As someone who has been a personal trainer, I have pretty much heard it all from clients–the good, the bad, the lies and the insults. If you’re working with a trainer or considering it any time in the near future, there are a few things I want to warn you about. Specifically, what not to say to him or her.
1. I love burpees. I have yet to meet a client who even remotely likes burpees. They are one of the hardest exercises because of the squat-thrust, push-up and jump-up involved, and they will send your heart rate soaring. So don’t lie to your trainer and tell her you like something these (unless of course, you actually do) or any other exercise if you really hate them. She can find plenty of substitutes. Plus, if you tell her you love burpees after just finishing 10 today, she will make you do 20 tomorrow.
2. I’m not sore. Especially when you first start working with a trainer, it’s normal to feel quite sore in many muscle groups. If you’re really and truly not sore, she should know. But if you are and think you just need to act tough, she’s going to assume you can work harder. And then you’ll be doubly-sore tomorrow and cursing the people who make toilets so low.
3. This is soooo hard. Don’t whine. Personal trainers hate clients who whine and complain. Suck it up and do the workout, unless of course, it really is well above your capability (but a good trainer should be able to spot that by watching you).
4. Of course I’m following my workout plan. If you are great, but if you’re not doing what you’re supposed to be doing in between training sessions, fess up. Your trainer can help you identify why the plan is not working for you–do you need more motivation, more rest, more challenge, etc. Also, if you lie and say you are following your plan to the letter, then she will continue to increase your workouts each week, and you may end up hurting yourself because you’re not ready.
5. I’m only consuming 1,200 calories a day. Again, if that’s what you’re supposed to be doing and are actually doing so, good for you. But if you are eating more and not logging every bite on your food diary, then chances are you won’t be getting the results you want. And that will leave you–and your trainer–frustrated.
6. I’m cheating on my husband. Personal trainers are not therapists; they don’t want to hear your personal details.
7. This workout is stupid. Negative attitudes never help anyone get through a workout. Yes, some exercises may appear meaningless to you, but maybe it’s because you don’t understand the benefit of them. Instead of insulting your trainer with a bad attitude, instead ask what the specific move is intended to do for your body.
8. I have to get my phone. Geez, if you’re answering your phone in the middle of a workout, there is something wrong. Turn it off, get focused and don’t waste your trainer’s time.
9. Oh, you thought that was good, watch this. Don’t try to impress your trainer (even if he’s hot). Not only could this lead to an injury by you lifting more or running faster than you’re capable of, but he will see right through it when you show up the next day unable to do anything (see #3).
10. I’m bored; This sucks; I hate your music; Get me some freakin’ water. All of these things are insulting to your trainer. Yes, you are paying her, but she is a professional and should be treated with respect, even if you think she’s the worst trainer ever, in which case, you should find yourself a new one (who won’t make you do burpees).