Working hard, eating right, having a plan and doing one thing every day that will get you closer to who you want to be is a fool-proof way to improve your health. However, the fitness industry tends to not be upfront about this, instead promising quick fixes and overnight results. For example, I learned this past year that I’m a pretty bad salesman when it comes to selling my fitness services. While most fitness facilities across the country offered all kinds of membership specials for the new year, fat loss programs guaranteed to work, etc., we didn’t offer anything like that at my training facility.
Having been in the fitness industry for a really long time, I know that the New Year is the time to capitalize on getting new members and training clients. Fitness businesses thrive on the resolutions and the people intent on finally making that change and jumping on the fitness bandwagon. Don’t get me wrong, I did it in the past. I ran programs like “New Year-New You,” “Brand New You,” etc. I’ll admit it, it’s catchy. And we sold a lot of them.
And of course, people buy right into it…for the first week or so. They’re all fired-up. Facebook pages filled with, “This is the year I finally make it happen!” comments. The fact is, January 1 is just a day (this year, it was a Thursday). It’s not really the turning of a season, much less the turning of your life.
Like most fitness facilities, we had our usual onslaught of people inquiring about our program toward the end of December and early in January. But that’s where I failed as a salesman this year because I told them what a lot of other fitness facilities won’t….the truth!
The truth is that changing who you are, how you look or who you want to become is not easy. In fact it’s pretty darn hard. New Year’s resolutions tend to over-inflate the significance, especially when it comes to health and fitness. People become over-attached to the outcome and end up over-believing the hype. As much as we want January 1 to be the beginning of something amazing, different and new, by January 14, we’re horrified to realize that very little has actually changed.
I’m not trying to make fun of people who set resolutions, I think goals and wanting to be better are something everyone should strive to achieve. But when someone calls or visits us in January with the false pretense that they are going to go from overweight, having never exercised (real exercise, anyway) and thinking french fries are a vegetable to heading out on a spring beak trip in March with a brand new body, I can’t help but burst their bubble. I could sell them a membership and tell them they’re going to look great in a little bikini on the beach in three short months, but instead I tell them the words they don’t want to hear: consistency and patience.
The people that get it and are committed (like many of you reading this blog) and buy into the fact that it’s going to take some time and a lot of hard work and dedication.
The ones that don’t get it often head off to the next place in search of the words they want to hear, no matter if it’s the truth.
Work hard, eat right, have a plan and do one thing every day that will get you closer to who you want to be.
Consistency and patience will get you there.
Ken Grall a Certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) through the National Strength & Conditioning Association, as well as a Youth Fitness Specialist (YFS) through the International Youth Conditioning Association. Learn more on the Meet Our Writers page.