100 lb. Club - My fitness evaluation at the gym

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09-08-2004, 03:32 PM
I joined the gym 2 weeks ago and today had my fitness evaluation. This included some basic stuff like height, weight, measurements, body fat, flexibility, some strength assessment. I was rather hoping for a bit more info on some of the weight machines but I have to go back on Friday for another hour with a personal trainer and he is going to show me what machines I should use, how to adjust them, good form etc. I didn't figure that I was in really good shape but I thought I was a bit stronger than what I really am and also I've been doing my squats wrong. Well not completely wrong but I've only been doing about a half squat instead of a full squat. I knew that my body fat was high, over half of my body weight is fat. Also I have a lot of excess water in the extracellular spaces so I guess I need to drink more to flush it out and also the trainer said a lot of it would come off as I lost weight.

Overall I was a bit disappointed because it felt more like he was trying to sell their personal training services rather than do an assessment. Don't get me wrong, I think he is genuinely trying to help me but I'm not at that stage yet where I want a personal trainer seeing me 3 times a week. I still need to get used to the idea of going to the gym several times a week.

They also have a boxing studio and the trainer took me in there and I got to do some of the workout that they do. It was kind of fun to put on some gloves and do some punches.

Just wondering for those of you who go to the gym, if you use or have used the services of a personal trainer. In what ways was it beneficial or not, I'd love to hear about your experience with a trainer.

09-08-2004, 04:51 PM
I've used a personal trainer a few times and sometimes it has felt worth it and sometimes it hasn't. It is definitely worth talking to a personal trainer to get familiar with the machines and even to set you up on a workout plan, but beyond that, you probably don't need one. Some people find personal trainers very useful and motivating, but I find I have a lot of self motivation.

09-08-2004, 05:00 PM
I've had one training session with a PT, and I think it's great if you're just starting at a gym and want a workout to follow, or if you've been at teh same workout and want to shake things up a bit. For me, though, I can't see going regularly. Maybe a few times a year. Some people I'm sure do better when they have someone there once or twice a week telling them what to do, etc, but I'm not one of them. So i think it depends on how you feel about the issue. No harm in trying once or twice, either.

09-08-2004, 05:01 PM
I have joined a couple of different gyms and finally in the last year have found a gym where the gym fit me and the personal trainers were worth something. I do currently use a personal trainer and have been using one for the last month. the reason I use one is that I had felt like i reached a wall and was getting bored.....the trainers' in this gym are great. They are creative and do not just stick you on a machine....I mean for me I can go from machine to machine and know to do 3 sets of so many reps but I needed someone ot show me some new techniques.

The first time i meet with the trainer at the end of the session she told me what areas I was weak in and what areas i was ok in.....i work with her about twice a week....and she is great.....i even used another trainer for a week because she was out and this other trainer was different but just as creative and motivational.

use the "free lesson" with the trainer to the max and see if they are a good fit with you...my trainer told me what kind of training she focuses on and also suggested other trainers if I wanted something different.....i would recommend asking them questions like how long they have been training and their credentials and if they have any references.........also see if they are able to motivate you and are creative enough to keep you motivated.

09-08-2004, 05:35 PM
I think they have something like that at the Y where I go. I have been thinking about trying to get some help from one of them. Would they help you set up a plan or routine ~ I think that is what I need ~ some guidance to know how to make some progress for myself.

09-08-2004, 07:51 PM
Take the free lesson. Then buy 2 more sessions, just so you know you're doing the right things & he can help you work out smarter, not harder.

See him again in 3-4 months when you are bored with your workouts & want to change it up a bit.

Definitely worth the money.

09-08-2004, 09:07 PM
I don't know. Mabye it's just my gym, but I wasn't that impressed by my free training session. The trainer I got told me that the ONLY way I would be able to lose weight was if I went from 3 regular meals and one snack to 6 small meals. Great. Doesn't work for me. And I don't mean I don't want to do it - I mean it makes me binge like the world is ending tomorrow. Even I know that binge does not equal weight loss! :lol: Plus, I felt like he didn't really know more about the weights/reps/heart rate/form than I did.

09-08-2004, 09:18 PM
Jennelle, I've never heard of anyone saying "the only way to lose weight is to eat 6 small meals" but I have heard it is the best way to keep your metabolism up and utilize protein properly. (It is actually what I do) If it doesn't work for you, then it obviously isn't the route for you and they should recognize that. I've found though that there are some personal trainers that are better than others, doesn't really do with the gym though the gym should hire a higher quality of trainers.

09-08-2004, 10:35 PM
The quality of "personal trainers" is all over the map. Also, as with ANY type of personal service, consulting, or counseling, there has to be a good fit. Good communication, ability to come to a common understanding, they challenge you but understand and respect your real limits, etc. If the trainers at your facility are ACE or ACSM certified or have a 4-year or higher degree in physical education, and if you can afford the services, go for it -- at least on a once-per-week basis. If they are not that qualified on paper, then still give it a whirl. In either case, if one trainer doesn't suit you, try another.

If I could afford it, I'd have a (qualified, knowledgeable) trainer with me at every workout.

P.S. Most gym trainers don't know JACK about nutrition and weight loss.

09-09-2004, 03:54 PM
Thanks everyone for their comments. I think what put me off of this trainer I saw yesterday was that I got the feeling that he thought that if I didn't do things his way then I was wasting my time. Maybe that's not what he thinks but that is how I felt about him. Plus I think he was pushing me a bit too hard when he was showing me this one machine. I felt like a bit of a failure and I know that is definately not the right mind set to lose weight. I'm going for my appointment tomorrow and then I'll tell him that I want to ease into things a bit more slowly and when I feel like I need more help then I will see about using a trainer.

09-09-2004, 10:18 PM

I suggest a trainer strongly. Luckily, my gym includes them free of charge so they're there whenever you want to change your program and for advice. :D If I never met with one, I wouldn't have a clue what to be doing for weights and things. I keep trying different trainers too to find one I really like and they've all been women (women's only gym). Maybe you want to try meeting with a female trainer and you'd feel more comfortable.. they do understand a little better I think as they can more than likely relate.

Alright, I'm babbling.. but anyways Good Luck and I'm sure things will all work out.

You're doing fabulous dahling - by the way! ;)

09-09-2004, 10:57 PM
I would feel okay going about a weight training program myself, gosh knows I have enough books and magazine articles that I would know what machine targets what area. What I really need is someone to show me how to use some of the machines ie how to adjust the seats and so on and also to check my posture. I don't need someone 3 times a week to push me. I'm not ready for that. I'm sure I could get a female trainer if I wanted but I'd probably feel more intimidated by a woman who was in super good shape than by a man. Probably feeling jealous I suppose.

09-10-2004, 03:29 PM
I went to the gym today for my personal trainer appt. This one is included in the membership so I didn't have to pay. I had a really tough day at work on Wednesday after my inital appt so between the two I was really sore and tired. I was supposed to work yesterday but I called in and said that my back was killing me (which it was, I could hardly raise my arms). So today when I went for this appt I told the trainer that I was only going to be able to do a strength training program 2-3 times a week and that I wanted to start out with easy machines because I can't afford to be taking a lot of time off work because I'm too sore from working out. Well it would be a combination of the 2, regular work and gym workouts. It was just too much strain on my muscles that are not in good shape to begin with. Well he seemed to understand and set me up with a pretty easy routine and gave me some good advice about training. So I'm just going to follow the routine he gave me, start with only a couple of sets of 10 reps or so and just gradually increase the amount of weight, reps and sets until I am doing about 3 sets of 15 reps. Then when I am at that point and I need more challenging exercises I"ll get another training appt.

09-10-2004, 04:01 PM

I would definite stretch after your workout, stretching helps reduce the soreness. Personally, I work out every day and I'm disappointed if I'm not at least a little sore and sometimes I'm sore for a few days. It shouldn't be so much that you can't get out of bed but if you do find yourself sore, again stretching will help reduce the soreness a little. I'm glad you got a routine you can start with.

09-10-2004, 06:14 PM
You will also adjust to the workouts and be less sore over time. After the first few weeks, the only times you'll be really sore are if you (a) slack off for a while and start back again, (b) change up your routine, (c) increase weight/reps significantly.

I don't know that stretching helps with soreness, but it sure FEELS great after a workout and helps with cooling down and switching gears.