The 4 Stages of Behavioral Change

If you are going to be a personal trainer it is important to understand getting a client to successfully adapt to an exercise program is dependent on that individual person willing to make a change.

A well known behavioral model that personal trainers can use is the Transtheoretical Model of Behavioral Change (TTM) more easily referred to as the Stages-of-Change model.  The basic idea of the TTM model is broken down into four different components;

  • Stages of change
  • Processes of change
  • Self-efficacy
  • Decisional balance

Succeeding with changing behaviors is no easy task but by understanding TTM you can have an easier time getting clients into a healthy lifestyle.

1. Stages of Change

The first component of the Stage-of-Change (aka Transtheoretical Model of Behavioral Change) model is about the five stages of behavioral change. The five stages of this are;

  • Precontemplation – People are leading an inactive and sedentary life. They do not understand the important of daily exercise.
  • Contemplation – People at this stage are still inactive but are realizing why not being physically active is detrimental to their health.
  • Preparation – A person is likely exercising but still not committing to a regular program. Activity might be sporadic and inconsistent.
  • Action – People are engaging in regular physical exercise.
  • Maintenance – Marked by regular fitness activity for 6 months or longer.

2. Processes of Change

This is the most important component of the Stages-of-Change model to understand while personal training.

This entails understanding the mindset and thought processes people go through from being inactive to living a healthy lifestyle. The different stages have different motivations and thought-processes you need to understand. You need to figure which stage a person. The goal is always to advance the individual to the next stage of the intervention.

I've already gone over the thought processes here, but to review.

Precontemplation

The goal at this Precontemplation stage is to make inactivity an issue at the front of the the person's mind.

As a personal trainer you should be making efforts to show someone why inactivity of physical fitness is an issue. Provide information about why being active is important via relevant sources. This could be articles, books, videos, friends and family, etc.

Contemplation

The goal at the Contemplation stage is to get them involved in some type of fitness activity.

As a trainer at this stage you should provide the opportunity for the client to ask a lot of questions. Give them more information about exercising in general. Figure out what type of exercise program will work for them. This means group exercise glasses, resistance training, sports, etc.

Preparation

The goal at the Preparation stage is for there to be some sort of regular physical fitness activity, even if it is sporadic.

To do your job well personal training a client you should provide the opportunity to be more active. Give your clients support, reinforcement, and positive feedback. Try to find fitness activities a client enjoys doing. Allow a client to express concerns and what is bothering them. Attempt to create a social support circle around the fitness routine.

Action

The goal for the Action stage is to maintain regular physical exercise.

Provide continuing support and feedback to the client so they stay with goals. (Remember SMART goals.) Figure out what sort of barriers a client might have to sticking with the program. Kids? Work? School? Make sure you assess whether the client will potentially relapse and if they are high risk for relapsing into a sedentary lifestyle again. Give them psychological and physical tools to deal with potential roadblocks.  Make sure to adapt the workout program to the varied lifestyle and changes a client may face. Are they going on vacation for an extended period? Give them an at-home workout.

Maintenance

The Maintenance goal is to prevent relapse to the old way of life, no fitness, and keep the current physically healthy lifestyle the client is on.

Encourage the client to maintain the current level of fitness and to continue on with the program. Make sure they understand the social support aspect of keeping up with fitness. Switch up the fitness routine to make it interesting for the client. You can gamify the system in which you are measuring fitness progress. Make sure you see whether a client is getting burnout with the current program.

Self-Efficacy

Self-efficacy is the third component of the TTM. This is the belief in ones capabilities to successfully in engage in a new activity, in this context we are talking about exercise programs.

This is extremely important because if someone doesn't believe in themselves, they will not be successful with an exercise program. You will typically find people in the Precontemlation and Contemplation phase have low self-efficacy. While people in the Action and Maintenance stage have a higher degree of it.

Self-efficacy is usually determined by past performance. If someone hasn't done exercise or wasn't very good at it, motivating them is that much harder. Someone who has exercised in the past and is good at it, will likely continue to do so. Self-efficacy is a circular concept.

As a personal trainer it is up to you in the personal training journey to provide a positive exercise experience for the new clients not used to exercising. This allows them to draw on those experience to continue to live a health lifestyle.

Decisional Balance

Decisional Balance is the perceived positives and negatives, pros and cons of adopting to physical fitness.

If you are in the Precontemplation and Contemplation stage you are going to have a lot more negatives and cons going through your head. This includes sore muscles, sweating, time, cost, etc. with fitness.

Remember the perceived negatives someone feels does not have to be rational. In fact most of humans emotions are not rational at all.

If you are in the Maintenance stage you are going to have a lot more positives and pros in your head. This includes changing and shaping your body, keeping endorphin levels up, lower risk of heart disease, feeling good, etc.

As a client moves through the process of the fitness program you have, often the decisional balance will shift. As a personal trainer you need to detail and record with a client perceived gains and perceived losses pf their lifestyle change. What are the maximal strategies for and minimal strategies going into this? What are the perceived obstacles in the way?

You want to avoid arguing about the cons that people see, even if they are unreasonable. Relapse to an unhealthy lifestyle can occur for a variety of reasons. This includes starting school, moving to a new city, family health issues, injury, etc. Never assume sticking with an exercise program is easy, even if it is for you.

In your own training journey what are some Stages-of-Change you know about yourself? What negatives and positives have gone through your head? How can you use these feelings to help clients?

The 5 Stages of Process Change for Fitness

Change is a part of life.

When you are embarking on a new fitness journey it is important to understand, you need to be able and ready to make changes. Specifically you will have to make a change around your attitude, beliefs, and behaviors around fitness.

These are the stages-of-process change model for fitness. This Process change method is part of the Transtheoritcal Model of Behavioral Change (TTM).

1. Precontemplation

This is when someone is inactive of living a sedentary lifestyle. This is when an individual is not thinking about fitness at all. They may even have a negative view of fitness in general.

As a personal trainer you should be making efforts to show someone why inactivity of physical fitness is an issue. Provide information about why being active is important via relevant sources. This could be articles, books, videos, friends and family, etc.

The goal at this Precontemplation stage is to make inactivity an issue at the front of the the person's mind.

2. Contemplation

In this stage of behavior change people are still sedentary. They might be in the process of starting to consider changing their lifestyle to that of a more active one. The individual may begin to understand why an inactive lifestyle is hurting their health. In the Contemplation stage they still are likely not ready to make a change to incorporate fitness into their lives.

As a trainer at this stage you should provide the opportunity for the client to ask a lot of questions. Give them more information about exercising in general. Figure out what type of exercise program will work for them. This means group exercise glasses, resistance training, sports, etc.

The goal at the Contemplation stage is to get them involved in some type of fitness activity.

3. Preparation

The Preparation stage is marked by that of some fitness activity.  It is likely a person is adapting to the mental and physical aspects of keeping a regular fitness workout going in their schedule. This mean they are doing sporadic trips to the gym or trying to get more steps on a pedometer or fitness tracker. They are ready to start a more active lifestyle.

To do your job well personal training a client you should provide the opportunity to be more active. Give your clients support, reinforcement, and positive feedback. Try to find fitness activities a client enjoys doing. Allow a client to express concerns and what is bothering them. Attempt to create a social support circle around the fitness routine.

The goal at the Preparation stage is for there to be some sort of regular physical fitness activity, even if it is sporadic.

4. Action

The Action stage is when people have been engaging in a regular fitness routine. However for 6-months or less.

Provide continuing support and feedback to the client so they stay with goals. (Remember SMART goals.) Figure out what sort of barriers a client might have to sticking with the program. Kids? Work? School? Make sure you assess whether the client will potentially relapse and if they are high risk for relapsing into a sedentary lifestyle again. Give them psychological and physical tools to deal with potential roadblocks.  Make sure to adapt the workout program to the varied lifestyle and changes a client may face. Are they going on vacation for an extended period? Give them an at-home workout.

The goal for the Action stage is to maintain regular physical exercise.

5. Maintenance

The Maintenance stage means an individual is participating in physical fitness for longer than six months.

Encourage the client to maintain the current level of fitness and to continue on with the program. Make sure they understand the social support aspect of keeping up with fitness. Switch up the fitness routine to make it interesting for the client. You can gamify the system in which you are measuring fitness progress. Make sure you see whether a client is getting burnout with the current program.

The Maintenance goal is to prevent relapse to the old way of life, no fitness, and keep the current physically healthy lifestyle the client is on.

What are Macronutrients?

If you are just getting started with fitness or nutrition you might have heard someone talk about macronutrients. What are macronutrients (often calls macros) though and why should you care?  We will go over all of that in this article.

macronutrients

Macronutrients

The term macronutrient (macro) is somewhat clear in what it means.  Basically for the human body to to develop, grow, and sustain normal function you need macronutrients. Food is composed of some combinations of the three major macronutrients which are fat, protein, and carbohydrates. Macronutrients is where you body gets calories from and it important in everyday life.

Yes, your read that right. I did say fat and carbohydrates (carbs) are important for body functioning. 🙂

Fats

Let's start off with the most misunderstood macronutrient,  fat. People think fat is bad. Actually fat is an plays an important role in your body. You need fat;

  • For protecting vital organs
  • Insulation
  • Storing energy
  • And transporting fat soluble vitamins

Roughly 20% – 35% of your daily diet should come from fats. What does that mean in terms of food? Oils, meats, fish, dairy, seeds, and micronutrients.

You should not exceed more than 10% of your daily calories from Saturated Fats. This means butter, full-fat dairy, cream cheese, and coconut and palm oil.

1 gram of fat contains 9 calories.

I should be clear I'm not saying too much adipose tissue (fancy term for fat) is good for people. You do need to be consuming some in diet and working it off with calories in and calories out.

Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are the second macronutrient we are going to be talking about. What role do Carbohydrates play in your body?

  • Fuels your Brain (Central Nervous System)
  • Fuels your body during exercise, (running, swimming, etc.)
  • Spares protein which can keep you muscle mass while exercising.

1 gram of carbohydrates contains 4 calories.

You can obtain healthy carbohydrates by eating whole grains, low-fat and non-fat dairy, and fruit.

If you are extremely athletic roughly 70% of your daily diet should be carbohydrates. With physical training you can store five times more Glycogen (animal carbohydrates in meat and seafood) in your body. This pretty much means athletes have the ability to store a lot more carbs.

If you exercise somewhat regularly, at least four times a week or more, 60% of your diet should come from carbohydrates.

If you don't more around much, only 40% – 50% of your daily intake of food should come from carbohydrates.

Protein

Protein is the building blocks for human structure. Proteins functions;

  • Help form the brain and nervous system.
  • Help form blood, hair, skin, tendons, ligaments, bones, and muscle.
  • Transport mechanism for iron, vitamins, minerals, fats, and oxygen.
  • The key to acid-bad and fluid balance.
  • Produces enzymes that regulate your body's metabolism.
  • Fights infection and disease.

That is why it is so important for human development and why you see see people pushing the important of protein in the fitness world.

You can get protein in your diet by eating rice, legumes (beans), nuts, seeds, whole grains, meat, and some vegetables.

If you are eating some animal products, meat, these are known as complete proteins. They contain all of the essential amino acids you need in your diet. Typically plant foods are not complete proteins which means they do not contain all of the essential amino acids.

The exception to this is soy. This is why you see a lot of vegans and vegetarians loading up on a lot of soy in they're diets. Vegans and vegetarians need it to maintain a healthy amount of protein.

If you are not doing much exercise it is recommend that you consumer 0.36 grams of protein per pound of your weight. If you are somewhat active this is increased to 0.45-0.68 grams of protein. An Athlete can consumer 0.54-0.82 grams of protein for every pound of weight.

ACE vs NASM – Which is Better?

ACE vs NASM? NASM vs ACE?

If you have stumbled upon this article I assume you are thinking of getting into personal training as a career or side job. To get started as a personal trainer in the United States you need to get certified.

The two most common certifying organizations in my experience are the American Council on Exercise (ACE) and the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM). These are widely accepted by most gyms and fitness facilities across the country and even abroad.

You have probably seen a lot of talk about getting ACE or NASM certified. I am going to over my thoughts about each certification and individual experiences studying for both.

ACE Certification

ACE boasts about 75,000 fitness and health professionals on it's website. To my understanding that would make ACE the most popular personal training certification, they have other certifications as well, in the United States.

The reason for this is that many gyms and fitness clubs support ACE education. ACE is also less expensive compared to NASM. Currently you can purchase the ACE Pro Advantage plan for $799 which includes everything in addition to the books and a retest voucher.

NASM is more expensive in that you need to buy the $1,000+ Guided Study program to receive a hard copy textbook. The less expensive plans do not include a textbook. Pricing for ACE and NASM study courses vary all the time though. I would keep an eye out for when they drop or have deals. NASM and ACE often offer payment plans for the courses, which I would take advantage of.

The difference with ACE materials is that it goes over a lot of behavioral psychology and motivational techniques.   NASM focuses just on the exercise science.

In my opinion the ACE material feels a little bloated because of the psychology. All this is  good to know as a trainer and something that may not come naturally to some new trainers.

However I feel when you are going to get certified are you doing so for the exercise science part of it. You should continue to learn on your own what will help you as a trainer.

The ACE Personal Trainer Manual, the textbook you read for the exam, is a bit hard to read. The book does a bad job of pointing out what is and is not on the CPT (certified personal trainer) test. Granted I have pointed out to many aspiring personal trainers that ACE provides an Exam Outline which is extremely useful. If you have the ACE Personal Trainer Manual the exam outline is provided in the back of the book. I recommend you follow it when studying since it tells you what could be on the test.

I say could be since the ACE, or NASM, has a bank of questions. It will randomly scoop up a batch and present you with these. Make sure to study. 🙂

The ACE book will often present a new term without giving an explanation. Sometimes the explanations are not clear. It also likes to bury certain terms and concepts that you should know and focus on. Personally I don't think is a conducive way to learn or write a book. The goal shouldn't be to trick new trainers but to provide knowledgeable trainers in the field for community.

You've heard my negative thoughts about ACE, but I would still recommend it. Why? It is an easier test compared to NASM and likely will take most people less time to get certified.

When I initially did my first round of test questions for ACE, I got a surprisingly number right without doing any studying.  You will still have to study but if you already have a good base of fitness knowledge ACE shouldn't be too hard for you.

Also if you do not pass your ACE exam, they give you the score and the areas you did not do well. This is helpful for those that need to brush up on certain areas to retake the ACE personal trainer exam.

If you are on a time crunch to get certified and money is a concern, ACE is an ideal option for you. I would follow the ACE Exam Outline so you are not overwhelmed.

NASM Certification

NASM is considered the harder of the two certifications by most fitness professionals in the field. You will typically find people that went to college and studied Exercise Science got NASM certification.

There isn't any fluff material in the NASM Essentials of Personal Training textbook. It is well written and laid out compared to the ACE textbook.

NASM presents topics clearly and it goes over in an easy-to-follow manner. I personally had a much easier time reading and understanding the material in the NASM textbook. This is from someone who didn't have a background or go to school for exercise science.

Also I feel what is presented in the NASM textbook better prepares you to be a personal trainer. The NASM Optimum Performance Trainer (OPT) model is superior to the ACE Integrated Fitness Training (IFT) model. Again the OPT model is better explained and laid out compared to the ACE-IFT model.

Granted the material NASM gives you is better and easier to understand but the test is harder compared to ACE. Just practicing questions will not make you pass the NASM personal trainer exam. You really need to understand the material on a deep level.

Speaking of that one annoying thing about NASM is that you only get a – PASS or a FAIL score. This doesn't really help you if you didn't do well on the test to just get a FAIL. The thing I really like about ACE it actually gives you a numeric score so you know how well you did. In addition it will give percentages in the different areas.

They tend to change around the questions and word it differently. It can be a tricky test and it is something you should devote time to understanding. With the NASM Essentials of Personal Training textbook you should be able to learn.

NASM has one HUGE advantage over ACE, which is Recertify for Life. This is a program where you pay once and you are NASM-CPT for the rest of your life. You just need to keep a current CPR-AED certification in addition to continuing education credits (CEU).

ACE has no Recertify for Life program meaning you have to pay $129 every two years to renew your ACE-CPT. If you do no NASM's Recertify for Life you will have to pay $99 every two years.

The upfront cost for NASM is much higher compared to ACE. However if you do Recertify for Life and you stick with fitness as a career, you will save money in the long run.

NASM is well respected by other fitness professionals due to it being harder and more focused on science.

Other Fitness Certifications

What about other certifying organizations? Sure there are other great certifications to get.

One that comes to the top of my mind is The National Strength and Condition Association (NSCA) which has the most respected certification in the fitness community with the Certified Strength and Condition Specialist (CSCS). The CSCS is ideal if you want to teach at the college or high school level and is required for most positions.

The CSCS test is extremely hard. It is considered the hardest certification to get.

If you are going to be doing personal training though getting a CSCS, would be good, but probably isn't necessary.  Also what certifications you get is largely dependent on what you want to do with your fitness career. I recommend you decide this for yourself.

Final Thoughts on ACE vs NASM or NASM vs ACE

Do you want a reality check? No client has ever asked me, “What certification do you have? ACE? NASM? CSCS?” You can ask other professional personal trainers, they will tell you the same thing.

Clients typically don't know the difference between fitness certifications and do not care. The people that will ask, other personal trainers and fitness professionals.

I've met personal trainers that are ACE certified and NASM certified that are fantastic. The most important thing to is to always keep learning after you get either certification. Be humble about what you do not know and want to learn. You will be a fantastic personal trainer if you have the mindset and attitude about it.

ACE does do a better job with ongoing education and providing webinars. NASM is a bit behind in this area but I still believe the winner between the two is NASM.

Just an FYI you will need to have a valid and updated CPR/AED certification before sitting for the ACE or NASM exams. This is a requirement and your CPR/AED certification must be done in person. I did my CPR/AED certification through the Red Cross. The two most common organizations that offer CPR/AED certification are the Red Cross and American Heart Association.

Have any thoughts about ACE vs NASM? What certification do you have or did you decide to go with? What experience did you have taking either the ACE or NASM personal trainer exam?

The 6 Steps of Motivational Interviewing for Personal Trainers

Motivational Interviewing can be a great technique for personal trainers to use to understand and encourage clients to stick with fitness.

I'm going to explain the basics of motivational interviewing for personal trainers. This will get you to understand how you can use it among many other tools at your disposal. It is designed to speak with people in a way to change their behavior, what personal training is all about. 🙂

1. Ask Deep Questions

At this point it is best to start with easy questions with a client. This includes open-ended questions about general health, fitness activity, SMART Goals etc.

You want to move to important questions that make the client think. If the the family has a history of coronary heart disease, “Did you know that regular fitness helps prevent heart disease?” is something that the client should consider and think about.

2. Listen

As I've discussed before listening to people, really listening, is an extremely hard thing to do. As a personal trainer though, you need to do this.

Effectively listening will show you care, understand, and respect your client's feelings. Remember they likely will be intimidated by exercise, unlike how you feel about it.

You can gain important information when you really listen to someone. I also don't mean listening with your ears but also your eyes.

3. Educate

You will want to educate your clients about the risks involved with not keeping up an active lifestyle.

This can be done via sharing resources such as videos, articles, handouts, etc. Point your client in the direction of good materials. Encourage them to search out information they want to know about and always keep the dialog open in a back-and-forth.

4. Be Friendly

Always show empathy and respect for a client's feelings. When they express negative feelings you do not want to get into arguments about that will make them feel defensive.

Acknowledge and be aware of how they feeling. Keep the conversation friendly and neutral.

5. Build Self-Confidence

Always find the “small wins” that a client is doing to motivate them.

Let's say your client used to take short walks with their dog. After sessions with you they are starting to take longer walks with the dog. Praise this type of behavior change.

6. Generate Ideas

Get your client to generate ideas on how they can best keep up with the workout routine you have set out for them. Goal-generating questions are a great way to accomplish this.

Encourage small changes which can lead to “small wins”.

Motivational Interviewing

The reason motivational interviewing works so well is because it has it's origins in addiction-counseling with therapists. Be aware of whether motivational interviewing is working with your client, or isn't.

Has the client stopped paying attention or listening to you? Then start listening to what the client is saying via their words, voice tone, and body language. You can learn a lot this way and like I already said, avoid arguments at all costs. The trainer-client relationship should always be friendly and respectful. You need to find ways to nudge, motivate, and encourage without seeming pushy.

I'd like to hear from personal trainers and others in the fitness industry. Have you used motivational interviewing in the past? Did it work well or not well with clients?

The 4 Stages of the Trainer – Client Relationship

If you are new to personal training there are 4 stages to the trainer-client relationship you should be aware of. If you are studying for the American Council on Exercise (ACE) personal trainer exam you will need to know this;

1. Rapport

At the Rapport stage the personal trainer, that means you, should be building a foundation of trust with the client. Keep in mind good verbal and non-verbal communication are extremely important. While it takes time to build a relationship with a client and have them trust you, first impressions are key.

Often first impressions can determine if you gain a client or never see that client again. At the Rapport stage of the relationship make sure you are well groomed, have appropriate clothing, and be confident in what you are telling your prospective client.

One important thing I tell other personal trainers just getting started is to listen.  I don't just mean listen with your ears but you eyes too. What does that mean? If a client is telling you about different experiences with exercise you need to be aware of their body language, voice tone, and other factors.

Appear attentive to everything the client is telling you with laser-like focus. Remember for non-verbal communication keep good eye contact, have goody body position, and be aware of your facial expressions.

“Listening” is a skill I learned from doing Improv. I recommend if you want to be a personal trainer you go take an Improv 101 class. It will help you in many ways personally and professionally. Good listening is difficult and requires constant practice.

2. Investigation Stage

The Investigation stage is the information gathering stage of the trainer-client relationship. Keep in mind you are asking someone that has never met you to tell you a lot of personal information about themselves. This includes but is not limited to body weight (in my experience the most touchy subject), medical history, exercise history, feelings about fitness, etc.

You can get a lot from this information but like I said in the Rapport stage, listening is really important. Don't take and give advice because, “I am the professional.” be open to hearing the client on coming to terms with their reality.

If you listen properly you will typically be able to figure out what exercises a client likes, or might like, and what they will not like. You should also be able to figure out why a potential client hasn't been able to adhere to a fitness program. Are kids getting in the way? Stressful situations at work? There could be plethora of reasons and you need to find these out.

Often in the investigation stage clients can get personal. Be aware of what is outside a personal trainer's scope of practice. If a potential client reveals they are suffering from an eating disorder or from depression, you need to seek outside help and refer them to the right professional help.

3. Planning

The Planning stage is when you should be setting down plans, goals, and roadmap with the client about the fitness program. At this Planning stage you should;

  • Set goals
  • Talk about alternatives
  • Formulate a plan
  • Evaluate the exercise program with the client.

You will want to use SMART Goals to set down goals.  If you are studying for the ACE personal training exam, know SMART Goals.

SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-Based.

Remember there are many ways to measure fitness progress. The ultimate goal through is adherence to the program you have laid out for the client. Even if you have to switch something up, you want them to be sticking to workout out. Since that is the only way they are going to see results and you will be successful.

At this stage be more open to back-and-forth communication with yourself and the client. Use goal-generating questions to get a better understanding of the where they are what you need to do.

From all this you can formulate a plan. Make it clear and write it down and present this to a client. Keep in mind that even though you enjoy fitness and a gym, the client likely will feel overwhelmed and intimidated. Show empathy and respect for the difficulties clients face.

4. Action

The Action stage is just what you think, the exercise part of the relationship. What you traditionally think of when you think of the term “personal training”.

If you want your clients to have the best chance for success, use a self-monitoring system. You can give a fitness client flashcards, a sheet of paper, use an app, website, etc. Self-monitoring has been proven to drastically help with behavior change and adherence to a fitness program.

This acts a great way for a client to be self-aware of their actions. It will also create better communication about what they client is doing outside of the training session. Basically if someone knows they are getting watched and monitored, they will change their behavior.

When you are in the full swing of training a client, you are a teacher. Become familiar with the different ways people learn. Some learn better by watching, some learn better by listening, and some learning better with kinesthetics.

An auditory learner might want to hear you explain a lot and ask a lot of questions. A visual learner might just want to watch you do the exercises, monkey see monkey do.  Another might want you to correct them doing it. Keep in mind certain people might need combinations of these instructions.

Keep in mind motor learning and physically doing things your body is not used to can be frustrating for beginners. It takes times to improve and you need to be there for your clients.

Remember to “tell, show, do” for the clients. Give clear explanations of what you are doing, why, and let the client focus on performing the exercises with focus. Always;

  • Say what was done well and positively reinforce.
  • Tell the client what was done wrong in a polite but encouraging way.
  • Give motivation so that the client can continue to improve.

Sandwich the negative between reinforcement and motivation. Do not overload the client with information about what they are doing wrong. This is where most trainers make a big mistake. Focus on the biggest errors in the exercise first.

To help reinforce the behavioral change that is necessary for fitness you can try a Behavioral Contract. This isn't a legal contract it is just for the client-trainer. It says things like “I will Do ___ When ___ How often ___ How Much___”.  They can be rewards in the contract for completing goals and penalties if they don't. You also set a date when you will revisit the behavioral contract. I've had good results with these contracts but it varies from client to client.