Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Self Assessment

I've got a lot of new things going on right now. I'm in a new city/state, I'm training with new guys and I'm looking for a new job. I thought it might be a good time to take a step back from myself and give myself an honest self-assessment (re: my profession, that is). The ability to do that is something that is I think would help a lot of new trainers and coaches figure out where they belong in this whole world.

Just like anybody else, I've got things I'm good at and some things I need to work on. I'm just gonna go ahead and list them out in a pretty simple format.

  • I think my strongest suit as a trainer is my ability to convey what I want to my athlete or client. I've honed my exercise cues pretty well and don't have to waste a ton of time and energy coaching an exercise. I'm able to pretty easily figure out the glaring mistakes and know the right ways to fix them so I don't fluster the athlete/client. 
  • I'm really strong at programming. I'm usually able to write a program that will be fun and hold the attention of the trainee for 4-weeks and will still provide a ton of benefit. People get strong on my programs and usually end up feeling way better than when they started; performing better as well. 
  • I'm a very adaptable. Regardless of the situation and whom I'm working with, I can make that person feel comfortable. Whether it's an 83 year old Holocaust survivor or a 15 year old basketball player from the inner-city, I'm able to connect with that person and relate to them on a level that makes them feel good about the session. 
  • I have a good network of people to go to if/when I have a question about something I don't know very well. Guys like Tony, Wil and Ivan have been instrumental in my development. If I don't know something, I'll admit it. 
  • I'm pretty good at figuring out the pathology of someones pain. I'm no where close to Eric Cressey's level when it comes to this, but I do ok for myself. 
  • I've trained myself a lot of different ways so I have a lot of insight into different things. I pretended to be a powerlifter for a little while (hahahaha). I did a few Cressey programs, which left me feeling extremely balanced and strong. I spent some time playing around with strongman implements, so I understand the benefits even though I wouldn't say that I trained for it. Some of my closest friends are CrossFit coaches and I've even done a few miserable fucking workouts. I'm not playing at being a weightlifter and I'm seeing the pro's and con's to this type of training. I've never been a bodybuilder though...fuck that noise. 
  • I'm very open-minded to new ideas. I like learning, and when information is presented to me about something I'm unfamiliar with I like to try and figure it all out. 

  • I can be really closed-minded to new ideas. I love learning, but when I hear something new that I "think" is dumb, I'll close down immediately. Much like I first was with things like CrossFit, running (Kelsi!) and even (shocker!) olympic weightlifting. I'm getting better at this though!
  • While I think that I'm really good at programming for things like strength, power, mobility, postural restoration and sports performance, I don't think I'm particularly good at writing programs for fat loss. Not the kind of fat loss where someone starts off 40 pounds overweight, that I can do; but if someone had 5-10 pounds to lose for an event. When I write those programs I start to second guess myself and then I start asking others for advice. Which leads me to my next point...
  • I'm not super comfortable with my nutrition. My basics are all pretty good, but I realize how little I know when I start hearing people talk about it who are very well versed in the subject. If that person who needed to lose 10 pounds asked me about nutrition, I'd end up referring them to Dan
  • I will sometimes impart my own bias onto a program/client. This is really not that bad; let's say someone comes to me and says "my only goal is to gain upper body size". Well, that's a good goal, but I'm still going to give you squats and deadlifts because 1) you're going to look ridiculous if your upper-body is big and your legs are tiny and 2) getting stronger in your lower body will help you increase strength in your upper-body. 

As you can see, I wasn't too hard on myself but I was still very honest. Despite my proclivity for suggesting that I am the best there is, the best there was, and the best there ever will be...I don't really believe that. I know I've got things to work on, and I'm going to keep doing that.

Have a great day and go lift some heavy shit!

1 comment:

  1. Great article Mike! Thanks for the shout out! I'm always happy to help, and also quick to admit when I need it to.