This September, change the way you train. Go back to the gym and get yourself a personal trainer to guide your weight loss in the most efficient way possible

September at last — now that the kids are finally back at school, you think you’ll have so much free time on your hands. As you search through the cupboards for your child’s school bag, you catch a glimpse of another bag covered in dust. As you clean it up you realise that it’s your long lost gym bag.

Untouched since June, you knew there had to be some reason that your jeans have been feeling tight.

Yes, you remember over-indulging a handful of times, but surely it couldn’t have affected your body that much? You try to justify your recent weight gain by placing the burden of blame upon your children’s shoulders: ‘The kids were on holidays and I had no time to train.’

Your children are an easy target, but as September is the start of a new term, you are determined to change. If this sounds familiar, it’s because it’s exactly what you said to yourself last year.

Gyms around the country are bracing themselves for an influx of prodigal sons and daughters as they return from their holidays.

You have received new-found secrets from your friend on how her long-lost cousin Susan has lost two stone. The problem with this is that, although your friend’s intentions were good in sharing this information, Chinese whispers are constantly altered as someone passes on the secret, leaving you even more confused.

A different approach

This year, you should take a leaf out of the Irish Olympic boxing squad’s methods. Since Barcelona in 1992, when Michael Carruth captured gold, Ireland as a nation struggled to qualify for international boxing competitions.

Rather than continue to make the same mistakes for other Olympics, the Sports Council realised it had to undertake a different approach. In Beijing, the boxing ring was the location where Ireland won all its Olympic medals. So what was this dramatic change that the athletes made?

The Irish Sports Council appointed a director of High Performance. His role was to appoint top coaches from different fields and countries to help the boxers overcome potential road-blocks to future success. Psychologists, nutritionists and strength coaches were some of the professionals enlisted to help them peak at the right time.

You cannot argue with results, and the standards of the Irish athletes were raised as they trained with like-minded athletes. They also received the missing bits of information that may have been holding them back from achieving success.

This September, you should take a different path to help you accomplish your goals. A study on the cadets at the United States Military Academy at West Point found that those who received coaching had 78pc better results than those cadets who trained alone.

When you have a coach, you receive the benefits of knowledge and experience needed for success, but it also makes you accountable to yourself.

When you are sick you see a doctor, when your car breaks down you see a mechanic, so when you want to lose weight, seek the guidance of a professional. This could be in the form of fitness professional, a nutritionist or a psychologist. Every journey needs guides so don’t be afraid to seek the encouragement of a coach.

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