I have recently come to the realization that Jillian Michaels scares me to death. Her style of personal training is part drill sergeant, part screaming mother, mixed with the vocabulary of a trucker. Reality television may be entertaining to a lot of people, but the “reality” of working with a personal trainer does not (and should not) involve a trainer screaming curse words in your face.
This unrealistic depiction of what personal training, or exercise in general, looks like, may have scared some people enough to never want to go to a gym or do any type of exercise. I spend 10-12 hours a week at the gym and I have never seen, or heard, a trainer do anything even remotely close to what happens on “The Biggest Loser”. If Jillian Michaels scares you, too, let me assure you that working with a personal trainer in real life is a lot different than the so-called “reality” you see on television.
I encourage you to give a “real” trainer a try. A good trainer can encourage and motivate without such drastic, in-your-face tactics, they are there to teach you how to correctly perform exercises, develop a plan to increase your strength, flexibility and cardiovascular health, help with weight loss and/or muscle gain, and encourage you to push the limits of what you think you can do; not send you into cardiac arrest while screaming obscenities in your face. When you are trained well, you can accomplish anything.
When you work with a trainer, you need to take some responsibility on your shoulders. You need to listen to what the trainer says and then do it. Don’t argue. Don’t say your “whatever” hurts. Don’t complain about what they are telling you to do. Don’t offer up some lame excuse as to why you can’t do what they tell you to do. Don’t have an attitude. Don’t be a baby about it. Suck it up and do what they say.
After working with my trainer for so many years, I listen to his quiet instruction without hesitation. As we workout he will say things like, “Tighten your core. Keep your shoulders down. Push through your heels. Go lower. Widen your stride. Tighten your glutes. Breathe. Use your legs and hips. Squeeze. Keep going. Relax.” Every time my trainer tells me to do something I automatically do it. I am so well-trained that sometimes I feel like Pavlov’s dog. Whenever I hear the word “gym” I start to burn calories.