Help them to understand that rest and recovery is as important to fitness gains as is the effort phase. Most of the physiological adaptations occur during the rest phase. It’s why proper nutrition is so important, the building blocks are fundemental. Help your clients understand that taking a day off can be the best thing in their fitness arsenal.
I always ask my clients what they have done for exercise on the days I don’t see them If they are complaining about being sore, or having a pain somewhere, we talk about modifications and being sensible.
As with most things in our society, everyone wants everything FAST!
Many of my clients get over zealous in the beginning, we talk about it and I will offer modifications and suggestions.
I do my best to educate them. Let them know what is acceptable to feel (bit of muscle soreness, perhaps) and not acceptable (undue fatigue, inability to walk). There should be a structure to their program that shows them the value of rest (muscles need it, brains need it). For example, if a client was routinely coming to our sessions sore or tired from the weekend, I would have to be very direct and tell them that they simply can’t arrive in that condition since it takes away from what we can do, and that’s just a waste of their money and both our time.
Most people want their results yesterday. So, they need to know how crucial it is to give their body the time it needs to adapt. Too much, too soon, and they won’t be able to do anything for a long time (an injury could sideline them for weeks or months). Of course, that would be the worst irony for this group! I like to remind people that slow and steady is not for wimps. It’s the smart ones who continue to get stronger, feel more energized, and prepare for greater challenges.