Mental coaching

Arnaud de Meester

Our Mental Coaching section presents the exclusive services of Arnaud de Meester, our partner in mental and physical performance coaching. Arnaud is a high-level athlete specializing in extreme endurance races. His unique philosophy is based on the belief that mental strength is as crucial as physical preparation in achieving any personal or professional goal.

Ælite : Arnaud de Meester, we are delighted to meet you today to discuss your exciting project. Can you tell us more?

Arnaud de Meester : Absolutely. First of all, hello and how are you? These small human gestures are essential to me. Greeting and genuinely caring for others’ well-being are fundamental values in my eyes.

Ælite : (Smiling) This reveals your deeply human nature well. Can you tell us about your service and how it came about?

Arnaud : The challenge I face is based on my observation that success depends 60-70% on mental, more than the 30% attributed to physical. Regardless of physical strength, without a solid mental structure, hygiene, and a minimum of will, it is a tough journey. Laure Ysebrant, an internal medicine specialist, was introduced to me a year ago through a mutual friend, Diane de Brouwer, a nutritionist. She emphasized the importance of physical and especially mental rehabilitation in her patients. I started working with about ten of her patients, with diverse profiles. I took care of their mental well-being and adapted physical exercises to their capabilities. Over quarterly analyses, we have seen significant progress. Armed with these successes, we opened a center in Hamoir, where comprehensive care is offered, including personalized mental support to help individuals regain their vitality.

Ælite : How did the beginning of your collaboration with us at Ælite Fitness go?

Arnaud : LDuring my visit to Ælite Fitness, I had the opportunity to meet Yves and Amaury, the managers, with whom I immediately connected. I was particularly drawn to their concept, which combines refinement and functionality while staying away from a strictly medical approach. I find it offers an ideal environment for holistic well-being. It is in this spirit that I proposed to engage in a global partnership.

At Ælite Fitness, my role clearly differs from that of a traditional physical trainer, which is not my preferred area. I focus more on supporting individuals with specific goals but struggle to achieve them despite their efforts. My approach is centered on mental coaching, where I meet clients once a week and provide regular follow-up throughout their journey. I am available to them for any information, advice, or motivational needs.

My goal is to create an environment conducive to a deeper awareness and understanding of their emotions, sensations, and experiences. By working in this way, I bring my expertise to Ælite Fitness clients, while respecting the role of the existing physical trainers. I am particularly interested in supporting individuals in rehabilitation, who often need additional mental support to complete their care journey. My intervention aims to provide this essential mental structure, whether for athletes or anyone else seeking to overcome personal challenges.

Concrete examples of success in Arnaud de Meester’s mental coaching:

Richard’s case: Crossing the English Channel.

Let’s take the case of Richard, an accomplished athlete in trail running and endurance. He set himself a colossal challenge: to cross the English Channel swimming. Physically, Richard is exceptionally prepared. However, he is aware that the success of this challenge relies not only on his physical strength but also on his mental resilience. In our work together, I focus on strengthening this mental capacity, crucial for overcoming extreme challenges such as a 15-hour swim.

The Book on the Power of the Mind:

This approach highlights the importance of the mind. To share this philosophy, I am currently collaborating with the newspaper L’Équipe to write this book on the power of the mind. Through my lectures and work, I strive to make people understand that in every trial, whether sporting or personal, it is the mind that leads to victory.

Bernard’s Inspiring Story:

It’s about redefining the limits of age… Bernard, aged 70 and having survived two heart surgeries, had resigned himself to the idea that his active life was over. He said, “It’s over, I’m old, it’s normal.” When I met him, I made him understand that this perception was not normal at all. “Coco,” I told him, “you have another decade ahead of you. At 85, I could understand this resignation, but 70 today is not what it was 20 years ago .” We then began a transformation journey. Today, Bernard runs alongside me at 6 km/h in Woluwé Park. His transformation perfectly illustrates that with determination and appropriate support, it is possible to redefine the limits of age and regain vitality that was thought lost.

Françoise’s Muscle Disease:

I am currently working with a 20-year-old woman facing a serious illness resulting in muscle loss. Her case requires rigorous discipline and regular medical follow-up. We have embarked on a journey of reinforcement, not only physical but also mental, to help her overcome her condition.

These examples illustrate the crucial importance of a strong and resilient mindset in conquering life’s challenges, a fundamental principle that I instill in my coaching at Aelite.

Aelite : In conclusion, Arnaud, could you summarize the essence of your method?

Arnaud de Meester : The key to any transformation lies in personal commitment. It is imperative that the individual be fully emotionally and mentally involved in their journey. The heart and mind must be aligned for the body to naturally follow.

My sessions are much more than just physical exercises; they are a dive into human potential. When I choose to work with someone, it is with the aim of achieving tangible and measurable success.

This is not just a training routine but a deep commitment aiming for concrete results. I invest in specific and measurable goals because success, in my view, must be quantified.

My approach is to awaken the will, heart, and mind of individuals. This is how they will achieve their goals. This rigor and methodology are absolutely crucial in my work at Aelite.

Ælite: We are curious to know, how do sessions go at Ælite in Waterloo?

Arnaud: Indeed, I am available at Ælite in Waterloo for personalized appointments. The process begins with a thorough analysis of each person’s goals, motivation, and discipline.

This triptych is essential: goal, motivation, discipline.

This approach is crucial because without discipline, motivation cannot be sustained. My role is not just to guide; it is to engage and inspire. Each session is meticulously prepared in advance. We do not settle for just physical movements; we seek for each person to understand the purpose and mechanism of each exercise, such as planking, for example, which is fundamental for pelvic rotation and back health.

Work is done in zones, focusing on muscle, mobility, and balance, ensuring that understanding and mastery of each movement are achieved. It is essential to fully concentrate during an exercise. If your mind is elsewhere, for example, thinking about picking up your children from school or other daily tasks, the exercise loses its effectiveness.

Even if you move your muscles, without adequate concentration, they do not work optimally. Muscles need to be consciously stimulated to fully benefit from exercise, otherwise it is like mechanically walking or running to your car.

Even if you move your muscles, without adequate concentration, they do not work optimally. Muscles need to be consciously stimulated to fully benefit from exercise, otherwise it is like mechanically walking or running to your car.

Who is Arnaud de Meester:

Adventurer/Ultra Athlete – Speaker – Mental/Physical Coach

  • 10 IronMan races worldwide
  • 2 double IronMan races: Netherlands – Iceland
  • ENDUROMAN ARCH TO ARC, connecting London to Paris by crossing the Channel
  • 150 km RUN – 54 km swim – 300 km bike

Instagram account: arnauddemeester
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