How To Choose The Right Personal Trainer Style For You

January 23, 2017  |  
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Just the term “Personal Trainer” reminds you that you’re going to spend a lot of time with your trainer, and they’re going to get to know you very well—they have to if they’re going to help you see the results you want. Having a personal trainer doesn’t have to be the way it looks on shows like “The Biggest Loser”—they’re not all militant individuals with bulging muscles and lots of camouflage hats. Just like there are plenty of healthy fitness goals one could have, there are plenty of styles of personal trainers. Don’t feel bad if you’re recommended one and think, “I’m really not feeling this person.” You should look forward to your sessions with your trainer. How else can you be expected to go? Here are some different personal trainer styles, and how to determine which is right for you.

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The militant one

Okay, so some personal trainers are militant. This person may push you until you feel like you’re going to throw up, and then she’ll push you a little further. She may call you some rather cruel names when you want to give up. She may offer very little praise or affirmation.

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Militant is for the competitive

Are you super competitive? If someone questions your drive or talent, rather than sulk off and become sad, do you feel energized? Are you often described as “Intense?” Are you driven by other’s approval (or rather, disapproval)? Then the militant trainer may be for you.

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The one that is your best friend

Some trainers are just so witty and personable you think, “Wow. I could seriously be friends with this person.” And you may actually become friends! You might grab lunch with your trainer after sessions, and divulge a lot of personal information like dating stories during sessions.

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Plays-well-with-others is for the best friend

If you work well with others, are often the one coordinating and organizing things and genuinely love incorporating the needs and wants of others into your plan, then you could do well with a trainer who is like your best friend. You will feel motivated to do well in your sessions because you like her, and want to make her happy!

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The one who checks in a lot

If you ask some trainers, they may just send you texts and emails throughout the day, making sure you’re sticking to your workout plans, eating healthy, not drinking too much alcohol, not watching that cooking channel that makes you binge eat cookies…They will be there, even when they aren’t there.

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The unmotivated person needs to be checked on

If you know there is no way you’ll exercise on your own without the fear of being reprimanded, then you need a trainer who checks in on you.

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The one who is just a normal, healthy person

Some personal trainers don’t look like personal trainers. They look like perfectly ordinary people. They don’t make you think, “That person is jacked” or “That person is too thin!” You really wouldn’t have thought anything about their body if you passed them on the street.

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If your goals are moderate, so should be your trainer

If you really just want to maintain a healthy weight and do enough exercise such that your doctor isn’t terrified for your heart health, then get a trainer who lives a similar lifestyle. Maybe you just need one who pushes you to walk a little faster on your power walks. It makes sense to choose a trainer with a body you want; they obviously know how to get it.

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The body-building competitor

The body-building competitor, who dedicates their entire life to perfecting their body and competing in fitness shows, will probably ask you to reach very, very high. She may not realize that you’re a mere mortal and don’t expect ever to be able to lift a car. She may talk to you as if you, too, believe life is all about perfecting the body.

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The body-builder is for the challenge-lover

If you know that, having someone set impossibly high goals for you will force you to reach higher than you ever thought possible, then go with the body-builder. You may end up near as fit as her, yourself. Which is pretty great.

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The one who babies you

Some personal trainers don’t want to make you do anything you don’t want to do. They’ll constantly check in on you, ask how you’re feeling, see if you need a break, and make sure you are comfortable. They will only push you as far as you want to push yourself.

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If it’s all about the health points, get the babier

Maybe you don’t have any specific fitness goals in mind. Maybe you don’t care if this or that muscle looks more toned, or if you lose X amount of weight. Maybe you just want to do something a little new and different, and get the health points for getting a personal trainer. Then the trainer who babies you is right for you.

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The one who is all about a system

Some trainers are all about the system, meaning you do x amount of these exercises, y amount of those, and z minutes of these. You do this, each time, regardless of what you feel like doing. It’s a formula, and it works.

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If exercise is your zone-out time, go for the system

If you go to workout to take your mind off of everything else and achieve a sort of zen-like state, then go for the trainer who insists on her system. You won’t get to do all cardio one day because that’s what you’re feeling, but you will be forced to train your mind to be still when you’re pushing yourself through repetitive exercises.

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The one who will check your nutrition

If you’re ready for it, some personal trainers will act as nutritionists, too. They will develop meal plans for you, and even weigh you. They’ll require you to send them a photo of everything you eat.

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If you’re serious about weight loss, go with the nutritionist

At the end of the day, what you do in your personal training sessions can’t help you if you aren’t eating well at home. If you are serious about losing weight, then you need a trainer who will also check your nutrition.

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