When my partner, Mike, gifted me with 10 personal training sessions for Christmas, I was thrilled. I had been exercising somewhat sporadically and trying to lose the baby weight for three years. (In fact, it felt a little ridiculous to call it baby weight when I had a toddler!)
At first I saw the personal trainer as a great opportunity to work on my fitness. Then, the doubts set in. What if the trainer was mean and barked at me like a drill sergeant? What if I couldn’t handle a whole hour of crazy, intense exercise? What if I hated it?
I love new experiences and I try to conquer my fears on a daily basis, but working with a personal trainer really scared me in some deep, dark place, and I made excuses for months about why I hadn’t scheduled the appointment.
Then, I signed up for the awesome Cycling for Libraries unconference and as reality set in, my first thought was OMG, I really have to get in shape now if I’m going to cycle 370 miles in 12 days!
I went to the YMCA in Austin (my gym) and booked the sessions with Travis. He asked what my goals were and I told him that I needed to get in shape to do this crazy bike ride with some amazing librarians. He decided that we were going to work on my legs.
The first session consisted of so many squats that I seriously had trouble walking for 4 days!
Now I go once a week, and the sessions consist mainly of circuits with weights that work my overall body with some cardio like running, boxing, and jumping rope thrown in. His goal is to push me to do more each time, which he does in the nicest, most encouraging way possible, and I’m happy to say it’s working!
The role of a trainer is to push you more than you would push yourself and in that one hour I do as much work as I would do in 3 hours by myself. I love that every week is different and each time I can do at least one thing that I thought I couldn’t do.
I’ve only been to 6 sessions so far, but I find myself amazed that I didn’t start working with a trainer sooner. It is really fun and I just feel so much more fit and full of energy. I’m motivated to exercise a lot more throughout the week, and I look forward to my sessions with him. In a way it has revolutionized my life.
If you’re thinking of trying a personal trainer, I highly recommend it. There are lots of guides online about selecting a personal trainer and this About page has some basic information to help you search for a trainer that is right for you.
I am a big supporter of the YMCA, and I have had great experiences at all three YMCAs I’ve belonged to. So, if you’re looking for a new gym with qualified trainers where your money goes to support great programming for your community, I highly recommend checking out the YMCA.
Written by Karen Holt, Librarian Lifestyle Founder. Karen is the Communication Librarian at The University of Texas at Austin, and she’s working on cycling up to 40 milles per day before July 27.