I’ll be honest. I didn’t really know all of the benefits of working with a personal trainer until I became one. While some people may think of having a personal trainer as a luxury, it’s actually a great way to maximize your time in the gym and get the most out of what you spend on fitness. And there’s so much more to it than you’d think. Let me explain …
Six reasons to work with a personal trainer
1. A personal trainer will do a full assessment on your body, natural movement patterns, goals, needs, overall health and wellness and design a workout program tailored just for you.
While group fitness classes are excellent for staying in shape, there’s no comparison to having a certified fitness professional giving you individual attention for an hour at a time. Your workout plan will be different from that of anyone else, because it will be designed to account for all of your needs. Maybe you have bad knees or are nursing an injury that would make it hard for you to do certain activities. A personal trainer will take all of that into mind when putting together a layout for your fitness routine. Your program will be just for you, and there’s no better way for it to be.
2. A personal trainer will correct your form to help you optimize your movement.
You may think you know what you’re doing in the gym, but maybe you don’t. After years of being in the fitness industry, I’ve found that people tend to have less body awareness than they know. Instead of risking an injury, or wasting your time doing moves improperly, a personal trainer can help you achieve perfect form, which gives your body the most results quickly. Do you have good mobility in your shoulders and hips? Do you really know what it means to “brace your abs”? Are you able to focus on proper breathing patterns and fully engage your butt and glute muscles? Maybe not, but even for a casual exerciser, these are essential techniques to master.
3. A personal trainer does all the thinking and planning for you, so all you have to do is show up.
A good personal trainer will have a program on hand for you every day you arrive to the gym, as well as offer you recommendations for cardio and classes you should be doing on other days of the week. If you don’t want to put together your own workout ideas, then working with a trainer is a way to take the thought out of it for you. Just show up and do what you’re told. It’s going to be good for you, every single time, and it takes away the guessing game of “what should I do for a workout today”?
4. A personal trainer holds you accountable to your appointments for workouts.
When you invest your money into working with a personal trainer, you’ll likely set appointments weeks out for your sessions. Those sessions will be on both of your calendars and you’re required to be there, or risk losing the sessions. If you struggle with staying consistent in a gym routine, perhaps working with a trainer will give you that added motivation to go several times a week.
5. A personal trainer will ask you hard questions about your lifestyle.
Do you drink too much? Do you sit too much? There are so many habits that we have that are unhealthy for us, and we just choose not to talk about them. But when you work with a personal trainer, they’re probably going to ask you if you got any sleep or remembered to eat breakfast. And they’ll be asking that, because they know so many things play into an overall healthy lifestyle. Would you benefit from an extra little angel sitting on your shoulder devoted to whispering healthy motivation in your ear?
6. A personal trainer will help you reach your goals the fastest and safest way possible.
In order to be certified to be a personal trainer, you have to learn, understand and master a number of health, science and kinesiology principles, which you use to put together plans to help clients. A training session is not just a few exercise moves thrown together to make you sweat. In fact, a real workout program is designed with things you want to do and things you should do, based on your overall fitness and needs. Therefore, if you have a goal in mind, such as running a half marathon or getting in shape for a wedding, a personal trainer can give you a science-backed way to do it, which will take into account safety, but will also maximize your time in the gym. While Google and YouTube can teach you a lot, online research can never replace the advice of a professional and personal hands-on assistance a few times a week, keeping you on track to achieve something. And no goal is too small. I have clients who say they just want to feel better every day, and I have some clients who have goals as specific as one day being able to complete aerial silk acrobatics. True story.
My advice? Give it a shot, just to see what you learn about yourself. Sometimes just six weeks with a trainer can really be a game-changer for your health and wellness.
How to find a personal trainer
If you’re shopping around for new gyms, see if they offer a complimentary assessment and session with a trainer before you join. Many do, and that would be a good time to get a taste for the personal attention of a professional. From there, you can see if there is a personality fit with you and the trainer and be open about what you need from them.
But you don’t have to be a member of a big corporate gym to find a good personal trainer at all. Many small private gyms allow contractor personal trainers to bring in their own clients for workouts. Or sometimes you can find a personal trainer to come to your own home as well. Ask around for referrals and do some online research. Whatever you do, just make sure your trainer has an accredited certification and they’re willing to take time to listen to your needs.
I honestly think that personal training can work for anyone, whether you’re in shape, out of shape, an athlete, totally sedentary or anything in between. Yes, it does cost money to train in a one-on-one setting, but it’s an investment in one of the most important things in the world — your health.
Questions of the day
Have you ever worked with a personal trainer before?
What’s your number one health and fitness goal right now?