The Sales Pitch
One thing that you will find when you first join a gym is that you will be heavily encouraged to sign up to one of their personal trainers for some one-on-one training sessions.
This is not a cheap option by any means. Indeed it can prove to be very expensive if you sign up for multiple sessions or for multiple months, for example.
However you are far more likely to achieve your own personal goals if you do take up this option because these trainers will really motivate you to succeed and will push you hard, and they will of course have the knowledge to know exactly what exercises and workouts you should be doing every time you meet.
My Own Personal Experience
There was a time when I was very ill for a long time, and as a result of this, I lost a lot of my muscle mass and was nowhere near as fit as I used to be. So when I finally got better, I decided to join a gym and ended up paying for 12 sessions with a personal trainer to help me get back in shape.
My goal was primarily to build more muscle because I looked and felt pretty weak, and with the help of a personal trainer I was looking to get back in the gym and start pushing myself hard, and ultimately get a structured training program drawn up that I could follow once I started training on my own.
So here is a detailed breakdown of my 12 one-on-one hour-long sessions to give you an idea of what you can expect when you pay for some personal training sessions yourself:
Week 1 (sessions 1 and 2)
The very first thing that we did when we met up for the first time was to get a detailed breakdown of my current fitness level and body mass. So I was basically told to stand on this machine, which was then able to tell me my body fat percentage, my overall muscle mass in various areas of my body and lots of other interesting statistics.
Then I was told to warm up on a treadmill for 10 minutes (which continued to be my warm-up routine for every subsequent session), before we really got into the workout.
The first two sessions were all about circuit training, where the aim was to build up my fitness and improve my stamina so that we could do more intense workouts in the following weeks. Therefore we did a range of bodyweight exercises, including pull-ups, press-ups, burpees and squats, as well as some simple machine exercises to work different areas of the body.
I have to admit that these two sessions were really hard, and they left the whole of my body aching for two or three days afterwards, but I felt great after each session because I know that I had been pushed really hard.
Weeks 2-3 (sessions 3-6)
Once the first two sessions were over, it was time to start training each area of the body in turn in order to start building muscle and increasing my overall strength, which was a lot more fun (and a lot more intense). The workouts were as follows:
Session 3 – shoulders
Session 4 – chest and arms
Session 5 – back
Session 6 – legs
This was where I started to learn how to use all of the machines at the gym, and it felt good to be working different areas of my body on different days.
Once again my trainer was on hand to push me hard (often making me do 3 or 4 sets of 15 reps on each machine), and although my muscles were really sore at the end of each session (and for a few days afterwards), it was really enjoyable, and I was already beginning to gain a bit of muscle and feel a lot stronger.
Weeks 4-6 (sessions 7-12)
The next three weeks followed the same pattern, except that I was using heavier resistance on each machine as I started to get stronger. So I was still doing separate workouts for my shoulders, chest and arms, back and legs, but I was being pushed even harder in order to keep progressing.
During this time I continued to get a little bigger and stronger as the weeks progressed, and by now I had become fully accustomed to using all of the machines in the gym. Plus I had also started doing some more intense exercises using heavy dumbbells and barbells, such as bench presses, squats and deadlifts.
At the end of the final session, I felt I was ready to start training on my own and didn’t need to pay for any more sessions with my trainer, particularly as he had drawn up a detailed training plan for each and every workout session. So all I had to do was follow this plan and increase the weight / resistance for each exercise as and when they become too easy.
Overall I would definitely recommend you sign up for some one-on-one personal training sessions in the gym if you are looking to achieve your goals quickly and safely because for me it was definitely money well spent.
It is worth pointing out that your trainer will not only tell you which exercises you need to be doing, but they will also show how to do these exercises safely with correct form, which is absolutely invaluable because it will help you avoid getting injured.
It is also worth mentioning that your own training sessions may not necessarily be the same as mine. My goal was to bulk up and build muscle, but if your goal is to lose weight, for example, your training sessions will look a lot different because you will be spending a lot more time doing cardio exercises on the treadmill and exercise bike, for instance.
Anyway the point is that it is so much easier to achieve your goals when you have a personal trainer on hand to motivate and help you because they know exactly what it will take for you to be successful. So you should bear this in mind if you are worried about the cost of paying for some of these one-on-one training sessions.