Updated: Mar 6
Short answer: Personal trainers aren’t qualified or trained to provide individualized nutrition counseling.
Long answer: Personal training programs do often include some nutrition education but it’s not by any means extensive enough for said trainer to have the skills to provide 1:1 care for a complex person. You may be thinking, but Connie, it’s just a meal plan that goes along with their fitness routine, it’s not that serious.
I’d argue that it actually is. I don’t think there’s a single human on this planet who “just needs a meal plan”.
When I hear that statement, my RD mind translates it to “I can’t trust my body or mind to tell me what to eat, how much, and when, so I’m looking to someone-anyone- who I feel knows more than I do for guidance and the only way I’ve been taught to ask for help is to ask for a meal plan”.
Then, said person feels bummed that they fell off the wagon because the meal plan was too repetitive and didn’t work with the unique tastes, cost, or preferences of that person. They will likely then try to get another plan of sorts because that’s what our current “wellness culture” deems needed to be in good health- to be on some wagon or plan.
I’m here to tell you that you don’t need to be on any sort of wagon to take care of your health. You can learn the skills to nourish yourself and prioritize your health, if that’s a goal for you, without a meal plan.
Very few people have ever been taught the concepts of general nutrition, body respect, how to listen to their unique body cues like hunger and fullness, or how to live life without jumping from diet to diet from a respectful weight-inclusive lens.
That, my friends, is where I (and my colleagues) come in.
If you answer yes to any of the following questions, working with a compassionate and Health At Every Size informed RD may be a great step for you.
Are you sick of counting calories/macros/points?
Are you interested in learning what food actually does for the body? For example- why do we even need carbohydrates? How many on average? Do certain people like athletes need more? How are they metabolized, stored, and used in the body? Are they really “bad” like the media says? (hint: nope!)
Would you like thoughts of food and your body to take up significantly less space in your brain?
Are you wondering how to model good eating behavior for your children so they grow up to have a healthy relationship with food?
Have you heard of Intuitive Eating but are a bit confused on all the nuances of it? (hint: it’s much more than just “listening to when you are hungry and full”)
Are you starting to explore a healthier relationship with exercise/movement and feel like you’d like to do the same with your relationship with food but need more guidance than google and social media?
Have you been frustrated and let down by medical providers telling you to “just lose weight” to solve a nutrition related diagnosis like type 2 or gestational diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, PCOS, etc?
Would you like to learn how to fuel yourself better throughout the day?