A Personal Trainer – Do You Really Need One?
A personal trainer. Who really needs one? And why? Well, for one thing, exercise is no longer as simple as running a few laps and lifting some weights. Gym patrons today are met with a puzzling array of machinery, props and other accessories intended to make your workout faster and more productive. Pair that with a near-endless supply of products, nutrients, supplements and other items purported to do wonders for your health, fitness, stamina or productivity and it can be difficult to know what to do or where to start. Celebrities and professional athletes have a cadre of experts assisting them with their fitness goals. This, no doubt, plays a significant role in their success, but what about the average person? Do you even need a personal trainer? Is a personal trainer the key to reaching your goals or just an expensive indulgence?
Why Should You Consider a Personal Trainer?
Having a personal trainer brings with it many benefits. Otherwise, there wouldn’t be so many personal trainers out there! A personal trainer can provide you with custom, effective workouts, monitor your progress, and ensure that you’re reaching your fitness goals. And, possibly equally important, a personal trainer can make sure your don't injure yourself, either from improper form or by simply over-exercising. Good personal trainers also provide consistent, non-judgemental encouragement and advice. They hold you accountable for staying on track and working out, and they bring you fresh ideas for your fitness routine.
But do personal trainers actually fulfill the promises they offer? Does training with a personal trainer really work? When it comes to the good ones, the answer is a resounding yes! In fact, according to a study published in the Journal of Sports Science and Medicine, working out with a personal trainer increases your fitness goal success rate by over 30 percent!
First, Analyze Your Fitness Goals
A personal trainer can be a great boon, but it’s not a route for everyone. Not everyone’s lifestyle or wallet can accommodate frequent in-person sessions with a personal trainer, especially since such sessions can quickly add up to a serious expense.
Before jumping on the personal trainer bandwagon, consider what your fitness goals are and what your personal schedule is like. Is it realistic that you’ll be able to make it to multiple training sessions that are at a set time each week? Or does your schedule demand a more flexible workout routine? Then, think about your goals. Are you trying to lose weight? A personal trainer can help, but they can’t lose weight for you. A BIG part of shedding off those unwanted pounds, after all, will be up to you and what you eat.
Trying to build up endurance? You may be able to do this on your own by timing runs and other cardio exercise, pushing yourself further each time and diligently monitoring your progress. After all, there’s little point in paying a trainer to watch you run on an elliptical for an hour.
That’s not to say that personal trainers can’t be a great asset. If you’re trying to build strength, fix a certain problem with your training, want to bulk up a certain amount, or are not sure where to start with fitness in general, a personal trainer is a great way to get started. Whatever your needs and wants, try to come up with a specific end-goal or set of goals. This is the marker you will use to check whether a personal trainer is worth it to you.
Consider a Consultation or Alternate Training Plan
While regular sessions with a personal trainer can get costly, a handful of sessions can be a great investment — especially if you’re new to fitness. Book a few appointments with a personal trainer to get a custom workout plan, diet, eating and exercise tips and more. A trainer can recommend what exercises are best for you and will tell you how much and how often you need to exercise based on your personal body stats and body goals. For a relatively small buy-in, you can get valuable information that might just give you that motivation you’re looking for.
Another thing to consider is group training. Group training takes place in small groups of 5 to 10 participants and gives you most of the benefits of a personal trainer without the high cost. Some people find that the company and camaraderie of the group helps keep them accountable and also makes working out more fun. Explore what options your local gym offers.
What's the Best Way to Know? Try it Out!
Most personal trainers will offer a free consultation or even a free training session. Go and check one out! You’ll see firsthand what a personal trainer has to offer and you can get answers to any and all questions you might have.
Before you commit to paying anything, make sure that your trainer checks out and meets the following requirements –
- Has certification from the National Academy of Sports Medicine, ISSA, ACE, NAFC or the National Strength and Conditioning Association.
- Has never had personal injury lawsuits brought against them. Ask the gym for verification of this.
- Is trained and certified in First Aid and CPR (just to be safe).
If you're considering engaging a personal trainer to help evaluate your fitness and help you reach your goals, stop by or call Tim at RX Fitness Equipment in Thousand Oaks. We're here to help. In addition to carrying equipment and accessories of all kinds to fit every goal and budget to make your fitness routine more productive, we work with hundreds of fitness professionals; personal trainers and coaches, nutritionists, physical therapists and doctors. We're happy to help you find one that's exactly the right fit for you. And don't forget, you can always find Tim's best-selling book, Fitness Equipment – A Shopper's Guide, on Amazon and other online book sellers as well as in our store.
Contact Tim Adams for a free consultation or stop by the store and take something for a test run. We’re here to help.