Part of what I miss most about working for SST is that most of the athletes who came in to train came in to train their asses off. I don’t see this as much in the commercial gym I am presently working at. I would estimate that about 75% of the members – even those who are training with trainers – have very little desire to achieve much of anything while at the gym.
Don’t get me wrong, I try to beat the living hell out of my clients. Some of them respond by pushing harder than I ask and some work as hard as they are going to regardless of my efforts to interrupt their mediocrity. But those who respond would be working hard for ANYONE – I’m not special, I know more than most trainers but I have yet to be able to figure-out how to make someone work who is unconsciously satisfied with being average.
Now, there are similarities between those who work and those who show-up. Most of those who work hard have jobs that require a lot of independent work – VP’s for large banks / vendors, self-employed, independent or franchise business owners – or are young and working towards something. Those who show-up tend to have jobs that they don’t really like, work for people they don’t particularly like, and present excuses for not doing the things I ask as opposed to simply saying “I made the decision to drink on Saturday night.”
I suppose this is the psychology of fitness and optimal health. At SST I was engaging individuals who were working towards high level competition or with young people who had never enjoyed the slack life that full time employment can offer. At commercial gyms I’m working with those who have tasted the good life – the distractions / indulgences that money can buy – and have found returning to the simple life to be too challenging. It’s sad really, relaxing, eating and slothing away life is easier than grinding away at a mostly pointless activity that leads you to optimal health but moves you further away from passive enjoyment.
I fear for the future of many people on the planet. Most of the people I see and engage are, at least, coming to a gym and of these, 75% of them are not working very hard. I cannot comment for those who do not come to the gym but I’d be willing to guess that 95% of them are doing nothing to make their lives better other than changing their perspective so that those who actually do something are seen as fitness freaks and those who don’t are seen as the norm