore the next day. They start to associate those feelings with working hard and making progress. Although I believe there is some sort of psychological benefit to this (as sadistic as it may seem) and yes I am guilty of it myself; be aware that getting addicted to these feeling may actually hinder your progress towards your ultimate goal. It can drive trainers nuts when a client loses sight of the intent of the program and cheats on rest periods or lighten’s up the load so they can be “sore” the next day or feel the burn right away. Chasing being sore and beating yourself into oblivion might not be the best way to get results.
Solution: Focus on making progress in your performance in each workout, if you are sore or not doesn’t matter (it’s just a by product that sometime accompanies hard work). Follow the program set out for you and the instructions and you will reach your goals.
So when you are about to step on that scale with any emotional attachment to the number, or when your friend starts to talk about the latest diet they are on, or you fear telling your trainer something that you know you should tell them, remember this article and use the solutions to stay on track and your journey will become so much easier.