What is the difference between having a personal trainer versus an online coach?! Do I even need either? What is the benefit? When I first started out lifting, I was around 14 years old and my dad was teaching what he knew. I slowly started to lift on my own, but was sporadic about getting to the gym. I loved fitness and health - I just hadn't fully committed myself (which being 16/17 years old at the time, I was a cross country runner, so that took priority). When I started college, I knew I needed to lose weight. I had gained 40 lbs right after high school due to disordered eating and utilizing food to cope. I would lose 10-20 lbs, but then put it right back on. I had not healed mentally from my parents divorce, as well as, I still struggled heavily with body image issues and my eating disorder. January 2020, I made the decision to get right with myself and I did just that (reference my very first blog post!!). January 2021, I was down 20 lbs and decided to fully commit myself to my passion - the fitness industry - I began training for my first body building show (tbd!!!!). I began working with both a personal trainer and an online coach. I knew that I had a lot to learn - I always want to keep learning because that is how you grow, but I also knew an extra set of eyes would help me truly reach my goals. So let's get into it.... Which is better? That is truly dependent on what YOU need and what YOUR goals are. A personal trainer can see things that you don't and help you push past that mental block - your brain tells you to stop sooner than what you are actually capable of. They can also design some pretty fun workouts, as well as, push you to try out new things. A personal trainer would also be an excellent option for newbies getting into the gym! They can teach you how to build workouts, correct your form, and show you all kinds of opportunities within the gym! For me, I learned so much in the gym - it was definitely worth the investment. I tried many new workouts and was critiqued on why form - which is what I wanted and needed. Form is everything! Even though I had been in and out of the gym my whole life, I still had many areas of improvement that my trainer recognized and worked with me to develop better skills. An online coach is more bang for your buck, but there is no in-person component. The in-person component is not necessary, but again, it depends on what you want and need. I chose to work with one because I wanted the structure and the commitment to myself. In addition, I need someone to look over my week and tell me what I could do differently or tell me I aced it! I have loved working with my coach. It has been such a game changer. They help you with your nutrition and your workout programming. The extra set of eyes is amazing to have. Coaches can really visualize and know where you will be well before you do - it is truly a gift they have! You can't go wrong either way! By signing on with either, it creates accountability and it will help you achieve your goals much quicker by helping you achieve a healthy lifestyle in a sustainable way. It is all about life style changes, not quick fixes! I would recommend both 100%. Invest in yourself and your health. How do I find...? Personal Trainer: You have loads of options here. You can call around to different gyms and see what they offer for personal training. You can also ask your friends or look up personal trainers on google or social media.
Most will offer a free first session - take advantage of this. You are going to be with this person a lot, you want to make sure you all work well together!
Online Coach: This one can be a little trickier, but there are still ways to find a great coach! You can ask around at the gym or look through social media! You can also google search "online coaches" or "online fitness coach" - results will come up.
Go through their website and look at their previous clients! Message them and discuss what you are looking for in a coach. They will answer your questions and ease any stress!