Personal Trainer Advice Please

I’ll admit, I wasn’t up for the gym today.  My trainer’s enthusiasm was waning as well so there wasn’t a lot of chit chat while I worked out.  While I’m glad I went today so I could get it over with and feel like I did something good for my health, I’m having some reservations if he’s the right trainer for me.  We’ve had more than four sessions together so I feel like I’m getting to know him.

Can someone who’s familiar with a gym and having a personal trainer give me some advice???  Maybe my expectations are too high?  Too low?

Because correct me if I’m wrong….

I’m paying you to watch me work out and to make sure that the exercises you’re making me do, I’m doing correctly.  So I’m not paying you to zone out and watch the rest of the gym and ignore me.

When you say Do 10 Reps, apparently I’m the only one counting while you’re checking your phone constantly?

And when I get to 10 Reps, you always tell me to do 2 more which I’m ok with, but in my head I’m mad because I DID WHAT YOU TOLD ME and I KNOW you’re not counting!

Today you put me on the treadmill for 10 minutes as a warm up.  Hell, if I knew I was going to warm up that way today, I would have showed up 10 minutes earlier and not had the treadmill during my 30 minute training session.  Am I wrong to feel that way?  Because my walking on the treadmill doesn’t require anything from you.  In fact, you left me for the 10 minutes.  Maybe you needed a break?

I get it that we all have bad days or days when we’ve got stuff on our minds.  But I just feel like he’s marking time while he’s ‘training’ me.  We do the same exercises and half the time I know he’s not watching to see if I am doing them right.  So I have to ask him.  Am I not paying for his attention to detail so I don’t get hurt?

I’m sorry for the rant today, but even though I was enthusiastic about his youth, thinking that he would motivate me, I feel like he’s just bored and I’m feeling that way too.  Maybe we both need a new partner?  He needs a big muscle guy to push and I need someone who will actually tell me what I’m doing right (a little praise motivates me well!) and what I’m doing wrong (so I don’t hurt myself).

He’s a nice kid, but I don’t think he’s very experienced.  You can tell he works out, but that doesn’t always mean he can teach/train.  In fact, he told me one of the first sessions that he was a finance major in college.  Maybe there’s nothing for us to talk about because of our age difference?  Maybe he’s bored with an older lady who’s just starting out?  Maybe we both just had an off day today?

Ok, so what do you think?  Please be kind, but honest.  Thanks.

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28 Responses to Personal Trainer Advice Please

  1. L. Rorschach says:

    That sounds pretty bad. In my experience, the trainer is actively engaging… either counting for you, spotting and/or touching the muscles you’re supposed to be working to bring your focus to them, or commenting on form the entire time. Hell no to checking his phone or looking around the gym!

    Does he work for the gym? If so, I’d tell them your concerns and see what they say. If you hired him independently, I’d find someone else.

    How many times has this happened? If just one day, he might have been having an off-day and will be back to top form at the next appointment.

    Liked by 1 person

    • janieleeds says:

      He’s yet to be much different in the times before and he is employed by the gym so I may give him one more chance and if the next session is similar, I’m going to the supervisor to ask for another trainer. Thanks for the advice. I appreciate it.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Well, this is in my wheelhouse (haha private joke YOU get, right?) as I used to teach aerobics before my gym was sold to 24 hour fitness. Yes, you need someone who MOTIVATES you even on the days when you aren’t feeling it. NOT to be checking the phone, but to count and tell you when to breathe during the reps, and generally making you feel empowered and strong. Staying WITH you and getting you to do that ONE MORE rep when you want to stop. I’ve had some good training and it’s worth finding someone right! I know you can do it!

    Liked by 1 person

    • janieleeds says:

      Thank you for sharing your wheelhouse knowledge! Yes, I got the joke LOL! I want someone to motivate and engage me (and my newly found core)! I do make the effort for that extra rep b/c he’s not counting and I want to say – Hey! Give me credit! I did more than you asked! LOL

      Liked by 1 person

  3. The V Pub says:

    He should be there to count for you, spot for you, push you. You want to be motivated and challenged and he ought to be doing that for you. Also, he should also be applying corrective action if you’re not doing an exercise correctly.

    Liked by 1 person

    • janieleeds says:

      Thanks Rob. That’s what I wanted him to do. In fact, at one point I asked him to put his hand on my back if I wasn’t holding it straight enough. He did do it once but when I did the next round of that same exercise, he didn’t so I’m not sure if I was doing it right. The whole reason I got the trainer was to do all that you wrote! I guess I’ll be asking for a new trainer at my next session. I appreciate your input!

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Janie you need a real man 👨😉

    Liked by 1 person

  5. He is out of line. Age difference is immaterial. The two trainers at my current gym are fully engaged. Neither is over 30 but they give my friend Christine ( a tiny lady of 70) a lot of encouragement, just as they do me (a fairly fit man of 52).
    I firmly believe in workouts with a trainer – they make you work harder than you would training alone but also prevent injury.

    Liked by 1 person

    • janieleeds says:

      Thank you for sharing your experiences with me. I felt like it was wrong, but since I’m new to the trainer arena, I was thinking that maybe I was expecting too much. I think I need to switch trainers.

      Liked by 2 people

  6. I gave up as my trainer had no interest in an over-5o year old with injury that meant exercises needed to be modified, I ended up in a lot of pain that was apparently “good for me” (it really wasn’t). She had no knowledge of anatomy and instead spouted claims that have not been substantiated with evidence. When it came to me either signing up again or choosing not to, she measured me and claimed I had lost 4cm off my waist. When I pointed out that she was measuring my underbust (!!!), she claimed that was my waist (hey, I know I am high waisted but that was just ridiculous!). I have since gone with a sports physiotherapist whose exercises are specifically aimed at not exacerbating my already dodgy back and knee. She has been wonderful. My advice is to go with someone who understands human movement and has a knowledge of anatomy and physiology, my guess is a finance student has neither.

    Liked by 2 people

    • janieleeds says:

      I am so glad you found someone who can work with you in ways that help and not hurt! I agree with your advice to find someone else. I have a friend who has a different trainer at the same gym and we can double up and have the same trainer together (for a session) so I think I’ll reach out and see if I like hers better. 🙂 Thanks for your suggestions and for sharing your experiences! 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  7. Most trainers hired by major gyms are paid in commission. That’s why when you sign up they offer “free” trainner session. This is a hit or miss because that’s how they get paid, I would be more hands on to try and get your business. But others just take a quick course get license and try to teach some exercise but not really engage. Someone who will train you properly will cost you some money but they will dedicated two or three days to you but dedicated the time some have no phone policy. They will build a plan for you depending your budget because they know they can’t be with you always but they will map out your body your strengths your weaknesses and set reasonable goal also meal and nutrition not diet but to actually Change habits. 300$ low balling for maybe a month one or two days and that’s low others up too 1000$ but longer time dedicated work out explanation ect these are trainner you source outside. Not that all gym hired trainners are bad some will definitely help good word of mouth is key. Just like you are here asking about a trainner is sort of not a good look for this man. Someone did say could be an off day. But I think your intial view of him was positive so share your concerns openly and direct if you don’t like how that works you use what you have learned ask when I. Doubt most gym membership will give you free tips!

    Liked by 1 person

    • janieleeds says:

      Thank you so much for your input! I am going to see him again on Thursday and talk with him to see if this can be remedied. I was thinking that perhaps it was an off day but I love how everyone (including you) have given me the insight on trainers etc. I appreciate your help!! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Create Space says:

    Hope you found solutions from all the excellent advice and that your gym time will be much more fulfilling now.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I once was a personal trainer. First, you MUST be able to connect with the trainer. You must feel that they put YOU first. THEY are supposed to do the rep counting, make corrections, keep track of reps and weight. THEY need to understand your goals and define the plan to get you there.

    You should ALWAYS do cardio before weights/nautilus to warm up your muscles. Weight bearing exercises on cold muscled can do much damage. This warm up should be at least 5 minutes. Enough to get your blood flowing and your heart pumping. NEVER stretch a cold muscle. They should be there for your whole warm up. Encouraging your pace, making sure you check your heart rate, making sure YOU are ok!

    Your body requires different exercises for the same muscles so they don’t get accustomed. If you do the same exercise all the time, it will be less efficient.

    You should tell the trainer what motivates you. And if you don’t, they should ask. Some people need to be yelled at and other need to be coddled (and everywhere in between). Training is a VERY personal experience. They should be motivating you so that you want to go…so you want to push harder.

    He is NOT working for you…bottom line. Find a new one. You may go through more until you find that right one. Be persistent and look out for you!

    And age is just a number…

    Let me know if you need more help. Best of luck!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Pingback: I Have A New Trainer! | Authentically 50 ~ Embracing Life's Changes

  11. I am so sorry you’re dealing with this! You need to find a new trainer ASAP because you deserve to have his or her undivided attention through the entire duration fo your session. You should also have a trainer who doesn’t ‘kill time’ by utilizing cardio equipment. I’m a Personal Trainer in Vermont and I LOVE my clients. I’m not sure if this will help, but here’s my process: I offer an hour long (tends to go an extra half-hour) free consultation to anyone. During that time we meet, I show them the studio, talk about my training style, get their goals and their WHY, do a movement assessment (functional movement screen) to understand their body better, and talk about pricing options. If I don’t feel like there’s any connection OR their goals do not match what I can offer (ex: I wouldn’t ever train someone who wanted to become a powerlifter because I know nothing about powerlifting) then I recommend trainers I know who I think would be a a better fit. If I do think there’s a connection, then we start right away and I let my clients know what my programming process is for them. I explain why we’re working on certain things and how they will benefit the goals we’ve set. I do not bring my phone onto the training floor unless I’m going to take photos or videos (with their permission). I bring a timer only. You should keep your expectations high and never settle for a bad personal trainer who isn’t invested in you and your health. It’s expensive, it’s time consuming, and it’s very intimate to let someone critique the way your body moves — you should find someone who understands this and makes sure YOU are the ONLY thing that matters during your session time. I so wish you lived in VT so I could train you and show you how great it can be! Don’t be afraid to shop around and take you business elsewhere. Best of luck! – @trainwithchelsy

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Thanks for sharing this post.
    I am also a certified personal trainer. I motivate, advise them for fitness. I tell them how to do exercise, I also advise them about their diet plan.
    My best advice is early to bed and early to rise.
    Drink Lots of water.


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