T Nation

Should I Hire a Personal Trainer?


#1

i want to lose fat and i build musle mass hypertrophy and strength . i am beginner should i do personal training for more results ? what are the characteristics of a personal trainer for those goals ?


#2

I would look into finding a gym that has a good coaching staff. Usually a much cheaper option and they are usually more knowledgeable than personal trainers.


#3

Worth hiring one, but check first if he has a specialty or philosophy that fits your style and needs.


#4

Honestly, if you do some research yourself you can do just as well.

Trust me if you do this journey by yourself you will learn so much more.

Besides, you’re choosing between

“should I research, learn and improve” or “pay someone to do it for me”

If you’re not lazy, you should know the answer.
There is an immeasurable amount of free knowledge on the internet.


#5

lol. no.

most high level athletes employ coaches, trainers, and nutritionists. That’s for good reason. If you have very limited goals, and don’t ever intend to have much success, then maybe you’re right. If, however, you have bigger aspirations than looking ok with your shirt off, a trainer can be invaluable. IMO, it can be the best money you spend in the gym if you can find a great coach.

I hear you if you’re talking about the average PT at a commercial gym. Plenty of those people really suck at what they do. I’m talking about QUALITY coaching. Just so we’re clear, and you don’t come back at me with that argument.

There’s also another group of people who would likely benefit from a trainer. Those are the people, probably including the OP, who HAVE read things on the internet, found themselves confused because they can’t figure out what sources of information are reliable and what aren’t, and just need some direction from someone who does it for a living to get them started. I think it’s wrong to say ‘everyone can do it, just don’t be lazy’. Some people, for one reason or another, can do all the reading in the world, and never figure this stuff out. They need a person telling them ‘this is what you need to do’. If the OP is this type of person, hiring a coach now makes a lot more sense than if he were to go it alone and spin his wheels for a year, ya know?


#6

I fully agree mate, no worries. If you want to achieve a high level you certainly don’t get around having to work with a professional.

This is what we’re dealing with though:

Based on that, I believe that you can start doing so without hiring a coach.
Of course, if she really is someone who cannot make any sense on what can be found online, she might as well read recommended books. If that doesn’t work out for her, a coach would become necessary. That path would be pretty apparent to her if it were to be the case though, wouldn’t it?


#7

One thing I don’t see listed above is that a proper trainer can check your form and give guidance. I noticed this when my GF joined crossfit. She has been doing push-ups incorrectly for like 3 months. They didn’t correct her or show her what she’s doing wrong. Sometimes you can join a group of lifters and they can mentor you. Might run into a few douches along the way, but you never know.


#8

how do you know what she was doing was ‘wrong’? I’m genuinely curious. Did she end up injured from them? That’s the only scenario I can really picture where a push up would be done definitively wrong. Unless she’s standing up to do them, or laying on her back, or doing something that is not a push up. lol.


#9

Find a workout buddy and start learning together!


#10

strongly disagree. The blind leading the blind is not a good strategy for learning. Finding a workout buddy can help with motivation, and making yourself show up to the gym to put in the work. But it is NOT a good way to learn how to create a proper lifting program, or to learn the lifts themselves.


#11

I agree that some people just can’t teach themselves, but I have faith in a majority of people to be able to do so.


#12

Man…

I’ve said this before, but I REALLY wish beginners would just stop trying to give advice.

I get the sentiment and the positive attitude you’re trying to bring with the whole ‘just bring a buddy and have fun, you’ll totally figure it out!’ But I’m telling you, it doesn’t work that way in real life. I’ve been observing people in the gym for 15+ years now. One of the most common things I come across is shitty lifters giving each other bad advice, and duplicating the mistakes of their lifting partner.

Learning good lifting patterns should be done EARLY in one’s lifting career. Grooving bad habits is the worst thing a person can do. It leads to imbalances, and potentially injuries that can be very hard to overcome if they are based on repetitive stresses.

This is not advisable. I believe that your faith in people to ‘figure it out’ is very much misplaced. I’ve seen too many counterexamples to believe it.


#13

Man…

I’ve said this before, but I REALLY wish beginners would just stop assuming other people were beginners too.


#14

You are a beginner. I read your log.


#15

You don’t really know anything about me from my log except that I am recovering from a serious accident and I had to start over.


#16

Any good consultant will quickly identify the things you’ve been doing horribly wrong to show you how fast hiring them is paying off.


#17

a foot injury that required multiple surgeries and tears (or worse) in both shoulder labrums.

I have not had surgery on either foot, but I have torn both of my shoulders.

I did not intend to discuss your personal lifting endeavors. I wanted to leave that out. But you are very clearly a beginner, I don’t know why you have a desire to fight that truth. 7 surgeries is quite a few, but let’s get real here. Most NFL players have at least 1 surgery every year of their careers. I heard Mark Shlereth say he had over 30 in his career. And he never reached a point where he was squatting less than 150 lbs for sets. You’re vastly overweight and extraordinarily weak. Injuries can only account for so much. Put your hubris aside, you’ll be better off for it.


#18

I don’t think i am vastly overweight but I have too much fat if that is what you mean. I’ll get back to where I was. I doubt his injuries came from a car hitting him and regardless of what you say, a football hit and a car accident are two very different things. No hubris here, I believe what I am saying is correct. So, good luck to you in whatever advice you want to give. I’ll give my advice as well. They can choose what they want to do.


#19

Good luck finding a good consultant.


#20

You should get shirty with the trainer for duping you/your partner with such see through tactics, not me.