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Female Fitness: How To Know If Who You’re Following Is Legit

Kim: [00:00:00] Welcome to episode 68 of the Fitness Simplified podcast. I’m your host, Kim Schlag. On today’s episode I speak with my friend and fellow online coach Chad Hargrove. I invited Chad on the podcast to discuss, publicly, something we have been chatting about privately in the DMs. A few weeks back Chad did an amazing post about the plethora of women’s fitness videos that show very toned women using only bands or very lightweight and exercises you’ve likely never seen before.
[00:00:38] A person commented on Chad’s post and he then shared the post in his stories and it made me raise my eyebrows. Her comment: “this is why I only watch men’s workout videos.” 
[00:00:53] Now that is not the answer. Today Chad and I talked through what is the answer? How do we help women find the best fitness content out there?
[00:01:05] Let’s go
[00:01:08] Chad Hargrove. 
[00:01:12] Chad: [00:01:12] What’s going on? Should I be on video right now? 
[00:01:14] Kim: [00:01:14] I would love it if you want to come on video. 
[00:01:17] Chad: [00:01:17] Hold on a second. How do I change this?
[00:01:23] Kim: [00:01:23] Bottom left corner.
[00:01:25] Chad: [00:01:25] Oh, there we go.
[00:01:27] Kim: [00:01:27] There you are!
[00:01:28] Chad: [00:01:28] What’s going on? 
[00:01:30] Kim: [00:01:30] Chad Hargrove in the building. Not in my building, but somewhere in Canada. Where are you these days? You’ve been in a couple of different spots, right?
[00:01:40] Toronto, Ottawa, right? 
[00:01:42] Chad: [00:01:42] Yeah. So, I moved here, to Toronto, about 4 years ago now, I started the business on the first day here. And then, I’ve moved back and forth a couple of random times throughout back to Ottawa where I’m from, which is about a five hour drive away.
[00:02:01] First time was to go to travel, which I ended up not traveling. So, I ended up coming back here and then the second time I was supposed to travel again and then COVID happened. So, basically what I was doing was going back to my parents’ place, stop in there, and then trying to leave. And then the second time, obviously, the quarantine and everything happened while I was trying to book it.
[00:02:21] Kim: [00:02:21] You had like big Southeast Asia plans, right? 
[00:02:24] Chad: [00:02:24] Yeah, I was supposed to be in Bali for a couple of months and then doing a few spots throughout there, like Japan and Australia. And then do that from about February to May, and then, right around when I was booking it, obviously everything started happening out there.
[00:02:39] So, back to Toronto, I went. 
[00:02:42] Kim: [00:02:42] But it all worked out because now you have a new kitten. 
[00:02:45] Chad: [00:02:45] Now I have a new kitten. Yeah, she’s tearing at my feet right now, actually. She’s just growing quite a bit; I’ve had her for about six days. You’ve seen her on the stories?
[00:02:53] Kim: [00:02:53] Yeah, I’ve seen her on the stories. 
[00:02:55] Chad: [00:02:55] I’ve taken a break from fitness content.
[00:02:57] Kim: [00:02:57] It’s all about Chad’s cat. I actually saw one of my former clients — I didn’t even know she follows you — but she’s like, “I’m just so excited about Chad Hargrove’s new cat.”
[00:03:09] Chad: [00:03:09] I think I may just post exclusively cats until she’s too big for everyone to, you know, watch so closely. 
[00:03:16] Kim: [00:03:16] That’s so funny.
[00:03:17] Okay. Now, I do watch your stories. I will tell you I don’t pay super close attention — do you have a girlfriend or is it a roommate? 
[00:03:29] Chad: [00:03:29] Roommate. Roommate, yeah.
[00:03:30] Kim: [00:03:30] I thought it was a roommate, but then I thought you got a cat with her. I’m like, “is this a roommate or a girlfriend?”
[00:03:35] Chad: [00:03:35] Yeah. I knew that was going to happen because I bring her up a lot in my emails on a more day to day basis.
[00:03:40] And, yeah, she’s just a friend for about seven years now. We kind of needed a roommate right around the same time and thought it’d be a good idea, and it’s been crazy helpful to go through quarantine. If I was living on my own that would have been not so fun. 
[00:03:59] Kim: [00:03:59] Okay. So, I got super personal really fast here.
[00:04:03] “So, do you have a girlfriend?” 
[00:04:05] Chad: [00:04:05] Well, you know, that’s like a question my mom’s asked me and stuff, so.
[00:04:09] Kim: [00:04:09] Okay. Got it. Got it. Got it. So now, what’s the status of COVID up in your neck of the woods? Is it business as usual up in Canada or what’s going on there? 
[00:04:17] Chad: [00:04:17] You know, I was thinking about this earlier, before the call, because I figured we’d talk about it, but it feels normal now.
[00:04:24] And I think the line that needed to be crossed for me personally was gym’s opening. I’ve been in the gym lately and that’s just like a huge sense of normalcy for me. It’s just somewhere I can leave the– like, I work at home, so I need to be able to leave sometimes. And going there as kind of like break time.
[00:04:43] So for me, personally, that’s changed everything over the past week or two. But everything’s kind of going. I mean, we’re wearing masks everywhere and people are still kind of keeping distance and were being cognizant of staying in our pods and having that — you know, you’re supposed to stick with the same 10 people — and, you know, people are breaking this rule, but as long as there’s like half the people who are pushing it and half the people who are going along out of respect, I think things stay pretty good. But yeah, we’re getting about 20 new cases a day, I think, in Toronto. 
[00:05:21] Kim: [00:05:21] Okay. Got it. Do you guys have theaters open yet? Like, movie theaters and stuff? Or is that still shut? 
[00:05:29] Chad: [00:05:29] Ooh, that’s a tricky one. I don’t know because I’m never at the theaters anymore. Big things are closed. So, like, I think we’re limited to about 50 people.
[00:05:39] So that probably answers the question. I’m going to a wedding tomorrow, and there’s a 50-person limit on that. 
[00:05:46] Kim: [00:05:46] Okay. Interesting. Yeah, we’re still pretty shut down in my neck of the woods. Schools are not opening. I’m not happy about that. My kids are going to be cyber-schooled for the start of the year.
[00:05:58] Chad: [00:05:58] Oh, God. How old are yours?
[00:06:02] Kim: [00:06:02] Mine are in high school. So, I don’t have it as bad as moms and dads who have little ones. That’s hard. If I had little kids here, I don’t know what I would do. But I have a senior in high school and a freshman in high school and that’s kind of a big deal, you know? They’re gonna sit in their bedrooms.
[00:06:18] Chad: [00:06:18] Their learning is actually like a little bit more important at this time, I guess. They’ve got big plans ahead and stuff, so it’s kind of throwing them off a little bit. 
[00:06:27] Kim: [00:06:27] Yeah. So that’s kind of where we’re at. COVID is still really throwing a wrench in things here in the States.
[00:06:33] Chad: [00:06:33] Where are you exactly? 
[00:06:34] Kim: [00:06:34] I’m about two hours South of New York City in Pennsylvania. 
[00:06:38] Chad: [00:06:38] Oh, okay. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah, it sounds like things are hectic in different parts and whatnot still. 
[00:06:45] Kim: [00:06:45] We’ll see. Hopefully we’ll get back to normal here someday. 
[00:06:50] So, we set this interview up a few weeks back after we had this friendly back and forth in the DMs. You shared a brilliant post.
[00:06:57] I loved your post, by the way. And then you shared a follower’s comment on that post. Why don’t you set that up for us, Chad? Tell us about the post. What was the post about? What was common about?
[00:07:06] Chad: [00:07:06] The post was about, just generally speaking, more or less about how oftentimes the tendency of major influencers in the fitness industry get a lot of play and engagement and they do a lot of posting exercises that are, you know, “creative” would be the nice way to put it.
[00:07:31] And then, the less nice way to put it would be “a waste of time.” So, just a lot of fancy looking stuff that no one’s seen that, for a variety of reasons, they’re probably encouraged to do more of, which is misleading. 
[00:07:46] Kim: [00:07:46] Yeah. There’s a lot of nonsense in our industry, right?
[00:07:50] Women selling other women on booty band workout and body weight workouts, and jumping around mislabeled as HIIT workouts. When in fact that stuff is not what’s going to get women the results they think they
‘re buying, right? They think they’re buying “lean” and “toned” and “fit,” and that’s not what’s gonna get them there.

[00:08:07] And so one of your followers offered the suggestion that she follows, which is: “this is why I only watch men’s workout videos,” right? And I was like, Whoa. I guess in my mind, that’s not the solution. But I do see where she’s coming from, right? I see where she’s coming from. So, talk to me, tell us more about that.
[00:08:30] Chad: [00:08:30] Well, you know what? That’s just something that I came across and then I just laughed. It was just like, “Oh yeah, this is funny way to say it.” I would have never thought to tell someone to do that and I took it as funny, not necessarily in a more literal sense, I was just kinda like, “heh, that’s kind of funny.” And then, you know, because I chuckled just so naturally at it, I was like, “yeah, I’ll post that one.” 
[00:08:52] I’m sure as you go through deciding what to share and stuff, sometimes when you share something funny, it’s just knee jerk. And probably, in an automatic sense, I thought I can get away with it.
[00:09:03] But I definitely — just thinking about how the optics of it — knowing my audience is mostly women, and I’ve said a lot of things over time and know what I generally get away with in terms of how people are going to react to things, but her being a woman who posted, I was like, “Oh, that’s kind of funny.” So, I posted it and generally the response was fine on that. I think there was a couple of people that came back and we talked about it. But yeah. 
[00:09:36] Kim: [00:09:36] Yeah. For me, women need to see other women as role models as to what is possible, right? And I feel like this is true across the lifespan, but maybe even more so in middle age and above. Women so often are not aware of what they’re capable of, right? And seeing people like me and Susan out here busting out pull ups and pushups and lifting serious weight is a window for them into what is possible, right?
[00:10:06] They’re like, “I could do that.” You know, the idea that this is for them, right? That lifting is for them, that being strong is for them, that they could see themselves there. And that said, you made an incredibly important conversation as we were DMing back and forth about that, which is this:
[00:10:21] The most popular women in fitness aren’t the ones giving the best advice. Right? They’re not. You know, the force is strong with the booty band brigade out there. 
[00:10:32] Chad: [00:10:32] I was almost going to say like, that’s generally true. And I was trying to find exceptions to the rule and I’m just like, even the exceptions, the rule, like, you’ve got a million followers, but your advice is actually good. They’re still not the most popular woman in fitness. At all. 
[00:10:47] Kim: [00:10:47] They’re not. Whereas some of the more popular men’s accounts, if you followed their fitness advice and you’re a man and you’re following their advice, you are going to get a good workout in.
[00:10:55] And so I was like, “you’re totally right, Chad. Let’s talk about that.”
[00:11:04] Chad: [00:11:04] Generally the Rock’s fitness advice, dudes could probably do pretty good following that advice. 
[00:11:10] Kim: [00:11:10] Right? He’s not saying, “use your booty band and jump and then do a compound move,” what they call a compound move, which is like three things that make no sense to put together… like deadlift and then shoulder press the same weight. You know, he’s not saying that kind of stuff. 
[00:11:32] So what to do about it is the question. You know, we’re both out here fighting the good fight from the coaching/content creation side.
[00:11:40] You know, we put out good information. But I think about the consumers, like what can these women do? Like, the women listening today, what can they do? How to wade through the fitness advice out there for women. 
[00:11:51] So, yeah, what are the red flags? Solve that for us, Chad.
[00:11:59] Chad: [00:11:59] You know, the problem is that the average consumer — I risk some people taking offense to this — but the average consumer thinks they’re smarter about fitness than they are. They think they’re more ready to just take some information off the post and then know it.
[00:12:15] They’re not going to be knowledgeable enough to narrow things down and be like, “that doesn’t fit principle. That’s wrong.” They’re not going to be able to wade through all that. So, they don’t understand principles about how things work, which really makes it hard to decipher right from wrong.
[00:12:33] So, the average consumer, for one, needs to understand that this might take a pretty lengthy period of education. Like, I’m self-educated. I’ve obviously taken courses, but I was at one point exactly where you were yourself. 
[00:12:56] I didn’t go to school for this. I read out of the courses and articles and podcasts and all that, and I became knowledgeable over the course of 10 years.
[00:13:06] Kim: [00:13:06] But didn’t you know a lot, like, months in. 
[00:13:10] Chad: [00:13:10] Oh, 100%. Why else would I have been trying to do it myself at 15?
[00:13:15] Kim: [00:13:15] I thought I knew so much, and I was so wrong.
[00:13:20] Chad: [00:13:20] So, you know, this is only one point, but there’s an inherent problem in fitness content and the receiving, the consuming of fitness content. It is that if you just use this stuff, you’re going to get the results, but i
t’s like the rhyme or reason around exercise selection, and how to change things over time, and, you know, if you’re going to change your body as much as you want, you’re going to have to understand how metabolism changes. And if you’re confused at all by that, and you get 12 weeks into a diet and you actually have to go up in calories because you actually need more muscle or continue to chip away at calories because metabolism changes, and then not being scared to raise them up because you understand how metabolism actually adapts and how to watch for these things. 

[00:14:07] If you get 16 weeks into a diet, you’ve lost 10 pounds, and all of a sudden you read something about diet breaks or reverse dieting, you get confused.
[00:14:15] What happens? You don’t know what to do. You’re standing out there in no man’s land like, “Oh God, I’m in the middle of the process, but….” you know, it’s like you get halfway through a level in Super Mario Bros and then you don’t know how to go on. So, what happens? Just, you know, jump into a river and start over.
[00:14:31] So that’s one issue that causes people be led astray by certain things they will use to understand whether the information is good, which in the fitness industry, the biggest one is, “how does she look?” Or “how does he look?” Which means that if you look the best, you have the best advice.
[00:14:57] Which I’m not going to say is always wrong, but it’s wrong a lot. And there’s probably no place that’s more wrong than the female fitness influencer, fitness celebrity, even worse. But if you can’t decipher between this, how are you supposed to decide what’s good from what’s bad?
[00:15:19] So, what’s the solution to this? Well, for me, it took about 10 years before I actually understood everything. And, honestly, probably more than 10 years, but if I had had the right education early, maybe I would have been able to take 5 to really understand it. 
[00:15:34] So do you want to spend the next 5 years figuring this out to a level where you actually can do it on your own?
[00:15:40] No one listening is saying yes. Everyone’s like, “five years? I’m trying to get this done in 16 weeks.” So, what’s the answer? You either really invest in understanding this to a point where you can apply and understand what information, what is good to the level that you know, we do, or you pay for help to get this done in a reasonable timeframe in a way that is done.
[00:16:01] And let sounds like a sales pitch and I did not come on here to do a sales pitch, but it’s like, that’s what helped me. That’s what helped you, I’m sure. 
[00:16:10] Kim: [00:16:10] And people are so much more willing to do that in other areas outside of their health and fitness, right? Like when my car is doing something weird, I don’t even consider Googling how to fix it. Never.
[00:16:23] Chad: [00:16:23] And for some reason, at some point, it’s probably just how diet advice has evolved over time and the way it was sold. Easy trick, easy trick, easy trick. So, consumers have gotten, I think, used to buying something because it was easy. Like, I’m just supposed to pay for the solution and then it happens. It’s almost like we’ve made this out to be too easy. Like, honestly, losing weight is as simple as eating less, true. Changing your body to the extent that you want, listener, is not that easy at all.
[00:17:04] It actually needs to be a pretty calculated process throughout. And we can talk about this as well, I think that’s a great spot to go, the biggest barrier to women’s — as far as I see with my clients, and I’m sure we share a lot of the same types of people — the idea of eating more after a diet underlies probably the biggest barrier to success. Maybe the scale and food relations, stuff like that, but the fear of eating more and the fear of specifically adding body weight, like, I have to be careful how I use those words, because if I say “gain weight,” that’s just bad.
[00:17:47] That’s like, you’re just trying to poison the client as they see it. Generally, “adding weight” sounds a little bit cleaner than “gain weight.” One is just terrible words to use. That area is just a huge problem. I think I went off topic there, but…
[00:18:03] Kim: [00:18:03] No, it’s okay. You know what, Chad, it actually brings me right back to what we hopped on to talk about, which, you know, Jillian Michaels.
[00:18:07] And I just — I didn’t say who it was, but I put it up on my story. She just this last week, her whole thing was about intuitive eating and that was kind of a mess and it was a train wreck as it was. But in this post she put up, she talked about, she made this side comment that everyone thought was fabulous about how women really can’t eat more than 1600 calories.
[00:18:26] Women, generally, that their bodies can’t process that and that, you know, we don’t have the metabolisms for that. And I was like, she’s not talked about the size of this woman or how active this woman is, just women generally, right? 1600 calories. She didn’t even suggest that this is a woman trying to lose weight. Like, just across the board. And that woman has millions of followers.
[00:18:51] Which is why I get women who come to me and they struggle when I give them their deficit calories and their deficit calories, you know, are 1700 or 1800. You know, they have a lot of weight to lose and they’re like, “I can’t eat this much.” And I’m like, “you’re already eating more than this. Believe me, you are.”
[00:19:10] Chad: [00:19:10] Quite a bit more, potentially. Yeah, that problem comes up a lot. It’s like, the first numbers for their deficit and you’re like, you know, it’s like you set them and you’re like, “we might have to shave them down, but I’d much rather we go down from that number rather than from here up,” because I’ve seen that work terribly so many times where I’d go too low because they wanted to, and all of a sudden I’m like, “yeah, this is it’s not going well.” And the process of going up from there is just like you almost never reboot after that. You need a break from it almost, just like tripping out of the gate on a sprint.
[00:19:52] It’s like, you shouldn’t have been sprinting to begin with. But yeah, the comment, you know, I wonder with people like that, and I think this is interesting for us to talk about because, you know, people listening, like if you’re not in this business, you might think we actually understand why they’re so terribly wrong sometimes.
[00:20:11] And I’m not sure if it’s like, they make up the lies for more or less conspiracy, like they know it’s bad advice, but they’re putting it out there because it just fuels problems or, you know, whatever. It’s what people want to hear. And it drives fast results. So, it’s like people are excited.
[00:20:29] People somehow think when they lose six pounds in two weeks that they just succeeded. I’m like, “no, you haven’t proven any success yet.” However, there’s that perception out there and if you can sell that, which honestly, if you create those expectations, like 1200 to 1600 is normal for everyone on a diet, then you’re going to always create someone who can stick to it for seven days, lose three pounds, think you just gave them the miracle, when in reality it was just the wrong approach to begin with.
[00:20:56] Or is it something like, these people just listen to the consumer too much. Because the consumer tries these diets, says, “I ate this amount and it didn’t work,” so they come back and be like, “Oh God, I guess some people don’t lose weight when they eat 1100 calories a day,” just because the consumer’s telling them. 
[00:21:19] For a while, scientists took the information that way when they did studies. They didn’t check for that stuff, but yeah. 
[00:21:25] Kim: [00:21:25] Look, I don’t know why these people do that kind of stuff. I wish I did. I don’t know why. The people giving the bad advice, sometimes I try and think, like, I think they really believe it because can they really be just so after money that they’re doing this, and I don’t know. I don’t know what the right answer is, why they do it, if they really believe it, or if they’re just out to get money or whatever it is.
[00:21:47] But I think it’s really important for us to help people really see red flags. Because I agree with you, I think hiring coach who you’re like, “this person gets people results,” is a good way to go. 
[00:21:57] Look, we both are coaches and I believe in it. But for people who aren’t, I think let’s talk about some red flags.
[00:22:03] So, let’s say I’m a woman, I’m on Instagram, I’m looking around, I’m following some people. What red flags would you say if you notice that that’s not a quality source? 
[00:22:15] Chad: [00:22:15] You know, I think the amount of skin is actually — you know, I was almost gonna check myself because I’m not judging, you know, people can wear what they want.
[00:22:34] And I was going to be like, just thinking of some of the more popular women out there who give good advice. I’m like, “how much skin are they showing?” And I would say there’s probably a relation. This is not cause and effect, so just because someone shows a lot of skin actually doesn’t mean they’re bad.
[00:22:52] Although I think they’re getting a lot of attention for a reason that isn’t their information, but I think that is actually a good one, and honestly, I think a lot of skin is often just compensating for something.
[00:23:06] Kim: [00:23:06] I’m sure the statement you just made would be a controversial one, but I agree with you, Chad. I agree with you. I think the person, male or female out there and what they’re showing the consumer all the time is their skin. Or even if it’s not their skin, it’s just a closeup of their butt while they’re doing exercises. They’re not selling you on the solution, they’re selling you on their body.
[00:23:29] Chad: [00:23:29] Yeah. And let’s be real here, some people just like the amount of attention. Like, I get on my Q and A sometimes because I’m bored, so it’s like, everyone’s going to have a different reason, like, some of them just might want attention for that reason and that’s totally up to them. 
[00:23:44] But I would say there’s a relation there for sure. I think that’s one thing you can look at. If you see someone showing a lot of skin, your first reaction should probably — and we can talk about other red flags, which will also help you — but you should immediately kind of have your guard up, probably. 
[00:24:00] Kim: [00:24:00] Good one. What else ya got?
[00:24:03] Chad: [00:24:03] What else do I got? Well, you know, and this is tricky because just because they’re not lifting heavy weights in their video does not mean they’re not talking about heavy weights. Like, I don’t show myself lifting all that much anymore.
[00:24:20] Maybe I should, actually. But it’s hard because sometimes you’re going to get to people with good information that are showing a lift, but they’re not using heavy weights. But I think, generally, if the weights are tiny or light or in color, probably, and there’s just a lot of jumping around.
[00:24:40] Like, if you identify “that looks tiring,” versus “that looks like it could be heavy” that’s probably a good distinction to make. And it’s not that lifting for cardio or sweat or heart rate or to get a good, you know, whatever, it’s not that that’s bad, but that’s going to be supplemental to your “heavier” training. 
[00:25:07] So if it looks like she’s trying to teach you how to like lift heavier, that’s a really good sign. 
[00:25:15] Kim: [00:25:15] I think you’re spot on. You hit a couple of really big ones there. If there’s no weights in sight or no talking about heavy weights in sight, that’s a problem for me. Either she’s showing you herself lifting those or if she’s not, she’s letting you know, “this is what you need to do.” There needs to be weights involved. 
[00:25:31] Chad: [00:25:31] Yeah. If anyone listening, you know Kim posts, you probably know Susan, so you see they’re lifting heavy. So, it’s like, if it doesn’t look something like that, then also have your guard up.
[00:25:45] And now if we put “very little clothing,” number one red flag and “no sign of weights, or at least encouraging you to get strong,” it’s just like, if those two are together, I’m not sure there’s any coming out of that w
ith any real information. It’s probably an unfollow.

[00:26:04] You can probably comb your, “who you’re following” and nix a few. 
[00:26:09] Kim: [00:26:09] Right. With just those two things. Absolutely. 
[00:26:12] Chad: [00:26:12] Yeah. I think that gets really, really, really black and white on those. 
[00:26:16] Kim: [00:26:16] Yeah. And the other one you hit on was, if she’s just talking about it being tiring, making you tired.
[00:26:22] If somebody is constantly using the words, “you’re going to feel this burning, you’re going to get sweaty, we’re going to be calorie-blasting,” those for me — not that you can’t ever talk about those, because like who doesn’t love a good metcon, right? But if that’s the bulk of the content, that’s a problem.
[00:26:37] Chad: [00:26:37] Yes. 100%. 
[00:26:40] Honestly, I think those are the two biggest ones. I think you can make a lot of your decisions based on those. Do you have any more?
[00:26:49] Kim: [00:26:49] The only other one I would say is, and I guess we kind of already covered it, is the idea of there’s no progression suggested. If they’re just constantly throwing random stuff at you, if they’re not encouraging you — and you said the words get strong, so there really should be a focus on, “pick a workout and stick to it.” Not “confuse your muscles,” not “let’s try something new” all the time, the content really should be driven on, “how can we help you get stronger over time?”
[00:27:13] Chad: [00:27:13] Yeah. I think pretty much any highly valuable coach out there that’s geared towards women or whatever, “get strong” is in the message, because not many women are past the point where “gets strong,” needs to be the primary focus. And the ones who are past it usually are in the shape you want to be in. So that’s usually the big one.
[00:27:44] And I think after that, it’s just in the best interest of the people listening, like, are they actually teaching you stuff? Does their account make you feel better? And, you know, in a lot of cases — and I think this goes both ways — speaking of a lot of like psychological stuff that goes through the average dieter’s mind. If you’re getting content like that, it’s probably speaking to a coach that’s been in your shoes at some point.
[00:28:07] And the difference between some coach is like, “hey, just hit your macros,” and that’s it. That’s fine for like 2% of people, but the help with navigating what the scale said today or you’re feeling bloated today, or just like the fluctuations, not only on the scale, but just in mood and emotions that goes through the process and just giving someone an understanding that they should go on.
[00:28:34] I think we probably do a lot of that. I almost feel like it’s what I post about every day, which is just the psychological stuff that goes on the average dieter’s mind. If you have accounts that are speaking to that, not only is this a fitness influencer versus not, you’re usually speaking to someone that’s been in your shoes that is much better equipped to help you out.
[00:28:53] Kim: [00:28:53] Yeah, absolutely. If that psychological piece is totally absent — unless a person is strictly speaking strength training, like, they could be speaking about that — but if they’re speaking nutrition and there’s no psychological element to it at all, that would be a red flag for me, as well. 
[00:29:08] Chad: [00:29:08] Yep. Totally. 
[00:29:11] Kim: [00:29:11] So what do you think it will take to make the most popular fitness advice for women the ones actually giving the best advice? 
[00:29:19] Chad: [00:29:19] I think that what would need to happen is impossible. I think that the process would need to get easy. 
[00:29:28] So the thing is — think about anything that’s very hard, that takes years to really accomplish. It’s like, the right answers are never the most popular. The “quick fixes” always win. And I actually think that we’re better off now than we were three years ago and definitely more better off than we were 10 and 20, so I don’t want to make this sound super negative because more people are being educated. 
[00:29:54] But I think in a lot of cases, a lot of people are finding out that, “Oh shit, this is a lot harder than I think,” and then it’s kind of like, “back to the drawing board, do I really want to do it, or should I adjust my expectations?” 
[00:30:06] But are we ever going to get to a point where the best information is the most popular? I don’t know. But we’re probably at least on a trajectory towards evening it out a lot. And the Internet’s helped with that. There’s more bad information, but a lot more good people have access to putting on their phones and giving out good information.
[00:30:26] Kim: [00:30:26] I think it’s tricky because who doesn’t want easy, right? Everybody wants everything to be easy, right? Easy sells. 
[00:30:33] And so if you can sell somebody on, “you don’t need to go to the gym” and “you don’t need to learn how to lift,” “here, drink my shake or do these 12 easy moves,” is tempting, right? People want that?
[00:30:50] Chad: [00:30:50] Yep. But I think coaches like ourselves should continue to take opportunities — like, you’ve been hard on TikTok — just taking the opportunities when the opportunities are there to get more eyeballs and the more people like us do that, the more the average person has access to people that are actually giving good information.

[00:31:13] We’ve both done this. It’s not a huge scale, but the more of us do it, like, I’m sure I’ve converted a couple of thousand people. Maybe even more than that. You yourself, absolutely the same thing. So, if we continue to do that and more people pass down good information and good examples and stuff to their kids, who knows where it could be in a few years. But I think this is our only way — we educate properly and make people communicate well like what we’re doing right now, teaching people about red flags. The more stuff that gets out there, we can’t do any worse doing that. And I think that’s the only thing we really can do. 
[00:31:57] Kim: [00:31:57] It’s really true. 
[00:31:58] I will tell you the TikTok thing is super interesting to me because there are so many teenagers on there and I will tell you, ladies and gentlemen listening, there are plenty of grownups over there. Don’t be afraid of TikTok. I think it’s super fun. 
[00:32:09] But there are so many teenagers. I’ve gotten this whole population of teenagers who follow me and I’ve specifically posted multiple posts about how to lose weight for your teenager, right? And they’ve gotten hundreds of thousands of views and I’ve got one of the posts I did that has like 2 million views — it’s crazy — speaking directly to these teenagers and I’m really wanting to make a dent in their understanding of how to lift weights and what they need. 
[00:32:41] Chad: [00:32:41] Yeah. I think maybe for you more than for me, but I’ve seen a couple of your posts and I’ve found myself doing this in some cases, like, you’re almost talking to a teenager. You’re taking on like “fitness mom,” basically.
[00:33:03] I’ve done this quite a bit, just like telling people — especially for a 15 year old or something — it’s like, “I know you think you’re going to nail this by 16, but prepare yourself that if you don’t do this really well, you might be 23 and in way worse shape than you are right now,” you know?
[00:33:22] And it’s not because you didn’t care. It was because you actually cared too much the entire time, 
[00:33:28] Kim: [00:33:28] And have a worse relationship with food and feel more confused because — and I’m talking to myself here, Chad — because I wish I could go back in time and tell myself as a 19 year old girl who — I did not need to lose weight — like, I thought I did, but what I could have really used if I wanted to look the way I did with somebody to show me how to lift weights and to actually do it. 
[00:33:48] I would have been where I wanted to be decades ago. 
[00:33:51] Chad: [00:33:51] Yeah. And that’s what I mean, though. TikTok is this opportunity to right now and that probably gives you a tremendous sense of meaning, right?
[00:34:00] Like, “if only I could just push in the right direction at a time before you’ve screwed it all up.” Just before you created more of a problem by not really knowing, by taking on false information and trying diets you probably shouldn’t have done, and creating problems in your head over all of this. 
[00:34:30] It’s huge. And that’s what I mean, the amount of kids you’re accessing right now is huge. You will change a few sixteen-year-olds lives. 
[00:34:38] Kim: [00:34:38] I sure hope so. It was really sad to me — I was really surprised on this last series of posts I had done with teenage fitness. The first thing I had told the girls is, “before I talk to you about diet and exercise, I want to talk to you about something really important, which is ‘losing weight will not solve your problems.’ You will not all of a sudden be happy if you lose weight.”
[00:35:03] And the thing that was shocking to me, dozens and dozens and dozens of girls were like, “yes, I will. It’s the only problem in my life. I will 100% be happy if I can lose this weight.” And it was really eye opening to me. 
[00:35:17] Chad: [00:35:17] Yeah. I’ve had those experiences before where a lot of people come back with — and I usually see it from the 14 to 18-year-old girl camp. I get gutted when I hear that. It’s just like, “Oh God, it’s worse than I thought.” Like, “Wow. This is bad. What do we do??”
[00:35:41] Kim: [00:35:41] Yeah. And for me, I guess the answer to, “what do I do?” Is I just keep talking.
[00:35:48] And I couldn’t reach out to all of them because it would literally take me hours and hours, but I would respond back to some of them and ask them some questions. And some girls got on there, like, “she’s right. I lost the weight. I still have problems.” 
[00:36:01] And I shared with them my own experiences, which is just like, “I lost a lot of weight. I used to be obese. I lost weight. Did I feel healthier? Was I happier? Yes. Did it take away all my problems? No.” 
[00:36:10] Somebody is like, “no one will bully me.” I’m thinking, “are you kidding me?” Like, as a grown woman, people still attempt to bully me online. I had a guy call me fat last year and I was like, “are you freaking kidding me?”
[00:36:23] So it doesn’t take away your problems. People bully out of their own pain and they’ll find something to bully you about it if they want to find something to bully you about. 
[00:36:31] Chad: [00:36:31] Yeah. You should make like the “14-year olds guide to eating right.” But in the words that they actually want to hear, which is like “getting into shape,” because the thing is, as obvious as the problem is with them, what I saw there was all the underlying issues that I talk to 30 to 50 year old women about that is like less obvious, because they’re more aware that it’s not good, but even though they’re aware of it, it’s really deep. Like, “scale went up today, that’s a bad day.” That started at like 14 to 18, I’d say, or maybe even earlier. It’s huge. 
[00:37:18] Kim: [00:37:18] Well, this has been a great chat, Chad. 
[00:37:21] All right, who are the top women you follow? Or the top women you would suggest other women follow for fitness? 
[00:37:27] Chad: [00:37:27] Well, you know, I was going to name you, but obviously everyone here already knows that.
[00:37:41] But a few that come to mind that are probably not unknown to anyone listening probably, but Katie Crewe and Sohee are probably the best. Just in terms of, they’ve got a background on all of it. They’ve been in most of their client’s shoes themself and seen a lot of ends of the industry — personal trainer, nutrition coach, etc. They’ve just got a lot of information and delivers it well. And just watch Katie lift. I mean, that should be the way you’re aiming to lift or at least be on that trajectory. 
[00:38:20] And then Susan Niebergall, my work mom, again, same thing. No bullshit advice and a great example from a “this is how to lift” standpoint. And the thing about Susan is so much of is actually her working out, so there’s no shortage of, “this is actually what it looks like.”
[00:38:40] And I think Susan is so extreme at her age, which, I think she makes everyone feel like it’s totally possible. Even if you get half those results, that’s probably exactly where you want to be. 
[00:38:55] Kim: [00:38:55] Fantastic suggestions. I appreciate you coming on. It’s always fun to talk to you. 
[00:39:01] You’re definitely one of the good guys out there. I appreciate your content. It is always so well-written. I will say, now that the age of the infographic seems to have passed, I miss your infographics. They were good. I was always so impressed how much information you could get into one little picture.
[00:39:18] Chad: [00:39:18] If only I could find a way to deliver stuff that I felt that good about again. I should just repost those. The problem was that I was reposting those on Instagram and they don’t like it. The second time you repost something, they’re like, “ehh,” third time I think I got blocked for like two weeks. 
[00:39:37] Kim: [00:39:37] You’ll have to put some up on TikTok and talk people through them. 
[00:39:45] Chad: [00:39:45] Yeah, I’ve seen you’ve done that few times. Has it gone well?
[00:39:49] Kim: [00:39:49] Yeah, absolutely.
[00:39:51] All right. My dear, this was fantastic. Tell everybody where to find you. 
[00:39:56] Chad: [00:39:56] The biggest place to find me is @chadhargrove1 on Instagram. And from there, I send daily emails, you can join those if you want.  
[00:40:06] Kim: [00:40:06] Will people get kitten updates on the daily email?
[00:40:18] Chad: [00:40:18] Yeah. They get all kinds of life updates. 
[00:40:21] Kim: [00:40:21] And when will the Chad Hargrove podcast be launching? 
[00:40:27] Chad: [00:40:27] You know, it’s probably with the next on the list. And it’s honestly just like one of those things that’s been just like, “I should do it, I should do it, I should do it,” and I just haven’t pulled the trigger. It’s pretty big undertaking.
[00:40:39] Kim: [00:40:39] Yeah, rip that band-aid off.
[00:40:42] Chad: [00:40:42] Yeah, exactly. I think that’ll probably be a 2021 thing on a more serious level. There’s just a lot on the go right now for the next couple of months.
[00:40:52] Kim: [00:40:52] Cool. Well, thanks so much for coming on.
[00:40:54] Chad: [00:40:54] Thank you so much for having me, Kim.
[00:41:00] Kim: [00:41:00] Thanks so much for being here and listening in to the Fitness Simplified podcast today. I hope you found it educational, motivational, inspirational, all the kinds of -ational. 
[00:41:12] If you enjoyed it, if you found value in it, it would mean so much to me if you would go ahead and leave a rating and review on whatever platform you are listening to this on. It really does help to get this podcast to other people.
[00:41:26] Thanks so much.