Sometimes sticking to a workout routine or nutritional plan is difficult because we can make excuses to ourselves about not going to gym or letting ourselves eat unhealthy, but when you have someone to check on you, it becomes easier. This is exactly what an accountability coach does for a living. With the advice of an experienced coach, you’ll learn about small habits, like bringing a protein shaker bottle to the gym or creating a regular exercise schedule, that can transform your life.
What Is an Accountability Coach?
Accountability coaches exist for all different kinds of purposes—fitness, work projects, writing - to do just that, hold you accountable to what you said you are going to do. An accountability coach will meet with you to discuss your specific fitness goals, then determine ways that you can meet those goals in a timely manner.
Holding yourself responsible (being your own accountability coach) is not always the best way to reach your goals. Why? Because you are so accustomed to your daily habits that you may not even notice when those habits are actually working against you, not for you. With the help of an accountability coach, you’ll be able to pick up on habits and excuses you make to yourself that are hindering you from achieving your goals.
What Is it Like to Work with an Accountability Coach?
When you first begin working with your coach, you’ll have an initial meeting to discuss what exactly your goals are. They will discuss with you in detail the exact reason for your goals and timelines. Then, your accountability coach will help you breakdown the larger goal into smaller weekly goals, so each week your progressing forward.
After your initial meeting, you will have regular check-ins with your accountability coach. Every coach has different techniques and approaches, but scheduling a weekly call or meeting to discuss your progress is typical practice. During this meeting, you will discuss specific goals that you both outlined for the week and talk about whether you met these or not and what you could have done to improve (if you didn’t meet the goals). You will also establish a new set of weekly goals for the following week. These objectives will likely build on the ones from the previous week, or remain the same if you have yet to reach a specific goal.
How Can an Accountability Coach Help You with Your Fitness Goals?
1. You’re More Likely to Follow Through
When people are put into a situation where they have to perform or complete a task with an audience, they are much more likely to put more effort into the activity. This tendency is known as the Hawthorne effect and can occur in a range of situations from working out at the gym to completing a writing assignment, though the term originated to refer to people who were more motivated than normal when participating in a scientific study. Our tendency to increase productivity while being observed can work in our favor when using the assistance of an accountability coach to lose weight. Having someone to report results to gives an extra incentive to actually follow through on your intentions.
2. Authentic Feedback
Working closely with an accountability coach allows you unique access to someone who can provide honest and authentic feedback on your progress. It’s tough to be objective about our own progress because we will always have a subjective outlook on our own habits and body image, but a coach can help identify where you might be struggling and offer suggestions for how to overcome these issues.
Researchers with the Harvard Business Review found that 92 percent of workers considered constructive criticism to be effective when properly communicated. Though this statistic refers to feedback in the workplace, this can easily be applied to working with a health accountability coach because people value their coach’s observations and are likely to appreciate having someone guide them towards a healthier lifestyle.
3. Helps Set Objectives and Deadlines
Making excuses for ourselves is one of the easiest ways to avoid responsibility and fall out of creating new habits. When you have a coach who is working with you on a weekly basis, you’ll be held responsible for meeting the goals you have set. An accountability coach can also help you determine whether or not your goals are realistic or if you need to break goals down into smaller steps first.
4. Learn from the Advice of Someone Else
Sometimes, all you need to help you succeed is advice from someone with more knowledge and experience. If you’re looking to hire an accountability coach to help you achieve your fitness goals, make sure to find someone who has real-life experience and a proven track record. With the help of an expert, you’ll learn useful tips and tricks that you might not have discovered on your own, like the importance of drinking a protein shake post-workout or how to integrate dynamic stretches into your exercise routine.
5. Someone to Support You Through Obstacles
Having the support of other people in your life is important for all aspects of your health, but this is crucial when working with an accountability coach. Research tells us that social and emotional support can help you to lead a healthier, happier lifestyle. When you have someone working directly with you on your fitness goals, you may feel more confident and determined to set objectives and work to complete them. Think of your accountability coach as your mentor and don’t be afraid to tell them if you’re struggling with your goals so they can offer support and a solution to overcome these issues.