Wednesday, October 20, 2010

A Trainers Expectations.

As your trainer, what do I expect from you? What do I need from you for you to achieve your goals?

I need you to commit to the program, to express concerns, to stay on top of your diet, to communicate with me (email, in person, this blog, text message) and I need you to put in the effort. I offer every client a program, I offer diet help, encouragement and advice. I'm not perfect, or a perfect trainer, but the best way we can achieve results together is by communication (mostly I mean you listen to me as if I possessed the word of god, just joking, though not really). I can only give you your programs, teach you how to use them and be there to answer questions and guide you, you actually have to make it to the gym to lift the weights and thrash the cardio equipment.

I've stated previously that my programs are of a very intense nature, I only have 30 minutes to work you, once a week in a lot of cases, which means I need to ramp up your metabolism. How do I do this? Metabolic resistance training and High Intensity Interval Training! The downside to this style of training as mentioned in previous posts is, it's hard. You do, however sacrifice training time for intensity.

As Charles Poloquin states:
"Rather than establishing rest intervals between sets, a circuit combines several exercises, usually about 10, so that no two muscles are worked at the same time. The idea is that the workouts are faster and also produce greater aerobic benefits (emphasis added). It’s also a time saver. Whereas the 30 sets that the Olympic lifter performed with station training would take about two hours, 30 sets of a circuit training workout could be completed in 45 minutes." (Poliquin)
Due to how little I see you it is extremely import you either buy more sessions with me, or make sure you come in to your allotted training sessions. I hear a million excuses a day from clients and to be honest I get sick of hearing it. I understand not every client is as committed as me to training, but why are you spending money on personal training, if you're going to waste your, and my time? Why did you join up with the gym in the first place? Is it just to throw some money at a problem and get no results? Or is it to utilise a service to help you achieve that which you might have otherwise been unable. If the latter is the case, and I sincerely hope it is with all of you, then utilise me and my knowledge, it's what I'm here for.

I have plenty of clients who don't listen to me, who like to run, like to walk for long distances,  like to eat starchy carb meals at night, like to skip meals, like to drink alcohol, don't like writing down what they eat, don't like sticking to diets (or making dietary changes), don't like lifting heavy, don't like training hard etc. And you know what? These are the very same people who turn up with injuries, complain they're not getting results,  have no motivation, skip sessions and are physically weak. I'm willing to concede it is my failure as a trainer, at least in part, perhaps I need to learn more about psychology/physiology , perhaps I'm not communicating my ideas effectively, perhaps I'm failing you, I'm certainly honest enough to concede that fact. That's where you need to get my ass in line, that's where I'm accountable to you. After all, you pay me for a service, if I'm not getting you the results you desire, you're well within your rights to bust me. I will generally listen to training concerns, will adapt programs to valid, justifiable concerns a client has, I have a very big tool box, feel free to dig through it (this doesn't sound right for some reason.).

As Dave Tate states:
In short: Training has never changed my life because it is a part of who I am.
In fact, I almost saw the weight room as the cause of keeping me from dealing with the things I avoided and, in some ways, this may have been true. What I was to learn, however, was that the gym was not an escape from things, but actually an entrance into the world of reality as I knew it.
It was the place where I could find inspiration and motivation, where I have had to deal with some of life's biggest challenges. And where I have had some of my best training workouts, business ideas and negotiations. In the weight room, I have forged powerful friendships, held therapy sessions, and made some outstanding breakthroughs toward achieving my goals.
To me, and to many others around the world, the weight room is not just a place to train, but rather a Zen-like temple — a place of symbolically higher ground where we bring our hopes, dreams, and aspirations (emphasis added). A place where we commit to grueling personal discipline and the continual challenge to improve ourselves: five more pounds on the bar, one more rep, another pound of muscle mass, another pound less body fat, more self-understanding. If we are serious, it is a way of life.
The weight room is a place where the trials never end. It is the place where we test ourselves continuously — we struggle to reach one goal, and, as soon as we reach it, there is another and more difficult one to meet (emphasis added). (Tate 2010)
I need to know why you're training, why you're in the gym, but most importantly, you need to know these things and you need to be willing to defer to my ruling. If I tell you running is bad, drinking is bad, missing sessions is bad etc you need to listen, I back up these claims on the blog. You can talk to me, rationalise your choices and see if I agree, if I don't? You might need to consider I know what I'm talking about, it's why I have this blog, it's a written testimony of my knowledge, it provides scientific examples that justify my position. Sometimes you will convince me, or at the very least I can give you strategies to help you customise activities I don't agree with, so you don't get injured and so you can still get results.

In Conclusion
The point is, as I summarise, I care about the results you get, I don't want you spending 1 dollar more than you have to, I want you to achieve what you set out to, so help me do that. Communicate, listen and most importantly come in to every training session pumped up and ready to break something! As they say "train hard or get out of my way!"

Tate D., (2010). How Weight Training Saved My Life. Retrieved 22/04/2011.

Poloquin C., Poliquin 101: Circuit Training and Superset.The evolution of a training revolution. Retrieved 22/04/2011.

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