Comments I hear often are:
“I just can’t get motivated”
“When I’m not competition dieting I struggle not to gorge constantly”
“How do I get it into my head that food is just fuel and stop craving things?”
Here are some of the things that I have covered in my one to one coaching sessions that can help with fitness goals:
Creating the Future
Goal setting is the first and primary technique I have used to help my clients define what they really want. A key to goal setting is defining the right kind of goals. So we would set clearly what your fitness goal is as without this clear goal in mind it’s hard to stay focused. Goal setting is more than just listing what it is you want. I will ask you to start visualising, feeling and acting as if you have successfully achieved your goal.
These images help to inspire my clients and propel them forward toward a dream, goal or outcome. In addition to helping create positive expectations, visualising successful outcomes helps you to tap into and direct your own inner source of motivation.
Compelling futures are typically formed around key values, which I help elicit through questioning. When you can connect your future plans and goals to your values, those goals become even more compelling.
Motivation and Confidence
Motivation is critical for people to achieve their fitness goals. A personal trainer can tell their clients what they need to do and how to do it, but that will not make any difference unless their clients are motivated.
You may be with your personal trainer for a couple of hours each week, but how are you going to motivate yourself? Many people with fitness goals are challenged by motivational issues, especially when they are overweight, tired, discouraged, etc. Good fitness requires a lot of learning, discipline and control. It can be difficult for people to keep up their momentum, and they may find themselves struggling with laziness and boredom.
I’ve helped people discover and focus on their own personal “motivators” and give them tools to feel confident whenever they want.
Breaking Old Habits
Changing old habits and establishing new healthy ones is another key to achieving good fitness. I work with my clients to step back and “think before you react.” For example, let’s say a client is offered some cake. Rather than just reacting by reaching for it, I will help the client to decide how to react and how to be more aware of the internal dialogue so they can ask themself things such as: How much do I want? Why do I want it? Do I need it? What do I really need right now?
As these questions imply I have helped people to sort out “need” from “want.” If someone wants the cake for the taste, for instance, how much does he or she need in order to get the taste or can they get the same sweet taste from fruit perhaps? If it is to please others, are there better ways to do that? If someone is eating in order to please him/herself, he or she can be prompted to consider, “Are you really pleasing yourself?” “How will you feel after you have eaten?”
Questions such as these can help people to switch their mindset about healthy eating from “depriving myself” to “benefiting myself.” This allows people to get the same feeling and gratification from not eating as they do from eating. They begin to realise that the pleasure of not eating will last longer than that derived from eating, and that the “food hangover” that often results from overeating is not nearly as pleasant as the feeling of energy and confidence that comes from eating healthy portions of food.
Clearing the Past
In working with diet and weight issues, I find it useful to get to the root cause of the bad eating habit. NLP techniques, such as those involving time line work, can be very useful to help bring such a person back into his or her past in order to discover the situations that triggered unhealthy eating habits leading to weight gain. This can be a very emotional process, but once people find such triggers, the issues can be addressed directly rather than trying to resolve them through food. It does take more than one or two sessions to identify and reprogram the problematic thought process. Taking this time, however, can help lift the burden off clients so that they are able to move forward with their lives.
These are just some examples of tools and techniques that I have used to assist people to achieve their fitness goals.