Personal Training – Am I Weak for Trying It??

I have never used a personal trainer..but I met with my first one this week. I never felt like I needed one. I’ve always been active and I learned a lot about working out starting from when I was in high school. I also did a lot of research about workouts from magazines, books, word of mouth and from past coaches. It’s almost as if I feel weak asking a personal trainer for advise. Ironically, I’ve had serious thought about becoming one because I feel like I could whip some people into shape but decided that this career path wasn’t for me.

Anyway, I was at the gym last week, and in the middle of my ab routine, one of my gym’s personal trainers knelt down beside me to talk to me. At first, I thought he was going to hit on me, but for awhile I still didn’t know.  Nevermind that fact, he began by saying that he was noticing I was doing a lot of ab work, but commented that it might get boring doing the same thing over and over. He offered to give me a free 50min personal training session to learn some new moves that worked my whole body but mainly helped build/stabilize my abs/core. At first I was hesitant, but because he used the word free, I thought I would give him a chance.

I met with him on Wednesday and got a few surprises. I found out that I’m fatter than I thought!! HOLD ON! Don’t get me wrong, I’m actually not fat, I know this. And I’m not trying to brag, but I am very proud of my body because I work hard for it. BUT, he measured my body fat with those pinching caliper things…and I think he said I was at 24%-25% which is at the high-end of the “fitness” level for women.  Now, this is a little different from my BMI which is a calculation using your height and weight (mine is at 19%).  I did some research online and a lot of people were saying that 24hour fitness might over exaggerate my body fat percentage so that I either 1) buy their personal training services or 2) make me feel accomplished when they tell me I already reached my goal in such a short time that I’m so impressed, I will continue their services. After meeting with him in the beginning, we went over goals. I decided I wanted to drop that percentage to about 21% which would put me at the high-end of the “athlete” level. I also would like more definition in my abs…nothing like a 6-pack or anything, cause that looks manly and gross.

He showed me some moves that I have never tried. He was very good at explaining how they’re done, what muscle groups the moves work and why I should incorporate them in my work out routine.  I told him that I didn’t really like the machines since they can be dangerous/boring and he agreed, and made sure to include full body moves. After the session was done, I did actually feel tired and like I had a good, strong work out. I was definitely sore the next morning. We sat down and talked to see if I wanted to continue and do some more sessions. Even though the price is kinda high, I decided to try it – mostly to see if I, or other people like me who already are pretty fit and set in their ways, can benefit from personal training. To get my money’s worth out of this, I made sure to tell him that I only want to learn workouts that will help me improve my over all routine, supplementing my running training program (without him messing with my running schedule/routine), and I wrote down specific goals that I want from these sessions. The personal trainer said he was certified to train athletes, which was appealing, and even said that these sessions could also include helping with my diet (which I think is fine) and he offered to give me routines for the days I don’t meet with him…..he also said I could text him on the off days and he would tell me what to work…..hmm…maybe he was hitting on me…..just kidding!

Anyway, I’m going to give this a chance, learn some new routines and see if this can help my running overall because you definitely need a strong core to be a better runner. My next race is in a little over a month, and since it’s a race I’ve done before, I think it will be a good test to see if these personal training sessions help. I’ll keep you guys posted! Let me know if you have benefitted from personal training in the past or if you would ever try it.