In my last post, I mentioned how I got into the habit of drinking a glass of water first thing in the morning and having a solid breakfast. Over a period of 3 months, this habit became ingrained. I still did not see visible changes to my physique or significant change in my weight. However, I was now eating less before lunch and the next target was the 4 pm urge to binge on carbs. The food court was just below the office and passing by tempting desserts, cookies and coffee was very difficult.
However, based on my general research, I concluded that I was making good progress by creating a new structure of habits where I had reduced my tea and snacking by half. At this stage, I was running out of ideas to do better so I decided it was time to go to a personal trainer.
I went to various branded Gyms and also individual trainers operating out of their own studios. I was not sure what I was looking for and had no idea what I should be looking for in a trainer or a gym. Would I be able to work out on my own and succeed or do I need a trainer? If I need a trainer, what should I expect from the trainer in order to be sure I will succeed in my goals? By the way, that is what a trainer will ask you first; What are your goals and by when do you want to achieve your goals?
If you are starting out, here are a few things you can consider while formulating your goal. Ask yourself, what do I want to change? Do I want to lose weight? Do I want to improve my strength so that my daily chores are not so difficult? Do I want to look solid? Decide on your goal and stick to it. You can make the most of your personal training sessions if your goals are stable and well defined. You can also make the most of your self directed workouts if your goals are stable and well defined.
Consistency and persistence are the two key qualities when it comes to fitness. This is where a personal trainer comes in very handy to supplement your own will power. The trainer has knowledge of energy systems, exercise combinations and training techniques that can help you achieve your goals faster than if you were by yourself.
Personal trainers are expensive and unless you earn buckets, you cannot afford them ongoing. So look for a trainer who explains the training strategy and the reason behind the exercises and makes you self sufficient by giving you exercise routines that you can do on your own. This way you can train one week with the trainer and the other week on your own until you get self sufficient.
Trainers charge by the hour. So here is the issue; you need to warm up before exercise (I will talk more about this later). In a typical one hour personal training session, 15 to 20 minutes goes into warm up on a tread mill or elliptical. You actually get supervised training only for 35 to 40 minutes though you pay for an hour. If your trainer wont give you routines and make you self sufficient, don’t waste your money with them.
I was with a great trainer for two years and finally had to leave because he never made me independent. He would not give me routines for my vacation. He would not give me details on how much weight I was curling or lifting etc. That made me very dependent on him. That is when I decide to take a personal trainer course with the objective of learning everything about fitness. Though I became a certified personal trainer, I use the knowledge for only myself, family and friends. The basic idea was to become independent of the personal trainer.
My posts will attempt to be simple and easy to follow, however, I am also working on more technical sections of this blog for workouts and to explain the logic behind warm up and stretching etc and how they fit together. So stay tuned and look at my home page to see when I put up links to the exercise and diet section.
More in my next post.