HABIT BASED COACHING
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How habits fit into a curriculum
A curriculum is:
* A set of carefully curated, targeted lessons and activities that go in a particular logical order, step by step.
* A purposeful and progressive program and plan for client learning, engagement, and development.
A curriculum gives you:
* resources for learning, and
* a "game plan" for action.
The 5 S formula.
Each habit in the PN curriculum matches the “5 S criteria”.
Habits are small daily actions that people can do in their real lives. They are clearly defined and easy to understand (though not always easy to do).
Habits break larger tasks into smaller pieces.
Habits go in the right order. Actions that come first set the stage for actions that come later.
Habits are purposeful and reflect a larger “game plan”. Each one is there for a reason.
Habits are supported by daily lessons and learning resources as well as your coaching and mentorship.
Step by step.
If you’ve ever taught a complex movement or set of sport skills, you know that you have to start small and simple (with basic drills that address very small pieces of that movement).
You can’t expect beginners to do a perfect barbell full snatch, wrestling takedown, ski jump, or backflip on their first day of training.
You know that there is a plan and a progression to those more complicated moves.
You start by breaking those movements down into their absolute fundamentals, and helping clients practice each of those tiny chunks in a logical progression.
The same is true of PN Coaching.
The curriculum puts the habits in the right order, and breaks complex skills down into simple ones.
At first glance, the order of the habits might seem a bit random. However, each one is carefully placed in a particular sequence.
Habits and lessons are cumulative and coherent.
Each habit/lesson builds the skills for future habits/lessons. Later habits and lessons return to themes and ideas from earlier ones.
Everything is connected to everything else in a logical progression.
Week 4: Notice and Name lesson.
(A lesson about the importance of self-observation and self-awareness.)
Week 14: Experiment Day: Snapshot lesson.
(A simple self-tracking exercise that looks at a few items throughout the day: energy levels, mental state, mood.)
which leads to...
Week 17: Record What You Eat Habit
Week 29: Tune Up & Troubleshoot lesson. (How to analyze patterns in habits.)
which leads to...
Week 38: Time Bandits, Time Warriors lesson. (Reviewing time use and what it says about priorities.)
And so on.
“Anchor habits” come first.
“Anchor habits” are things you can do anytime, anywhere. They’re foundational behaviors.
For example, for fat loss, weight loss, or body recomposition, the two anchor habits are “eat slowly” and “eat to 80% full”. These trump all other habits.
When clients get stuck or overwhelmed with new habits, they can simply return to these “anchor habits”.
Concrete, practical, prescriptive habits come first.
“Do X in Y way” habits come first.
We tell clients what to do and how to do it for the first several months. This gives them a clear structure and a system, and removes uncertainty.
While clients can still customize all habits to their needs and nutritional levels, early habits focus on clear, unambiguous basics.
Then, we start loosening the reins, allowing more open-ended habits and interpretations of them.
* Early, concrete habit: Eat 5 servings of colorful fruits and vegetables each day.
* Somewhat more open-ended habit midway through: Use a targeted recovery strategy.
* Completely open-ended habit near the end of the program: Pay it forward.
We mix up “hard” and “easy” habits.
Not all clients will struggle with the same habits. However, some habits tend to be harder than others.
We carefully dole out “hard” and “easy” habits so that clients aren’t constantly asked to do difficult things.
We mix up “new stuff” and “review/consideration” habits.
Habit: Eat whole foods only.
(A “stretch” habit, fairly difficult, requires learning new things.)
Habit: A little more, a little better.
(Relaxing the control, scaling back expectations, allowing client to choose the next actions and simply improve slightly on what is familiar.)
Some habits are “stretch habits” or “experiment habits” rather than “forever” habits.
Some habits are presented as “things to try” for 2 weeks, rather than “you should always do these as specified, forever”.
* Eat only/mostly whole foods.
* Drink only/mostly calorie-free beverages.
The idea here is for clients to:
* Try something that pushes their boundaries for 2 weeks.
* Expand their skills and repertoire while doing so.
* See what they learn and discover about themselves and what they like, need, and/or want through this process of experimenting.
* Add this information and insight to the Owner’s Manual.
At the end of the 2 week “play period”:
* Clients decide what was most interesting, valuable, and useful about that experiment for them.
* They decide what pieces of that habit to keep.
Stretch habits in particular are great opportunities for clients to:
* Get them outside their comfort zone, trying new things.
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For more on how habits fit into the our program, check out the article below:
THE WORD IS OUT
I have enjoyed working with Jef for the last 15 years. He has added a needed dimension to my life. I feel better, look better and enjoy life more by being healthy and strong due to Jef's instruction and input. Not just working out but looking at the big picture of health has helped me considerably.
~ Tim M.
Been with Jeff for over 12 years. His knowledge of anatomy allows him to address any physical issues. He takes a personal interest in his clients. Workouts are creative and tailored for the individual.
~ Ralph S.
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