Why You And I Need a Coach

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It may come as a surprise to some reading, but I have a coach, someone who writes my programs and to whom I’m accountable towards. It’s one of the best things I have ever done.

Likewise I have a number of coaches as clients myself, and I feel it’s one of the highest compliments I can receive. One such individual is Shane McLean who’s a personal trainer in Texas.

He took the time to write up this short summary of why he chose to hire a coach and why he feels it’s an important component for anyone to consider, coach or not.


Why You (And I) Need a Coach

It was the middle of July in the sweltering, unforgiving Texas heat and my football coach was making the team run 200-meter sprint repeats at the END of practice. As you can imagine, we were all thrilled and no one complained at all.

After a few intervals, most of the team was gassed and we still had a few more to go. When my turn came around, I took off sluggishly and the coach was none too pleased. He started to scream a few choice words in my direction.

It was nothing that bears repeating here because what’s said on the field stays on the field, just like what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.

However, among the expletives, he dropped a pearl of wisdom.

“Practice should be harder than the game, so the game is easy.”

That was all the motivation I needed. I sucked it up, dug deep and ran out my final intervals without compliant.

That’s the beauty of having a coach.

The coach picks you up when you’re feeling down and makes you dig deep when you’re spent and can still see the good in you when nothing is going your way.

Coaches Need Coaches Too

Being a personal trainer, I see the value of coaching from both sides of the fence. I coach clients in a one-on-one setting and I also reach out to fellow professionals for advice when I’m struggling with my own progress.

Because there are times when coaches need coaches.

You can benefit from having a coach in your corner at some time in your life, whether you’re already a coach or you’re looking for something bigger and better in your life.

A little of Drill Sergeant Lou (or Tony Gentilcore) can be just what you need.

He’s a thinking man’s coach.

And because Lou was busy, I reached out to Tony (lucky for me he responded) because I was struggling with my own progress. My goal was and still is to deadlift twice my bodyweight.

However, after a back injury and long break from deadlifting, I had no clue where to start.

Tony loves to lift heavy things and I wanted to lift heavy things, so doesn’t this sound like the start of a beautiful bromance?

However, I was in a bit of a pickle because I couldn’t afford to pay him what he’s worth, so we came to another arrangement.

That tells you what kind of person he is.

He’s not only a man who makes people suffer for a living, he has a heart also.


After a year of online training with Tony, I realized what good coaching is and I decided to share this bromance knowledge with you.

Now, if you’re on the fence about hiring a coach, hopefully my experience with Tony will push you over the edge.

1) Coaches Bring Out Your Best

I’m a believer that you already have the tools inside of you to be a success.

You weren’t put on this Earth to be ordinary, you’re put here to be extraordinary. You may feel like this is new age mumbo jumbo but bear with me for a moment.

Like a lawyer who represents himself has a fool for a client, you fail to look at yourself objectively. You’re either too hard on yourself or fail to see the good inside of you. You cannot see the forest through the trees.

This just makes us human and not Sheldon Cooper.

However, do you know who can help you access those tools and bring out the best in you? A good coach, that’s who.

Several times during the year, I got down on myself because I was either injured, not lifting what I thought I was capable of or struggling with certain lifts that I suck at, like squats.

The moment I’d express this sentiment to Tony, he would quickly turn the tone around and offer me encouragement, advice and exercise cues to help me keep crushing my workouts.

Being on the receiving end of a pep talk is very empowering.

2) Coaches Provide Knowledge

After 25 years of lifting and over 8 years of coaching clients, I thought I had my shit together.

However, after being exposed to different programs, philosophies and training techniques, I realized that my way wasn’t the only way of doing things.

Imagine that?

Every new program and interaction I had Tony was like a sponge moment. All I needed to do was soak it all in.

3) Coaches Provide Accountability

One of the reasons why people hire coaches is to provide them with accountability because they’ve made an investment of money and time in the pursuit of better health and fitness. It always helps to have some skin in the game.

However, if they don’t show up, they’re wasting their money and the trainer’s time. This can result in one pissed off trainer. Trust me, you don’t want to upset the person who writes your exercise programs for a living.

Before Tony I had the dreaded case of do as I say, not as I do and I was accountable to no one. Now I feel accountable to Tony because he has eyes everywhere (like a ninja) and I also report in every week.

A good coach will help keep you on the straight and narrow.

Wrapping Up

You cannot go through this life alone. At some stage, you’re going to need some help. That’s what a good coach will do, help you be more awesome than you already are.

And who doesn’t want that?

About the Author

 Shane “The Balance Guy” McLean, is an A.C.E Certified Personal Trainer working deep in the heart of Texas. Shane believes in balancing exercise with life while putting the fun back into both.

Did what you just read make your day? Ruin it? Either way, you should share it with your friends and/or comment below.

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Plus, get a copy of Tony’s Pick Things Up, a quick-tip guide to everything deadlift-related. See his butt? Yeah. It’s good. You should probably listen to him if you have any hope of getting a butt that good.

I don’t share email information. Ever. Because I’m not a jerk.