There’s evidence that the most effective weight loss strategies for the long term tap into 3 things; nutrition, physical activity and mental well-being. This power house combination can deliver results that last for the long term as habits become ingrained into daily lifestyle.
A level 3 Personal Trainer has been put through their paces during their PT Course learning pivotal aspects of human anatomy and physiology, client focused exercise programme design, diet and nutrition, goal setting and a whole host of motivational techniques.
It’s therefore no surprise to us that a popular reason for enlisting the expertise of a Personal Trainer is for help losing weight and keeping it off. If you’re keen to work with weight loss clients there’s lots you can achieve during your hourly sessions to deliver results. There’s also a whole heap of things outside of your appointments that can go wrong!
Here’s our top 3 ways to help your clients mind their weight outside of their sessions.
1 – The Food Planner/Diary Combo
We all know that eating too much and not moving around enough can lead to weight gain. Conversely not eating enough at regular intervals can put the body into ‘starvation mode’.
As if that’s not enough to deal with, poor quality diets, too much sugar, excessive stress and poor nutrient intakes can all quickly become weight loss saboteurs.
Prepare for your weekly sessions by giving your client a food planner to follow.
Be realistic here with meal suggestions and snacks for them to choose from rather than something too prescriptive that might be harder for them to adhere to.
Next, it’s over to them. Ask for a food diary to be completed every day summarising meals, snacks and drinks. Try and include a simple hunger rating, such as on a scale of 1-5 so your client can easily feedback how they were feeling at the time.
Armed with this information make adjustments to their food plan for the week ahead.
This two way feedback and review process instills gradual lifestyle changes that help keep your clients on track and focused on their goal.
2 – Get Outdoors
Don’t over complicate things with lots for your client to do outside of your sessions, especially during the early stages of them falling into sync with their new diet and fitness regime. You’re the expert and you can channel more complex exercises and muscle building moves during your sessions. As you’re client becomes more familiar and adept with new concepts it will be much easier for them to make the transition to adding these into their very own workouts.
Agree a simple exercise plan for your client to follow in between session such as increasing their daily walking and focusing on the number of steps.
Stepz is a great app that will give results to feedback to you and you can agree targets together as you go along. This is also great for motivation as a desire often sets in to beat a previous result.
When its mission accomplished then it’s time to progress your client onto the next level. Consider adding in some hill climbs, walk/run intervals and killer strength moves.
What’s next? Review and advance according to your client’s achievement to keep their weight blasting furnace fully fueled.
3 – Coach Mindfulness
Many a Personal Trainer will have experienced clients who start out determined to lose weight only to lose momentum. Mindfulness involves developing a strong state of natural awareness of self and what’s going on around you so that you are able to make conscious informed choices. Mindfulness isn’t about denial, rather considering alternatives and personal goals before reaching a decision. For example, recognising reaching for the biscuit tin at coffee break as a temporary distraction and finding satisfactory alternatives.
Spend the last 10 minutes of every session concentrating on client motivation.
What’s going well and how can you plan in more of this both inside and outside of your PT sessions?
What’s getting in the way and how can it be tackled head on?
Take a gym session as an example. Headphones on and programme in hand your client cracks on with their workout. Now compare this to headphones out, fully concentrating on the tempo, correct muscle movement and exercise execution. Effective training requires optimum effort. Typically clients who aren’t seeing results have little realisation that they’re simply going through the motions.
The Academy of Fitness Professionals provide the gold standard in accredited personal training courses with state of the art training fully endorsed by REPs, Skills Active and the NCFE. Their specialist knowledge features in the UK health and fitness media including the Mirror, BBC2 and Women’s Running. This is the ultimate learning destination for those serious about their fitness industry education and long term career as a Personal Trainer.
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