At least once a week someone asks me for a weight-management program that can “run 100% on auto-pilot.”
The fact is..even our ONBOARD 101 isn’t 100% auto-pilot if it’s being used as part of a Weight-Management Program.
Because even the most successful weight-management program requires some sort of HUMAN INTERACTION and COACHING via phone, Skype, Zoom, email, text… ect.
Do world class athletes just figure it out for themselves…? Heck no!
Even a 5 year-old T-ball player starts out with some COACHING…. right?
THE TECHNICAL STUFF IS EASY
Listen… the technical aspect of weight-management is no more difficult than balancing a check book. Caloric input vs. energy expenditure. Pretty simple.
The hard part is actually doing it and holding oneself accountable.
Plus, the challenge of changing lifestyle habits and behaviors. People need help in figuring out what alternatives are best and fit into their particular life circumstances. This is the real stuff!
So let’s have an “adult conversation” about weight-management.
- When it comes to weight-loss (fat-loss) almost all consumers enter the fitness environment with unrealistic expectations (lose 20 lbs in 20 days). A fitness professional absolutely MUST ADDRESS THIS ISSUE RIGHT AWAY.
- I continue to advise my consulting clients to look the client squarely in the eyes and ask, “Exactly what are your expectations of this program?” This absolutely needs to be brought out and “put on the table” and addressed.
- If the client says, “I want to lose 20 lbs in 20 days” the trainer has an OBLIGATION to start a new dialog and to re-frame those mis-informed expectations. Anything less is just setting you up to take the BLAME when the client doesn’t hit his or her preconceived, unrealistic goals.
FROM SABOTAGE TO REFERRALS
- Even when the client is motivated and understands how it all works… that it is a “process,” a “lifestyle” and is the “perfect client” – there is the issue of SABOTAGE that goes on at the client’s home.
- Consider the “mom” who wants to lose body fat and change her lifestyle but is met with resistance and objections at home by the husband and kids. Or, the office co-workers who goad your client into coming along to the fast-food joints for burgers and fries.
- We consult our clients to hold classroom style meetings once a week and encourage the “mom” to bring her husband, kids, other family members, friends, co-workers, etc. to the first two meetings (for free) in order to gain their support and encouragement. You’ll be amazed at what happens once you show the “support group” how to actually be supportive..!
- These two free classroom meetings for “supporters” almost always CONVERT into REFERRALS for the club or trainer. But, it is a rare club owner or trainer who sees the value in this. It’s too complicated or too much work. (It’s really not!).
INCENTIVES ARE CHEAP AND EFFECTIVE
- Incentives... This is much like a sales program where there are GOALS as well as INCENTIVES for ACHIEVEMENT of reaching those goals. Almost all clubs, trainers, etc. miss this one.
- It is NOT ENOUGH REWARD for people to simply operate on the belief that “down the road” they are going to feel better, look better, lose body -fat and have increased energy, less stress,,, etc., etc. They need SHORT TERM GOALS and incentives – EVERY WEEK. And not physical attribute goals, but, even behavior pattern achievements such as:
- How many times did they make it into the club (recorded)
- How many minutes of cardio (resistance training, stretching, etc.)
- Did they complete their Daily Journal every day
- Best handwriting in the Journal
- Did they share a healthy recipe
- Did they complete all the quizzes
- Did they create or pre-plan their weekly menus
… and then validate and recognize these achievements via public postings in the clubs, social media, discounts on training or pro shop, even little certificates of accomplishment with their name on it goes a long way in rewarding their short-term efforts.
YOU ARE THE PILOT…
THAT PART IS SIMPLE
But after 20 years of doing this stuff, I can assure you it’s the SUPPORT and EDUCATION and how those elements are delivered that are key. You are the pilot!
Executed correctly, it is a much bigger money-maker than just exercise programs. A comprehensive program that include education and support will:
- Generate more referrals than any other product or service in your fitness business.
- Attract new prospects from a full 60-minute marketing radius.
- Gain attention “on the road” as a mobile program for corporate accounts, churches, schools, organizations, etc.
After all, the #1 reason people join a club or hire a trainer is to change their body (usually NOT to get bigger!).
I hope this sheds a little light on some of the challenges we face every day and why I continue to create even more tools (like ONBOARD 101) to help with the process.
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