Things your personal trainer won’t tell you

Let’s face it, a few sessions in the gym won’t be nearly enough to reverse years of physical neglect. Here are some tips to help you progress. Your personal trainer won’t tell you everything. Some things you should be able to figure out on your own.

1. I know when you have been cheating.

If you are making zero progress with your trainer, you are probably not being completely honest about your eating and drinking habits. Full openness will allow your trainer to tailor new diet and lifestyle strategies for you.

2. You won’t look like The Rock after 6 to 12 weeks.

Trying to achieve a chiselled physique like your favorite movie star? Realistically, unless you’re already in good shape, the 5 to 10 years of abuse you put your body through won’t be reversed rapidly. On top of this, dramatic changes in body fat, especially in females, may lead to problematic hormonal issues.

3. You are probably not injured

No matter what your goal is, you will need to train hard, blasting out of your comfort zone. A buildup of lactic acid during training will cause a burning sensation in your muscles: vastly different from an actual injury. Your trainer should be able to help you differentiate between the two so make sure you communicate what you are feeling, and without exaggeration just to steal a rest.

4. You don’t need me

It should be the aim of any good trainer to educate their clients to the point they are able to maintain their health and fitness regimen independently. If you are not learning anything from your trainer, and doing the same old routines, then it may be time to find someone new.

5. My certifications don’t really mean anything.

Be wary of trainers who fill their résumés with long lists of pointless certifications. A significant problem with the industry is that anyone can sit an online course one day and call themselves a trainer the next, despite no experience. Yet they are then able to work with people of all ages and even people with special needs. You wouldn’t hire a lawyer or doctor without a legitimate degree so be careful who you choose. It is often better to use a referral from a friend who has worked with someone genuinely good and experienced.

6. There isn’t a best way

The fitness industry is full of people claiming they know the best or the only way to achieve your goals. Everyone is different so what works best for one person may not work for another. The best way is the way that works for your needs and lifestyle.

7. I know when you’re faking sickness or an injury

Next time we won’t tell you when it’s leg day.

8. Stop wasting time.

Water breaks, bathroom breaks, tying shoelaces, et cetera – you may think you are being clever catching extra breaks but you are just wasting your own time.

9. It’s OK to fire me

Personal or professional, give your trainer the courtesy of a notice that you would like to quit instead of disappearing without a trace.

10. I know what you did last summer

We usually know what you didn’t do last summer and that’s exercise, eat properly and get enough sleep. That’s why you returned unfit, heavier and carrying more body fat.

Bonus: Personal hygiene matters

Personal trainers will make sure they are clean and nice smelling for you, so please return the favor.