“I have a trainer but they don’t do anything with my food”
I’m hearing this far too often now…
The truth of the personal training industry is that it is an extremely mixed bag across the world. There are some incredibly passionate, honest trainers whose goal is to deliver maximum value to you and change as many lives as possible.
On the flip side, there are just as many who will cut corners and cruise through – the industry has an extremely low barrier to entry for what can be a fairly highly paid job. It is an industry that is too easy to get into, too easy to stay in, and an industry that makes it far too easy for pull the wool over customers’ eyes because of the sheer volume of misinformation and “entertrainers” out there.
It is easy to be misled and fall for a great Instagram salesperson when parting with your cash.
Here are a few examples of professions who, on face value, earn a similar fee to personal trainers and what they have to do to get to that position:
- Architects – undergo up to 7 years of study, followed by a junior role before progressing. They are heavily regulated throughout their careers to maintain consistently high standards.
- Doctor – spend 4 years in medical school and up to a further 10 years as a resident in some countries. They are also heavily regulated and monitored to maintain standards and ethical practices
- Accountant – study for up to 4 years, and then fill a junior position before progressing. They are heavily regulated throughout their careers.
You can probably see where this is going…
What about personal trainers? With the below, you can become what seems like an expert, even if you have never set foot in a gym before.
- Open up a training facility. No qualifications are necessary to do so in the vast majority of countries.
- Coach advanced training techniques in your local “box” – a 16 hour, weekend course. Very achievable for most, the only barrier can be the cost.
- Gain a Level 3 Personal Training qualification – a 6-week online course. Once again, achievable for most, finance will be the greatest hurdle for many.
This means that the profession attracts many of the wrong types of people. People who will do the absolute bare minimum to pass off as a trainer and to take your hard-earned money. Those who did the bare minimum to get there in the first place. People who lack the passion, education or the moral fibre to carry you through a transformation from start to finish taking care of all aspects of your training, nutrition, physical and mental health.
However… and it’s a big however!
Ours is also an industry full of deeply passionate individuals who care a huge amount about your results and well-being. People who have found their place in an industry that allows them to use their skillset to help you see the best in yourself.
These are the trainers who sat for months researching personal training courses based on reputation, level of education and what they will learn rather than how much it cost and how fast they could do it.
These are the trainers who ask questions, spend their free time studying, learning, doing additional courses. These are the trainers who are likely more invested in your result than you are.
There are trainers out there who will do everything they can to ensure you receive a return on your investment. To do so a good trainer needs to be all things to all people.
Not your friend, but a friend when you need one. Not a drill sergeant, but a drill sergeant when you need one. Not a psychologist but a psychologist when you need one.
You don’t pay a trainer to be your friend or to watch you exercise, but you do pay them to deliver a result and sometimes that involves all of the above applied at just the right time. This takes care, attention, education, experience and integrity.
A training programme should cover all bases with a progressive, goal-driven approach, and not sessions made up on the spot day by day. Alongside your training plan you should be given guidance on adequate supplementation to improve your general health, recovery and plug any nutritional holes in your diet.
And then this brings us to nutrition, the main subject of this article. One of my pet hates is trainers who are either too lazy or ignorant to create the correct nutritional programming alongside a training program.
Some will say “but I’m not a nutritionist so I can’t do that”. Some will say that “people just want the training without any dietary advice”. Some will even say “my client doesn’t want fat loss”. Others will come up with a whole host of reasons why they haven’t bothered to look after their client’s nutrition, but it is all smoke and mirrors. Whatever their excuse, they are wasting your time and money.
Training and nutrition work hand in hand, and both need to adapt based on real-time feedback and progress. A training programme, when written correctly, will need different nutritional prescriptions sometimes day to day to maximize performance, recovery and to deliver the result that you, the client has paid for.
They must be fluid and adaptive based on ever-changing goals, progress and needs. One will not work correctly without the other and therefore they cannot be mutually exclusive.
Personal trainers are not paid a premium to watch you exercise and then forget about you. They are paid a premium because for every hour in the gym with you, a trainer should be spending two additional hours planning, adapting and assessing your situation to optimize everything about your experience and end result.
This takes time, effort and care so when choosing your trainer choose wisely. Don’t fall for pretty pictures and shiny content. Find someone who cares, someone who is invested in you and wants your result as much if not more than you do.
The trainers in U.P. have been famed for this since Nick started the company and it is this exact culture and mindset that Nick has bred within us. We are not incentivized on session numbers or money earned, we are incentivized on the value that we deliver to clients.
Have we given the client everything we reasonably could to ensure a return on their investment?
Have we exceeded that client’s expectations?
Have we given the client the end result they wanted?
This is what has made us the number one personal training business in the world – we care about your result more than you do.
In a world of social media marketers, you need to learn to tell the difference between trainers who are solid gold and those who are just gold-plated. Make sure whichever trainer you choose has all bases covered; your training, nutrition and supplementation all work together so make sure you get what you pay for.
If not… Move on!