How Can You Be Sure Any Other Program Will Meet Your Needs?
So you want your own fitness program, but you don’t know where to start. Where do you get most of your daily information? If you’re searching for local events, news updates, or product recommendations, where do you turn?
If your answer is “social media,” you’re keeping company with the majority of Americans. It’s not hard to understand why so many people rely on social platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for information; after all, your feed is a compilation of people you admire, care about and trust.
Whether it’s your bestie or a celebrity, you have the option to follow their daily life and enjoy a feeling of closeness.
But what happens when someone you trust makes exciting progress in their fitness journey – and promises that you can enjoy that same success, too? It’s tempting to watch somebody successfully transform their body and decide you want the exact same thing for yourself.
More and more social influencers are releasing their “one of a kind” diet and workout plans, along with a guarantee that anyone can easily duplicate the same results. To prevent you from wasting your valuable time and hard earned money, read this article to understand exactly why one-size-fits-all programs are not the best option compared to your own fitness program.
Don’t Be Fooled by Fitness Influencers
Scrolling through social media you can easily find influencers posting their workouts, meal plans, products, and inspirational messages while looking ripped and flawless. Remember these are their programs that worked for them. They have different body types. They have different diets. It is much different than what could be your own fitness program. Although it may appear that they are trustworthy and knowledgeable about fitness, are they really? Unfortunately, a lot of what you hear and read in the news and on social media is not as black and white as some would have you believe.
What Are the Qualifications of the Fitness Influencer?
The biggest concern with most influencers is that although they have a huge following, they have zero qualifications to share credible information and recommendations. Also, a governing body regulating or questioning their advice does not exist. Therefore, people assume that these influencers must know what they are talking about because they have a great physique themselves. Most of them sell what they know to be true for them. They are not selling your own fitness program.
However, just because someone has a six-pack or has an amazing booty, it doesn’t automatically mean they have the expertise to be a qualified coach.
The programming they offer could be based on what simply works for them and does not guarantee that you will achieve the same results. We are all different and respond to different training and nutrition methods. A ‘cookie cutter’ approach is potentially damaging for the fitness industry and for the general public who don’t know otherwise. Not only could it damage your health, but it could also damage your wallet too. How many of these cookie cutter programs would you buy and not see the results before you eventually learned you needed your own fitness program?
What Are the Program Details?
If the details of the program aren’t very thorough or if the details are vague, this should be a red flag. Workout programs can include a wide range of services and many that are available online do not offer personalized virtual training programs. For example, many influencers create a virtual program with the purpose to scale their business. And in order to grow this type of business that doesn’t require to be there every step of the way, they create programs once and sell to many people. Do you feel this style of workout programming is the best way for you to achieve your personal goals? How can they give you confidence that they deeply understand your needs and sell your their program, not your own fitness program?
Below are a few important questions to consider before investing in any workout plan:
Are the workout plans and nutrition for bulking up or cutting?
How exactly are the workout plans personalized?
Is there phone or email support available?
Are there videos demonstrating the exercises?
What does the format look like?
How many workout plans are there?
Are there recipes that come with the nutrition plans?
Beware of Unsafe Exercises
People will often try to re-invent the wheel by creating exercises to be different and separate themselves from every other fitness influencer. Unfortunately, these inventive exercises often lead to potentially unsafe technique that will likely result in injury. This is especially important to be mindful of for those who are newer to working out as it may be difficult to identify which exercises are safe and which ones to avoid.
Not only will people try to come up with unsafe exercise variations for the sole purpose to be different, but it is also important to watch out for poor form and technique that is performed on traditional exercises. You will see numerous poorly performed squats, planks, pull ups, and bench press on social media with incorrect technique for the sake to claim they have lifted a certain weight and then get validation from others online. Someone who lacks knowledge on correct technique might watch these videos and think that this is acceptable. As mentioned earlier a beginner won’t know the difference between good and bad training, which is why individual programming is the best option.
If you are ever unsure about which exercises are standard, conduct your own research using a credible websites or verified social media platforms from accredited organizations in the fitness industry, such as: NASM – National Academy of Sports Medicine, ACE – The American Council on Exercise, NSCA – National Strength and Conditioning Association, ACSM – American College of Sports Medicine, or NETA – National Exercise Trainers Association.
Reality: Fitness Is Not Sexy
Influencers frequently post on social media to persuade you into believing that their programming is exactly what you need to reach your goal of losing fat, building muscle, or improving your health habits. After all, it is more believable when you see posts of delicious healthy meals, flawless workouts, desirable physique photos, and how happy they are living their life. But, is that really what your life will be like after you purchase one of their plans?
The truth is fitness success is about doing the little things that are not posted on social media. You may be wondering why don’t people post the truth then? The answer is simple. People don’t want to scroll through their feeds and see these boring, tedious, difficult, annoying, and unattractive things that require time, effort, and dedication. That is why most influencers will glam it up to look more appealing and sexy by using filters, angles, lighting, photoshop, and hours of editing to make you believe it is true.
Build Your Own Customized Program
Sure, it might be tempting to buy a generic workout program, but have you ever considered designing your own fitness program? If this is something that interests you, keep these basic points in mind:
Consider and identify your fitness goals. Are you starting a fitness program to help lose body fat? Or do you have another motivation, such as preparing for an upcoming race?
How much time can you realistically devote to exercising each day?
Create a balanced and sustainable routine. Spread out exercises during the course of a week. Do strength training exercises for all major muscle groups at least two times a week.
Start low and progress slowly. If you’re just beginning to exercise, start cautiously and progress slowly. If you have an injury or a medical condition, consult your doctor or an exercise therapist for help designing a fitness program that gradually improves your range of motion, strength and endurance.
Build activity into your daily routine. Finding time to exercise can be a challenge. To make it easier, schedule time to exercise as you would any other appointment.
Allow time for recovery. Plan time between sessions for your body to rest and recover.
Put it down on paper and keep track of your progress
Developing your own fitness program requires time, dedication, and self-motivation. If you feel like this may not be the best route for you to take, there is another option for you to consider.
Seek Guidance from a Certified Personal Trainer
When it comes to fitness, everyone is different. Your unique body mechanics, experience, goals, fitness level, likes and dislikes can guide your trainer in creating your own fitness program that is specific to your needs. Additionally, these plans are created to be realistic and flexible, meaning it can be adjusted as you change. With a program that fits, you are more likely to maintain the habit and see results.
Here are a few additional benefits of working with a Personal Trainer who will create a customized plan for you:
Motivation – Working with a trainer can provide the support, energy and motivation you need
Consistency – A Personal Trainer can hold you accountable and help you overcome excuses
Clarity – Removes any guesswork and provides credible information and direction on your fitness journey
Confidence – Strengthen your self-confidence on understanding and performing various exercises
Avoid Injury – Learn proper exercise technique to improve your results and prevent injuries
Wherever you are in your fitness journey, hiring a certified Personal Trainer will be highly beneficial. If you are willing to commit to following your trainer’s advice, it’s a worthwhile investment in your health and fitness that could pay dividends long after your session is over. Investing in your health with the help of a Personal Trainer may be one of the most rewarding decisions you will ever make.