Personal trainer can help with fitness goals

Special to the Herald-Leader,GrantGensheimerDecember 29, 2013 

Grant Gensheimer, Baptist Health

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Whether you have been exercising for a while or you are thinking of starting, you may wonder if you could benefit from hiring a personal trainer. While no one needs a personal trainer to start or continue their exercise program, there are some advantages to hiring one.

If you are new to exercise or feel totally clueless in the gym, a trainer can help you get a running start (no pun intended) on your workout program, while making sure you perform exercises correctly and safely. Learning and performing poor technique can limit your progress and, more importantly, is a recipe for injury. A good trainer can help you avoid this while maximizing your fitness gains.

You may also consider hiring a trainer if you have trouble motivating yourself to get to the gym or if your current workouts are feeling stale. Trainers can provide a great source of external motivation and accountability. Some people just don't have that internal drive to exercise. We all need help in this area from time to time. Even elite athletes have some sort of strength and conditioning coach to motivate and guide them.

If you have don't seem to be improving or you have reached a "plateau" in your training, a trainer might be right for you. This is the point where many people start to feel frustrated and begin to lose motivation about their workouts. A trainer can help you to break through these plateaus.

Whatever your reasons may be, if you are considering hiring a personal trainer here are some quick tips to help you get the most out of it:

 Always check with your doctor before starting any exercise program.

 Have clear and measurable goals in mind.

 Ask what type of certifications/education and experience a trainer has. This may take a little of research on your part.

 Ask yourself what type of personality you want in a personal trainer. Do you want someone who will scream at you during every rep, someone who is there to simply count your reps, or someone who is somewhere in between?

 Have a start and end date in mind beforehand. If things go well you can always hire the trainer for more sessions.

A personal trainer can work with you to set up a program and monitor your progress so that you can eventually take over and manage your own fitness goals.

Grant Gensheimer is an exercise physiologist with Baptist Health HealthwoRx Fitness & Wellness Center at the Mall at Lexington Green.

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