Fitness Friday: Personal Trainers – Not Just for Actresses & Celebutantes! | The Sisterhood of the Shrinking Jeans LLC


A couple of months ago, I landed in a fitness rut. I was running, running, running. And the weight? Not budging. Muffin top? It was still there. I knew I was working hard, but nothing was happening. I felt like I was in a hamster wheel.

One night at the gym, I was going whole hog on the elliptical when one of the trainers at the gym approached me and introduced himself, and offered a free training session.

And I thought to myself, why the heck not? It’s free (not really, but oh well), what can it hurt? He penciled me in for a few days later.

The first session, well, the original guy wasn’t available. So I met with another trainer. We sat down, discussed my goals, how much motivation I had, and what kind of support I had at home. We talked about the real key to weight loss, which isn’t JUST cardio – it’s resistance training. And cardio was pretty much all I’d been doing.

Right there, that little nugget?  That I needed to do resistance training to get over my plateau? Yeah, I already knew it. But I needed someone to TELL me that. Again. Restate the obvious.

Then, he made me step on the scale, and took my measurements, then made me grip this horrid little thing that read my BMI. And we set some goals. At this point, I knew I was kind of in for a timeshare type spiel trying to sell me a package.

And I hate that kind of stuff.

But I knew that going in, and also? I knew that having a personal trainer would be a GOOD thing for me. And something worth investing in. So I braced myself, and got ready to bargain.

After some haggling (I swear we did everything but write down a number on a little piece of paper and pass it back and forth across the desk) we came to an agreement I was comfortable with. Two sessions per month. Basically a check in, to refresh my workout, every few weeks.

We started out with a bang. My first session left me hardly able to hobble out of bed the next day. Ow. But good ow, you know? And I started to feel stronger. Plus, I was actually retaining the exercises and information he was giving me during our sessions.

All was well for about a month, then all heck broke loose in my life. Lamest excuse ever, but my phone broke. And his number was in it. I tried in vain to reach him through the front desk at the gym. And I was about to give up and cancel my agreement.

And lo and behold, he called me. Last week.

We’re playing catch up. He’s all gung ho, and kicking my ass. And I’m loving it. I can already feel a difference. A personal trainer is kind of a luxury, yes, but at this point in my life, it’s something I need. I don’t have a lot of extragance in my life…and my health is worth the investment. I figure I’ll spend less at the doctor, so it’ll all even out.

You may be wondering ‘Is a personal trainer right for me?’

Ask yourself these questions:

1) Am I stuck in a fitness rut? A trainer can give you fresh ideas, new exercises you may not have thought of before. Also, they can check your form, to make sure you are maximizing your workout. My trainer has my sessions packed into an intense 30 minutes. After I am punished by him for 30 minutes, I do about 20-30 minutes of cardio. So I’m in and out of the gym in an hour or less.

2) Am I ready to REALLY commit to getting fit? Sometimes investing money into a trainer will force you to go to the gym. But if your head really isn’t in the game, I wouldn’t recommend getting a trainer. If you see him or her a few times a month, well, what are you going to do the rest of the time? If you’re not fully committed to carrying out the workouts they lay out for you on a regular basis, you won’t see results. Thus, a waste of money.

If you decide you want to take the plunge, keep a few things in mind:

1) Choose your personal trainer carefully. Make sure you’re a good personality fit. And that you feel somewhat comfortable in front of them. Because some of the exercises you’re going to be ordered to do are not cute and some bodily functions may come into play. Just saying.

2) Don’t get bullied into more sessions than you want. Within reason, you should be able to dictate how often you want to see your trainer.

3) Once you get started, DO WHAT THEY SAY. When they give you a workout, write it down, and do it, as prescribed. If they say three times a week, do it THREE TIMES PER WEEK. They know what they’re talking about, and you’re paying them for their expertise. So listen.

I’m super excited to be seeing my personal trainer on a regular basis again, and am even more excited to see results. After tonight’s beating, I’m pretty sure I’ll be seeing some soon!

Have you had an experience, good or bad, with a personal trainer? Have you been thinking about enlisting one as you progress on your fitness journey? Tell all in the comments!

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