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Online Personal Training And

Health Coaching

the 5 whys

Whether your goal is weight loss or performance-related, it’s important to understand why you’re doing something.


There are times when you don’t really know what the ‘something’ is. It might be a gut feel or, you might just think ‘you need to‘. This exercise is designed to help you ponder and perhaps come up with the real answer.

The 5 whys was originally devised in Japan in the 1950’s at the Toyota plant to help increase the efficiency of the production line and it was established that after asking ‘why’ 5 times, the root cause of the problem or predicament could be established.


Asking questions is important such as, ‘what is your goal?’

And the answer is equally important, ‘to lose weight’.

However, if left there and a programme was designed purely around this single fact, there are many other important aspects of that goal that have not been uncovered including a vitally important one, the real why! or the actual root cause of the problem. Let’s look at an example:

Q. What is your goal?

A. ‘To lose weight’

A good start, but do we have the real answer or the root cause to help solve the problem? No. So we carry on…

Q. Why do you want to lose weight?

A. ‘Because I’ve put on a lot in the last few years’

Do we have the real answer or the root cause? Not yet…

Q. Why have the last few years impacted your weight?

A. ‘I had a stressful time at work’.

Do we have the real answer or the root cause? Not quite…

Q. Why has work been stressful?

A. ‘I was working long hours and eating badly when I get home’.

Do we have the real answer or the root cause? Almost…

Q. Why have you been working long hours?

A. ‘A few people in my team were made redundant and I was doing three peoples work. It was awful, but last month I started a new job and now I want to get back into shape!’


Now armed with this information a road map can be drawn up as to how nutritional guidance can be implemented and why!

Please take your time with this and if you feel your ‘5th why’ is too private and you’d rather not submit it I’d be more than happy to discuss this on the phone.

All correspondence whether in questionnaires, calls, or in-person is always kept in the strictest of confidence.

Your 5 whys