Having a personal trainer is becoming a fashionable thing at the minute. Everywhere I turn, somebody is advertising six pack shortcuts, competition preps, macro calculations and workout plans. I understand that money is an important part of any industry, but the prices for some personal trainers are astronomical, and if money is the name of the game, is your fitness their concern?
The fitness industry is riding a huge wave across the globe with more and more people looking to become advocates of a healthy lifestyle. People are joining the fitness revolution in an attempt to fight off the obesity levels which have steadily increased over the past decade, but has hopefully come to its peak. This steady rise coincided with the age of social media, as people began spending more time in-doors reading computer screens than outdoors enjoying the world.
However, the age of social media could now be a vehicle for health as opposed to a hospital bed.
Facebook, YouTube and Instagram all cater for people who avidly follow fitness. They offer us a platform on which we can connect, share and motivate each other to become better versions of ourselves. All the information shared on these sites is free of charge and needs to be searched to be found. This offers some kind of exclusivity as this is what we want to see, not something posted last week by a Kardashian which keeps gathering ‘likes’. You want to improve your lifestyle and by surrounding yourself with others who share common goals, through social media is the easiest way to do so.
Google is the largest provider of free information, a simple search offers thousands upon thousands of suggestions, but now it is up to you to choose which “protein pancake” recipe you’ll enjoy best! The combinations are endless! But each one is different, as it has different ingredients, for different outcomes, for different people, for different results.
So, what are your goals? A personal trainer will not give them to you, they are yours, and yours only. A personal trainer will help you reach for your goals inside the gym. That’s their job. It’s what they are being paid to do. But outside the gym, we need to be strong. We need to become time keepers for our busy schedules, making sure everything fits. We need to become master chefs and cook up deliciousness when the moment arises, and we need to become fine tooth combs so we can browse the social world gathering hints which will allow us to work smarter, not harder.
Movie stars, for example, are constantly being bombarded with questions about their bodies, as that is what we love to see. Mark Wahlberg had numerous interviews following the release of Pain and Gain as he was in the best shape of his life, ever since his early Marky Mark Calvin Klein shoot. People wanted to know his workout routine, his eating routine, his calories, his protein powder, what time he went to the gym, how long he spent there, who was his gym partner, the colour of his tan, his barber, how he smelled before a workout, how he smelled afterwards. These interviews were interesting reads, but most importantly, offered the reader priceless amounts of free information. Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson similarly had his whole life put under a microscope due to his enormous muscle mass and insane transformation, and he will be under the public gaze once more as he begins shooting a Baywatch remake with Zac Efron.
Wahlberg, as recent as two weeks ago, had another interview with Men’s Fitness magazine to talk about his off-season. This took place during the time he takes away from the big screen, but the interview focused on his diet and workouts, even though, he barely had one because it was his OFF-SEASON. People love this stuff, yet still go straight to personal trainers to find out what they should be doing. Also, he smells like roses 24/7 for anyone wondering.
Everyone has something to offer. If you talk to the right people, you’ll get the right answers.
We have preconceived ideas however that personal trainers “will know exactly what I need to do in order to look like this”, and I think people are too quick to judge. Science shows that we judge people within the first 13 seconds that they enter a room. In this 13 seconds, we look at their hair, their clothes and their skin, and we decide whether we will like them or not. It happens that fast. Which is a scary assumption to make. But just because they have a qualification which renders them a personal trainer, just because they work in a gym environment, just because they have a certificate doesn’t mean they know everything. I am not undermining the values of a personal training degree but with the sheer amount of free information on offer and the never ending list of sources it would be unproductive to take their word as gospel without doing some research of your own, which can be as small as reading a fitness related article or following your favourite instagrammer to researching a whole 12 week step-by-step guide to achieving success.
The internet can explain everything from what a basic bicep curl is? To how to set up and manage your own gym?
So, is your fitness really their concern, or should it be your own?