So you’ve decided to put your fitness front and center this year, or at least, you feel coerced into doing so after seeing Target stock it’s entire women’s department with swim suits. It’s only March! Can’t we get through Easter candy season first? So now comes the hard part, actually following through.
For those who are new to the gym-scene, your first days, weeks…even month, can be totally overwhelming. The equipment isn’t familiar, you feel like a lost idiot, and you spend most of your time trying to avoid the congested areas, while sticking to the only two or three machines you know. Fast forward a couple weeks and you’ve all but given up because the emotional stress of going to the gym just isn’t worth it.
If this is you, now may be the time to consider a personal trainer. Not only will they turn the gym into a familiar and comfortable place, they will teach you more about the equipment than you would likely ever learn on your own. And very soon after you will realize that a (huge) majority of gym-goers are actually clueless and use the machines completely wrong. It’s not you, really, it’s them.
But hold on just a minute. Hiring a personal trainer isn’t for the faint of heart. Trainers are merely a stepping stone to help point you in the right direction on your fitness journey. The hard work still needs to come from YOU.
Here are five very important considerations to take into account before getting your Richard Simmons on.
If the thought of a personal trainer has you seeing dollar signs, you’re right. Trainers can be expensive, but they don’t have to be. While the majority of us do not have the budget to allow for 5AM wake-up calls from Gunnar Peterson (who trains the likes of Kim K. and J Lo), you can probably find areas of your life to make some cuts (ahem, repeat Happy Hours every week) and put that money to better use.
Figure out your budget first so you know what type of trainer will fit into your lifestyle and bank account. If the idea of spending (roughly) $100-$200 a month is outrageous and totally not going to happen, you may need to consider building your own training regime. But please note: being your own personal trainer requires incredible discipline and accountability. If getting a trainer is important to you, downsize and cut back in other areas of your life, and make fitness a priority.
You know you want to work out, but where are you going to work out? If you already have a gym that offers personal training, I would strongly suggest scoping out the trainers and seeing if there is one that has a style that fits what you’re looking for. Training at your regular gym definitely has its upsides. You will be trained on the same equipment that you use on a daily basis when working out solo (and not feeling like Cher in Clueless is always a plus). Also a bonus if you have kids and your gym offers needed child care in order for you to get your sweat on.
If you don’t already belong to a gym, it’s time to check them out. Most “big-box” types of gyms offer child care and personal training…a nice complete package that leaves little room for excuses. And while we’re on that topic, if you need some extra motivation, check out The 4 Excuses You Need to Stop Using.
Working out requires some level of passion. You don’t have to love the sounds and smells of the weight room, but you do need to love (or learn to love) the fitness journey. Nothing happens overnight, good things take time, and progress takes dedication. If fitness just so happens to be a fun little idea you got while out walking your dog, I challenge you to join a gym first before jumping into the deep end with a personal trainer. You would be surprised at the number of people who waste hundreds of dollars on un-used training sessions.
This is not to discourage you from achieving your fitness goals, but simply to point out that you must follow-through and show up for your sessions each week and be passionate enough to put forth the effort to make them effective. Do yourself (and your soon-to-be-trainer) a favor and think this through.
Jessie Spano from Saved by the Bell lamented “No time, there’s never any time!” This is probably something you mutter at least once a day to yourself. And now you want to add in another piece to an already complex puzzle. Do have time to workout? Start by NOT asking yourself this question. No one has time. But those that are passionate make time. Fitness needs to be a part of your regular life. As easily as you schedule in work, groceries, errands, Facebook, and Instagram time, you can schedule in fitness. You make time for what is important in life. Fitness is no exception.
How serious are you about making fitness a part of your life? Hiring a personal trainer is definitely taking a step in the right direction and will reap many positive benefits down the road. Aside from a better physique and a healthier body, working out does wonders for your emotional state and your confidence. However, keep in mind that this hobby involves time, passion, and a heavy dose of commitment in order to see positive results. A fit lifestyle is not a sprint to the finish line. It is a marathon and an entire lifestyle change.
The decision to hire a personal trainer is not one that should be taken lightly. Really put some thought into deciding if this is right for you and if you have the drive and dedication to put your money where your muscles are.