Katie Bulmer-Cook: Why losing weight doesn’t have to be your number one goal

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As I often cover the topics of health, fitness and lifestyle in my column, I’m frequently asked questions by people who are considering making changes to their daily routine, joining a gym or starting a fitness class.

More often than not, those same people feel nervous at the prospect of hitting the fitness scene and have inaccurate perceptions about what personal trainers and those working in the fitness industry are really like and what will be expected of them.

So this week I’m going to bust a few fitness industry myths, in the hope that it will remove the fear and set a few things straight.

To kick things off, a trainer’s job isn’t to get you the biggest results in the quickest time.

Although the industry seems to have swayed massively towards quick fixes and overnight transformations, the reality is that the biggest success comes from creating sustainability with lifestyle changes not fads.

Baby steps and steady progress yield long term, lasting results.

Many people think that instructors want to make them sick … the truth is they don’t.

We don’t want to make you sick.

If your trainer is measuring the success of your session by how horrendous they can make you feel, with you throwing up being the holy grail, then unfortunately you’ve chosen the wrong trainer.

You have to walk before you can run, and working within your own capabilities while providing small challenges is key.

Everyone starts off feeling unsure and/or intimidated, but fitness trainers and instructors don’t expect you to be a gym bunny from day one.

The gym or a new fitness class can be a scary place, especially if you’ve been inactive for some time, but a good trainer will completely understand this and coach you in a way that meets your needs.

Losing weight doesn’t have to be your number one goal.

Despite the fact that more people than ever are over weight or obese, it doesn’t mean that everyone’s goal has to be weight loss.

There are so many other benefits to exercising and being more physically active that can have an extremely positive impact on your life.

Improved mental health, meeting new people and increasing confidence are just some of the many benefits to working out and moving your body more, and fitness professionals are here to help you achieve all of those things and much more.

You won’t be forced to workout everyday.

While many people think that starting a fitness regime will mean hitting the gym hard everyday, if you’ve picked a top notch trainer or instructor, they will place a big emphasis on rest as well as work.

The truth is three to four sessions, working at the correct intensity is enough to see significant health benefits and aesthetic improvements.

Losing stacks of weight won’t always make you happy.

Attaching your happiness to a goal weight can make you miserable on the journey there.

A lot of people will join a gym and say to themselves, ‘right, when I shift this three stone, I’ll be happy’… setting themselves up to be miserable until they ditch the weight.

A better option is to celebrate your small achievements and wins along the way and be proud of yourself for the progress you make.

We have a host of excellent fitness professionals in our city, who take pride in their work and provide an amazingly friendly service.

Go on check them out and take the first step to a fitter, healthier you.