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Training Psychology: Motivation & The Old Saying, 'No Pain, No Gain'.

Motivation to train is a funny thing, it's either stimulated internally or externally. I could divide by examples the two types of training clients that I train. In this article I will talk about types of clients and the myth of ‘No Pain, No Gain’.

Since I have an opportunity to talk about something that relates specifically to my field of expertise, I wanted to cover a few topics that help people get into and stay into training.

1. Motivation

Motivation to train is a funny thing, it's either stimulated internally or externally. And what I mean by this is I could divide by examples the two types of training clients that I train.

Group One:

    One group is the type of person that needs no reminder, I can tell them anytime day or night and they will show up, and they listen to what I say and perform how I tell them. These are clients that are internally motivated and don't need so much of the external coxing to accomplish their goals.

    They can visualize what they want to achieve and they go for it. Their training time is maximized by the mere accomplishment of showing up because it's their intent to give one hundred percent of their time with me.

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    They are on time, they pay without being reminded, they make their training time a priority and absorb every word of information provided to them. This group is an individual who is most likely to achieve their potential in what ever they embark on.

Group Two:

    The second group is the client who needs a great deal of external motivation. They require loads of verbal support, constant reassurance, and frequently cancel their time or are within a time frame of over fifteen minutes late, they present poor form with frequent complaints.

    They tend to have every reason in the world for not obtaining success with their goals, and will quite likely blame the trainer for their failures.

Do You Need Outside Verbal Support To Keep Up Your Motivation?

No, But It Does Help.

Training Trends:

    Okay with all that said, training seems to run in trends - If you are new to the gym or a training program you may be full of enthusiasm but also have some fear based hesitancies by simply not knowing what to expect. Or you can have been training for a long time and simply have overtrained to the point where you have lost the joy in your training.


    It's my job or the job of any good trainer to not only know whether your client is type one or type two, but also if there are underlying reasons why they could be a mixture. I find that clients for the most part do want to get into shape but some have the misconception that its going to be an easy journey... and there is no quick fix!

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    Training is hard, and needs to be consistent. But that's not to say it needs to be day in and day out the same old thing. There are many ways to do the same exercise, body part or training routine to accomplish client goals.

    Listen to what people tell you when they start a program. If they have negative language like "I can't" "I never" "I won't ever" try and correct and reinforce positive training time.

    Whether you like it or not each client will develop a bond with you and it's your job as a good trainer to aid in filling the needs of the clients. This includes rewarding with positive language when the job is well done. And by educating them on what they can and can't achieve, being honest, and teaching them to the best of your ability what works for their body.

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2. The Old Saying, "No Pain, No Gain," And What It Means

I find it surprising even in this day and age of technology and development that people still buy into this saying. I like to use the analogy of the body as a fine tuned automobile, you keep it maintained, you put good fuel in and you get good performance from it... with this I mean our bodies are these amazing machines that before we consciously realize it sometimes its telling us things, sending us a message.

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For one thing if you feed your body or back to the car and put poor fuel in, you get poor performance, or with food you get bad results, increase in body fat, no substantial muscular gain, feelings of being tired and weak.

Now with the topic of pain: if your body sends you the message telling you it's in pain... LISTEN, you are doing damage to it. It's a red flag that injury is about to or already has occurred. A good example would be during the bench press. Commonly people are confused by muscular discomfort vs. tendon tears - they allow the movement to go down way too deep, shoulders out wide with a wider grip which puts the focus directly onto the tendons and not the actual muscle.

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Causing and increase in injury risk and reduced benefit of muscular contraction and development. Now does this mean you should not push yourself, or that training should be discomfort free? NO! Absolutely NOT! It means that learning to listen to your body's cues is an important way to avoid injury that will take you out of training for a short time or perhaps even permanently.

I think listening to that saying is what made people go to the gym, lift through injury, train way too many times a week and lift way too heavy. They sacrifice form and ultimately sacrifice the proper development of that muscle.

LISTEN to what your body is telling you, if you are too tired to train one day, take off come back in fresh the next day. If you have pain and not just muscular discomfort, stop that exercise and give that area the rest and attention it needs.

Have You Ever Caused An Injury By Ignoring Pain In The Gym?


If you have a chronic pain, go to the doctor, seek an expert to aid in finding a solution. And soon just as with the car you will be up and running top speed again.