I have a client who was doing great – motivated, progressing, etc. Suddenly, there are complications: she doesn’t “like” to sweat, she can’t jump because her arches hurt, she won’t work out on her own time anymore. She’s getting new shoes, which will hopefully address the issue of her sore arches (and therefore opening up new exercise opportunities during our sessions). However, she’s “bored” and wants to do other things. I’ve been working on the major muscle groups with her, using a variety of full-body exercises, along with more traditional strength and resistance training. She’s happy with her muscle tone and likes to see her progress there. Her current goal is weight loss.
Any ideas on how to motivate her? Any ideas on finding new “fun” exercises that she can do within these new limitations? It’s very frustrating because I feel like she’s her own worst enemy and needs to give a little (but not with pain), but I also want to make her happy and find things for her to do that she’ll enjoy.
Thank you for any advice!
I am with those who believe that there is more here than just boredom with exercise.
One thing you did not mention is the age difference between you and your client. If there is a great discrepancy, your client may not be comfortable discussing emotional issues with somebody much younger, and at that point in time, there is little you can do about it.
If she is at present in a place where ‘she does all she can do’ then you have to meet her where she is.
You cannot always please a client, particularly when she has decided to be unhappy. You can only do the best you can do and remind yourself that you are not responsible for her emotional state.
Thank you all so much! I have talked to her about goals (her primary goal used to be running a half-marathon, now it’s weight loss). I’ve explained about calories in vs. calories out and while she eats well overall, the calories out part seems to be missing for the reasons I stated earlier. Her emotional state is definitely the issue, but seems to be beyond me. I’ve tried talking to her, re-examining her goals, etc. I think she’s in a place where she’s convinced herself that she’s doing SOMETHING to take care of herself physically (seeing a trainer), but that’s as far as she can/will go. As far as the games go, I’ve tried a few variations already, but she doesn’t like to throw/catch on top of the other restrictions she’s imposed, so even that’s limited. I am hoping she’s gotten her new shoes (thanks, Karen, for the Brooks Cadence recommendation – I’ve passed it along) so we can get back to running…. Again, thank you all so much for your thoughts and suggestions. I’ll keep you updated!
Thank you all for the great ideas! While I did not post this question – I was about to ask one very similar. I have a 16 year old client who has recently become very uninterested. She trains 3 days a week and we vary it alot – however recently I have found her putting in about 25 % effort. She wants to talk more than exercise & while I let her vent I try to bring her focus back to the workout.
It has been a struggle the last few weeks and know there is more going on in her life than what is being discussed and think this time maybe a sit down conversation is the way to go since changing up her routine is not working.
Harris’ answer makes a group of sense. I think you have to get to know an individual a little better to find out what motivates and inspires him/her. In sports performance, weight loss, bettering the nutritional habits, and even improving your sleep pattern, the emotional issues that change these elements one way or the other plays a huge percentage it them. Sure the physical and mechanical habits from practice and routine can decrease the adverse effects that emotions bring to the table, it is the emotion that is always there, being bridged in all aspects of one’s life.