There are some really good coaches out there, but “some” doesn’t compare to the majority. With fitness and looking good becoming more of a priority (or even just trying to not be obese) the fitness industry is completely saturated with online coaches and different programs. You could Google workout plans and find hundreds, if not thousands of different routines. Does that means they’re all good because they made it to the internet? No! That just means someone posted them on their site or forum. Today we have so many coaches and routines that it can get overwhelming for potential clients to decide. One may have more credibility through experience, while the other has actually attained a degree in the field. One can have decent results and accomplishments, while the other has none but claims to have accomplished a lot without proof. With seeing the extent some fitness models, coaches, and nutritionists will go, I can see how hard it is for potential clients to get confused and shy away from the idea all together. Hiring an online coach doesn’t have to be overwhelming, but there are a few things you should consider:
1) COOKIE CUTTER PLANS: A big problem with most online coaches (or coaches in general) are cookie cutter routines. What is that? That’s a “one size fits all” routine that they give to everyone regardless of unique needs, age, focus, etc. Immense numbers of coaches get exposed for sending cookie cutter routines to clients all the time.
SOLUTION: Make friends with some of the other clients by the same coach or do your research on him/her. Knowing what the other clients are doing helps you compare and see if the coach is really designing programs for YOU or NOT.
2) CREDIBILITY: Many coaches recently have perfected the art of SCAMMING. They know if a coach has a more accomplishing background, the client feels he/she too can accomplish that much under the wing of that coach. Unfortunately, many coaches have started either exaggerating their story or making up one. Some top fitness models have gotten exposed for claiming to have power lifting world records, black belts, charity, marathons, attaining looks naturally, etc. There really is no limit to the madness. Most “fitness gurus” have never been truly in the field of fitness.
SOLUTION: Do a background check and find proof. No proof, no accomplishment. Most individuals would gladly have some sort of post or news in the paper about achieving something “so amazing”. He broke a world record? Have him (or look yourself) find it on a trustworthy site. Sources such as a friend agreeing doesn’t count.
3) NOT OPTIMAL: Regardless of if it’s workout or diet, always check to see if your coach is wanting to help you with an optimal plan. What do I mean? I mean your coach should be finding the best possible route for you to get LONG TERM RESULTS and have SOMEWHERE TO GO NEXT. It’s easy to get caught up on quick results, which is why many individuals don’t mind these coaches that prescribe crash diets. The low calories as a challenge and the coach as motivation makes up for the starvation, right? Coaches and program writers all over the world know that most clients want immediate results. So what do they do? They give them exactly what they want. Give the customer what they want and they’ll buy, right? The problem is not getting the results, but what happens to your body and what happens next. During a crash diet (basically starving for weightloss) you do plenty of harm to your body as well as give yourself no hope for progression. What do I mean? After the coach tells you to only eat 1000 calories, then what? Once your body finds homeostasis (balance to where your body stops changing and your weight loss stops) you have to drop more calories or do more work to further your progress. That means either working out more (expending more calories) or eating less (taking in less calories. After eating less than 1000 calories (let alone less than 1800) and working out almost everyday like a lot of these coaches prescribe. You will either end up in the hospital, gain your weight back after eating “normally”, have long term effects, get injured, lose ample amount of muscle, or even death (sounds extreme, but starvation combined with too much working out can be quite dangerous).
SOLUTION: Find a coach that tries to find your maintenance calories. See if he/she is making small adjustments along the way rather than big chunks at once. Aim for roughly one pound a week for weight loss/gain. LISTEN TO YOUR BODY. If you feel like you’re being starved or you can’t even function during the day then it’s a good signed of exaggerated dieting or training. Of course being hungry is a part of dieting, don’t get that mixed up (Everyone complains about hunger on a diet, well hunger is a side effect of not eating enough calories). Your coach should be working with you, not just prescribing extreme changes to your lifestyle.
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