How to piss off your trainer

This post does not represent my state of mind (ok ok, maybe it does a little) but I know it does represent a lot of trainers, beginners and even advanced and well established ones. We can be as passionate and simple as we can, but sometimes we get our fare share of numbnuts. Although the saying goes like ‘’there is no dumb questions’’, I would like to have a word with the person who came out with that quote. It all depends on whom, when and how those questions or affirmations are formulated. I don’t want to put anyone down, or sound like I am the only one right or that It’s my way or the highway, but some people need to listen when people talk. There is some that are so self centered that they forget to who they talk to. There are also those who believe everyone but their trainer, and some that have all the answers (they think) and still fail to achieve anything near a decent shape. I will always answer to the best of my knowledge to someone that has a beginner or advance question, however, repeating myself twice or three times will always irritate me, especially if I know you or have been following me for some time. I must say that I am in no way talking about the beginner trainee that is bombarded with all kinds of information from television, trainers, friends or family. I want to talk about those annoying ‘’know it all, go nowhere’’ that think they have all the answers, those types of people that makes us trainers want to become daycare workers, where we would work with kids of higher IQ’s than what we have to deal with sometimes. You will soon understand what I mean.

Tell them that your friend lost weight with the cookie diet and you want to try it…

For sure!! It’s obviously simpler than getting up earlier in the morning, grab a cookie and off to work. It’s also tastier than a nice piece of steak or eggs and some nuts and veggies. Losing weight has a price, but you shouldn’t pay the price with your health. I have seen people lose a fair amount of weight following that diet, and some lost only to gain it back plus a couple of more pounds than what they started with. I don’t care if they had results; I just don’t believe that eating some cookies will help you lose fat the healthy way. Yes, I have seen their diet comparison chart (below) which I think is full of shit.

 Let me explain; if mister not so ‘’smart for life’’ compares his diet with diets such as nutri-system and slim fast, it’s only because of the market he wants to reach, since it’s all based on what you have to buy in order to succeed. I rather pay the local farmers market and get real food. You are supervised with a doctor and blood work and all that crap? Seeing a doctor/physician for a diet is like going to a mechanic to get a cavity fixed. Blood work? The problem with simple blood work is that you only know if there is a problem when you are already sick or need some drastic measures to reverse the numbers. I have seen many blood work results with little difference following those types of diets and it always came back (negatively health wise) to bite them in the ass. You also have a weekly weigh in and this is where it drives me nuts. Weekly weigh-in is good only if you lose weight, or else you will go crazy and give up. However, if the weight is not moving it’s not necessarily a bad thing but you can’t tell unless you do a real bodyfat evaluation, only then you’ll know if you lost bodyfat or lean muscle mass. Oh, I forgot, you don’t care if you lose muscle mass, as long as the weight goes down. I see. Losing muscle is now being recognized as a condition like any other important medical conditions that doctors need to put a term on, in order to prescribe some sort of synthetic ailments. Losing muscle mass is now recognized as sarcopenia (from the Greek meaning “poverty of flesh”) is the degenerative loss of skeletal muscle mass and strength associated with aging (0.5-1% loss per year after the age of 25)[i]. In other words, losing lean muscle tissue makes you age faster, weaker, frail…Still don’t care? I’d like to help you out, which way did you come in?

Tell them that you want to train like Jillian Micheals from the biggest loser or Tracy Anderson..

Sometimes, lucky dimwits end up knowing someone who knows someone that helped them meet a superstar and they get instant fame because that star endorsed the way they train, their methods, if we can call that training. For example, Tracy Anderson who got her fame from training Gwyneth Paltrow and Madonna. Statements like ‘’woman should not lift more than 3 pounds’’ (for fear of bulking up), ‘’ don’t just throw away these moves. You have to stay connected to your legs.’’(What the hell does that mean??)…With the 3 pounds quote, all I see is mothers lifting up their child and having huge arms like Schwarzenegger. I don’t know what makes her stupid but it really works.

You know what’s wrong with Hollywood trainers? They make unbelievable shit (training and nutrition wise) look incredible and believable, just because certain celebrity endorsed it and are in a reasonable shape (I’m not talking about healthy).  They could superset the shake weight with a yoyo while singing ‘’I have nothing’’, if a celebrity say it’s good stuff, it will be the next big thing. Too bad stupidity is not painful. Another example, take Jillian Michaels from ‘’the biggest loser’’. Michaels is known to scream, yell and insult her clients, beat or rough them up if she has to in order to get what she wants. If you have to yell or scare your client to have results, it says a lot on your skills as a trainer. If that’s what you need, fine by me, but if your trainer can’t get the message and results without having you scared or beaten up, well maybe your trainer should revise his techniques or his people skills. If you need someone to yell at you because you can’t walk straight on the treadmill, or you just can’t get the 50th rep on the bicep curl up, maybe it’s because the method is not appropriate for you, not the other way around. I don’t care if you have been a couch potatoe for years, or you mother died from liver disease, or that you were baptised at Seaworld, working out, getting and staying into a healthy lifestyle should not be war, it should not be a bad experience, it should be a lifetime deal of fun while rediscovering yourself, your limits and new achievements. I’m all good for the show ‘’biggest loser’’ but the methods, more than often irritates me.

Tell them what they have to do

This comes mostly from advanced trainees or the ones that have been training for years. They always say that they eat well (audio really does not match the video) and that they have been training hard for some time. However, it’s always funny how they always took it easy some weeks before they come and consult for a new program, nice excuse in case the program or bodyfat increased or that they get their butt kicked with the new program. The best is when I hear them say that they will do their own leg program since their knees have always been their weaknesses. What they really are saying is that they are scared sh*tless of doing my leg program because reason#1: they will have to do little but tough exercises that will make them look like wimps. Reason#2: they will have to use small weights or if they have a great structural balance evaluation, I will kick their ass and give them exercises that will give them the most bangs for their bucks, nothing like the leg extensions and the seated leg curls. So next time you come for an evaluation and you almost tell me what to do for your workout, keep talking, I always yawn when I’m interested.

The take home message is let the professionals do their job. What is it worth to pay someone if you try to tell them what to do? Let them work their magic, but on your part, do what you have to do and let them trainers show you that if you follow exactly what they say, you will have the results anticipated. My question to you is; can they prove to you that you got results? Did you lose fat? Do you feel better, stronger and healthier? If so, you did your job and they sure did too..



[i] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sarcopenia


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