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How to get the most out of your PT session

Ashleigh Went

I’m a huge fan of personal training. 

In fact, I think that enlisting the help of a professional is one of the best things that you can do you for your fitness – especially if you’re not really sure where to start.

Hiring a personal trainer is a significant investment in your time and money. Therefore, you certainly want to get the most out of every session. Here are my tips for squeezing the most bang for buck out of your personal training:

Get your mind in the game

One of the reasons I love personal trainers is because they take some of the guesswork out of training. Rather than deciding which exercise you’re going to do, in which order, how many reps, etc., you simply follow their instructions.

However, in my own experience sometimes I almost go on ‘autopilot’ mode and forget to actually focus on what I’m doing with my body – particularly if I’m doing an exercise for a certain amount of time or just feeling fatigued.

Rather than just mindlessly pumping out reps, I now try to really focus on what I’m doing: engaging my core, concentrating on the muscles that I’m using and obviously, following the trainers cues.

If you’re feeling distracted, take some time before your session to warm up and get into the right mindset prior to beginning your session – it also means you can spend the whole session working out rather than having to warm up during time that you’re paying for.

Watch the chit chat

Having a rapport with your trainer is very important. After all, you’re spending a lot of time with them and it’s essential that you feel safe and comfortable. However, it’s possible to get a bit carried away with chatting, at the expense of your workout. I myself have done this because I’ve either really enjoyed the banter with my trainer, or because I’m feeling lazy/unmotivated and I would rather chat than work out (sad, but true).

Remember that you’re there to work on your fitness and while a little chat between sets or during your warm up/cool down is more than ok, don’t put your trainer in the position of having to tell you to shoosh and get back to work.

Keep up the good work

 You work hard in your personal training sessions… so don’t slack of in between them! One “good” hour a week with your PT won’t override 167 hours of sedentary snacking. If you can only fit one or a few hours of exercise into your week because of personal circumstances, that’s fine – just make sure your expectations reflect that. Better yet, make sure to communicate what your goals and expectations are before your start training together, so that you both are on the same page.

Personal trainers can help you reach your fitness goals, but unfortunately they’re not magicians (thought if you know of one, let me know). You need to put in a bit of work too.

Don’t fall in love with your trainer

Sounds funny, but rings true. The very nature of personal training involves taking an interest in your life, listening to you and often touching you. Don’t confuse this for love! Remember that this is their job and they’re there because you’re paying them. It doesn’t mean that they aren’t invested in your health and wellbeing – it just means that it’s part of their profession.

Trust me when I say that having a crush on your trainer can take your session from time spent improving your fitness to time spent flirting and worrying about your appearance.

I’m well aware of love stories that start with a trainer and their client (my boyfriend was once my coach!) but these tend to be the exception rather than the rule. Respect their professionalism and keep the focus on your fitness.

Remember that you’re spending your time and money on this – treat it like a choice, not a chore. If you put the work in and approach your training sessions with enthusiasm and focus, your mind and body will thank you for it.

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Ashleigh Went

Ashleigh Went has a passion for all things health and wellness. She’s currently furthering her studies in nutrition, but also has a Bachelor of Communication and is a qualified fitness instructor with over five years experience working in a gym. Among other things, she’s a lover of great food, coffee and fashion. She can usually be found shopping for activewear, in the gym or updating her Instagram @wentworthavenue More about the Author

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