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5 Things Clients Do That Drive Me Crazy!

by | Oct 7, 2019 | Blog Archive

She powered up the hill confidently and looking fit and strong.  A 5km run before a HIIT workout, what a machine right?  As she approached, I was filled with a mixture of admiration for her well-trained running stride, and also rage as I knew that she had just ruined the session she was about to do with me….

A fact of life of being a coach is that some people just cannot be coached.

They cling to old ideas of what works (or has worked in the past) doggedly regardless if the playing field has actually changed for them.  They may have lost weight in the past by amping up their weekly workouts, calories burnt and dieting on low calories…. but there comes a time when that is no longer efficient or effective.

I had explained to this client that the point of a 30 min HIIT workout is to give your maximum effort.  If your legs have just run 5km uphill, the last thing they are going to do is an effective squat jump.  The point of training HIIT is to max out in less time, and walk away to recover and burn more fat at rest compared to an hour on the treadmill, when the fat burning effects of your workout stop the minute you step off.

And yet they would insist on running to Metafit.  ….to do half squats and half the amount of pushups they would be able to do well-rested.

They just couldn’t lose the idea of more calories “burnt” on the clock = better…. and I would then watch them do a tired half arsed effort on the exercises that really count towards changing your shape, fitness and strength as a result of being pre-fatigued and not recovering due to over-training by emphasising time over intensity.

I no longer train this person but I thought why not lay it out there – the 5 things that clients do that drive me up the freaking wall:

1. They rely on technology to assess their workout:

I loved my Garmin watch.  When I was running, it was a great tool to map out new running routes, assess my speed, distance and effort level.  I even used to use it along with the chest strap heart rate monitor to see how high I could get my heart rate during a HIIT workout. 

But then I got too busy to go out running very often, and wearing my watch started to annoy me.   Just a sweat collector on my wrist.

I still see clients checking their fitness watch during a workout.  If you’ve been training for years, you should know when you’re maxed out without checking.  And if your goal is fat loss, your daily workout contributes about 3% to that equation…. even if you do as much as possible. 

I once gave a Barre class and had to help a lady off the ground at the end, laying in a pool of her own sweat.  She told me it was a great class, but she didn’t burn much, and needed to do more cardio – according to her fitbit.  🤦‍♀️

If you’re trying to address the energy equation with as many workouts as possible, and technology, you are barking up the wrong tree, my friend.

2. They miss the whole point:

You paid me to achieve a result – I have a method that I know gets lasting results, in time….. so whyyyy am I having to spend time addressing the office chat from unqualified co-workers???  

“Oh, Susan at work is doing a detox and lost heaps of weight already and doesn’t even work out – why am I working so hard and not losing 5kg in a week too??”

Let’s ignore the fact that Susan’s calorie surplus was off the charts before her magical detox, so she had a bit of room to move, she’s now in about a 70% energy deficit and has cut every food she usually loves out (this time it’s for good, right, we’ve all heard that before) – and that 70% of her weight loss is water and that without doing a decent strength training programme Susan will lose muscle mass and regain more fat when she returns to her preferred eating habits.

Yeah, don’t be like Susan.

3.They tough it out and martyr on:

Everyone loves a tale of triumph over adversity.  But if you’re sick or injured, trying to maintain your usual training is NOT a sign of dedication.  It will only prolong the issue.  If you’re sick, stay home and rest.  If you’re injured, stop trying to jump and run, and do a sensible rehabilitative strength training programme as advised by your coach!  You may actually enjoy it 😉   

See point one re: the effectiveness of a workout performed pre-fatigued.

4. Chop & Change:

Been training for a few weeks, expecting big things from your high levels of starting motivation?  Juuuuust when things are about to really come together and progress – they drop off the face of the planet??  “Oooh well that didn’t work for me so i thought I’d try xyz now” and the cycle continues.  Literally anyone who has ever been good at anything did it for longer than a month I can guarantee.  So why is your training any different?  Training is a continual process of developing skills, adaptation and then progressing.

Whether you want to be fitter stronger faster or leaner the process is the same.  Your method should just be something you can stick to long term.  Simple!  9 times out of 10 a lack of results stems from a lack of consistency – not that the training method “didn’t work”.  All training methods will work regardless if performed consistently enough.

5. They get the maths wrong

Not the number of reps, sessions or how long they should train or even how many calories to diet on.  But the order of priorities – meaning, they put themselves last on the list of important things to do. 

It’s easy to fall into the trap that you’ll get around to it one day.  After winter sports/work settles down/wedding season is over/you get on top of your budget, then things will settle down and you can finally get to it. 

The truth is, that your fitness should be a part of your regular routine, without even giving it a second thought.  If you need help to establish habits that will see you get lasting results for good, in less time each week, get in touch!

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