Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist - I decided to take this exam a couple days prior to actually taking it. This cert is one which many people revere as having one of the more demanding tests in the fitness world. At around 5 hours of testing time, indeed, it’s no joke, and understandable why many practitioners insist on suffixing themselves CSCS thereafter.
The personal growth and education journey are an interesting one. When I first picked up an exercise science textbook over 30 years ago, I didn’t even realize this was a profession. When I started professionally in 2004, I felt I had a lot to overcome to gain “respect” in the community; so I added 5-10 workshops and certs to the roster every year, ACE, NASM, PES, CES, ISCA kickbox, PNF cert, corrective exercise and anatomy specialties, Active Isolated Mattes Method, Precision Nutrition, and many MANY more. In 2012 I memorized the entirety of the US medical lecture series. That was a big turning point for my approach, and changed the way I view credentialing forever.
Every week that goes by I want to make sure I don't know the same things, I don't think the same things, I don't believe the same things I did in the prior week. It generates new weeks. It unfolds a new life. It enables me to solve new problems. It creates new ideas. This opens up new opportunities of all kinds, including prevention in the orthopedic arena, health troubleshooting, behavioral change strategies, and more.
I worry about professionals who have the same approach or believe the same thing year over year. In the fitness industry, there are "experts" who use the same templates for workouts and nutrition for clients or programming forever. They never explore. They aren't searchers. They aren't curious. They shun learning. But I don't think that this is in the fitness industry alone. I see it in people's relationships, careers, investments, learning (or lack thereof), politics.
Just. The. Same. Old. Crap. Every. Single. Day. For. Decades.
No growth = no joy. Just because you found something effective doesn't mean other modalities aren't also effective, more effective, or more accessible to other people.
The first month that anyone works as a legitimate certified trainer in a genuine professional environment, he will discover solid strategies, robust programming tools, and more. We all find tactics which work well. Some of us aren't satisfied with one or two or even a dozen. Some of us are searchers, because the beauty of the universe isn't just vast; it's endless. The fact of the matter is that even the same concept has to be communicated in different ways to different people at different junctures in their lives.
Same tactics equals same successes. That's great and all. But it also means the same failures. It means the same amount of missed connections, missed growth opportunities, missed joy. Next week that could be different. But only if you know or believe something different.