Getting the Most out of Personal Training Sessions

Getting started with an personal trainer can be wonderfully transformative experience. Whether you’re just beginning your fitness journey, have a specific target you want to hit or just want to ensure your current form is effective, utilizing the services of a professional trainer is a great resource.  Asking your local gym is probably the easiest way to engage the services of a personal trainer and discussing your goals up front is the best way to find the one to help you on your path. 

So let’s say that you have already found a trainer and signed up for a few sessions. While simply showing up to your sessions is a start, the following are some tips for get the most out of the time you have with them:

1. Respect your session

Everyone has a busy life. Everyone. Showing up late for an appointment is a bad policy for everyone. For your training session, you are literally wasting not only time, but money.  You are also communicating to your trainer that you don’t value your fitness goals and telling them that it is not a priority.  Also, you could be pushing in to someone else’s time who needs the session more than you.

What you do during a session also matters. If you choose to play on your phone by checking your text messages or fiddling with social media, you again are wasting time. Also, spending time more time socializing with your trainer than working can hurt you.  There is a definite difference between being friendly and chatty.

If you respect your’s and your trainer’s time, you will be far more likely to get the best out of your trainer; which in turn will help you see your results faster.

2. Be both physically and mentally prepared

Great personal trainers can often push their students outside their comfort level.  Students are often not either physically, or mentally, prepared for the exercises in your session. To arm yourself, you should come prepared with an open mind. Put aside the mental or emotional distractions that occur during your day and be ready to be pushed!

Being physically prepared involves more than just ready to feel the burn. You should definitely get 6-8 hours of sleep the night before a session.  Also, make sure you eat appropriately before your session.  You don’t want to be too bloated, or too weak, to bring your best.

Key takeaway – It’s not simply the workout, that will help you get the fitness goal you are looking to achieve; it’s being physically and mentally prepared that will really make the difference.

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3. Trust your trainer and be honest

Your personal trainer is a professional.  They have experience and training in helping you achieve your goals and deserve your respect.  I you come to them and say that you think you should be doing more lunges, then take the initiative and do more lunges. Just remember, you engaged their professional service because you need professional guidance to help you in achieving your goals. The more you listen and trust your trainer, the faster you should progress. Once again, keep an open mind and follow their instruction to get the most out of your training.  This does mean that you should continue to follow their advice, even when you are training by yourself.

Related to the trust you put in them, you should also be honest with your trainer.  If you are asked about your pre/post workout routine, don’t sugar coat it.  We all have a way of glossing over our bad habits, and your trainer can probably see through the white lies you are telling. They can be utilized for far more than just workout; they can also help uncover and break through bad habits that you weren’t consciously thinking about.  They can help you look holistically on your fitness path; including your diet and the care you take of your body.  Being honest sets the stage for the positive changes you want to make in your life.

4. Learn EVERYTHING you can during your training sessions

The most important purpose of engaging in training sessions is to engage in your personal fitness goals and advance your results.  Once achieving your results, your journey should not come to an end; although your training sessions might.  You should be taking away all of knowledge you gained throughout your sessions. Make sure that before your planned sessions finish to ask lots of questions!  Great trainers are passionate in sharing their craft and should be helpful in either answering, or pointing you in the direction, of the answers on your mind.

Remember, personal training should be temporary.  The goal is to help you accelerate your fitness path and to provide education to empower your fitness decisions. Keep this in mind whether you are thinking about engaging a personal trainer, or if you feel that you are not getting the most out of your sessions. It will pay off in spades.

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