Personal training: How it started vs. how it’s going

I officially started training at the Jewish Community Center in July and it’s been going incredibly well. At first, I felt nervous and needed to find my footing in this new environment. I learned a lot in my studies, through shadowing other trainers, and through training a friend since March, but it still takes more practice and experience for me to feel confident in something new.

Leading up to my first session with my first client in this gym, I felt what I’d consider pretty standard first day of work jitters. I decided that I prefer to do a video chat prior to a first session with a client to go through their exercise and medical history, health goals and more. Speaking with this client previously helped lessen my nerves on the day of and it’s been part of my process ever since.

I take training seriously and I wanted to make sure I was prepared for our first session together and that I would leave the assessment with a much better understanding of my client’s needs, especially since he was recovering from a medical situation. It went really well and by the end, I felt like I had the information I needed to create a training plan for him that would address his goals while supporting his recovery.

Fast forward a couple months and I now have 4 consistent clients at the JCC, training each 2-3 times per week. That may not sound like much, and it certainly was a slower start than I anticipated, but I’ve enjoyed every moment of it. My clients have signed on for more sessions with me and have all expressed that they’re feeling progress from our sessions together, which is truly all I want. While it’s only been a couple of months and a handful of clients at the gym, I’ve felt really fulfilled and like I’m actually able to make a difference in their lives.

There has always been a part of me that loves doing work where I can interact with strangers and build relationships with them. Even with my high school and college customer service jobs, I always appreciated having ‘regulars’. To me, personal training is a huge step up in that I get to exchange daily pleasantries with folks at the gym who I don’t yet know while also building relationships with and supporting my clients on a deeper level.

I also love the freedom and flexibility that comes with personal training as a contractor. I am able to decide who I train, I can determine my training schedule with my clients directly and we know enough about each other that when a scheduling conflict arises, there’s a level of understanding that doesn’t always exist in other types of work arrangements. I also love being in control of my work. There is no one telling me what to do or how to do it, but rather I am entirely responsible for the service I’m providing, which helps me grow in a way that I truly value.

I am so grateful to have found personal training as a new career path and while it’s a unique time in my life as it coincides with my first pregnancy, I am confident that this is the direction I want to continue to move in. When our baby arrives, I’ll have to take time off and I’m guessing it’ll be another slow start when I am able to get going again, but now I have the confidence to move forward full steam ahead.

I am very much looking forward to being a strong example for our child of prioritizing health and wellness, pursuing your passions and finding your own path in life. It’s not easy to be brave, take chances and push yourself to grow, but with the right support system, it truly is worth any hurdles you may face along the way.

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