Never Stop Learning
Earlier this month, I had the opportunity to attend a Glute Lab Seminar with Bret Contreras during my trip to San Diego. If you haven’t heard of Bret (and you couldn’t guess from the session name), he’s all about the booty building. In fact, he’s been dubbed the “world’s foremost expert on glute training.” How did I end up in a glute specific training, you may ask? Allow me to rewind.
At the start of the year, I set a couple of goals for myself around new certifications and training sessions that I wanted to seek out in 2019 to deepen my knowledge as a trainer. I try to do this every year to keep my methods fresh for both the TL Method and my classes at Compass. This year, I wanted to incorporate two different formats:
An Experiential Training - For me, this would involve traveling somewhere to complete the training in-person. It’s a great opportunity to check out a new city and learn from someone new (like Bret)!
An Online Training - As much as I’d love to travel all the time, it’s not cheap. An online session is a great opportunity to learn as I go and complete the session on my own time.
For my online specific training, I was zeroed-in on completing a nutrition course with Precision Nutrition. Unfortunately, life happens, and the certification that I was aiming for filled up before I was able to register. Bummer. I’ve marked my calendar (with reminders) for the next one.
For my experiential training, I was targeting a barbell seminar. It’s something that I’ve been eager to incorporate into my Down and Dirty format at Compass, but I’ve struggled to find the right one. I am however looking forward to a Kettlebell certification rolling through Compass in a couple of months. It will be a great opportunity for me to expand my knowledge around queues for kettlebells, and I will be able to incorporate it into all of my Compass class formats.
Back to my trip San Diego - I had originally booked my trip just for fun; San Diego is one of my favorite cities. But, when I was randomly scrolling through Bret’s Instagram (as one does), I stumbled across a Glute Lab Seminar kicking off just a couple of days before my scheduled trip. I had been following Bret for a while as he’s one of the most respected names in the fitness world, especially when it comes to glute training, so this seemed like an opportunity I couldn’t miss. I changed my flight the same day and packed my bags for the Glute Lab Seminar.
Contrary to popular belief, the seminar was not all about building the cute beach booty. There are so many more benefits to building your glutes outside of a perfect Instagram pic. Here’s a quick list of a couple things I learned:
Ever heard of “Lazy Ass Syndrome”? It’s also been deemed “Gluteal Amnesia” or “Dead Butt Syndrome.” It occurs when you’re sitting for long periods of time - aka if you’re at work 8-10 hours per day. Glute training can help stimulate these muscles and keep them engaged.
In tandem with “Dead Butt,” glute training can help better support your joints - including your knees, hips and ankles. It can also decrease inflammation.
It was an incredible opportunity to learn from Bret himself about how to incorporate more glute training into my workout formats– for Compass and the TL Method. It reminded me of how important it is to take advantage of chances to learn from other trainers. The way I train and the way I learn– it’s not the end all be all. There are so many different body types that respond well to different types of training. It’s all about learning how to work with different people and designing a workout program that can be beneficial for them where they are in their fitness journey.
The experience also reminded me to take a look back at my own training journey. Looking through past videos in my program, I realize that I’ve learned new ways to cue so that people can understand the way their bodies move. It’s critical not to get stuck in your ways. Go to different gyms. Explore different styles. See how other instructors move students and get inspired.
Comparison isn’t always the enemy. There is always room for improvement. As a gym owner, I try to evaluate why students are attracted to a different gym versus Compass. As an online trainer, I look at other trainers’ social presence to see what may be working for them. I never stop learning.
If you’re looking for a way to learn deepen your own knowledge - in fitness or otherwise - find a training. We live in an age where there’s an endless amount of information available to us. Here are a couple of pieces of advice for choosing a training from my own experience.
Ask around your network. Talk to 3-5 people who have completed the course. Often times, trainings are an investment of both your time and money, and you want to be confident in your choice.
Weigh out your options. Narrow down what you’re really looking for. I’ve been hunting for a barbell training for months because I wanted something that is less focused on the Crossfit approach to lifting. While narrow can be limiting, it helps you focus on what’s important to achieving your personal goals.
Evaluate a range of options. Free seminars are always a good place to start. But, don’t forget to look at networking groups. As an entrepreneur, it’s great to be able to connect with others who are also building their business.
I never want to say that I’m an expert. I genuinely believe that there’s always more to be learned– from different coaches and different disciplines. If you’re eager to learn something new, I encourage you to do it. Set your goals, research your options and follow the opportunities you find. You never know where they might take you! You’re next adventure could be right around the corner.