What to Look For in a Health & Fitness Coach
There are personal trainers and then there are health and fitness coaches. And yes! They are two very different people. Keep reading to learn what a health and fitness coach can do for you.
What’s the difference between a health coach and a personal trainer?
A health and fitness coach is going to help a client develop healthy habits and work with them on their goals to create a healthier lifestyle. A personal trainer, on the other hand, is going to help a client with workouts, giving them exercises and possibly giving ideas to become healthier. (a lot of gyms don't allow trainers to give nutritional advice. Nutritional advice can only come from there on staff dietician)
A health and fitness coach and a personal trainer have very different jobs. If you’re not sure which one you need, look at your goals. Do you want to just get a good workout at the gym? Or do you want to approach your health goals through nutrition, exercise, and other tools that can help you make steady progress?
If you want to just include new workouts in your exercise regimen, a personal trainer would be a great fit. If you want to make steady progress toward your health goals with support that’s customized for you, definitely consider a health and fitness coach!
What to look for in a health and fitness coach
Once you’ve decided a health and fitness coach is right for you, make sure you’re finding the right one for you. Here’s what to look for when searching for a health and fitness coach.
Proper training and qualifications
There are so many “coaches” out there: business coaches, sleep coaches, life coaches, and health and fitness coaches. Before you dive headfirst into a relationship with a new health and fitness coach online or near you. Check their qualifications.
You want a coach who works with you one on one and doesn’t just throw you in a group program leaving you unseen. Your coach should have a step-by-step plan to follow with flexibility for life and your goals (not his/hers) This coach should be setting you up for life not just a quick fix cut everything out to lose 20 lbs only to gain it all back. You should be looking for a coach who is helping your habits and schedules, addressing your mindset, and not just telling you to eat this or that.
Understanding and appreciating your fitness level and goals
When you are looking for the perfect coach to help you get started or continue your health journey, it is important to find someone who has your best interests in mind.
They should create a workout plan and nutrition plan based on your specific needs, abilities, and fitness level. You are the client and they need to be looking at what would work best for you! When a health and fitness coach is working with a client, they should never pull a random program off the internet or give every single client the same advice and/or program.
Before even starting a program, a good health and fitness coach will look at clients’ current health and fitness levels, as well as assess their current form. They should not just be throwing clients into a program. If you feel this is happening to you, ask yourself, “How do I know if I am doing these exercises or counting macros correctly?” If you can not answer with, “My fitness coach showed/helped me,” you could be doing yourself more harm than good.
Nutrition and diet knowledge
You want someone who understands diet and nutrition and who knows how to make those aspects support you and your fitness plan.
It has been said by many knowledgeable and certificated people that being healthy and losing weight is 80% diet and 20% exercise. This means your health and fitness coach should have a very large grasp on what your body will need to help obtain your goals when it comes to nutrition and dieting.
Accessibility is key!
You want a health and fitness coach who is going to be accessible to you! Buying a workout guide or checklist won't help you stay on track — you want accountability and support. Whether it is the text message, group calls, Facebook groups, 1:1 sessions, etc. — a client needs support and will have questions along their health journey.
Accessibility does not just mean they have a scheduled weekly call with you. You need to make sure the coach is listening to you and is asking you questions about your goals, issues, successes, etc. Make sure they are looking at the game plan and changing things up if need be. They should be working on what will actually get you to your goals. Not just adding you to the same program every other client is on.
Want to work with a health and fitness coach who’s got YOUR back?
If this blog has you thinking, “I need a health and fitness coach!” you are in luck. I am a certified health and fitness coach, with trainings and certifications in personal training (through ISSA) and health coaching (through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition).
I will create a customized program to help you reach your health and fitness goals, and I have a vast knowledge of nutrition and diets. Plus, I have been in your shoes before — healthy but unhealthy and trying to find the right balance for my body and mind.
If you decide I am the coach for you, you'll get 12 weeks of 1:1 intensive virtual coaching from me where I can show you exercises, help you understand macros, share recipes, and shape your mindset to get you going in the right direction! Book a free consultation call to get started!