Ben Sweeney is a man with a lofty goal, he wants to be a fitness trainer on the long-running NBC reality series, The Biggest Loser. As a personal fitness coach in New York City, Ben works with clients every day, motivating and helping them achieve their weight loss goals. However, not long ago there was a time when he was the one who needed coaching.
When Ben started college, he was a busy athlete. He knew what he had to eat to stay energized, particularly for the calorie-burn that comes with playing college baseball. Unfortunately, when his time on the field was over, he continued to eat like he was training for the next game. He also tried to tell himself that he could eat anything he wanted because he was trying to put on muscle, even though he stopped going to the gym and lifting weights.
Most people would consider losing 70 pounds to be a once in a lifetime accomplishment, but Angela VanBuskirk had to do it twice. After losing 100 pounds with the help of a personal trainer, Angela’s efforts were stymied by an aggressive bone tumor in her leg. Now, she’s 70 pounds lighter and determined to finish her fifth half-marathon in three hours or less.
Angela’s true weight loss story is the result of patience, determination and “admitting the struggle.” For her, the struggle took years to overcome and included heartbreaking setbacks.
The American Council on Exercise (ACE) conducted a survey and discovered that for most fitness professionals, this career was not their first job. Many had pursued other avenues only to find that the fitness industry was where their true passions lied. It assumed that many find their love for fitness later in life. Many in the business will tell you that since they were devoting the hours of a full time job to their own fitness, they decided they might enjoy getting paid along the way.
“I was in banking for 15 years before making the leap to personal training full time,” said Pamela Hernandeez, a personal trainer at ThriveFit.com. “In 2009, when the financial services industry collapsed, I was fortunate not lose my job but a lot of people I worked with did. It made me step back and realize how much I had come to dislike my job.”
She kept both jobs for a while as she she pursued her ACSM CPT fitness certifications and to ensure her passion and the clients would be there to pay the bills. As a banker, she says she hated what she was doing and how it didn’t offer any real value for people’s lives. With a full-time fitness career, she gets to make a huge impact on the lives of others. “I knew I had found my calling. I was able to quit my banking career in June 2011. I have never looked back!”
Sound like you?
Some of the most popular careers in the fitness industry include health coach, personal trainer, dietitian, spin instructor, and Zumba instructor. Before you consider taking one of these paths this year, learn more about what each profession entails. (more…)
It’s Christmas time, when we think of others and how we can show our love through tokens of appreciation. Before going broke buying presents, however, save a little bit for yourself to spend on something that could do a world of good in your life by providing a bevy of health benefits. From getting off medications to finding a surefire way to cope with stress, these gifts promise more than momentary satisfaction, they may just inspire a completely new lifestyle.
1. Hire a Personal Trainer
Sometimes, the choice to workout comes down to accountability. When exercising with a friend isn’t cutting it, hiring a trainer can be a great choice. They know what moves to do, how many need to be done to be effective, and how to do them so you don’t get hurt. They also take care of formulating a fitness plan with your goals in mind. Missing a 6 a.m. workout is a lot less likely if you know there’s someone waiting for you at the gym ready to charge your credit card whether you show up or not. Just be sure to make sure they’re accredited and look into what kind – not all certifications are created equal. Can’t make it to the gym? Sites like Wello will do video-chat training sessions to serve clients anywhere, anytime.
2. Get a Nutritionist
Do you have fitness down, but need help with the food part of being healthy? A consult with a nutritionist may be your answer. A diet book has no concern for what foods you like and dislike, certain allergies, and current fitness levels. A dietitian will. They’ll give you a proper eating plan to follow and do all the math and science stuff, like calorie counting, for you. Before picking one, make sure you have a certain rapport with them so that you’ll feel at ease, know they give clear directions that you can easily understand, and explain why certain foods are and aren’t necessary. They don’t even have to be local. Dietitians like Mary Hartley, RD do Skype consults. (more…)
There seems to be a great chasm between those who workout and those who do not. But does anyone really know why that is?
Often surrounded by people who don’t love working out as much as I do (admittedly, I’m an enthusiast), I’ve asked myself this question many times but to no avail. It seems that the path to fitness is narrow and few find it, but I wish that wasn’t so as exercise is such an essential part of a long, healthy life. Not to mention it can be a blast once you find your groove!
Perhaps there are some insider secrets that ‘insiders’ wrongly assume ‘outsiders’ already know. This slideshow is my humble attempt to “crack the code” and unveil those tips, tricks and secrets so that everyone can find their way to fitness and establish a routine that truly sticks.
As I stumbled into running in my mid-twenties, my husband followed me. However, for us this was a short lived commonality. The activity caused us stress and arguments. This isn’t unique to our marriage, it seems to happen in one form or another for many couples. They can’t see eye to eye on fitness, or they can’t manage to workout together. Yet, there are those few diamonds in the rough who manage to make it work. Here are three stories about couples and their relationships with fitness.
Like I said, once upon a time, people would call both me and my husband “runners.” We ran races together, went for jogs together, and made plans for other big events. This was all fine and dandy when I was only running a few miles and doing so really slowly. My husband liked the challenge of beating me. Well, I got faster, I started going longer, and I guess somewhere along the way, my husband got disinterested. I’d nag and he’d oblige, but it just turned into a mess. I’d push too fast and he’d want to take breaks. Or he’d want to slow down and I may have called him taunting names. (Oh, come on! You’ve done it, too!)
Long story short, my husband found out two things. One, he was now married to a marathoner who couldn’t be stopped (I just finished the Chicago Marathon this past weekend). Two, he had no interest in running or even traditionally exercising. This was a recipe for conflict time and time again. If you could imagine, the marathoning wife doesn’t take kindly to what she sees as a “lazy” husband. (more…)
When you hear the term ‘personal trainer,’ what do you immediately think? Beefy, sweaty, thick neck and yelling? Yeah, me too. And if you’re like me, you find personal trainers a little intimidating because of that. I mean, what do I possibly have in common with Sven who could probably throw me 100 yards and whose extracurricular activities likely include flexing and researching protein powders?
Well, if the thought of hiring a personal trainer is too far outside your realm of comfort but you still want to get in shape, consider Wello your new best friend.
Wello, which was founded in Palo Alto, California in 2011 by fitness fanatics Leslie Silverglide and Ann Scott Plante, is a strictly online personal training service that uses video technology to connect you with a personal trainer for one-on-one training sessions. (more…)
Let me start this post with a disclaimer:
I am not perfect.
I am, however, a professional. I take what I do, as a personal trainer, very seriously. If someone has trusted you with his or her health, fitness and general well being you absolutely should take it seriously.
The problem is many personal trainers do not.
I can’t speak for every gym, but I know the big gyms where I live don’t treat or pay trainers well. When you’re not treated well it doesn’t translate to the best experience for your client. Or many personal trainers are training while they learn to be something else. This isn’t a bad thing, however, it can affect the trainer’s focus. And then there are athletes and body builders who train to support their sport, using their training techniques on clients who have very different goals.
If you’re currently working with a personal trainer, or are considering working with one, here are the things you need to know that a personal trainer SHOULDN’T be doing. (more…)
As smart phones become more popular, so are apps promising to help you get into shape. These apps might make you think there’s no reason to spend money on a personal trainer. But some experts say relying on so-called “virtual trainers” might not be the best idea.
“Every person has a different body and learning curve, for this reason I think it is crucial to workout with a trainer,” said celebrity trainer Joel Harper. “The modifications and the tweaking that is done by a personal trainer, so that you exercise properly, is key.”
Experts say this is something lacking when you are using a workout video, website or phone app. You can follow along, but it takes someone actually watching you, ensuring you are doing the exercises properly. If not, you run the risk of injury or not getting the results you are expecting.
Your first step in hiring a personal trainer is finding one. If you are a member of a gym, that’s a great place to find a personal trainer. This gives you the opportunity to observe the trainer and see how they work with their clients. The gym can also provide you information on the trainer, including their certifications, specialties and testimonials.
If you’re not a member of a gym, you can also find personal trainers by doing a search online. The American Council on Exercise website is a fast way to find ACE certified trainers in your area. Go to www.acefitness.org and enter your zip code. Another website to use is www.personaltrainercentral.com. (more…)
Freelance writer, motivational coach, trainer, nutrition consultant, health club manager/owner, bodybuilding champion, and author, Tom Venuto has been a star in the fitness industry for the last two decades. If you’re looking for a credible trainer with lots of experience, he’s your guy.
As a freelance writer, Venuto has written more than 400 articles on nutrition, training, fat loss and fitness motivation that can be found all over the internet on sites such as About.com and BodyBuilding.com. Another large accomplishment on his resume is being the founder and CEO of Burn the Fat Inner Circle, a website for fat-loss support with more than 13,000 members.
Out of all his achievements in the fitness industry, his e-book is definitely what he’s most known for. Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle is one of the bestselling online books ever sold in history. It’s rated by Clickbank.com as the number one e-book in the world for both fitness and diet books. Those who have read it have given it the nickname “The Fat Loss Bible.” His other published book is The Body Fat Solution.
Venuto gradated from Bloomsberg University of Pennsylvania with a bachelor’s of science degree in exercise science. He’s been training since 1983 and began competing in bodybuilding in 1989. Since then, he’s competed 28 times and has taken home seven championship titles such as: (more…)