personal training choices

Is Your Personal Trainer The Right Personal Trainer For You

How do you know if the personal trainer you choose will get you the right results? No seriously, how? When choosing the right personal trainer for you it’s important that you look at several different factors. 

Nearly every personal trainer you speak to can show you the great results they have gotten for themselves and for their paying clients. But how can you tell that they will be able to do the same for you? What if their previous success stories had more time to exercise than you? Or started in a better position physically than you? Or doesn’t mind following a meal that has no chocolate or any little piece of delicious devil’s nectar? Will you get your money’s worth?

These are all legitimate fears when on the hunt for a personal trainer. It’s important to know that you can never 100% know if the results will be delivered, but there are indications that will point you in the right direction.

The free consultation

Any trainer worth his salt will set up a free consultation with a potential client before entering into a financial agreement. This is so the trainer (if he is good) can actually assess whether YOU are the right fit for them. Personal training is a big commitment and finding how committed you really are is 90% of getting the results. Remember, it is the client that must physically and mentally do the work, not the trainer. The remaining 10% is the expertise that the trainer offers in exercise and nutrition.

What options does the trainer offer the client when it comes to training?

Yes, there are certain training methods that will get the most optimal results for the client, but what if the client doesn’t like that method? Or is not physically conditioned enough to complete the method? This is where you can tell if the trainer is indeed ‘’Personal’’. If the trainer offers you a limited, strict and narrow-minded option based on his previous success, he is missing the point.

Every person has implications that will change the method of exercise. For example, can only train twice per week, is physically unfit, has no free weights experience, has poor mobility and so on. These all force the trainer to come up with a solution that is ‘’Personal’’ to you and you only. So, look out for the magic program solution, because it doesn’t exist.

Did they give you nutrition advice?

To be honest, a good trainer should give nutrition advice. A good trainer should not only give you advice, they should give you the choice on what option would suit your current situation best. There are three nutrition protocols that cover all clients. By offering you the options, the chances of you getting results are increased as you will stick to the plan that YOU choose, not the plan that was chosen for you.

Here are the options


This is where the client guesses, to the best of their ability, the quantity size of the meals. In the hope that they hit the right amount for a weight loss or weight gain. This method is very popular but has a lower success rate as it takes time to guess the right amounts consistently. If you have no time to follow a meal plan or count calories, then this is a good option for you.

Flexi calorie counting

This method is popular, as it allows you to choose the food you eat to a certain extent. The trainer will give you XXX number of calories to eat in a day. You will then will fill those calories with 80-90% ‘good food’ and 10-20% ‘bad food’. This works very well as you will not feel restricted in your food choice and you can factor in some treats. This method has a good success rate if you are consistent with it.

Meal Plan

This is by far the quick method for getting the results you want, but also the hardest. It involves your trainer making a detailed food plan that has everything counted for in terms of calories and grams. It is very restricted, but if the trainer was good enough to calculate the numbers right and you can stick to the plan, then the results will materialise. This method is the hardest to stick to of the 3 options.

In conclusion, when picking a trainer, first ascertain whether you get a free consultation. Thereafter the exercise options and nutrition choices will make themselves evident in the consultation. If they don’t give you this ‘personalised’ approach to the plan, they are probably not the right fit for you.


Luke Heapes is the Fitness and Product Development Lead for Aura Leisure. For more information visit auraleisure.ie 


Once you’ve found the right trainer, it’s important that you beat the fitness buzzwords and find a programme that suits you. Check out Luke’s article on buzzwords