Just say, no weigh!!!

Posted on March 24, 2011. Filed under: Misc | Tags: , , , |

As I have mentioned before, I do not currently own my own gym.

It is definitely something I am working toward.  I would like to work with one of my colleagues in the field.  This would divvy up costs and provide me with another opinion when looking to help clients.

However I am running in to some philosophical issues when the subject matter gets to the “brass tacks,” so to speak.

I realize that my views are not the same as the conventional fitness professional.  While they are talking about how to set up a circuit area in the location, I’m talking about how to best design our recycling program.  My dream is to have the first zero-impact gym.

Funny thing is, that’s not what throws my colleagues or potential partners or investor off.

The idea that throws them off is that I don’t want to have a scale in my gym.   I do not ever want to weigh my members.  Ever.

This is one of those situations where I wish I could see inside people’s heads, because I don’t understand what is so weird about this.  I would think that the idea that would throw them off is the t-shirts made of bamboo and the mats made from recycled sneakers.  But nope, it’s the scale part.

I have had to revise this view slightly because I intend to work with aspiring MMA athletes, and part of that will be helping them make weight in a healthy way.  Hence why I am studying to be a certified Sports Nutritionist.  So in that case I will need a scale.  But outside that I see a scale as unnecessary and BMI to be irrelevant.

That’s right I said it, irrelevant.

So why do I feel this way?  I would be happy to explain.  Just realize I am not stating this to get you to see things my way.  I am stating this for you to see why I see things this way.

  1. I’ve been overweight since the 90’s. Yep that’s right Coach W is overweight, in fact depending on the chart on a good day I’m obese.  So why no panic?  Because every other health marker I have says I’m fine.  Now many think they discredit this by saying, “that’s because you have more muscle.”  What they don’t realize is this proves my point.  If any other health marker was off but my weight was fine, every doctor I know would be telling me to change what I do.  Blood Pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar, Iron content, bone density, name it.  If any one of those is off by itself, automatic medication.  But if they are fine, no one cares about my weight.
  2. It makes no one happy. I have yet to see a single client step on the scale and be happy for a sustainable amount of time with the number.  They are happy when it goes down or up depending on the goal, but they always want it to be more.  But if their dress size drops 3 sizes, that is joy that lasts, and is reinforced every time they go out or put something on.  Or if the pants get loser and the shirt sleeves get tighter on a guy.  Instant attitude change.  So why bother with the scale?
  3. You don’t need a scale to tell me if you need to reduce, gain, or improve your health. If your honest with yourself, you can tell.  And so can any decent health professional.  So why embarrass someone with stepping on the scale.  Think of it this way.  If I have a fairly overweight client, over weight due to excess fat.  And during our initial assessment conversation, I find he has not been active up until meeting with me.  Do I need to make him do a push up test? No.  Because I already know he’s not going to be able to do many.  Again, why embarrass my client.  Now if he requests to test himself in that particular category that’s different.  Now he is inviting the challenge of it, and it becomes an area of motivation, not ridicule.              Side note:  This is why many “trainers” do mini-workout routines or exercise tests as part of their assessment.  To make the potential client feel out of shape and uncoordinated.  And make them feel like they need the trainers services.
  4. Obesity is not a disease, at most it is a symptom. I can’t tell you how many arguments this has started.  But what can I say, I read.  And according to articles I keep seeing pop-up, being heavy, even obese, is not always bad for you.  In fact sometimes it is even better for you than being a ‘normal weight’:

Now before someone gets the wrong idea, let me be clear.  I am not encouraging being overweight, nor would I consider myself fluffy-friendly per se, or any other moniker you can think of.  However, there is a misdirected prejudice just for being heavy.  And based on the info available, I see no reason to weigh my clients.

I just believe that if we are working naturally to make you lean, strong and healthy.  the weight will take care of itself.

Please note I said naturally.  Because it is extremely difficult if not impossible to be obese, muscular, and lean.  Without the use of ” additional help.”  That is not my scene, and it never will be.

I also mentioned healthy.  Some people can handle being heavier, muscle mass or not better than others can.  It is what it is.  If you are a larger person due to excess in lifestyle, your heart, muscles, ligaments, joints, all have to deal with additional stress.  Which will not be good for you.  An analogy I like to illustrate this is if you took the engine from a Civic, and tried to use it to power a Semi-truck.  No one would be surprised if the engine gave out.  Same thing goes for your body.

But if we merely focus on tape measurements, BP, RHR, and other recognized health markers.  I think my clients will be just fine.

Best Health,

Coach W


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One Response to “Just say, no weigh!!!”

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I like the idea of a zero-impact gym. The best way to design your eco-program is to start at home. It will give you valuable practice and insight. 🙂

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