Spent the weekend down with the Coaching Academy in London. I know FitCoach Chris did the same a couple weeks ago and I certainly enjoyed hearing from coaches in the industry. Will share the experience on Tuesday. The message of the week this week is: remember - coaching is about helping a client get from A to B with your help but particularly utilising their own resources. FitCoach is pitched mid-way between coaching and mentoring. We are semi-directive not non-directive and bring a coaching edge to personal training. My summary this week will clarify our role and where we can take this moving forward....

 "Be the change you want to see in the world"
  (Mahatma Gandhi)
 This came up in an earlier success habit but is one I have been focusing on this week.
 What can you do this week to be consistent with Gandhi's call to action.
 What can I do to get better results in my business / for my clients?
 Ask, what is frustrating me right now? Then ask, what can I change to fix it?


Coaching Yourself to Success

If there is anyone in anyway struggling or not getting everything they want out of their personal training career I believe the single most important thing you could properly embrace is coaching.

We are all coaches! Perhaps developing further our coaching skills will help us become better coaches but we are coaches in the sense our role is to move our clients from where they are currently at to where they would much rather be. But to do this well we must understand and embrace the philosophical difference between training clients and coaching them. One of the things a coach does is probe and question about what their clients’ want. They ask questions. And in your training as a Master Trainer or from your reading of the support document ‘Motivation and Behaviour Change’ you will be familiar with the notion wants|needs|lifestyle and our need to negotiate between these elements aligning needs and lifestyle to our desires or wants. [We ask what do I want, therefore what do I need to do and how must my lifestyle be to achieve this. And if I do this how will this help me style my life the way I want it?]

We now need to simply apply this to ourselves properly. We need to ask ourselves once again what do I want. But more than this if we are to become our own coach (and you may prefer to employ one) but if we are to better coach ourselves we need to ask this fundamental question of ourselves. What do I want?

All too often we neglect to do this. And when we do we allow the world to influence our future more than we, it. And this is a problem. We can become so busy we fail to prioritise this element.

You may wish to review this previously recorded Online Seminar - 

This work is important for we cannot goal set, set an action plan or hope to get anywhere truly worthwhile until this first work is complete. Completing it will fill us with delight and energise our future actions. We need to also take a look at two more areas before we are ready. We need to look at what efforts we have been taking and what thinking we have been adopting that hasn't been working. And we need to look at what limiting conditions have perhaps prevented our progress to date. Ask yourself what has been holding me back? Perhaps this is a limiting belief you hold. I wonder where it originated. Indeed whether it truly your belief or one passed down to you when you were much younger? Then I wonder what better belief could you hold if you could define your own beliefs? And if we reinforce this enough through repetition perhaps we can create a new repeated pattern of thinking and therefore being to replace this old belief? Or perhaps it is repeated behaviour that gets in the way. Let's simply identify what it is, what seems to cue it and replace it. Select a new behaviour and become more aware of when you start to run your old program and stop it and play instead your new.

Coaching is mainly about change but this change rests on a key premise. You can only change yourself and your clients can only change themselves. Your desire to change the world starts with recognising it starts with changing yourself. Trying to change others in order to prevent the need to change yourself doesn't work. And you cannot change your clients, they can only change themselves. This is huge for you as a PT. We must focus on providing the right environment for them to change, offering the right support for them to change and supporting the development of the right self efficacy for them to embrace and master change. And as they do we can help them work out with better form and technique and can guide their nutrition plans and facilitate the whole change process.

But when we do we offer the very best method of helping them get results from fitness. And this priority on results is key. If you feel not enough people are buying into your personal training service – change. Don’t change them, change you. But to know what to change and when to change and perhaps how to change to you must be at one with your needs|wants|lifestyle matrix.

So, I am now assuming we are feeling more aware of what we want, what we need and how we want our lifestyle to be. Michael Gerber refers to this work as your primary aim and strategic objective and Stephen Covey as being proactive, starting with an end in mind and putting first things first. It doesn't matter how we chop it up it is about getting to grips with what you really want, understanding how this will serve you and making plans for change (unless you already have it all!). And we initiated this work a few weeks ago online!

Goal setting: Wow what a tool. But what a waste! The start point is looking at what you want and seeing it as far too big to possibly accomplish. What’s your start point? Now we need to break it down into bite sized pieces. So let’s do it. What are some basic steps we could derive to make this thing more manageable? And what is step 1. Let’s now solely focus on this step! But be aware that we have already done the work to know that completing it will naturally progress us towards our desired aim.

So now we are focusing on just one step (the first) what strategy do we have to achieve this specific and measurable outcome? And what actions (or process goals) can we take to achieve it. We now have our priority outcomes for this period. We can now do the work to establish what this month’s and indeed this week’s priority work is in terms of our business aims and our ability to work on our business not just in it! And therefore we should have the clarity that if we are going to put first things first it means putting these things first (not other reactive and what may appear urgent and pressing things first). And this is goal setting. And our clients rarely do this! And this is not surprising because neither do we!

Being a Personal Trainer should be truly amazing. The technical aspect of our role is exciting and rewarding. But too we must embrace the entrepreneurial aspect of our role – the part charged with the job of driving our business forward, being less concerned with the day to day running our training and more concerned with future planning and strategic organisation of our resources. This is truly an essential ingredient and one that we must embrace and as we do it should feel wonderful for we take control of our business but also our lives and future happiness for the work we did at the beginning aligned our business with some of our inner most desires and ideals. And this should almost feel spiritual, not in a religious sense but one where you feel at one with your business, your life and of course your purpose. Intense? Yes. And so it should be!




Darren is an experienced Personal Trainer and Coach having spent time working in fitness around the world with several thousand hours PT experience and is owner and founder of the European Institute of Fitness as well as FitCoach program. Darren offers one-on-one business coaching to Personal Trainers to assist them to better build a successful and robust fitness business.  


You can find out more by visiting or visiting the ACSM FitCoach main website



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