Leaving your trainer behind is a tough gig. Needs change. I’ve had people leave me for various reasons: moving away, increased workload, career change, and the standard issue of money. Life happens!
Here’s what else tends to happen, though. When we stop our training, we tend to fall off our plan. Even I ended up in this trap. When I did Iron Tribe Fitness for over a year, I was in the best shape of my life. Eventually, I had to spend my money elsewhere and had to stop training there. I learned that it’s really hard to push myself to the same limits that a trainer would take me. As a result, I lost a lot of those sweet muscle gains and fell back on old, lighter training methods that didn’t work me as hard. I gained ten pounds along the way and have yet to take the weight back off.
I tell you all of that to tell you this: when the time comes to part ways with your personal trainer, you’ve got to pick up the weight of your own fitness regimen. That’s tough. It’s so much easier to follow your plan when you’ve got someone else leading the way. In the end, though, you must make a choice for yourself:
Cross your fingers and hope that your progress stays with you.
Take responsibility for a new plan.
As you can probably tell by now, the old “cross your fingers” method just won’t work. Old habits have a way of pulling you back to where you started (see “Your Secret Saboteur II” to find out why). Let’s assume that you’re going to take responsibility for your new plan. Now this is usually where I’d break into my usual 3-part explanation of what you need to do. I spent two weeks working out the bullet points and everything to give my usual answer, and I’m tossing it all out here. At the end of the day, though, you don’t seem some elaborate approach to stay on track after trainer breakup. You just need to ask.
Ask for help. Ask a friend to hold you accountable to avoiding the cake at work. Ask the person on the treadmill next to you if she works out often and would like to work out together. Ask your former trainer if you can have copies of past workouts so you have some guide to follow in the gym. Ask your best friend to join you in prepping for a run later this year. Ask your friends at church if they know where a group fitness class is held. Google “free/low cost group fitness classes” to see where you can plug in with some new exercise plan. ASK.
No matter what plan you end up following, get others involved in the process. We need that encouragement to carry on when things get tough. A partner in health can give us a reality check when what we really want is a nap. You probably hired a personal trainer the first time around because you needed help in reaching your health goals. Maintain that belief in asking for help. No one reaches the finish line alone when it comes to better health. ASK.