As fitness professionals, we answer a ton of questions from our clients/members on a daily basis regarding fitness. No big deal; I love talking shop with anyone interested in improving their overall health and wellness. I usually do my best to remain objective and provide as much information without opinion as possible. Sometimes it doesn’t work, especially when someone asks me about burpees and their general effectiveness. I usually don’t like to write-off any programming or nutrition info without first examining it with a fine-tooth comb.
No one needs to explain that each person is an individual, with different wants and needs when it comes to their diet and exercise programs. Which is why the first response to the question of
“what do you think about this weightlifting program?”
“what are your thoughts about this nutrition program?”
usually sounds something like
“Well, do you think you’ll be able to stick to it?”
Nutrition programs are only as good as the adherence level of the individual. That is the number determining factor of success when it comes to health and wellness. Say a client has a hard time with protein intake. Does it make sense to have them try and eat 1.2g/lb? Nope. They won’t be able to stick to that. If someone can’t reasonably stick to a nutrition program then it doesn’t make sense to even attempt it. Yeah, in a perfect world, we’d all have chicken rice and broccoli for lunch and the rest of our meals would look like that portions plate that for some reason was burned into our retinas in elementary school. But that isn’t sustainable, partially because it’s boring and partially because life gets in the way! We aren’t always 100% of the time able to plan our meals, and that’s okay! As long as we can stick to the program.
If a client comes to me and tells me they hate bench press, does it make sense for me to program bench for them? No! Because they aren’t going to enjoy it and the likelihood of adherence goes down. A program is only as good as the client’s ability to stick to it. Some people love CrossFit. Great! Stick to it. Some people love yoga. Terrific! Stick to it. Some people love powerlifting. Won’t hear any complaints from me!
Bottom line- there’s rarely one right answer in fitness. The rightest answer is the one that enables the greatest adherence.