It’s pretty well documented my love for donuts (See here). And they will always remain #1 but that doesn’t mean there’s room for other sweets (my sweet tooth is strong). I would say that cookies are a close second. So when I hear cookie cutter, I tend to believe cookies are ready or are on their way. So then why don’t cookie cutter fitness plans come with cookies? It would at least blunt the disappointment when they don’t work out. Cookie cutter fitness plans are not the way grasshopper, no matter how much you love your fit celebrity.
For someone just starting out on their fitness journey, there is some merit to signing up for a cookie cutter fitness plan. At the very least, it will give you a basic idea of what you should be doing in the gym. It’ll take some of the thinking out of working out, give you a mediocre plan and allow you walk into the gym with a little more confidence. Do not be alarmed by the initial gains you’ll make… cuz you’ll make a ton (I’m not joking). Someone who is just starting out has all of this untapped potential. Your body is going to respond amazingly to any resistance training and you’ll put on muscle. But you will plateau!
That one size fits all approach loses its allure starting with the average crowd and all the way up. The cookie cutter fitness plans will get you to average but that is where it most often stops.
I want to highlight an example. One of my good friends signed up for one of these transformation challenges that many of the social media celebrities host. More often than not, it’s the best transformation using their cookie cutter plan. My friend is a fit individual, lifting for 10 years plus and has a sold grasp of nutrition. He’ll range from 170-180 and is more than moderately active. The plan suggested that he eat 1,500 calories to start cutting. 1,500 calories?!?! I know girls that look great and eat 300-400 calories more than that.
I also know a friend that signed up for the full package – workout and nutrition – with a well respected individual. Signing up he had a 15 week training program in front of him. Just follow the plan and you’ll get to where you want to get. No consideration of muscle imbalances, weak points, previous workout history. As well as no consideration of equipment availability, injury history or recovery capabilities. Literally little customization… and no cookies!
The selling point with them is that they are cheap and I get that. Normally with more personalization comes a higher price tag. And that’s not realistic for many. The other selling point is that they have amazing transformations. Because lets be honest, if you throw the plan to the masses, it’s bound to work on some.
I’ll say a few things on the above. Do your research! There are so many smart, passionate individuals out there that can lead you to success and at an affordable cost. Ask around and don’t just take “yea she/he is great.” Why are they great? Be sure that you’re getting access to this individual, even if it is just via email. You’re going to have questions along the way. You also want to grow & evolve. Having someone there for you in some capacity is priceless…
And speaking of priceless – your fitness should be in that category. It’s an investment in your future. As I’m sure most of us plan on living long and healthy lives. Cookie cutter fitness plans are not going to arm us with the tools for long term success. We need something more detailed and structured so we can understand what works and does not work for our body. Because we’re all different and unique. So next time you seek out the cheap and easy option… think about what living a healthy, long life is worth.
Good luck on all of your fitness journeys. And here’s a bicep flex to crushing 2018!