I remember a conversation I had with a bar owner a few years ago. I was in the bar for research purposes only, of course. The bar had been around for decades with barstools filled mostly by regulars. I was covering a story on the bar’s 50th anniversary celebration for the local newspaper.

When I asked the owner what the most popular beer was, he said with a smile, “Just one more.” No doubt, the phrase is one he heard multiple times from bar patrons on any given night.

The phrase is a common one with many connotations. It can be just one more hour of sleep on the weekends. Binge-watching one more episode. Or just one more bite of cake.

A little indulgence.

Nudging Clients Along

The phrase can be a handy one in the exercise world and a useful verbal cue in the training world. The simple concept is easier for a client to comprehend “just one more” instead of a multitude of tough exercises ahead. Just one more rep, one more minute or one more pound is easier on the psyche while pushing the body, without going to failure.

A little nudge.

This term can be effective in building endurance, gaining flexibility, creating equilibrium with balance, increasing intensity, and moving toward progression.

Physical benefits are evident.

It can be a simple motivator when you or your client may not be feeling it. Go just one more minute on the treadmill and you might want to extend the time even further. Adding just one more pushup or one more burpee to the routine can be a huge accomplishment.

Mental advantages are worth noting.

Keeping a record or tracker is an easy way to document improvement. Compare progress along the way with your client for positive reinforcement.

Here are some examples of how to nudge clients towards just one more:

1. Think of it in terms of weightlifting. Over a block of time, add just one more rep to a weightlifting exercise(s). If your client trains two times a week, adding one rep over four weeks adds an extra 8 reps. A cumulative total translates into a higher volume, and builds slow but steady strength and progression. Kind of like the tortoise and the hare. Ramp up the intensity along with the reps now you’ve increased the training load over time, carving out more opportunity for noticeable gains.
2. Build cardio and leg strength with hill sprints. Just one more hill sprint gets the heart pumping and the legs shaking with a big dose of confidence. The next time out, the hill won’t seem so big and scary, and speed is likely to increase along with strength.
3. Gain core strength. Hold a V-sit or static crunch for just one more minute and feel the abs burning as you envision the six-pack developing.
4. Improve balance. Stand in a yoga tree pose or dancer pose, attempting to balance on one leg just one more second.
5. Work on endurance. Ride a stationary bike for just one more song.

It all boils down to mindset. We grow physically and mentally by obtaining bits of success, and pushing a little bit more than the last time. Most of us as fitness pros and many of our clients want to be challenged. It feels good to overcome a challenge! And we all want to see results, even if success is measured one step or rep at a time.



Kim Becknell Williams

Kim Becknell Williams is a freelance writer with more than ten years of personal training experience. Certified through NFPT, she is a Functional Training Specialist and holds a Master Trainer level certificate for resistance, endurance and sports nutrition. Kim has written two books including Gym Etiquette 101. She enjoys writing a variety of lifestyle articles and fitness blogs.