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Preventing Trainer Burnout...
by Orlando Griffith
Personal training seems like a luxury to most people; however it is actually a necessity to all. To sell someone on the benefits of exercise isn’t an easy task when most people think they already know the subject well enough to take care of it themselves. Therefore when the money flows Personal Trainers do their best to seize the opportunity of training as many clients their schedules will allow. The trouble with this is the negative returns often occur if time management isn’t a priority for the Personal Trainer.
 In Trinidad, particularly where there is a direct correlation between gym attendance and Carnival the opportunity for trainers to make the most amount of money vary among many factors but primarily around the length of the Carnival season, trainers have no choice but to put in the long hours if they want to have a sufficient cash surplus after the season. The challenge with a less than consistent cash flow with the added enthusiasm of wanting to help people can create an environment for burn out.
Burnout is a real thing and seasoned trainers know exactly what I’m talking about. When you’re getting there you’ll feel like getting sunlight is a magical experience, you’ll even feel like you’re repeating the same exercises over and over with clients, you can start feeling physical manifestations of your fatigue where headaches, yawning during conversations with clients and the lack of motivation to workout is apparent. You’ll find your focus waning and concentrating on what your client is doing and saying becomes difficult and this can affect your session’s quality and clients can sense when you’re not paying attention making them feel less important. Remember superb customer service is part of
the personal training experience; you have to be one with your client at all times, remember they’re PAYING YOU! Does a few of these scenarios sound like you? If so you more or less became a slave to your own schedule.
As a new trainer the temptation is always there to accommodate anyone to build your clientele and reputation for financial security. While your rationale for training before sunrise to after sunset sounds good for the pocket you’ll lose motivation quickly. The best option is to split your days into two 4 –hour shifts where you can still find time to workout, run errands, spend time with important people for mental breaks and get much needed power naps; glorious power naps! Learn to be creative with your time management and go into your business with a plan on how you want to spend it, try to find ways of maximising your output with fewer one on one sessions by offering group training, extend training services to special populations, produce online videos, present original written articles on fitness related topics, offer sports camps and use other talents to not only pad your pocket but build a solid reputation. It is difficult to not let potential clients coax you into keeping odd hours but you

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