The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly of the Fitness Industry


In this article, we’re wrapping up our 4-part blog series about the 4 keys to a successful health and fitness journey (your Odyssey).

Before you jump in, if you haven’t yet, please first go ahead and check out part 1: “From Comfort Zone to Growth” to learn how true growth works, how to handle friction, and how to embrace the challenges you’ll be met with along this journey.

Then, make sure to read part 2: “The Road to Self-Mastery” to learn how to find out what works for YOU, why obstacles are an essential part of you becoming better, and how to cultivate a growth mindset.

Third, read and learn how to practice moderation in all things, why doing hard things is a KEY part of your Odyssey, and how to take action while keeping your emotions in check in part 3 “How to Cultivate Self-Discipline”.

Finally, let’s dive into the 4th key, Justice, which ties it all together and hopefully inspires you to be a part of our collective mission.

Table of Contents

Ugly Truths About the Fitness Industry

Let me start by saying that I love health and fitness. It’s something I’m involved in all day every day. It’s why I started Odyssey Coaching Systems, and it’s why I dedicate hours upon hours every single week to creating free educational content for you. 

Nutrition and training completely changed my life for the better, in uncountable ways. I know what it’s like to be overweight, out of shape, stuck with unhealthy habits, and not knowing what to do about it.

Having gone through my own transformation, I also know how amazing it is to finally connect the dots, reach your goals (for me that was losing 30kg), and fall in love with the process of continuous improvement.

That’s why I’m so passionate about sharing what I learn with you. To help YOU too, reach your health and fitness goals and be successful long term.

Throughout this 4 article series, I’ve tried to paint the most complete, unbiased, and honest picture of what your Odyssey will look like.

I’ve not kept anything secret, and I never will. All of the systems, tools, and tactics we use with our online nutrition coaching clients can be found at no cost to you via the blog, the Talking Nutrition podcast, our YouTube channel, and the free resource section.

Plus, if you’re looking to take it one step further, we even offer free consultations for you to share your goals and discuss your next steps.

Snake Oil Salesmen in the Fitness Industry

The dark side of this industry though, tends to do the exact opposite.

Your natural human weak spot for quick and effortless results gets taken advantage of, you’re fed misinformation through mainstream and social media, and modern-day snake oil salesmen try to sell you all kinds of powders, pills, and potions that’ll supposedly do all the work for you.

Let’s look at some numbers.

The worldwide nutritional supplements market size was valued at USD 381.79 billion in 2023 and is expected to surpass USD 624 billion by 2023.

You’d think that with all that money being made, we’re all killing it. Everyone’s walking around at a healthy body fat level, holds a good amount of muscle mass, is fit, never sick, and is able to eat healthily and flexibly without stress, guilt, and health issues.

However, that’s not the case.

Obesity rates began to rise worldwide back in the 70s, and have only continued to rise since then. By 2030, 1 in 2 American adults is expected to be obese (click for study). 

That means that even though so much money is being made off of those who deserve help, even with all the resources and information we have available these days, the global obesity epidemic does not seem to get any better.

Something doesn’t add up here.
Something needs to change.
And we need to work towards that change together.

Social Media – The Wild West of Nutrition and Fitness

Ever tried to learn more about nutrition and fitness just to end up feeling more confused?

Back in 2012, before social media blew up, I remember Googling “how to lose weight”, only to end up watching documentaries, browsing forums, and reading news articles and blogs packed with conflicting information and (often purposely cherry-picked) misinformation.

I’d try some of the recommended tactics and diets like a juice cleanse, fat burners, shakes, MyFitnessPal’s insanely low-calorie targets, low carb, fasting, and more…

I did my best, but it was impossible to stick to those restrictive approaches.

Fast forward to a decade later, and all we have these days is MORE exposure to misinformation, charlatans, and snake oil salesmen.

This makes navigating nutrition and fitness very difficult.

One thing I don’t like either though, is people trying to grow their audience by attacking others. No matter how (sometimes purposely) wrong and misleading someone may be, it’s not helpful.

I believe there’s already enough fear-mongering around nutrition, and that more of our resources and energy need to move towards finding a solution rather than just talking about “this and that is bad for you”.

That’s why it’s amazing to see the evidence-based space – which combines the latest research with in-the-trenches experience with real clients – grow rapidly.

Although you still need to stay critical, there’s more and more of the good ones these days!

(In the Self-Mastery article, I listed some of my favorite accounts to follow. Feel free to check it out and do yourself a favor by following those people!)

The Common Good

As a society, we still have a lot to learn about something we do every single day, multiple times a day, for the entirety of our lives – eating. Many people don’t yet know how to eat both healthily, flexibly, and sustainably, and that’s a problem.

This is why my passion for helping people improve their health and fitness, and sharing our effective and sustainable approach with people like you, is not just a passion but also my DUTY.

I’ve seen it work for hundreds of people, who not only improved their health and fitness but also completely changed their identity and mindset around nutrition, all for the better.

Not just that, they then went on to inspire friends and family members around them to take action for their goals too.

That’s why we’re wrapping up this article series on Odyssey Coaching Systems’ core values with the 4th Stoic virtue: Justice.

Simply by being here, you are officially part of our collective mission to make a positive impact in this world and serve the common good.

We promise to continue to provide you with evidence-based information and tactics that WILL help you be successful long term.

As long as you promise us (and yourself) to cultivate and maintain the courage needed to take consistent action for your goals, adopt a growth mindsetpractice moderation in all things, and do your part in paying it forward.

"Maybe one day we’ll be able to look at a new graph of worldwide obesity rates and that line go down again. However, to get there, we have a lot of work to do. And that work starts with YOU."

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