Nutrition is a mind field. From the latest fads and trends hyped up in the media, to what the famous Instagram star is promoting.
It doesn't get easier as you're taught the food pyramid in PT school.
We know that to optimise client results we have to look at their nutrition too.
But don't make these common mistakes that every new trainer does.
1) Cut Carbs.
The biggest misconception with nutrition is that carbs are bad and in order to lose weight you must cut carbs (or other food groups) from your diet. Without some proper research and education on nutrition, it is easy for trainers to get caught up in this and prescribe carb cutting to their clients without understanding first energy requirements. Carbs do not make you gain weight, a calorie surplus does this.
2) 1200 Calorie Diets
The magic number. That 1200 calories. Where does it come from?? Unfortunately, many uneducated PT's will put clients on a calorie restricted diet without first calculating that clients energy requirements. This first comes down to calculating BMR (Basel Metabolic Rate). Most clients BMR will be much higher than 1200 calories. Which means only consuming 1200, much less than your BMR you are inadvertently destroying this client's hopes of any progress. You see, the body is one smart cookie (excuse the nutrition pun), Its sole responsibility is survival. Regardless of how many or how little calories you provide it, it will continue to survive. Does that mean you'll see fat loss? No more like muscle loss, as muscle is energy expensive and requires calories to fuel it.
3) Over Complicate Nutrition.
Nutrition is pretty simple. Eat whole foods, reduce the amount of processed foods, adequate protein at each meal, a good source of healthy fats, complex carbs, lots of veggies and some fruit, daily. But it gets overcomplicated by most trainers. You need to eat x amount of protein 30 mins post workout. Your post workout meal should only be protein and carbs. You can only eat 3 meals a day or 6 meals, who knows, it's always changing.
Each individual person will have specific dietary requirements you can work with. Keep it simple and find a process that works for that person, that sees them get results without changing a 100 things.
From your initial consult, it could be as simple as swapping 1 diet drink a day with water.
BONUS POINT: You are not qualified as personal trainers to write meal plans for anyone.
Ella Martyn is an Online Fitness Coach, Mentor and Educator with a focus on a balanced approach to health and fitness.
Ella's online mentor program Females In Fitness , helps female pesonal trainers reach their peak and become a leader in the industry.
Simply drop Ella an EMAIL today to find out more about FIF and see if you are a good fit.