We all know that working with a personal trainer can provide so many benefits. If you’re just starting out, a personal trainer is a great resource to learn how to exercise properly and regular appointments make you a lot more likely to show up at the gym. Of course, trainers often charge between $40 and $80 per session, or more. Luckily, there’s a great way to get the benefits of having a personal trainer for only a fraction of the cost: Online training. We sat down with Paige, an ACE certified personal trainer with years of experience training clients both in-person and online to find out a bit more about online personal training works.
1. What exactly is online training? How does it work?
Online training is a lot like in-person training, but all training is done virtually. After an initial assessment and consultation, I design a customized workout program for that client. However, instead of being there in-person for their “sessions” they refer to my online exercise video library, pictures, demonstrations, and detailed descriptions for the exercises. Depending on the tier of training they choose, my involvement can be a coaching them and providing feedback 3 to 5 times a week or as little as once a week.
2. What types of people (typically) sign up for online training?
The same as those who come to me in the gym—those who want to better their lives in some way through fitness. The only differences would be that often, those who come to me for online training have crazy hard-to-plan-around schedules. Also, online training is much more affordable than paying $70 an hour for in-the-gym training. Some of my online clients came to me looking for a more affordable way to have a personal trainer.
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There’s no easy way to sum up Destination Fit, the new venture from David Norton, a former producer of several seasons of The Biggest Loser and the Miss Universe pageant, among other large-scale happenings. But the closest way to describe the venture might be along the lines of “American Idol for the fitness industry.”
In short, Norton’s goal is to help bring obscure but talented fitness instructors into the spotlight.
So how, exactly, does Destination Fit work? Workout pros with all sorts of backgrounds—from Pilates to bootcamp to indoor cycling—are invited to upload a full-length workout as an audition tape. They compete for votes against all of the other trainers who submit videos; when 12,000 total votes are cast the round is over and a winner is named.
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The Biggest Loser is a popular show about average people who have not been successful losing weight by themselves. They see the show as both a last resort, and a second chance. Thousands try out each year but only 16 make the cut. Josh Steele knows all about this process. He’s been writing to the Biggest Loser for years, but was never chosen for the show. What happens to BL contestant hopefuls when they don’t make the cut? If you’re Josh, you embrace the old-school motto, “eat less, move more,” and by doing so, Josh lost a phenomenal 250 pounds! This is his story.
At nearly 7 foot tall, Josh Steele is a man who can afford to carry a few extra pounds and still be healthy, but the day he weighed in at just shy of 600 pounds, he knew his height couldn’t compensate any longer. Always a big strapping lad, he said he didn’t even really notice the weight coming on because it happened so gradually. “I think back and realized I just became lazy,” he confessed. “Partying and late night eating caught up to me.”
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In 2003, a handful of young software developers from tiny Estonia wrote the code for a voice-over IP program and called it Skype. Derived from the words “sky” and “peer,” Skype was a video chatting and instant messaging application that allowed grad students studying abroad to chat with their significant others back home. OK, that wasn’t the only thing it was used for, but more than 10 years and $8.5 billion later—thanks Microsoft!—the uses of Skype have outgrown simple peer-to-peer communication.
The live and instant nature of Skype holds the senders and receivers of information accountable, making the program perfect for dietitians and personal trainers. Citing affordability and optimum time management, both our resident nutrition expert Mary Hartley RD, and the wellness team at Retrofit, among many others in their shared industry use Skype to counsel patients on diet and fitness.
“I could base an entire practice around Skype,” said Mary, who meets with clients in real life and over video chat. Living in New York City, Skype saves her and her patients gas money, traffic time, and office expenses. “Their (patients) appointments are booked on their Gmail calendars, they pay via PayPal before their appointment, and then we’re on,” said Mary.
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