Get Fiteeza's all new guide for fitness pros - insider's sweat


Contributed by Guest Blogger

Lisa Jameson, BS, CPT

When your client isn’t feelin’ the workout, create the workout to change the feeling.  Often clients come to us unmotivated and uninterested in moving. We may be more excited about the client’s workout than the client.   We typically offer encouraging words and hand them the workout we designed in hopes that the client will start to feel motivated.  But, is this the right approach?  

Perhaps a more psychological based approach over the physical will be help the client be more successful and ensure they return to you for future workouts.  Talking with your clients about how they want their workout session to make them feel meets them where they are in that moment. It also gives you an opportunity to keep them on track with their established workout goals rather than skipping the workout.

I have found clients tend to be the happiest and most satisfied when they set multiple goals that don’t solely rely on the physical component.  For example, the workout below is designed for a client who wants to lose 30 pounds and have leaner arms. The story that goes with the 30 pounds weight loss sounds like this: “By losing 30 pounds I will be able to take the stairs without feeling pain in my knees.  I will wake up earlier in the morning to create a positive start to the day. I will enjoy getting dressed each morning with my renewed confidence. I will feel healthy and powerful when I walk into my office each morning. When I wear a tank top I will feel strong and smile when I look in the mirror. ”  In addition to weight loss, this client’s goals are: confidence, strength and power.

Below is the first sample workout in a series designed to show you, the fitness professional, how to create a specific feeling during the workout session while incorporating your client’s physical and performance goals.  Whether the goals are body fat loss, building endurance or successfully complete a spinning class, these “Feel Ya” workouts can be incorporated into a client’s program as a one time workout boost. The idea is to empower clients with a positive feeling adding another tool to their fitness toolbox.  These feelings ultimately help strengthen and empower the client from the inside out and enhances their physical goals.

This first workout is designed to create a POWERFUL feeling.  Try using it with a client who has shown up for their workout session feeling defeated or stressed.

  1. Start with 3 - 5 abdominal breaths reaching the arms up with the inhale, breathing in the fuel needed for the workout and releasing the arms down with the exhale breathing out negative energy.  You are setting the intention for the workout here. Consider offering the mantra “This workout may be tough, but I am tougher.”
  2. Stand in mountain pose for 15 seconds.  Tell your client to channel their inner Superhero.
  3. Dynamic Warm Up - perform each exercise for 30 seconds:
    Bird Dog, Bridges, Supine Alternating Pulling Knee to Chest, Lateral Hip Swings, Squats, Lateral Lunges, High Knees, Jumping Jacks
  4. Workout - perform each exercise in a circuit with 3 - 4 rounds of 40 seconds each with a 20 second recovery between: (choose weights appropriate for your client) 

    KB Swings
    Push Ups with Alternating Punches
    Alternating Curtsy Lunge with Shoulder Press
    Inverted Row or Pull Ups
  5. Finish with 3 stretches holding for 20- 30 seconds each:
    Child’s Pose, Hamstring Stretch, Figure 4 Stretch

Tada! Your client is now a strong superhero and has transformed stress into power, all thanks to you.


Lisa Jameson has a  B.S. in Health Education and is ACE, AFAA certified.  She has nearly two decades of experience in personal training and group fitness. She has worked in corporate,  commercial, college, in-home and outdoor fitness settings. She stays hungry for learning and feeds her mind with journal articles, books, conferences, webinars, and classes.  

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