Coaching is a buzz word that gets thrown around a lot in fitness and nobody has really been able to define it. Is it being a cheerleader? Being a drill sergeant? Showing tough love, or holding your hand? Today I will give you my clear definition of the word "coaching" and why I think it is the most important part of your health and fitness journey.
Coaching is the process of addressing and removing whatever obstacle is in your way, right now.
The obstacle is either one of two things.
An ineffective strategy
A lack of action and compliance
This is when you have the motivation, are taking action and are still not seeing results. The problem here lies within your strategy. What, when, how or why you are eating is usually the culprit. When other times it is stress and/or exercise related.
A Lack of Action and Compliance
In short, this is knowing what to do but not doing it. Strategy isn't the problem, following through on the strategy is. The problem here is that most of us are not aware of why we do or do not do anything. We put the responsibility of our actions on our circumstances (our life, our work, our relationships etc.) when really this is not the case. Actions are dictated by our thoughts or interpretations or our circumstance. That is the key distinction.
Coaching is the process of meeting you where you are at and moving the roadblock out of your way. It is not about teaching a certain nutritional/exercise bias or philosophy and it is definitely not about tough love all of the time. The goal is for the client to become the expert, with the help of your coach of course.
When the roadblock is strategy we tweak the strategy... but what about when the issue is compliance? Do you have a proven system or "structure" to help you get unstuck? A tool and coach that can help you solve any problem within your health and fitness and get you the results you want?
Good coaching must be able to help you, the client, develop a an effective strategy and help you get out of your own way in order to take action. Good coaching must also be interactive and client-centered. Meaning that the coaching process is a collaboration between the client and coach and not a full out dictatorship by the coach. Telling you what to do all of the time rarely leads to long-term success.
Having a coach that knows how to help you with both of these types of problems is huge in order to get results and maintain them permanently.