One of the most common questions I get from potential new clients: “How often do I need to meet with a Personal Trainer to get the results I want?”
Short answer: It depends.
The long answer requires me asking you a bunch of questions, and I’ll have a much better idea once I do an assessment so that I know exactly where you’re starting from. Typically, clients who train with me more frequently achieve their goals faster for a variety of reasons: accountability, I know how hard to push them without causing injury, I know which exercises they need to do to and how to do them correctly, and I can assess each and every exercise as it happens to fine tune their workouts on the spot. But let me give you some things to think about:
Do you know exactly what it is that you’d like a Personal Trainer help you achieve? Clearly you want to make some physical changes to improve your health and fitness, but the majority of new clients who contact me really don’t have a clear idea of what they want. I can’t help you get where you want to go if you don’t even know exactly what that is yourself. So when you say “I want to tone” or “I want to be healthy” – what exactly does that mean to you? You’ll never know if you’ve achieved your goals if you don’t know what results you are striving for. On the other hand, if you tell me that you’d like to lose 50 pounds or be able to run a marathon next spring, that gives me something to start with. We will get very detailed with goal setting when we start working together!
Do you know why you want to achieve this goal? Knowing why is key to staying motivated and helping you do the most effective things to get you where you want to go.
Are you new to exercise? A beginner may need more face time with a Personal Trainer initially simply to make sure that you are learning the correct exercise technique. Once you’re more comfortable doing the exercises on your own, you may just need to see me for a tune-up once in a while so that you keep making progress. How frequently depends on your specific situation, but typically at least once a month if you expect to keep making progress. You can also sign up for online coaching where you get your customized program delivered via digital methods (accessible from a mobile device or computer) that shows your workouts in detail; exercise videos, pictures, descriptions, and instructions on how many sets, reps, intensity, etc.
Are you motivated enough to actually do the homework that I’ve given you on your own? You can’t buy motivation – it has to come from within if you expect a successful outcome. That means that you really want to do this for you, not because your spouse/parents/children/co-workers/neighbors/doctor/ siblings/friends, etc think you should want to. And excuses – any excuses – simply won’t cut it. You’re going to have to do the work if you expect to get the results that you want. There are no short cuts. So, if you easily get side-tracked by kids, work, pets, friends meeting for happy hour, etc, you may need to see me more often if you want to keep on track.
A word of caution that can also affect your results: make sure that the trainer you are working with has the credentials and experience to be working with you, especially if you have any orthopedic or medical issues. The fitness industry in the Twin Cities market has become saturated with franchise gyms that are dirt cheap and staffed by unqualified people who have no degree, no experience, and no credible certification in the field. This has become more problematic in recent years since many folks who’ve lost jobs in completely unrelated professions have started working as personal trainers even though they have no background in health or fitness what-so-ever. How do I know this? Because I was actually contacted by one of them asking me to stop over for an afternoon to teach them how to train other people. Yikes! Needless to say, I turned that gig down. Many people go to them because of their low rates, but hiring a low rent trainer can actually be more costly for you in the long run.
Unless you stop trying, there is no failure, only feedback. You receive feedback every time you look in the mirror, step on a scale, play your favorite game or sport, or go to your Doctor for a physical. If you don’t like the results of your feedback, you need to make some changes: eating habits, exercise habits, stress management, etc. As a professional Personal Trainer and Health Coach, I can help you set appropriate goals and get you started on the right path to achieve the results you’re after. But I can’t make the changes for you – only you can do that.
If you’re motivated enough to do the work, we can find a solution to fit your budget. Call me now at 612-804-9496 if you’d like to know how I can help you get the results you want!