13 June 2019

THE HEALTH DIARIES: Working with a Personal Trainer - FAQS

 
 
Today will mark my 6th session with my personal trainer, and it's definitely been an experience. Since telling people I signed up with a PT, I've had a few questions asked - and I also reached out on my socials to see if anyone had any questions and I had a few back. So for today, I thought I'd do a little FAQ post around my experience.

 
WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO GET A PT?
Probably the most common! For the last year and a bit, I've been trying to get my health in order, sorting out my eating habits and my fitness. Since January 2018, I've lost over 2 stone, but I seemed to stall around a certain weight and I couldn't quite break that barrier. I think I realised that up until that point I'd just done running, but I needed someone to let me know how to get past that, get to my goal and then maintain it. It's something I thought about for a while, and then when we moved gyms a couple months ago I thought it was the perfect time.
 
HOW DID YOU FIND YOUR PT?
I go to a Pure Gym near me, and they have a list of personal trainers that work out of their gym. It was really easy to find the list, get to know their specialities, look at their socials etc and get their contact information.
 
WHY DID YOU CHOOSE YOUR PT?
Again, quite a common one. For me, I knew pretty much straight away I wanted a female personal trainer for a number of reasons. I personally felt more comfortable with that, but also I just felt that because a lot of my health issues are from PCOS, a female would know my body better and know how to work it. Looking through the list of PT's available at my gym there were about 3 women, and I looked at what they all did, their expertise, and also their socials. The other thing I would say is I need someone aspirational - basically who looks like they take their own advice and I can aspire to look like. Ellie, my PT, was that for me - her description and services were definitely more around lifestyle than a lot of others, and she also looks like a Love Island contestant. I met her for a consultation before we started, and we got on really well.
 
ISN'T IT RIDICULOUSLY EXPENSIVE?
Not necessarily. In my old gym it would have been - but I think it depends on what you get for your money. I know some people have had a PT and they pay for pretty much just the session they have with them, and that's it. That for me would be a waste of money because I know it's about more than that. Thankfully Ellie's price doesn't just include the session with her each week, she also gives me a plan for any other sessions I do, she reviews my nutrition, has given other tips around my lifestyle and is always on the other end of the phone. So for me - she's great value for money. But I would recommend doing some research and checking around to make sure you get something full package.
 
HOW OFTEN DO YOU SEE YOUR PT?
Once a week - we have an hour session every Thursday.
 
ARE YOU SEEING RESULTS?
Yes, 100%. It's weird because when I started my goal was purely around weight - and so far thats the one aspect that hasn't changed so much. However, we also did measurements when I first started and we check those every week, and we do bi-weekly photos to see a difference. Weight wise she did warn me that because we'd be building muscle chances are this would be slow to go because muscle weighs more than fat, but measurement wise we're definitely seeing reductions. I am also feeling stronger, fitter and I'm actually enjoying the gym. I feel really weird if for some reason I need to miss a session of working out. It is a full lifestyle change, so we haven't been trying to go hard and fast - it'll be gradual. I think it depends on what you're after - if you are off on holiday in a month and want to look half a stone before then, you'd obviously do different exercises and work harder, but that's not really my goal anymore.
 
DOES YOUR PT YELL AT YOU?
No! Not at all - and to be honest this was something I was a bit worried about. If someone has a go at me or yells at me, I dig my heels in. Thankfully, Ellie isn't like that at all. She's really encouraging, she's supportive and even if I do something wrong, I don't get told off. She just tells me how to do it properly and helps me. Also, we just have a chat during the session as well, which is a good distraction when you feel like you're about to throw up at times.
 
DOES IT HURT?
Yes, of course it does. I don't see the point in going to the gym and working out if you're not going to feel knackered by the end of it. It's a good pain though - it's a pain of I worked my arse off (literally sometimes) and I'm going to see results.
 
DOES IT HELP STAY MOTIVATED?
Oh my god yes - and this was another reason I wanted a PT. I needed to be accountable to someone other than myself. I feel like I let Ellie down if I don't do all my sessions per week, or haven't eaten as well as I should do. Don't get me wrong, she doesn't have a go at me if that's the case, it's more like okay that's fine, how can be do better next time. But yeah, I do feel like it's keeping me motivated to keep going.
 
WHAT TYPE OF STUFF DO YOU DO?
So it's a bit of a mix, the first four weeks were mainly HIIT routines for upper and lower - I'd do a full body work out with her, and then do just upper on my own, then lower on my own (both with 20-30 mins cardio) and then one cardio session which would usually be park run. But we've changed it up recently so I do a full lower body session with her with weights and burning, and then a little cardio finisher, and then the same with upper the next week.
 
WHAT'S THE WORST PART?
Probably hurting for two days after, sometimes it'll be a day, but last Thursday we did the first full lower body session and my arse cheeks were hurting for maybe 3 days after.
 
WHAT'S YOUR TIPS FOR WORKING WITH A PT?
Actually listen to them - definitely. They want you to do well, and they'll help but you also need to put your own work in. If you're not going to put the effort or work in, then it's not going to be worth the money for you. Also, do your research first - try and make sure you get a good fit for you with a PT otherwise it's just going to be a chore.
 
HOW LONG ARE YOU GOING TO USE ONE FOR?
Undecided right now! To begin with it was just going to be up until I got to my holiday in July, but I think I will probably carry on for a few more weeks after to get to a certain goal, and also work out how to sustain it so I don't suddenly go backwards very quickly. But - it will depend on finance as well!
 
Let me know if you guys have any other questions - these were some that were asked, so always happy to answer more! Also go follow my PT on Instagram as she's awesome - find her here.
 
Much love, Lisa May x
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