Women’s midlife challenges.Bernadette is a sensitive, successful but overworked 56-year-old client of mine. When she came to me 2 years ago, she was emotionally distraught and desperate to change her body, her energy level and her outlook on life. In addition to holding a demanding job, she was struggling with the onset of menopause. Hot flashes continually interrupted her sleep, and her workaholic behavior left little time to relax.
How many times have clients asked you about over-the-top weight loss products they saw on television? Usually the product manufacturers make outlandish claims that you itemize and debunk. It’s not always easy, however, to convince clients that a pill doesn’t work when they’ve already been exposed to very persuasive arguments from well-produced infomercials. You can’t keep your eye on every bad claim.
Are your clients trying to lose weight on their own? They may be better off as part of a group. Why? New research conducted by Aston University’s Mike Green, PhD, and Nicola Elliman, in conjunction with the Western Human Nutrition Center at the University of California, found that organized weight loss groups had some significant advantages.
Here’s another reason for your clients to maintain a healthy weight: Women who have gained more than 20 pounds since age 18 have a higher risk of developing breast cancer after menopause than women who have maintained their weight, according to research published in the February issue of Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers and Prevention.
By now everyone knows that lack of exercise and unhealthy eating can cause health problems. A new study released by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Centers for Disease Control and Prevention demonstrates just how dangerous the problems can be. The study, published in the March 10, 2004, Journal of the American Medical Association, found that deaths due to poor diet and physical inactivity rose by 33 percent (%) over the past decade, and noted that these lifestyle factors may soon overtake tobacco as the leading cause of preventable death.
Case Study: Weight Loss
According to the 1999-2000 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, more than 64.5 percent of Americans are obese or overweight (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 2003). It's no wonder, then, that many clients cite weight loss as a main goal when starting a new exercise program. As personal trainers, we want our clients to reach their goals quickly and safely. However, results are sometimes hard to achieve, leading to frustration and dropout. A creative approach may be what's needed.
The sources for the case studies in the first part of this article are case law and anecdotes from industry professionals. Today most cases are settled out of court and therefore never actually create case law. These examples are valuable because they illustrate typical day-to-day areas of risk exposure in personal training. The second part of the article addresses risk-management strategies for each of these concerns.
If your older clients ate as much healthy food as they wanted, would they still lose weight? Possibly, according to a study in the January 26, 2004, issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine that examined 34 older men and women with impaired glucose tolerance.