There are 3 Types of Authors: Which are you working with?
The purpose of this article is to bring to your attention the three types of authors, coaches, advisors, etc out there in any industry. Why? Because there are people in every industry on this planet who are marketing their services and products to you and it's important to learn how to evaluate them. Your success is determined in part by the people you learn from, and take advice from - so choose your author carefully!
Author #1: Has never tried it - but writes about it, or tries to teach it.
The absolute best example of this is the never-ending flexibility debate in the training world. You will read almost everywhere, from many 'experts', that flexibility training either doesn't reduce exposure to injury, or, even more ridiculous, that it should not be performed prior to strength training. Yet, these coaches/authors/academics have typically never trained flexibility properly themselves, and certainly have not used it in the real world with clients. With due respect to academic research, in the realm of flexibility training the only opinions that matter are those coming from experienced coaches who have had the training and guidance to train this physical quality with clients, and themselves. I was fortunate enough to learn a great deal about flexibility training from King Sports International.
In the nutritional world, an example of this would be someone who claims to teach proper nutritional habits, yet they exist on Red Bull, coffee, and packaged foods. While this may seem like an exaggeration, it happens all too often in the nutritional coaching world.
Author #2: Tried it, and failed.
These people tend to be easier to spot because of a general negative tone on a subject. There are many trainers out there who take a weekend course, become certified as personal trainers, and after spending a year in the industry they quit. They may say that the industry doesn't work, that people just won't listen and follow instruction, or that people just want to be lazy.
What is typically going on here is that the trainer did not learn how to improve their services and communicate effectively with their clients. It can be a frustrating position to be in - especially if you don't know how to change it!
When you are searching for a trainer, ask them questions about the success they've had with other clients. If they have positive testimonials, and speak highly of their success with others, you are on the right track. Ask them about nutritional services they offer - if they begin explaining to you that they don't offer any advice or services because they've found 'people don't listen to what I suggest, and they don't do what I tell them to do", then look for someone else.
Author #3: Tried it, and succeeded at it.
This is the person you want to work with and learn from! You will know this person when you see them, because they walk their talk. They train without getting injured all the time, they are vibrant, healthy looking individuals.
You will also notice that this type of person improves all the time - physically and emotionally. You notice each week that their physique improves a bit at a time. Contrast this to people you see in the gym week in, week out, who never change.
Emotionally, this person is sharp, positive, and adds value to your life whenever you come into contact with them. The work they publish is honest, well researched, and logical. They speak from personal experience, and from experience based on helping others.
I trust this information will guide you towards making better choices when working with trainers, coaches, and other health care practitioners. It should also assist you in knowing which books, articles, and publications to read.