For clients working out isn’t the hardest part about exercising; it’s finding the motivation to actually go to the gym. This is the reason many hire personal trainers in the first place: A mindset of “I paid for it, so I have to do it” sets in. Even just the idea of someone holding them accountable is enough to motivate a client to walk through the doors of the gym. Trainers need to start keeping clients motivated.
Most clients start their fitness plan very excited for a new adventure, and super motivated to morph their body into what they’ve always wanted. Then over time, their motivation decreases. Whether due to a slowdown of results, a lack of proper sleep, or a busy schedule, it seems harder and harder to keep clients excited to push for results and not just give up altogether. These are top trainer tips to keep your clients motivated:
For clients to see appropriate results, they have to treat their health and wellness as a priority. Stress this point to them. If your client does not first and foremost see their health as a reason to carve out time in the day, they will become unmotivated. Sit down with each client at the beginning of working with them to help them manage time, arrange schedules, or set priorities as needed.
Making training fun is an excellent way to keep clients motivated in their workout. Find what makes your client laugh, or what pushes your client. It may be a friendly competition or an internal battle to beat last week’s numbers. Talk to them. Entertain them. After a few weeks of fun, your client will start to associate going to the gym with happiness rather than dread. Just remember to keep the fun challenging.
Set reminders for your clients on when to do activities when you’re not around. After setting priorities and time management, determine when will be best to stretch, workout (without you training), sleep, and eat. Sticking to a strict schedule will help your clients feel accomplished at the end of each day (almost like checking off a daily checklist).
So many clients have people supporting them along the way that meets their sources for motivation. Be sure that the support system also knows what does (and doesn’t) need to be said to keep your client motivated. Some clients, unfortunately, do not have that system.
When this is the case, it is up to you to be that support for them to lean on in tough times. Emailing daily or just texting a simple “Hey! How is your week going?” will not only keep your client on track but solidify to your clients that you truly care about them and their wellbeing. Trust us, they will think of you and their progress each time you reach out.
Some trainers try to make a routine different with each session while others will change up the routine every few weeks or so. Not only is changing the routine necessary for growth and development along one’s fitness journey, but it will also keep your client guessing and stepping out of their comfort zone, keeping the session exciting and new.
Help your client visualize a goal to keep in mind throughout the journey. Whether this is a material item (a pair of pants or a new dress) or the idea of getting to play on the floor with grandkids, help them create a visual representation of the end goal. Ask clients before training to provide a reason why they have chosen now to start training. Finding that reasoning is always a great place to start and a good reminder when hope or motivation starts to waver.