How to Motivate Clients

If you’re like many personal trainers this time of year, your training calendar is probably pretty booked with new and returning clients wanting the best fitness and nutrition program to help them with New Year’s resolutions. You may also be starting to notice your clients’ enthusiasm for that fitness and nutrition program starting to wane. From more lackluster workouts to less strictly following the daily meal plan, you can see signs as January goes on that the motivation your clients felt just a week or two ago is fading. Helping clients get back on track and stay motivated to achieve their goals relies heavily on communication and should be an integral part of every trainer’s program now and throughout the year. Here’s how you can do it:


Ask what clients like best/least about the workouts.
Every client is different. Whether your client is looking for more variety, more fun or just down and dirty efficiency, providing a program that plays to their needs can mean a more personalized and effective workout for your client.


Discuss what clients like best/least about the nutrition program.
Many clients, especially those just starting out that are most likely to lose momentum, will take the meal plan you hand them at face value. Having this conversation with your client can help you customize a meal plan to some extent that not only appeals to him or her but is also much easier to follow through on.


Talk about goals in a more personal way.
You worked with your client to create some solid S.M.A.R.T. (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, with an element of Risk, and with a speicifc Time to complete) goals of losing a set number of pounds and percentage of body weight by a certain date. That’s great! If you haven’t already, now is the time to make it personal and tie those goals to feeling. Discuss why the weight loss, fat loss, or other fitness goals are important to your client and use language around the feelings achieving those goals will inspire. Whether it’s the confidence they’ll feel in that bathing suit this summer on a planned Hawaiian vacation, the pride and accomplishment of crossing the finish line at that first 5K they registered for or a “look at me now” feeling of power walking into a big upcoming reunion, feelings can be a much stronger driving force than just a number on a scale.


Agree on a way to stay in touch.
As time permits, a quick phone call, text, tweet or email can go a long way in building long-term relationships and keeping clients motivated in between sessions. Find out what works best for your client, especially newer clients that may be struggling, and regularly connect with questions, tips and motivation.


Regularly communicating with clients will help them invest in themselves and their program to stay motivated throughout the coming weeks leading to a more satisfied client and better retention rate for you. How do you inspire clients to stay on track with their fitness and nutrition program as the New Year fades?


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