Fabulous! You have decided you are ready for change and have found a Personal Trainer (PT) to help you reach your goals. CONGRATULATIONS! It is one of the best investments you can ever make in yourself. For those who have never had a PT, you may be thinking all of us are like Jillian Michaels and screaming for days. Or you may be nervous. Whatever you may be feeling, these tips will help you really love and get the most out of your sessions.
- Your first session is an introduction.
Often trainers want to get a feel for how you move (they will likely have you do different assessments) and where you are at fitness wise. So your first workout might not be an all –out- balls- to-the- wall kind of experience. This is a good thing. It means your PT is going to program for YOU specifically and not give you a cookie cutter approach.Your trainer may even request you chat or have you fill out a survey prior to working together. These are all good signs of a great trainer!
- Communicate, communicate and communicate!
Yes, as trainers, we can pick up on cues like body language and your form during movements, we may know ok, back off a bit. But we may not always know what you are feeling or thinking without you verbalizing. Maybe you had knee surgery years back and kneeling for a lunge hurts. Tell us! We can easily swap movements and modify a workout so it is comfortable yet still effective.Also, tell your trainer your likes and dislikes (which you may not know until you do them). It does not mean s/he will never program what you dislike (I mean, nobody has come to me yet and said to PLEASE program burpees!), but it will help your PT know how to keep you interested and motivated.
Some trainers rely on physically correcting or showing you how to do a movement. For example, your trainer may put his/her hand on your lats to show you what muscles to engage or may move your arm in a tricep extension to correct your form. If it ever makes you uncomfortable (‘cause I get it, some people do not want any physical contact) just let your trainer know.
- Trust the process.
One of the reasons you may be hiring a PT is because you do not know how to program safely and smartly for yourself. Your trainer is going to come up with workouts for you based on how many times a week you train together, what you are doing on the other days, what your goals are and what your level is.Sometimes workouts may look easy on paper when your trainer shows you. And you may snicker and start questioning if you picked the right PT. Then you do the workout and DAMN, are you humbled!Or maybe it was not as crazy hard as you expected. Just know it is part of a process (and working you to the point of feeling like you might vomit is not necessarily a good thing).
A good PT is also going to have check in points with you to see how you are tracking on your goals. They will chat with you about what tweaks or changes that can be made.
Just remember, your trainer wants to make sure you reach your goals smartly and safely. Stick with the journey!
- You get out of it what you put into it.Yes, you are hiring a PT to motivate you. And yes, you are paying them for that. But remember too, energy is everything. If you come in with a defeatist attitude or constant complaining, it makes it exponentially harder for a trainer, no matter how awesome he/she is, to do his/her job if the client is resisting.Go into every session with a, “I can do this!” attitude and you will be blown away with what you do. That’s one of the most beautiful aspects of having a trainer. They dig out of you what you may not even realize you are capable of.
- Treat Personal Training like an investment.What I mean is, if you are going to buy a Cadillac, you are not going to take it off-roading or haphazardly park it where it will get scratched. You are going to shower it with TLC and treat it like the god that it is.Same with hiring a Personal Trainer and showing TLC for your body and mind. You can maximize your investment by treating your body well even when you are not in a PT session. Dial in your nutrition. Get enough sleep. You know, reconsider ordering that 3rd margarita the night before a 6 am session.
Just like #4, you get out of personal training what you put into it.
Having a Personal Trainer is life changing. Taking that step is one of the kindest things you can do for yourself. Work hard, have fun and watch as you grow and evolve!