Are Personal Trainers Worth It?


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Although it may seem like a strange question to ask a personal training studio, we thing it’s a great question. After all, if you’re spending your time and money on something, you want know whether it is worth the value.

This article attempts to break down how personal trainers can help you achieve your goals and whether it’s the right fit for you.

What Is Personal Training?

Wikipedia tells me

A personal trainer is an individual certified to have a varying degree of knowledge of general fitness involved in exercise prescription and instruction.

The job of a trainer is help you, the client, achieve the goals you have set out for them.

Let’s use a 10kg weight loss goal to start.

First your trainer will help identify the smaller goals needed to achieve this large goal.

For example, you may need to lose 0.5kg per week for the next 20 weeks. This will allow you to reach your goal of 10kg weight loss.

Your trainer will then set out a specific training and maybe nutrition plan, to allow you to reach your goal.

Training can be done in many formats, which all constitute as personal training to help you reach the goal of 10kg weight loss.

Your PT will also then offer you different methods of measurement to see if you are progressing onto your goal.

Personal training programs are normally comprised of

  • Workouts
  • Nutrition Programs
  • Extras (Supplementation, life style changes, stress management, hormonal analysis etc)

We will break each section down so you know what you should be getting.

The Workouts

Although to the naked eye, a workout may just seem like a workout, there can be lots of variables that must be taken into account when trainers write a program. For example.

  • Age
  • Weight
  • Height
  • Blood Pressure
  • Training age (how long someone has been training for).
  • Flexibility/Mobility
  • Type of personal training (ie 1 on 1, 2 on 1, group etc).
  • Previous or current injuries.
  • Stress Levels
  • Sleep quality
  • Oxygen update (how well you breathe)

And many more factors go in to determining which program a certain client can do correctly. We have a saying at our gym,

Everything works, but nothing works forever.

This is to show you that a program that you once achieved results with, wont necessarily carry on giving your results over weeks and months. It’s often a new/different stimulus that can kick start the progress again.

From our experiences, we find that training 3 or 4 times per week gives the best results for people looking to drop body fat, build muscle and achieve a more toned look.

The Diet

Depending on the level of expertise of your trainer, the plan may or may not include nutritional advice.

With some personal training packages, nutrition is included, but in others it may cost extra. It is always best to ask before you start on your fitness journey instead of assuming.

The quality of advice will also depend on how educated your trainer is. If looking for someone who offers nutritional programs you’ll probably want to know how many examples of people they have helped transform (transformation photos are great at this) and which qualifications they have.

Some trainers will know the basic level or macronutrients such as protein, carbohydrates and fat. Yet other trainers will go into more advanced biochemistry to make sure your body is efficient at burning body fat before they can work on the details of protein and carbohydrate consumption.

Extras

The more advanced and generally the more expensive your personal trainer is, will dictate not only their level of expertise but also how many ‘extra’ levels they go to, to help you achieve your desired outcome.

For example, as well as providing nutrition and training advice, your trainer may also provide you with supplementation advice. Targeted supplementation will help improve stress levels, increase speed of fat loss and help you workout harder.

As discussed before, if qualified, your trainer may be able to send you for blood tests and food intolerance panels. For example, I would estimate that 1/3 of our clients need additional therapies and interventions to achieve results, because of a poor state of health. Running blood/urine/saliva tests to determine blockers to weight loss is an advanced feature not offered by lots of gyms.

If you have had a difficult time losing weight previously, you may need a plan that takes into account your own body chemistry and works WITH this to create lasting change.

From our experience, the following criteria of people find personal training well worth the money. If you find yourself in agreement, then it might be for you.

— You want guidance from a professional so you don’t have to make all the decisions yourself.

— If you’re used to working out, but need guidance to speed up your results.

— If you’ve never worked out before, but want to skip the learning curve and get results quickly.

— If you have a deadline coming up that you cannot miss (birthday, wedding)

But don’t forget, YOU are the one who is going to need to put in the work. The programs don’t work by osmosis i’m afraid.

Summary

Personal trainers are there to help you achieve your fitness and health goals.

There are 3 main areas in which they can potentially help.

Training

Dietary requirements

Extras (supplements, body fat testing, blood testing)

Remember these 3 questions when asking if you would benefit…

— You want guidance from a professional so you don’t have to make all the decisions yourself.

— If you’re used to working out, but need guidance to speed up your results.

— If you’ve never worked out before, but want to skip the learning curve and get results quickly.

— If you have a deadline coming up that you cannot miss (birthday, wedding)

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