By PPT Trainer and Director, Sean O’Shea
As a personal trainer, I’ve made MANY mistakes in the way I’ve trained clients.
Now I’m not saying that these mistakes were a bad thing. I’m always saying to our clients, the biggest mistake, is when you don’t learn from it! Mistakes build character, and along with the right mindset, create a platform for future success!
Experience is simply the name we give our mistakes.
Early in my career, I read EVERYTHING available to me to do with health, fitness and physiques! The biggest difference, back then, I couldn’t see through the bullshit!
With so much information available online, through friends, in magazines and on social media, it can become difficult to decipher what the best approach is for both me, and my clients.
Smolov, 2 a day training, German volume training, Olympic lifting cycles, carb cycling, carb back loading, Outlaw, ketogenic diets, paleo, cluster training…..
The list goes on! How do we know what approach is best?
Now this is not my confession (even though that’s the name of the article). Some of my mistakes are a blessing is disguise for others. As I mentioned above, I truly believe in evaluating where things went wrong, and learning from mistakes.
One of the most common mistakes I see in both clients and trainers, is taking the wrong approach with a client at the wrong time.
More specifically, things like:
- Using advanced approaches or exercises too early (earn your stripes!)
- Not catering the approach to the physical and commitment levels of the client.
- Not paying respect to their health, flexibility/mobility and structural balance issues (strength relationship between muscles).
- Skipping a general preparation phase of training.
- Training for entertainment, or the entertainment of others. Just picking exercises, methods or training goals just to be different.
- Trying things out with a client because you read it on a website or saw it on YouTube. Just because you heard it was the approach used by (insert famous movie star) to get ready for ‘that’ movie, doesn’t mean you’ll get jacked and ripped like they did. It probably wasn’t their program anyway!
Learn from my mistakes! Here are a few helpful hints based on things I would have done differently in the past.
- If you’re a beginner, train like one! Develop the technique, and master the big compound movements before you try getting fancy with programs, exercises and methods. Still can’t squat your bodyweight to full depth? Maybe you should work on that before you try done an Olympic Snatch!
- You’ll be a ‘beginner’ for a lot longer than you think. 1 year in the gym isn’t that long a time period. Get really good at the basics!
- Find a good trainer or coach. Having someone write sound programming, evaluate your progress, and keep you accountable will go a long way.
- Respect injuries. Not just the injury site, but the repercussions it has on other areas of the body. Having a great trainer or coach will again assist in this area.
- There are no ‘new’ exercises. Anything worth doing has been around a long time.
- Different rarely means better.
- Stability/balance training (like bicep curls, one leg on a bosu with your eyes closed) should be left for those joining the circus (Just to be clear, I have not make this mistake).
- Calories count. If you’re eating more calories than you’re burning, you won’t lose fat.
- Again calories count! Trying to build muscle while not eating enough won’t work. You’ll need to eat A LOT of food! Know your amounts!
- If you’re not eating the right macronutrient amounts for your goal, you’ll never look the way you’d like. Pairing the right calories with the right macronutrient ratios is a powerful combination!
- Foods you enjoy should be eaten in moderation! Deprivation is not a good thing!
- Some people aren’t ready (or may never be ready) for calorie/macronutrient counting. Although this may sound contradictory to the points above, some people will become stressed or ‘narky’ in these processes. Creating a healthy relationship with food is essential for longevity. You may need to get creative in the ways you monitor or control your intake.
- If you’re on a diet, and can’t see yourself doing it 6 months from now (with the exclusion of some, e.g bodybuilders preparing for a show), your approach will end badly!
- Dieting too hard or unhealthy for fat loss will result in weight re-gain. Most of the time with a little extra than when you started!
This coming April, we start our new 12 Week Shift! Whether you’re looking to lose fat or build muscle, we believe our product could help you! 12 weeks of personalised training and nutritional programming, ongoing support and accountability from a PPT trainer. You’ll also be in the running to win one of our major prizes (combined value over $1000 worth). You won’t even need to be a current PPT client to get involved!
This will be a game changer for anyone looking to improve his or her body composition, and take his or her training to a new level. Don’t make the mistakes I made!
WE CANNOT WAIT TO SHARE IT WITH YOU ALL!
Until then, if you’d like to know more about how to train and eat right for your goals, get in touch with us through our contact page.