What Comes First in Finding the Right Personal Trainer? You
You’ve finally made the decision to seek a change in your fitness level. You may be an active person who is looking to get to the next level or compete in an event. Or you may be a sedentary person who has never exercised before or simply took an extended sabbatical from exercise. Either way, the decision to enlist the services of a personal trainer to help you accomplish this is one that you should put a lot of thought into making. As this endeavor is something only you can do for yourself, this is a time to be very specific, and somewhat selfish, when finalizing your choice. Below are four questions to patiently take the time to answer.
What is your goal?
Here you are sitting at point A, but you have decided that you need to go to point B. So, what is point B? That answer is the intitial framework of what you will be looking in your personal trainer. You want to find the right person to get you to point B as quickly, efficiently, and safely as possible. Are you looking to lose 20 lbs. gain muscle mass, lower body fat by 4%, or complete an endurance event? These are just a handful of possible goals. The important thing is to be as specific as possible and keep this in mind as you line up potential candidates for the job.
What are your needs?
Once you have defined your goal, it will be important to think about what you need from your personal trainer. Think about who you are and what you respond to best. Do you need someone who sends motivating messages daily or just need a trainer who only communicates for scheduling purposes? Are you looking for nutritional counseling too? Perhaps you are only able to workout in the morning. These are all criteria that you want to account for before you start the process. To consider a trainer who is not available in the morning or cannot educate you on making proper food choices is not going to help you. Finding certified personal trainers who are also certified in nutritional counseling will provide a better stable of candidates. When you begin to review candidates, you will look for these points in their programs.
What do you like?
This answer may not come to you right away, so simply close your eyes and imagine yourself exercising. Take note of the images that come to mind and the exercises that you are performing. You may simply be running on a treadmill. Maybe you are doing some yoga. What if you played football in high school, therefore you may prefer more power lifting type exercises. Doing something you like will keep you more interested. Finding like-minded personal trainers can instantly form a helpful connection. Fitness professionals who are familiar with what interests you are able to build off that foundation and expand your program from there.
What are your restrictions?
Finally, do you have any restrictions or limitations? This one should be pretty easy and is very important. If you have had any injuries, surgeries, or medical issues that could keep you from certain exercises you must note them from the start. These situations may restrict you from certain exercises or from entire modalities. Issues stemming from previous knee or back injuries, or heart conditions of the utmost importance to you and your trainer. While you may share these with your personal trainer on a health history questionnaire, it is important for you to take these into account when choosing a trainer. Search for trainers who have experience in dealing with clients with similar conditions.
Other than your relationship with a spouse or partner, the relationship you will have with your personal trainer is one of the closest or intimate relationships you can have. Some may argue that it’s your doctor, but you don’t see your doctor every week. Plus, your personal trainer helps move your body, stretches you, corrects your form, knows your physical and emotional strengths and weaknesses. With all of that, you had better choose wisely by putting yourself first to get the right personal trainer.