This is the third in a five-part series where we’re diving deeper into the Principles that govern Two-Brain Coaching. Here are links to the first two in case you missed them:
Today, we’re going over a big piece of how we view program design. As you’ll no doubt see, its so much more than writing out sets and reps, selecting exercises, and making sure that people move well and eat good food.
Principle #3: Sleep, Eat, Move, and Manage
In order for clients to achieve their goals, there are four areas we as coaches address: their sleep, nutrition, movement, and stress management.
Within each area, we make recommendations that fit within the context of their current situation, lifestyle, and overall goals.
In general, we look to help them address each of the four areas in two distinct ways – they should do them often and do them well.
Said more directly, they should seek to:
- Sleep often and sleep well.
- Eat often and eat well.
- Move often and move well.
- Manage their stress often and manage their stress well.
Perhaps its easiest to see this in a visual manner:
Each of these areas are viewed to have equal importance. While some clients may check the box in the move and sleep categories, they could be leaving a lot of health and happiness on the table because their stress management and nutrition are sub-par.
During the ‘Design’ phase in Principle 2 is where you’d work through each of the above areas and look for low-hanging fruit. Telling someone to go from sleeping an average of 4 hours per night to 6-8 is asking for a HUGE change, so perhaps the first suggestions are simply to sleep in pitch black and cooler temperatures.
Likewise, a daily regiment of 60-90 minutes of movement can seem like a monumental task for someone that doesn’t exercise. But that is precisely why we included ‘unstructured’ movement. In the fitness industry, its easy to get caught up focusing on ‘gym time’ as the only movement we ask a client to take on. In reality, taking the stairs or parking at the back of their work parking lot can easily add “free” minutes to their daily movement goal. Movement should never just be restricted to things done in the gym. Carrying groceries, kids, and briefcases qualify too!
You’ll notice that we don’t espouse a particular ‘diet’, but rather sound eating recommendations. This keeps the focus where it should be: nourishing the body. Asking someone to adopt nutritional habits that are a radical departure from what they’ve been doing for years and years is a sure recipe (pun intended) for failure. How about asking them just to chew their food at least 30 times? After all, that’s where digestion truly begins!
Last, but certainly not least, we come to managing one’s stress. Family, work, and personal health can all serve as tremendous sources of stress. Small, daily disciplines like focusing on things they are grateful for are small wins that truly add up to big change down the road. Being accountable to yourself for the things you want to accomplish and taking a proactive approach to how your time is spent are wonderful additions as well.
This can seem like a big undertaking; it requires education (from you) and self awareness (from them) in order to work. It doesn’t happen overnight, but this framework provides a fantastic foundation for making a lasting impact in your clients lives.