Would you hire a personal trainer?

  • sf_athlete

    Posts: 15

    Sep 15, 2009 11:44 PM GMT
    Times have definitely changed and personal trainers are not seen as such a luxury item any more by a lot of people... but for some the idea of hiring a trainer is way out of their realm of possibility.

    And even more today, there are some amazing advances in technology and research that the top trainers would definitely be able to give an athlete of any type some good info to make their programs stronger and more efficient.

    So, I am always curious to know why people DO or DO NOT hire a trainer.

    Are there no intelligent trainers in your area or facility?
    Do you think you have all the info you need?

    Let me know what you think..
  • fitartistsf

    Posts: 716

    Sep 16, 2009 12:43 AM GMT
    I have...
    Beginning of September, 2008, after 20 years of my yo-yo workouts and hating my plateauing, I hired an ex-competitive bodybuilder, now a trainer/nutritionist. Best decision I have ever made, in regards to my keeping up my fitness regimen. I thought I had been doing everything right, and for the most part I had been, but she, yes, SHE (a female ex-competitive bodybuilder from the 80s and 90s) has re-taught me a lot about how I am lifting. In just over a year, I have seen better and faster gains than in the previous 20 years. It's been slow, but only because I am impatient to get in as good a shape as 99% of the guys on RealJock. And that I have the feelings of running out of time to enjoy being in shape. But after seeing and talking to a few 45-50+ year olds on this site, having that personal trainer is great. Plus, I have 2 goals: my 30th High School reunion is next summer, and as a former wallflower, I want to show all the jocks (including the dozen or so that I was in love with then) that have lost it, that I have prevailed... also the big 5-0 is in 2 and a half years...
    So, as I am learning, it is never too late to take on a personal trainer. Make sure though, that he/she is VERY knowledgable, very professional.
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    Sep 16, 2009 12:54 AM GMT
    I have one now. I've been seeing him for 13 weeks. We did new measurements yesterday and in that time I have lost 11cm from my waist, 6cm from my hips and 2cm from my chest and close to 8kgs in weight.

    Why did I get one in the first place? Coz I was plateauing in my workouts and I wanted a program that was sport specific. While I have PT qualifications, I haven't done anything like that and figured I may as well hire someone who has. I do view it as a luxury but it's one I'm willing to pay for, even if it means going without other things (clothes, going out, etc). I view it as part of a whole lifestyle change, and I'm really glad I did it.
  • DuggerPDX

    Posts: 386

    Sep 16, 2009 1:00 AM GMT
    I have as well.

    I have been working with a trainer for almost 2 1/2 years now, was 2x a week but we have moved it to 3x a week, on top of my other days I workout on my own the total is 5x a week, about 7 hours. My club has an all you can eat plan for personal training so it doesn't cost any more.

    He is a NASM certified trainer, and does competitive weightlifting. For me I needed someone to really kick start my fitness program, I had basically been a desk jockey for 15 years and had added about 60 pounds of fat. Now I'm back down to 207 and feel better now than I ever have. My trainer changes our program frequently, gives me a program to follow on the days I don't work out with him, and he keeps me very motivated to keep pushing my limits. I'm doing things now I never thought I would be able to do. It's been a very positive experience and I wouldn't change it.

    I think it is important to make sure you hook up with the right trainer, I get along with mine, and his focus is making sure I'm doing things with the correct form and that I'm always challenging myself.
  • victor8

    Posts: 237

    Sep 16, 2009 1:02 AM GMT
    I totally believe in using a trainer to achieve optimun results...I have worked with trainers since I first started working out at the age of 30 and weighed 130lbs at 6 ft....its been a long hard road to gain almost 50lbs of pretty good quality muscle...I studied every trainer for awhile in the gym...watching how ther worked with thier clients...how attuned they were to thier form and movement...and have worked with great guys...I've been with my current trainer for 3yrs next month...we do some crazy ship! Weights, plyo, endurance, tabata, bosu, bands....sometimes I feel like I'm training to join the circus...Today I worked with a 2nd trainer who I'm going to work with once a week doing more high rep, and cardio endurance to get rid of this stuborn 1 or 2 lbs...in addition i take the occational pilates class and walk and run the bleachers....I would love to have a nutritionist....but i eat really good, and don't really think thier would be much to change...Good Question!! I'm in SF often and will take note of your gym, and contact you for training...the problen I've encountered in using a new trainer for a one time deal is there usually don't work me hard enough(understanably due to fear of injury)
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    Sep 16, 2009 1:17 AM GMT
    i have had 3 trainers:

    trainer No 1 was a body builder...i was 150kg (planet sized) he halve my body weight befor he he quit as A PT

    trainer no 2 : gay ...didnt want me to surpass him in his fitness and had me do stupid balance stuff for a year.................i fired him, i wanted mass not a stron core (yaht i already had)

    trainer 3 : 4 weeks on holidays....in ireland.............saw i wasnt training my legs, i left ireland with legs that were in agony...AND very muscular....i learned alot from him

    been without a trainer for 2 years and noiw thinking about getting another!.........i have talked to him, but i am going to do with him i never did with all the others..............interview him to see if he and I's objectives are the same or compatible!

    reseaerch your trainers ...see and watch what thier clients become!.....the proof is in the pudding.

    good luck
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    Sep 16, 2009 1:20 AM GMT
    Not to hijack the thread but... Yes I'd hire a trainer..

    I have no idea how to go about doing this though? I definitely don't want the ones hired by my local gym (LA Fitness.)

    They seem to be uninterested and not certified.
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    Sep 16, 2009 1:34 AM GMT
    I had a trainer until recently and got some good results, but not nearly as good as I wanted. I still learned a lot though. Unfortunately the company got kicked out of my gym and won't refund me or the other members for the unused sessions. Ugh.

    I would recommend hiring a trainer though, especially for people just starting out in the gym.
  • fitartistsf

    Posts: 716

    Sep 16, 2009 3:44 AM GMT
    DO NOT hire a trainer in a chain gym, like 24hr Fitness, LA Fitness, etc. Yes, they are certified, but train mostly average, overweight people that just want to follow through with their New Year's resolutions. They are also more like salespersons, at least at the 24hr chains, roping in members then giving them little or no training.

    I suggest hiring a private trainer. Mine I mentioned above has her own private studio, with weights and equipment far superior than in a public gym, and maintained far better as well. Because of where I live, my sessions, about an hour and a half, are very cheap. She also owns a supplement store, with far better quality than say a GNC, or any of the other stores that are similar. I buy all my supp's from her, so she can monitor my progress with them.

    I have no qualms about training with a female. She has almost 30 years experience, far more than a chain gym trainer (or most trainers that have never competed and do training more as a hobby). Plus her own workouts that she did while training to compete. I would put her up against ANY male trainer I have ever seen, heard, watched, read about, etc!!!!!!
    If a female trainer is good at her job, DO NOT be a sexist idiot, they can be just as good, or better than, a male trainer!
    I know that by next summer, my big goal, I will have significantly better photos to add to my profile here on RJ.
  • EricLA

    Posts: 3462

    Sep 16, 2009 4:34 AM GMT
    I feel like I hit a plateau. I'm bad at creating my own workout plans. So, I'm thinking of hiring a trainer for a few sessions to create me a new plan and to work out with him a couple of more times to ensure my form is correct on the new exercises.
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    Sep 16, 2009 4:35 AM GMT
    Most trainers at commercial gyms are trainers on paper. By that I mean, they're certified and nothing more. They're either out of shape themselves, or they lack the ability to apply their knowledge when working with their clients. And I've seen a few trainers use their time with their clients to do their own workouts. Awful. icon_lol.gif

    Would I get one? No. I've been lifting for over 10 years. I think I'm doing fine on my own. I'm willing to put the time/effort into doing my own research. The internet is full of information. And there are lots of fitness related communities/forums out there to pick some brains and ask questions. Some people are too busy for all that, and would rather have a trainer tell them what exercises to do and what foods to eat. Nothing wrong with that. To each his own.

    However, if I was training for a particular sport, I'd hire a trainer that was actually experienced in that particular sport. No point in hiring a trainer with a bodybuilding background, if you're training for a triathlon, right?

    Speaking of experience and background, Craigjd brings up a good point. Talk to your trainer and make sure he/she can help you achieve your goals. If you want to be muscular, then you should be hitting the weights and not pulling on rubber bands or balancing on balls. If your trainer can't deliver, then it's time to find a new one.
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    Sep 16, 2009 12:03 PM GMT
    I have a trainer. After working out for quite sometime based on varios workout routines available in magazines and online, but not seeing much difference, I decided to get one. He is simply amazing. Other than designing a great routine, he is a fun guy who continuously keeps making workouts fun. After starting to train under him I even joined a couple of classes he was taking at my gym.
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    Sep 16, 2009 12:10 PM GMT
    if I had the money...
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 16, 2009 12:14 PM GMT
    Hey, this is a great thread...something I've been contemplating as well! Can those of you who've hired trainers give some additional information:
    -# of sessions per week?
    -or what sort of schedule do you maintain?
    -train at their gym or your's?
    -rough cost per session?

    thanks, I've been considering this as well as I need something to kick start my workouts again...
  • jc_online

    Posts: 487

    Sep 16, 2009 12:32 PM GMT
    I hope to hire a trainer again. I had one for about 6 months and it was the best thing I have done to help my workouts; I learned a lot from a great trainer at Ballys in Virginia Beach. The main roadblock for me is economical. A good trainer is definitely worth the price, it's just a price I can't always afford.
  • 11city

    Posts: 45

    Sep 16, 2009 1:00 PM GMT
    Having a trainer is a GREAT way to get back on track with a fresh workout program and accountability in nutrition (which plays a huge role in your fitness results). If you're in the L.A. area and need a trainer, then I'm your guy! icon_smile.gif
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    Sep 18, 2009 10:50 AM GMT
    I worked with one in chile, but was not super overwhelmed. I´m going to work with a guy I know in the UK for a bit, but I can´t do it every week because of cost (and it kinda gets on my nerves... I don´t need the help discipline wise)
  • Ironman4U

    Posts: 747

    Sep 18, 2009 12:24 PM GMT
    I recently hired a trainer at my gym. I see some guys are saying not to do that, but obviously it depends on the trainer. I got back from 2 months in New Zealand, and my ex- was looking noticeably more ripped and strong then when I left. So I hired the same trainer he did and I've been very happy. I've also hired a coach for Ironman training. Again, a good trainer/coach is worth whatever you pay them!
  • KepaArg

    Posts: 1721

    Sep 18, 2009 6:15 PM GMT
    I would hire a personal trainer, because even though I love working out I am a little ADD when it comes to the weights. Cardio and swimming I can stick to with ease, but training with weights I tend to notice that I don´t do them fully, and I do need someone there to 1) show me how to properly do the exercises and 2) to push me!
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    Sep 18, 2009 6:53 PM GMT
    have thought about it, but tough to find a good one.
  • IdkMyBffJill

    Posts: 148

    Sep 18, 2009 6:55 PM GMT
    I have one now - and have for the past 9 months or so.
    I've had to go through a few to find one that worked for me.

    I have the trainer for 2 main reasons: 1) I have a really hectic schedule and don't want to have to plan out a workout schedule, I like to be able to delegate that and just show up and do whatever he has planned for the day and 2) I wouldn't push myself as much if alone, and would probably convince myself that I was "too tired", or "would go later" etc...and miss days here and there.

    We meet for an hour 3x/wk and he gives me homework for 3 other days of the week. With Sunday off.

    It get's expensive but it's worth it to me -- and in my geographic area it's probably a lot cheaper than in some regions.
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    Oct 16, 2009 8:28 AM GMT
    After taking off the weight I gained back, my gym offered a good deal,so I chose Adam. He is in great shape and makes me work. Since I have a left hip replacement,through him I found out that I am not strong enough and need to strengthen the muscles that were cut,years ago. He is well educated in this area & pushes me to make choices.Plus,he is easy on the eyes...icon_redface.gif
  • josephmovie

    Posts: 533

    Oct 16, 2009 9:11 AM GMT
    I've had a few trainers and from my experience its a real hit and miss affair.

    My advice is:

    - Get someone around your own age, sex and body type
    - Be VERY specific about what you want to achieve. It makes both them and you more accountable.
    - Avoid the trainers at chain gyms. They are more salespeople than anything else, many with very minimal qualifications. Having said that, I found my best trainer at a chain gym, but even he used to slag of the other trainers he worked with.
    - If you are not getting results them give them the boot. I wasted a lot of time with trainers waiting for them to come up with the magic formula that would work for me. They never did.
    - Above all, look for someone who actually likes you as a person, and who is interested in you as well. It will make a big difference if there is a bit of chemistry there.

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    Oct 16, 2009 9:31 AM GMT
    After reaching a plateau in my own workouts, I started working w/a personal trainer. It's been 2 months & the change in routine is just what I needed!

    A personal trainer provides you with a an objective perspective on your progress and can see gains you don't recognize or improvements you need.

    My guy is the best! He's extremely knowledgeable and has got me on a "strip down to build up" program-- completely different from what I thought I wanted/needed and the change has been incredible! Endurance has increased dramatically and he pushes me beyond my expectations--just what I need!

    You need to communicate clearly w/your trainer & let him/her know exactly what you want to achieve & make sure that he/she is blunt about what you really need--you'll be surprised at what they see that you don't.

    I also prefer that mine is straight. Keeps things strictly business. (yeah, yeah, I'll probably get a lot of flak for this, but it's my preference.)

    Only problem is the cost! In Brazil, personal trainers are provided for free by the gym as it's just common sense to prevent members from hurting themselves at the gym.

    I'm lucky in that I teach mine English in exchange for personal training, so it's win-win!
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    Oct 16, 2009 10:12 AM GMT
    Just a tip if you do work out in a chain gym and have to go in that direction - you can learn a lot about someone's knowledge and dedication to craft by watching the trainers interact with their clients. It can help you eliminate a lot of people right off the bat, and from there you ask questions of the prospective trainers to see what they know and what their credentials might be.

    Also, the point made earlier about avoiding trainers who are not in shape themselves is spot on.