I know this probably appears like a shameless plug to convince more people to hire me for training or perhaps to advance the Personal Training profession further, but I promise my intentions are pure. I was asked recently by a member at the facility I work for "what does someone get from having a trainer?". I realized this was an important question for me to answer. And I don't mean some bullshit answer that the common big box gym's sales staff is going to sell you about how if you invest a small fortune into their most knowledgable trainer that somehow all your health and fitness obstacles will suddenly disappear and all your greatest physique dreams suddenly come true. I hate to tell everyone this, but personal trainers aren't fairy godparents, I don't go out of my way to make training "fun, quick, and easy, and I sure as hell don't intend to do anything that might resemble the shenanigians you see or have seen on the biggest loser. I mean really would some one please punch Jillian Michaels in the mouth for me and tell Bob that being a hardass doesn't involve snide remarks and eye rolling, but I digress. Anyway I realized that I needed to define the benefits someone receives from a great trainer or coach. Now before going on I want to remind everyone that these are not absolutes and every trainer or coach brings a different set of skills and experiences to their clients and programming , but I think any coach would agree that these benefits are things every client receives from his or hers service.
3. Program Design
Having a good trainer means you receive a thoroughly designed program that lays out a detailed road map that directs you to your desired goal in the most efficient manner. This is a huge benefit to you because it takes all the responsibility off the you. You no longer need to worry about what your training session is going to consist of every evening or morning nor do you have to figure out which set and rep scheme protocol is more beneficial to you. All that is required is that you show up at the gym ready to work and follow the plan your trainer has given you. You have essentially outsourced the task of planning your own training which allows you more time to focus on things that need attention in your life, such as work, family, and that honey-do list that seems to get longer by the minute. All this adds up to you being more efficient and receiving greater results both inside and outside of the gym.
Trainers force you to be honest and accountable. For most just the knowledge that you have an appointment with someone and that that person is expecting you is enough to overcome an excuse for not making a trip to the gym. But in addition to this a trainer insures that you get every rep of a set with the prescribed weight. In my experience knowing someone is watching your single action makes you tighten up. It forces you to use proper technique, to count every single rep, and to push the weight when appropriate. Having a trainer eliminates any chance that you will show up and just go through the motions. A trainer keeps you honest by asking questions that sometimes you don't wanna answer, such as what have you eaten today, how much water have you consumed in the last three days, and how is that food log doing. Answering to someone other than yourself forces you to evaluate your progress from an objective point of view because that is how your trainer sees it. A trainer is going to allow you to rationalize why you couldn't pack your lunch all week or why you had to go for ice cream on saturday night. Having a trainer forces you to honestly evaluate your progress and current position. Allowing you to make the necessary adjustment and continue on your journey to your goals.
1. The Internet, Discipline, and Life Happens
This one may seem a little out of place when compared to the last two, but give me a few sentences to explain myself. The internet is a wonderful invention it has gotten ride of borders and boundaries placing everyone and everything just one click away. So if your anywhere near competent with a computer you can easily fine a half way decent program that will give you what you are searching for in the way of a plan to get you to your goals making benefit #1 unappealing. And if your already someone who possesses a large amount of self-discipline then you don't require any extra reasons to get to the gym making benefit #2 pointless. But the number one advantage you get from having a trainer is the ability to adapt and change your program while not altering the destination. See I understand that life happens and there isn't much you can do to avoid it. I understand that their are more important things in your life than training. I understand that kids get sick, dogs jump the fence, and work can require more from you than you had expected. This is where a trainer becomes invaluable because good trainers can make changes to the program as need while not changing the agreed upon destination or timeline. This is something that most don't have the ability to do themselves because they lack the knowledge. See your trainer understands his program inside and out. He understands the principles of training and has the knowledge to manipulate them as needed through various modalities and strategies meaning although he has designed your program with a specific route in mind he still possesses the ability to alter the route when obstacles are encountered.
A trainer can be an invaluable resource. I highly recommend considering hiring a trainer or coach. I say this not as a someone who stands to benefit fiscally from your investment, but as someone who has had coaches before and can give testimony to the benefits you can receive from outsourcing your training.