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How to Choose the Right Personal Trainer for You

03/16/2015 11:34 EDT | Updated 08/27/2015 11:59 EDT
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The weather is warming, those initial resolutions haven't gone so well and soon everyone is wearing less clothing. This can create panic and urgency for some people -- often the solution is to get professional help and hire a personal trainer. Although, initially this may have been an expense that you just wouldn't take on, now the idea of forfeiting those new pair of shoes and a few nights out to pay for a trainer isn't so far-fetched. Unfortunately, human nature and today's conveniences can hold us complacent. Hiring a qualified personal trainer can have a great impact on creating momentum with your fitness and lifestyle goals.

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The Benefits:

Motivation - we all need it! Having someone be there to externally motivate you can do wonders for your success. Not to mention, undergoing regular fitness evaluations and goal setting will help in ensuring your are tracking your progression.

Proper training/program planning - Maximize your time and effort. You will be challenged to get outside of your comfort zone.

Accountability - There is power in having an appointment set, someone waiting for you and money already spent on that appointment.

What to consider:

Reputable & convenient location - A gym close by or on the way to or from work can allow for increased consistency. In addition, if your time is very tight or the gym is not your thing, you may want to have a trainer come to you. Minimum requirements are a must when selecting a trainer! You are dealing with your most important attribute -- your health. Some main points to research and consider should involve the trainer's level and area of education, certifications, years of experience, training and personal fitness background. In addition, your trainer selection should be someone who has CPR and first aid as well as valid insurance coverage.

Male/female preference - Some people find that they are motivated by and/or may relate better to the same gender while others may find that the opposite gender works better for them

What will it cost? - Generally $50 -$100/hour (depending on where, who, how many sessions, etc). Longer packages generally give better per session rate. Higher price doesn't always mean better but lower price generally attributes to less education and experience.

Do you need a gym membership? - Not necessarily. There are generally three categories for personal training:

1) Freelance - In-home sessions; various levels of education and experience; price does not always match quality.

2) Commercial Gym - Usually less education requirements; price usually a little lower. You may be required to be member and pay membership fees.

3) Personal Training Studios - Specialized, more experience and education. Geared towards clientele looking for a more comprehensive and customized solution. Prices may be a little higher.

How do you know it'll work for you?

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Ask for a TEST DRIVE. Here's how it should go down:

TEST DRIVE (should include consult and 15-20min session). No pressure.

- Interview the trainer. You are hiring him, not the reverse

- Personality is also a HUGE factor

- References -- don't be afraid to ask for them and call them.

- Promises and expectations -- what promises are being made to you and what are the expectations of you as the client in order to maximize the program success and your results? These should be very clear right from the start.

If you're looking at creating some momentum with your fitness, hiring a personal trainer could be just the solution for you. Be sure to follow these tips and do your research to ensure that your health and fitness goals are maximized.

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