The past decade or so has brought an incredible rise in the popularity of amateur physique and barbell sports. So many people are interested in transforming their body and pushing the limits of their physiology. Whatever kind of activity you enjoy most, there is a niche community out there in which you can display your talents. As such, the business of fitness has grown tremendously as well.

Perhaps the fastest growing part of this business is the “online coaching” side. Anyone and everyone with a bit of experience in fitness is selling their services as a coach who is ready to help you get in shape. But just how helpful is it to have a coach to guide you along? Better yet, how necessary is it to hire a coach as far as your success is concerned? The answers to these questions are a bit nuanced and deserve a bit of context. Qualifications, experience, and merit go a long way in the experience you might have with a coach. Likewise, your own personality and values might predispose you to being successful with or without a coach. However, getting the right combination in a coach or mentor can make a big impact not only in your fitness, but in all aspects of your life.

 

Not Everyone “Needs” a Coach

Let’s start off with the part that most coaches tend to keep quiet. You don’t need a coach in order to have some success. There are certainly some people who are able to analyze their actions objectively and make a plan without emotion. They may spend a great deal of time digesting and scrutinizing all there is to learn about diet and exercise. And while it takes a lot of dedication and effort, these people eventually do well in finding their own path and learning on their own.

Likewise, there are some people who also have a do-it-yourself attitude that makes it hard for them to relinquish control to another person. These people tend to second guess everything a coach tells them and often do what they think is best regardless. This creates negative emotions and doubt around their training and nutrition, which makes the process harder and less effective. In the end, they end up doing worse simply because they were unable to trust their coach and let the process unfold. For these people, it’s not that they don’t “need” a coach. Rather, these people won’t find success in hiring a coach until they are ready to let go of their own bias and trust the process.

Of course, anyone can have success to some extent without the help of a coach. Starting as a beginner, nearly any kind of exercise and diet change can have a meaningful impact. Even as you become more experienced, having success is possible in so far as you dedicate yourself to learning and progressing, but the process can be made easier and more fulfilling when you trust the right person.

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