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Show highlights include:

  • Why coaching credentials don’t mean squat (4:17)
  • How a trainer can stunt your progress and make you worse off (6:40)
  • Why you’ll get better results by working with a fun coach (7:04)
  • Why you should always run away from coaches who verbally abuse you (12:26)

Please email me at katie@coachkatiedanger.com and let me know your thoughts about what makes a good coach.

The most important thing you can do to amplify your competitive success is focus on your nutrition. I created the Competition Nutrition Guide to help you maximize your performance. Get your free copy at http://CompetitionNutritionGuide.com.

If you’re ready to become the best version of yourself, head over to https://RedHNutrition.com to find the best supplement solution for you. And you can save 20% with the coupon code PODCAST20 at checkout!

Read Full Transcript

Hello athletes, welcome and thank you for tuning into the Coach Katie Danger Podcast recorded live from Omaha, Nebraska. I'm your host, Coach Katie Danger, U S army veteran, fitness coach and founder of Red H Nutrition. Here's a fact for you, 99% of us are not elite athletes. We're individuals from all backgrounds, juggling life priorities, including jobs, our families, their needs, and trying to find time to take care of ourselves every single week. When you tune in, I'll be discussing clear, concise and actionable strategies you can use to get the most from your fitness, nutrition, and mindset. So you can optimize your life without compromising your time. So athletes settle in and get comfortable. I'm here to educate, inspire, empower, and entertain you to help you enjoy the unique fitness journey that you are on.

(00:52): Hello And welcome athletes. Here we are at episode number 34 of the coach, Katie, and your podcasts. And I couldn't be more excited to chat with you today. Today. I want to talk to you about what makes a good coach. In fact, this is the first episode, since we've decided to move forward with the name change of the podcast from the everyday athlete podcast to the coach, Katie danger podcasts. So this seems like a pretty fitting topic to talk about, given that the change of name of the podcast to the coach, Katie danger podcast, you guys, I consider myself a coach and it has taken me a lot of experience in years to get to the point I am in my coaching career. And it is not about the accumulation of credentials. It is not about my ego anymore. It is about the person that I'm working with.

(01:41): But unfortunately the Genesis of this episode is learning from all the bad coaches that I seen and personally experienced over the years of training, as I've been immersed in the fitness industry. And later, I'm going to tell you a story about the time where I was a particularly terrible coach to somebody, and it changed a lot of my perspective. So I'm going to be very humble and share that with you as well. But the majority of this information unfortunately, has been because of bad experiences that I've had with other coaches. So I bet that if you know how to identify a good coach, it's going to help you and your journey. And that's why this episode is so important to me because the fact of the matter is this getting into fitness and getting into the fitness industry as a coach, as a personal trainer, it is really, really easy.

(02:23): Almost anyone can hop online and get a certification and call themselves a trainer or a coach. In fact, I'm sure you can go to Groupon right now and type in like remote coach or online personal trainer. And you come up with ones that are like deeply discounted for 20 bucks, 20 bucks. You can go and get your personal trainer certification. And I put that in very heavy air quotes, personal trainer certification. It's just too easy to become a personal trainer. So credentials are not everything. In fact, a few months ago, after the coronavirus had settled in and some gyms were still able to operate. I actually found that there are gyms out there who don't even require their trainers to be certified in anything. So I had this, what does it take to be a good coach on my mind? And I have it on my mind quite often because the majority of coaches out there online coaches, these talking heads, these gurus, they're just in it for themselves.

(03:17): So what actually makes a good coach and, you know, caveat to all of this, it's my opinion. But this opinion is based heavily on the experiences and the perspective that I've developed after being in fitness for about 15 years now. So what makes a good coach? Sure. You've got to have some sort of credentials, but I often think that some coaches and trainers, they put way too much emphasis on the letters and credentials that are behind their names than they do about the processes and how they're actually going to take a client from point a to point B. And one thing I want to say before we go any further in the podcast is I'm going to use the word coach and trainer almost interchangeably because for the sake of this podcast, they mean the same thing. A coach, as a trainer of trainers, a coach, an athlete as a client, a client, as an athlete.

(04:02): So if I use those two words, I mean the same thing. If I say coach, I mean trainer, if I say trainer, I mean coach, if I say athlete, I mean client, if I say client, I mean athlete, okay. So you've got to have some sort of credentials, but what we often find out is that these coaches who spend so much time getting all these letters behind their names, they're still not sure how to actually implement it and get somebody results because that is what it means. Nothing, no course you've ever taken no credential, no certification. It doesn't mean shit. It doesn't mean shit. If you can't actually help somebody get the results that they want. And another pet peeve of mine are coaches who try to pigeonhole their athletes into one way of doing something. There are too many coaches to count that have a, my way or the highway mentality.

(04:51): It's these little ego that gets in the way. And it's like the coaches, what can this person do for me rather than what can I do for my athlete? Any coach out there who is worth their salt at all, is going to understand that an individual is an individual and there are processes, there are systems, but at the end of the day in individuals and individual and no system or process is greater than the individual itself. So just remember that, I feel like I've seen it all. And with all of these experiences that I'm going to tell you about, I really think that I finally narrowed it down to some real concrete ways. You can identify coaches to find out if they are worth your time are worth your money and are worth their salt, right? So the very first thing that you should look for is that they at least got some right to train you.

(05:35): And what I mean by that is do they have a legitimate credential in most States, there is no legal action for a personal trainer to go out and train somebody in fitness. And if they don't have a credential, but I think it is very, very important that they have some sort of credential. I know I just talked about earlier that all the credentials in the world don't mean shit. If you can't get your clients somewhere, but here's what I think has this trainer gone to any school? Have they been doing this longer than a few months? Remember they don't need to have a doctorate or anything. They don't need to have thousands of hours of training, but I'm telling you a good trainer, a good coach knows at the very least that to be a professional, to be taken seriously, they have to take a course and they've got to align with a professional organization.

(06:18): This is basic, and this is one Oh one. If your trainer or your coach doesn't have a single credential at all, ask them why they don't. The next set of criteria that I think is important is something that I've developed for myself, essentially. It's my guiding principles. So that I, when I work with my clients, when I work with my athletes, I am making sure that I'm taking my ego out of it. And I am putting their goals at the forefront. The worst thing that can happen is a coach. Doesn't listen to the athlete and the goals are not aligned. And you go through all this work and all this programming only to find out that the end of the day, you guys were never on the same page. Anyway. So this is to make sure that you get on the same page. If you're a coach or you're an athlete, whoever you are listening to this, this is really important because I think it makes sure that you're on the same page, whether you're the athlete in the scenario or whether you're the coach in this scenario, you got to make sure that you're working together.

(07:05): Here's what I think a good coach does. They educate, they inspire, they empower and they entertain you. So they're going to educate you on what you need to know to help you navigate your journey. Ultimately, this information that you're going to learn, it's not forced down your throat, rather it's information. That's like subtly sprinkled throughout your training and throughout your relationship. So you can consume it when you're ready. And they're going to inspire you to dig deep, both in your training, but also in your efforts to learn more. You're going to feel empowered because your coach has taught you how to trust yourself by putting you in positions that you can be successful when it gets tough and last a good coach, which is going to entertain you. And no I'm not talking about telling you about movies. Are you guys going out for coffee or being full of witty banter?

(07:49): I mean, at the program and the training that the coach is having you go through is going to keep you interested. It's going to keep you coming back for more. It's going to give you just enough stimulus. So you feel successful that you're going to want to come back the next day and see how that new stimulus has helped you grow. You're going to be excited to show up for training because it's fun and you enjoy the challenges. So remember though, the coach athlete relationship is not one sided. So if you're an athlete out there and you're listening to this and you're like, see, I knew my coach should do this for me. Remember that your participation in this is just as important. Now your coach, your coach should listen to you more than they should talk. I believe a good coach, a good mentor, a good leader listens more than they talk, but athletes, you guys also need to communicate.

(08:33): You need to have the obligation. You guys athletes have the obligation to communicate. You need to tell your coach what's working. What's not, and is on the coach's shoulders to make sure that they hear this information. And then they adjust programming and training appropriately. So athletes, what you have to do your main responsibility is to show up and show up, ready to work. But you gotta make sure that you communicate as well, because there are great coaches out there who will do exactly what you need done for you as long as you communicate. So make sure you communicate. Now, I can't guarantee that the coach you're working is going to listen to you. That's on them. However, it is your responsibility to communicate. It's a two way street here. I believe that a coach is a guide. They are a guide who puts their own needs and ego aside to find the best path for the athlete they're working with.

(09:22): I really get upset when I speak with athletes and I'm learning more about them and they just haven't had the best experience with the coaches. You know, this is myself too. I'll probably talk a little bit about a coaching experience, but the unfortunate part is there's athletes out there who just don't have good experiences. Their stories revolve around the athlete having to do something they didn't want to do, but the coach was operating under my way or the highway and the athlete lost trust in the coach. They lost trust in the coach. They'll trust in themselves. They lost trust in the, in the program. Then the coach gets frustrated, the relationship deteriorates, and then you end up with an athlete trying to find greener grass. All of this is preventable. A good coach is also going to be somebody who tries new fitness is dynamic.

(10:04): This is where that individualized approach comes from because fitness is so dynamic because an individual is so dynamic, a good coach. She's going to stay at the front of new trends, topics, nutrition, new brands that come and go methodology, research, anything that is new out there. A good coach is going to want to learn more about, and then, you know, make the determination if it's going to fit or not. But to dismiss information and knowledge without actually experience, it is a really, really big problem with a lot of coaches who tend to get on their high horse and who tend to follow certain methods and research without giving any concern or consideration to perhaps another side of the coin. So experience is incredibly valuable and athletes should look for coaches who have experienced because it is so valuable. You can not cheat experience and navigating the ups and downs of your fitness journey with a coach.

(10:56): Who's had experience navigating fitness journeys and the ups and downs of it is going to be incredibly important as you reach your goals in your journey and the entire education inspire and empower and entertain foundation that I mentioned earlier. It's cyclical. It is not necessarily linear because no matter how great a coaches, no matter how much schooling they've got, no matter how great a program is, no matter how many people, this particular coach has taken from point a to point B and found results. There's still gonna be a time where a plan does not go as planned. And a good coach is going to know how to weave and get you on that right track. So you can get back to being successful. And that road might not look like what it was supposed to look like before, but a good coach knows exactly how to get you back on a path to helping you be successful.

(11:40): Now I have to admit though, I have not always been a good coach. I've learned a lot of lessons working with others. And as being an athlete myself, I have been on the receiving end of some terrible egotistical and narcissistic coaches. But myself, I've also been driven by my ego as well as a coach. You know, I don't need to really dive in deep to the really shitty coaches I've had had. In fact, some of them might even be listening to this podcast, but just really awful people who only put themselves first, I've been in the military. I spent seven years in the military. I went to basic training boot camp and the mentality there, a lot of people think they beat you down to build you back up. And the thing is, you know, not all drill sergeants are shitty. You know, there are ones that really do have you at the forefront and they don't have to verbally abuse you to get you to do what you want.

(12:26): And there's absolutely no reason out there that a coach should ever verbally abuse an athlete to get them to accomplish a task athletes. I am here to tell you as somebody who has been an athlete verbally abused by a coach, it will never get you to the promised land. So just remember that if you have a coach right now who verbally abuses you, who picks out personality traits or physical traits about you and uses them to your detriment, run, run the other way as fast as you can, because there are coaches out there who can help you get to the place you want to go without treating me like shit. So that's as far as I'll go off on that tangent. But now I want to dive into an example of how I changed as a coach and what I did to a client of mine.

(13:07): It was just not right. And I've learned from it, but I want to share this with you. I'm not perfect. And a long time ago, I trained a client. She hated burpees. Now I know we all say we hate burpees, but like she really hated burpees. And I can't even joke about this in our intake process, she looked at me in the eye and she said, if I ever had her duper piece, that she'd fire me now, I let it roll off as a joke. But I could tell that she was probably serious about that. And I know I didn't want to get fired so whatever, I'm not going to make her do burpees. Right? Well, we work together pretty well for two months. And then I don't know what it was. I thought she was doing well. I thought she was making progress. I was like, you know what?

(13:40): She's going to do burpees today. We haven't done anything like a burpee. I want to do burpees a day. I want to see how far she's come. Well, she came to her session that day. And the first thing I told her is that I thought she was ready to progress to burpees and face something that she didn't enjoy. I thought that that was like the next stimulus for her is I had to get her out of her comfort zone. I told her that it would toughen her up side note to coaches out there. It is not up to you when your client is ready to do something. It is when they're ready. It is not on us to toughen them up. We put stimuli in front of them and we see how they respond. But if they're not ready to respond and they're not ready for the stimulus, you're probably going to get a negative outcome.

(14:17): And needless to say, getting back to the story, the session in which I had her do burpees, it didn't go very well. She was angry during the workout. And she was very upset when she left. Never. However, did she verbalize that she was upset with me? I could just tell from her body language I could tell from the look on her face and the tone in her voice, that she was not happy with me. And still, even after our session, before I followed up with her, I thought, well, you know, he was just having a bad day or I mean, of course she's not going to like to do burpees. Well, it turns out I did. I followed up with her because I hadn't heard from her. And we were on a really good schedule. It was two to three a week. We were meeting and I had a feeling, something was off.

(14:54): I could just tell. So I reached out to her and I told her that I had her do burpees that day because I thought she was ready and she returned fire. And she told me that she was upset. I had her do something that she had told me. She wasn't comfortable doing it. I made her do it anyway. And that she never ended up coming back to me. She never told me on the phone. She wasn't going to. But after that interaction where she told me she was upset with me because I had essentially, I mean, here's what I heard. I violated her trust. I made her do something that I told her. I wouldn't make her do. She trusted me as a coach. And then I broke that trust and I can't blame her for not coming back to me. Would you ever want to work with a coach who betrayed your trust?

(15:32): If you're working with a coach right now, who's betrayed your trust. I'm going to tell you once again, there are coaches out there who can do better and you do deserve better. So I tell you this story because I am humble about it. And it was a learning experience for me. This was about 10 years ago now, but I still think about it because I deal with athletes every single day who are struggling. There's good days, there's bad days. And usually it's on the bad days when an athlete will talk to you more and sometimes what coaches are making their athletes do. It just seems really silly. It seems one sided. It just seems to drive and feed the ego of the coach. So do what is best for you at the end of the day? I think before even wrap up this podcast episode, after sharing that story with you, coaches can do better.

(16:13): I did better the moment I failed my client, but I made a commitment to myself that I would never fail a client like that. Again, I have a responsibility. Coaches have a responsibility to guide their athletes on a journey is going to be enjoyable and successful. Their goals are their goals. And I must simply do my best to guide them on the path of least resistance that helps them get through that resistance when it arises because resistance, pain, struggles, sicknesses, plateaus, all that shit is going to come to the surface. And a good coach is going to help an athlete stay focused on their goals. And a good coach is going to do their best to guide the athlete back to the path of least resistance. So there you have it there, you have it athletes. That is the long version of what I think makes a good coach.

(16:59): And what I think an athlete should look for in their coaches. My philosophy, once again, it is very simple. It's the way that I coach it's educate the athlete, inspire the athlete, empower the athlete and entertain them. Now the entertainment isn't necessarily an absolute requirement. Education, inspiration, and empowering is an absolute requirement. The entertainment is a bonus because you guys, this journey is not easy. It's going to be filled with lots of challenges that suck and lots of challenges that really make you think twice about the journey you're on. But if you have a little bit of entertainment, if you have a coach who can empathize with you and sympathize with you, those challenges are going to help you grow. Not only as an athlete, but as a person with some strong mental fortitude, that's going to carry you even further than the barbell. So I've shared with you my perspective and opinion on a coach.

(17:46): And I would love to hear from you if you've got 2 cents about this and you want to share it with me, please email me. katie@coachkatiedanger.com. Let me know your thoughts. If I get some good ones, I'm going to bring them up in an upcoming episode. So let me know what you got. Well, athletes, before we wrap up episode number 34, let me remind you that supplemental nutrition could be the difference between where you are right now and where you want to be. You know about macronutrients. I know you do you know about proteins and fats and carbs, but my grown nutrients, micronutrients, your vitamins, your minerals, your probiotics, your micronutrients. Those are the catalyst for the big results. So check out reddish nutrition.com, find the perfect supplements and stack them for your goals. And remember, as a listener is a very, very valuable listener of this podcast. Use the code podcast two zero podcast, 20, and you're going to save 20% on your entire order. You guys, that is it for episode number 34. What makes a good coach? And one last time, I want to thank you for tuning in and hanging out with me. Let me know your thoughts. If you got them, I want to hear them email me, katie@coachkatiedanger.com. And for now athletes, this is coach Katie D until next time over and out.

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