Thursday, July 24, 2014

5 Things You Should Know Before Hiring a Coach or Trainer

Today is Thoughtful Thursday! I've gotten lots of emails this month about people wanting to know how they can get a wellness coach or personal trainer to work with them. Maybe you have a trainer or coach, well this post is still for you. Here are 5 pointers on how to gain/maintain a very valuable relationship and will tell you what to look for in a coach or a trainer. Also know that if your trainer or coach doesn't listen your concerns at all or is constantly tardy/unprofessional, it might be time to look for another one. When you hire a fitness professional, this is what you're getting into.

1. Understand that your trainer/coach has invested many hours, and in the case of the very experienced trainer, years in order to help their clients reach their goals. I know some trainers do have ego issues, but if yours is someone who has possibly gone to college for their education, (like I have), do not ask them if their price points and then get all sulky and non-committal when they tell you. A good trainer is certainly not free. What if you spent hours on the job only to discover that you weren't getting paid because your boss didn't feel like they wanted to pay your wages? That's what I thought. Respect your trainer's time and investment, and I assure you, they will respect yours. Know that if you want to reach your dream goals and beyond, you will have to spend money. "A dream without a plan of action and committment is just a wish."

2.  Be teachable. Ok, so no one knows your body like you do. Understand this...there is a major difference between muscle soreness and real pain. "Unless you have real pain, do not complain." Tell the truth about your limitations, and a qualified trainer/coach will understand and honor them, but complaning because you don't like to get on the mat and do planks, when you have the physical ability to do planks doesn't count. Yes, we will try to prescribe exercises you like, but there's a very good reason to why we chose the exercises that we did. There is a science to this.  Because we care, we push you. Why did you hire a trainer? Because they have a skill set you need in order to reach your goals.  My policy is, "Praise in public, reprimand in private." Also if you have a trainer, you don't like their communication style, settle that with them before you complain to a different trainer and say you're going to commit to them. A good coach/trainer  will provide you access/opportunities to resources that will empower you and not make you and not make your dependent on them.

3. If you've found a trainer, coach you love. Support their business by giving specific referrals.Write a review for their website. They have to pay bills too. I have a client/graduate  whoehas fed me referrals for 2 solid years, and I'm eternally  grateful to her. When I was putting my hubby through school, and money was super tight, those referrals were the reason I had business in the slow times.

4. If  we tell you we use a product, and you see results, then it's safe to assume that we're not just affiliated with that product for the works for us....who better to get a product recommendation from right...? Trainers are the hardest  sells of all, and good trainers know what goes into a product and why it works for them. You didn't ask because it was asked because it works...

5. Be on time and always confirm your attendance for sessions and classes. You would be mad if you invested hours of time into your wedding, and all you got from potential guests were "maybe's". The same is true of your trainer/coach. Don't waste their time. Most gyms and trainers have an attendance policy...mine is two no-show's and you're off my roster...permanently. This problem is so bad in my area that I decided to do online coaching and not waste my gas or put miles on my car. If you're going to be late, then call if possible. We understand emergencies come up...but "I don't feel like it." doesn't count. A biblical principle I try to live by is "Let your 'yes' be 'yes' and your 'no' be 'no'".

I hope this post helps you understand the committments involved in finding the right trainer/coach for you. These points are written based on real-life experience, and what I look for in my clients. In other words,  follow the golden rule. I understand that there are "shark" trainers out there, and  they give the rest of us a bad wrap, but I try to walk with integrity with my clients, and I know many other trainers who try to do the same. This post was written on their behalf. :-)

Thanks for listening as always!

- Julie
Curious about what Julie does for her workouts?


  1. Great point of view. Sometimes it is hard to see what it means for you vs. for us. It is indeed an investment so I definitely respect my trainer's time. I do not like to have my time wasted. #wowlinkup

  2. I love this because it complements my post on Hiring a Trainer When You are on Budget. Posting this on my FB page. #wowlinkup