Back to the (Wellness) Basics

As a Wellness Coach, you’re likely to face regular questions from your clients about supplements, specific diets, detailed workout plans and more. However, until we address the basics (Move, Fuel and Rest), nothing else really matters.
Having worked in the health and wellness industry for 30 years, I haven’t seen it all, but I’ve certainly seen a lot. And much of what I’ve seen emphasizes the final 2% while ignoring the initial 98% of the pursuit. Take supplements, for example. Some of them can be beneficial in the right situation. The problem is that we turn our eyes to the supplement, which can potentially provide a marginal improvement, before we’ve addressed the primary issue! Sure, XYZ supplement may make a difference. But before we even talk about spending money on something that might help, how about we make adjustments to something we KNOW will help, like exercise, proper fueling or consistently adequate sleep?!? Then, once those are dialed in, let’s have the discussion about supplements, if desired.
I’ll never forget the response provided to an “Ask the Coach” question in Triathlete Magazine a decade ago. The person writing in was a new triathlete who was had signed up for his first Ironman (2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike, 26.2 mile run). He had all sorts of questions about heart rates, hill training, intensity levels and more. The Coach responded with a humorous but incredibly wise answer: “Swim a lot; bike a lot and run a lot. Once you’ve got those consistently built into your schedule, then we can start talking about the minor details.”
In working with your clients, it’s tempting to get down into the weeds. With some of your clients, who literally do have a stellar track record of “Move…Fuel…Rest” habits built into their lifestyle, the weeds can be a valuable journey. However, for most (99%+?) of your clients, it’s making the meaningful basics a consistent part of life that will have the biggest impact. Sounds boring? Absolutely not! The real value of a great wellnes coach isn’t the ability to talk fancy – it’s the ability to help clients put real and consistent life change into motion.
Vince Lombardi (yes, the guy after whom they named the Super Bowl trophy) famously said during his initial team meeting: “Gentlemen – this is a football.” Getting “back to basics” seemed to work out pretty well for him, didn’t it? Maybe it’s time we do the same in the wellness arena.

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