Pro: A personal trainer can look at your physical condition and write a workout plan that will help you meet your specific physical fitness goals. If, for instance, you have been steadily exercising for years but you have seen very little muscle development, a personal trainer can help you tweak your workout to fit your fitness level and your body type, thereby ensuring that the strength of your biceps (or your triceps or your gluteus maximus or all the muscles in your whole body) are seen by everyone you know. A personal trainer can help you work out through injuries by ensuring a workout that gets your heart rate up but does not exacerbate the damage. A personal trainer can help you lose weight, develop muscle definition, or lower your BMI. Often, a personal trainer can help you do all of this and more.
Con: Personal trainers are often expensive, usually starting at $1/minute. Three 45 minute sessions per week could mean spending $540 per month. If you can commit to working out on your own for the majority of the week, one session per week could be enough, but if you are going to pay a personal trainer, you might as well let them do their work, which means letting them take a lot of your time and a lot of your money. You could look at this point in a different way: when something costs money, that thing becomes more valuable. Then, perhaps the cost of a personal trainer will create more accountability.
Pro: A personal trainer will watch you exercise and will be able to make sure that you are using the correct form. We all like to think that we are using correct form while in reality we just cannot watch ourselves exercise the way someone else can. Incorrect form can lead to, at best, a lack in results, and at worse, some very serious injuries.
Con: Are they certified? Some gyms have created their trainer certifications, which may or may not comply with state and federal trainer certifications. Any trainer should be able to tell you details on their certification and prove that it is current. Finding the answers is simply a matter of a little research on your part, but you should do the research.
Pro: Accountability. The modern lifestyle is truly a busy one and offers unlimited opportunities to work, and unlimited opportunities to indulge in entertainment. These two extreme time-suckers are often mashed into life with little time left to do the things that can actually improve our life, like working out. By hiring a personal trainer, you are hiring someone who will be passionate about your physical wellbeing. You will have appointments with this person; most of us are more likely to keep an appointment with a personal trainer than we are to work out on our own.
Con: Food often takes a large part of the road to meeting your fitness goals. You may know about the food pyramid, and you may even eat organic, but there is much more information available regarding food and calories that can help you enhance your workouts. A personal trainer cannot advise you on nutritional matters unless they are also a certified nutritionist. To ensure you’re getting the most out of your personal trainer, ask to see a nutritionist certification.
Con: If you are capable and willing to commit to working out, you could take advantage of any of the millions of at-home workout available online, making a personal trainer obsolete to your life. YouTube is rampant with free workout videos, and there are also several inexpensive subscription-based workout generators online these days.
Whichever side of the training conundrum you take, find fitness motivation to keep you on track and to live healthily.
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