Let’s face it. We all need a little help from time to time. Having a support network when you’re trying to reach a health goal is crucial. There may be a few out there who make up their minds to lose weight and maintain a healthy lifestyle all on their own, but they’re few and far between.
As their trainer, you can offer your clients support and encouragement, but we all know there is strength in numbers. This is why it’s so important for trainers to help their clients build a support network at home and/or online. Having someone (or multiple people) out there for support can make the difference. Especially, if your clients have tried before and failed.
Here are a few different methods you can suggest to help your clients build a support system to help them when you, as the trainer, are not around.
5 Methods Clients Can Use to Build a Support Network
1. Make Your Home a Healthy Space
Wouldn’t it be easier if everyone in your clients’ home were healthful?
They say that the kitchen is the heart of the house. This is where we can either adopt a lifestyle that promotes wellness or one that promotes unhealthy habits.
I always suggest to my clients to let their family know that some positive changes are coming in the kitchen. While telling your kids to only eat sweets when you’re not around is one thing. But telling them dinner will change forever is another. Don’t just say, “Hey kids, Mom or Dad is on a diet!” Try saying, “We are all going to work together as a family to improve all our health through healthier eating.”
Make a list of the benefits of healthier eating. For example, sports performance, brainpower, stronger muscles and more energy. These benefits typically get families on board!
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2. Make Workouts a Priority
The main complaint of many clients is that they don’t have time for the gym. This is where scheduling workouts and making them a priority is important.
Clients need to commit to working out at a specific time and refuse to derail those plans for any reason short of an emergency.
If your client has a calendar for their family or friends that they use, encourage them to mark their workouts into their calendars. This will help prevent cross-bookings or scheduling conflicts. Likewise, encourage your clients to add their workouts to their work calendars so they can organize their days accordingly (like, booking meetings in the afternoon so they can get in a pre-work morning workout).
For clients that really struggle to get their workouts in, consider offering them at-home workout options. They’ll save the commute time and won’t need extra support for things like childminding if that’s a key concern for them.
I encourage my clients to stream the workout from their smartphones to their television and make it a big fitness event in the household. Have everyone gather around the TV and support each other to get fit!
3. Get Social With It
Why limit your support network solely to the people you live with? I always suggest that my clients use their social media channels to post about their fitness journeys. The Trainerize client add-on for Facebook makes it really easy to quickly share a post when you’re workout out. For clients that are keen, they could even try a live stream! Those likes can go a long way to fuel a workout.
My clients’ daughter would live stream the family working out together. This makes it a fun and interactive experience. It also inspires your followers to make a positive change not only with them but also with their family’s health. It also is a great way for you to increase your support group numbers! Your client might even find some workout buddies who could join them for some small group training.
4. Become a Weekend Warrior
Sometimes client schedules can be absolutely packed, but more often than not, they have more time to exercise on the weekend—even though they might rather spend it sitting on the couch.
Weekends are a great time to work out. Gyms are empty and typically there is someone around to watch the kid(s), Encourage your clients to take advantage of this prime time and become a weekend warrior. They’ll find other weekend fitness warriors out there, and they’ll end up with more energy and feeling more accomplished when Monday comes rolling back around.
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5. Use Cheat Day as a Chance to Celebrate
Everyone loves a cheat day, but why not use that day of indulgence to celebrate with your friends and family who have either joined your fitness journey or are supporting it.
Clients can choose any day they like and make it a day to have fun, enjoy some “comfort foods” and get in some quality time with the ones they care for. If these celebrations become a regular thing, your clients will know that they have something to look forward to and it’ll likely be a time when they will talk about their fitness progress — how’s that for motivation?
When you consider how hard it can be for clients to simply get in some activity, it’s clear how impactful a support network can be. Having a support system while the client is getting healthy can offer the priceless motivation and inspiration they need to continue especially when things get hard or frustrating.
It really doesn’t matter who the support system is. It might be friends, coworkers, parents, children, or partners. Just remind your clients to share their journey with those around them and have people there to root for them every step of the way.