Keys to Avoiding Health & Fitness Burnout
Beginning your journey to better fitness can be an exciting time of your life. You have identified the important role your fitness may have been affecting you, so you decided to take action to course correct.
However, as a personal trainer, one of the things that always saddens me about seeing new people signing up to the gym is seeing them only a handful of times and then never again. While there are a variety of reasons that may drive a person away from continuing their fitness journey, in this video, I am specifically talking about those that stopped going to the gym because they got burned out.
The fitness burnout is a real thing and it’s something that I see all the time, and allowing it to happen can be one of the biggest mistakes you could make. For most of the people that get burned out, it has nothing to do with their desire to be fit; in fact, I would argue that their desire was at the heart of their burnout. While several reasons exist for what causes fitness burnout, two that stand out to me include setting unrealistic goals and failing to discover healthy food choices that one will want to eat with regularity.
Setting Realistic Goals
One of the most common causes of fitness burnout is when people are overly ambitious with the goals they’ve set for themselves; I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been asked by people how they could lose 50 lbs by summer. Don’t get me wrong — ambition is a great thing because it forces you to push beyond your limitations, but you don’t want to get too carried away. Working with a personal trainer who is educated and experienced can be a massive help in guiding you in the healthiest way to your goals.
Getting injured is one of the most frustrating things that can happen when you’re training. In my opinion, unrealistic goals are among the leading causes of injury for beginners and recreational gym-goers. It’s okay to want to push yourself, but you must allow yourself for gradual progression because this is what ensures that your workout isn’t going to hurt you. A good personal trainer will test your limitations and know when to pull back when they sense discomfort.
Gym newbies almost always have this vision that they’re only going to make progress in reaching their goals by going 110% for every workout. Much of this can be because of shows like The Biggest Loser, the hype videos for upcoming UFC championship bouts, or something seen on social media. Your personal trainer can help you with setting achievable goals that will help build momentum and confidence, without making you feel overwhelmed or discouraged.
The key for any beginner to have success in reaching his/her fitness goals is to make the healthy lifestyle a sustainable one. Overreaching with the goal setting is likely to crush the desire to workout because it’s just going to be one failure after another. A good personal trainer will start you with achievable goals, then gradually build up the intensity as you gain strength and become better versed at performing the exercises. The ultimate goal of every personal trainer is to instill healthy lifestyle changes that will be adopted by their clients that last a lifetime.
Finding Healthy Food Choices You’ll Love
You don’t need a Master’s in Nutrition to have a good idea of what foods are healthy and which aren’t. In fact, even a 5-year old knows that eating vegetables is healthier than eating Cheetos, so why is it that so many people bypass healthy eating and go for unhealthy foods?
Eating foods that taste good can promote positive emotions. One of the things that holds people back from healthy eating is that they don’t know how to integrate fruits and vegetables into their diets that makes it enjoyable. This can help prevent burnout by creating a positive association with healthy eating and making it an enjoyable part of their fitness journey.
If you think that the only way to live healthy is to eat only bland food, like boiled chicken and broccoli, then you are absolutely wrong. A personal trainer with knowledge about nutrition can help you explore new foods and recipes that can help avoid boredom and burnout by adding variety to your diet.
Have you ever eaten a whole bunch of junk food, but still find yourself feeling hungry? Oftentimes, the reason why healthy foods are more satiating is due to their rich nutrient density and fiber content, whereas junk food has none of that. Those healthy foods will lead you towards feeling full for a longer time, meaning that you are less likely to overeat.
Personal trainers aren’t miracle workers, so you shouldn’t expect to look like an Instagram model in a couple weeks. However, a good personal trainer can help you with becoming more comfortable about going to the gym, teach you how to properly perform various exercises, guide you in your path towards fitness with tailored workout plans that are specific to your goals, maximize your accountability, and enlighten you on how you can fall in love with healthy eating.