I think the perception of personal trainers is that they yell a lot, aren’t very smart, and live-eat-breathe fitness. That’s certainly the cliché anyway.
Ironically, I don’t know many trainers since all my fitness coaching is done online. So I’m speaking for myself here. While I may not be the sharpest knife in the shed, I rarely yell (and when I do, it’s not while working out… I’m too out of breath!) and fitness is in my life, but it’s NOT my life.
In fact, that’s just the tip of the personal trainer confession iceberg. Here are some more confessions, along with some takeaways so you can learn a thing or two.
Confession #1: I don’t always like working out.
I’m blessed to enjoy exercise, for the most part. But not always. There are times when I just… don’t… want to.
I know I’ll be glad I did. I know it will feel good. I know I need it and it will be good for me.
Be that as it may, some days I’m just not feeling it. Don’t get me wrong, I’ll still do it… but not with a happy heart.
Confession Takeaway: In life, you have to make tradeoffs. If the joy of the result is greater than the pain of the moment, it’s a worthy trade.
Confession #2: I don’t always give it 100%.
I usually workout 6 days a week. I’m competitive with myself and I like to see progress. So I tend to leave it all out on the floor.
But there are days when I just don’t have it in my tank, physically or emotionally or both. When that happens, 70% will just have to do. And that’s ok.
Confession Takeaway: You are allowed to take the foot off the gas every now and then. You may even find your performance improves.
Confession #3: I don’t always like eating healthy.
I can’t recall ever watching a cooking show where the chef didn’t like every food in the history of ever.
Seriously? You like charred goat tongue vinaigrette on your fruit tartare? I don’t believe you.
That’s what people think trainers are like, that we enjoy every supposedly healthy food.
Question: Who has two thumbs and would rather eat one of them than eat a beet? This guy!
I also loathe olives, lima beans, Brussel sprouts, and darling of the health food world, kale. There, I said it. I don’t like you kale!
I could go on… but just thinking about all these nasties is making me feel a little queasy.
Confession Takeaway: Don’t feel like you have to acquire a taste for something just because it’s healthy. There are plenty of other healthy food options out there.
Confession #4: I like junk food.
People are always surprised to learn that I cheat on my diet by eating donuts once a month. What might be more surprising is, I want to eat them every… single… day. I just don’t.
I could also eat Mexican food every day. If I had a spirit animal, it would be Mexican food. In fact, I didn’t choose to like Mexican food. It chose me.
I have found 14 ways to eat healthy Mexican. However, sometimes I just want a giant queso-covered carnitas burrito swimming in a pool of queso, with a side of queso, extra queso-y.
I also like donuts, Doritos, French fries, donuts, cheeseburgers, ice cream, cookies, donuts…
I could go on… but just thinking about donuts is making me want donuts.
Donuts. Donuts. Donuts.
Confession Takeaway: Having taste buds is a gift. If you’re not abusing treats, you can enjoy them guilt free and without totally sabotaging your results.
Confession #5: I don’t like working out my legs.
If you took a poll, you would find that most people don’t like working out their legs. I’m no different.
Here’s the thing about leg work: they’re your biggest muscle group (talking quads here). So there’s A LOT of muscle for lactic acid to build up and burn.
What I’m basically saying is, legs are the most painful body part to workout and I’m not a huge fan of pain. I still do them. I just cry a lot.
Confession Takeaway: Don’t be top-heavy by only working out your upper body. Not only will you look ridiculous, you’re going to create imbalances that will lead to an injury.
Confession #6: I’m self-conscious.
I too can fall victim to body image issues at times, stemming from some teasing in my youth. Today, as a trainer, I feel I need to look the part. I can get worried that if I’m not fitness-model fit, people won’t take me seriously and it will affect my business.
And speaking about fitness models, that’s the other issue: this is a visual industry in a visually obsessed world. It’s one of the beefs I have with many of Beachbody’s programs… they’re all about getting ripped, huge, chiseled, whatever.
Don’t get me wrong, they make great programs. I just feel sometimes, they’re emphasizing the wrong things and it can create insecurities in people, myself included.
Confession Takeaway: Give yourself permission to not look like a fitness model. Besides, fitness models don’t even look like fitness models 99% of the time.
Confession of a Personal Trainer: Closing Thoughts
Ahhhhh… glad I got that off my chest. I feel so much lighter!
As you have seen, we are not all rep-shouting meatheads, double fisting wheatgrass smoothies and tofu bars. We too have challenges we have to be honest about.
Here’s the point worth reiterating: fitness needs to be in your life, but it doesn’t need to be your life. It’s okay to not be perfect, to not love everything about being healthy, and to have to deal with obstacles… as long as you are, indeed, dealing with them.
What’s not okay is to do nothing. You’re far too valuable for that.Start My Coaching!