Despite the overwhelming documented evidence proving the positive effects of regular exercise, few people meet the U.S. governments recommendation of 150 minutes of moderate, or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise per week.
Many people don’t even meet Jack LaLanne’s recommendation of 30 daily minutes of exercise.
Even more disheartening, many people that start an exercise program drop out within a few weeks to months.
Among the top reasons: Time, Money, Procrastination, Lack of Knowledge, Intimidation/Social Phobia, Lack of Support and Boredom.
Let me address boredom. Yes, this is a very real concern. Yes, this can be controlled. The problems origin can be either (a) You don’t know what you are doing. (b) Your trainer sucks. or (C) You are not challenging yourself enough.
For gym go’er’s: Don’t stick to a routine you learned 20 years ago in high school and don’t try and copy every move you see “fit looking” people do. Try taking a group class, they can be fun! Don’t be afraid of getting out of your comfort zone from time to time, the initial little challenge could turn into a pleasant surprise. In my particular case, I have recently took up taking hot yoga classes. Not only am I having a blast sweating in a room filled mostly with women, I learned that the smaller the yoga instructor is, the more I will be getting beat up.
If you are thinking about hiring a personal trainer, I suggest you pay attention to the trainers at your gym and watch how they interact with their clients, are they active? Do their clients appear to enjoy what they are doing (even if the trainer is making them a sweaty mess) and most especially watch the trainer while the client is working. Do they educate and motivate the client, or simply count? You want the trainer that puts the word PERSONAL in personal training.
For trainers: If your routines are the same for ALL of your clients you are working on auto-pilot…and this is not a good thing. If you are training all your clients in only one training method regardless of the clients goals then you are either limited or lazy.
Don’t think for a minute that other gym go’ers are NOT taking notice of your actions or inaction. If there are two universal truths, gym go’ers watch, and gym go’ers talk.
Personal Rant: I am not a fan of machine-only workout programs and am even less a fan of machine-only trainers. Yes, I know that machines have their place and I use one or two of them with select clients, but if your belief is that “machines are safer than free-weights” then I ask you send me credible proof.
A dumbbell, kettlebell, medicine ball, squat rack, barbell or even old-school calisthenics should be nothing to be afraid of. Of course using these things means you (as the trainer) will have to rack and re-rack weights, demonstrate and explain safe technique, spot and issue coaching cues, instead of telling the client “move the pin up/down and repeat the pre-set movement X times.”
Take notice of what CrossFit has to offer; Fairly short workouts that are scalable to the individuals ability using primal movement patterns (push,pull,squat,run,jump etc) and a variety of methods including calisthenics, kettlebells, cardio events and weight lifting. Given such diversity it would be hard for me to imagine someone getting bored of this sort of workout. If your clients are bored, YOU might be part of the problem!