Lessons Learnt Working In The Health & Fitness Industry…
2016 is drawing to a close and as a new year approaches, it always seems like the right (if not clichéd) time to reflect.
So here are my musings; an accumulation of lessons, reflections, “ah ha” moments and observations collected over the last number of years working in this industry.
Less, actually, is often more. There’s nothing wrong with taking a step back and allowing your body time to rest; for muscle recovery, for headspace, to prioritise work/family etc. There’s a time to push and a time to pull back…what is really detrimental is burning yourself out by trying to do it all.
If you’re in a “less” stage, just stay moving and don’t let it become a “nothing” stage. Learn to cut out the fluff. Focus on the stuff that works and is worthy of your precious time, forget about the rest. Efficiency and consistency are the keys to longevity.
Fitness should enhance your life…not control it. Being a total health nut has its advantages, but it also has its drawbacks.
Stubbornness and inflexibility about my training regimen led to me missing out on plenty of social occasions in the past.
Life really is too short and there should be other relationships in your life that are more precious than the one you have with the gym.
Train smarter, not harder or longer (see above point – efficiency is key), keep fit and strong, but learn to enjoy life.
Let life happen…because it’s inevitable that it always will, do what you can today and forget about what has passed.
I hope I’m not contradicting myself here…
Let life happen, yes, but don’t blame life for you not reaching your goals. A little bit of forward planning and preparation can go a long way.
Learn to enjoy the process, not just the prize. Have goals you are working towards but focus on the steps to get you there; work hard and relish it.
Humans are hardwired to find the path of least resistance but when it comes to your health and well-being, there are no short cuts; consistency, patience and hard work always win out in the long run.
Guilty! I can be a sensitive soul and read too deeply into a simple, throwaway comment. But think about it – maybe you misinterpreted it or maybe they were having a crap day…either way, it’s probably not your concern.
The health and fitness industry is so vast and varied, you might as well accept that not everyone is going to agree 100% with what you say and do. Have your own opinions, be able to rationalise them and don’t take it personally if not everyone agrees.
There are many ways to skin a cat and being dogmatic in your approach to health and fitness won’t do you or your clients any favours.
Further to the above point; from a professional point of view…have training principles that you believe in but don’t be afraid to change them.
Keep learning, keep evolving and find people in the industry whose principles you admire; listen to them, take their advice then apply it to your own systems.
If you don’t look back at the way you used to do things and cringe…you probably haven’t progressed much in your thinking.
I really believe that you need to have a genuine, deep-rooted interest in helping your clients if you want to be successful in this industry.
There’s going to be many times in your life that you have to do things you don’t particularly want to do, but being empathetic towards your clients and their needs shouldn’t be one of them.
As a trainer – be punctual, be energised, be organised, be prepared for each client and their session.
Remember their injuries, remember their birthdays, ask about their job, their kids…remember that the hour or two you see them every week is a small fraction of their week; they have a lot of life to live in between.