My trainer, Vikki Hettiger, and I have been working together twice a week for just over a year. During this period, I’ve made a number of observations that explain the extraordinary advantages of hiring a Personal Trainer.
First, there are a number of exercises I wouldn’t be able to perform without Vikki encouraging me. She is the cheerleader that reaches across to my inner resources, enabling them to succeed, where alone I would have failed.
Second, Vikki offers a view I could not otherwise have. It’s like having a “mirror”, and acquiring a level of critical vision that is beyond my capabilities when I’m working out by myself.
Third, working with a good trainer is a “cumulative” experience. The brain and the body do not grasp it all at once. Acquiring muscle memory takes time and repetition. The rigor eventually pays off, but only when there is consistency. Each session ‘builds’ on every detail of the experience – some of it works at a conscious level, and some of it is the subconscious effort of acquiring habits so they become “ingrained”. The things I learned early on in our sessions have become the building blocks that have eventually allowed me to perform more advanced exercises.
Another thing I realized is that even though I am reasonably body-conscious, there are still muscle groups that I barely had control over in the beginning. Through Vikki’s attentive and consistent training sessions, I gradually gained a much keener awareness of how my muscles inter-relate… and how to coordinate and control them consciously. This is, undoubtedly, what people mean when they say ‘I’m discovering muscles I didn’t know I had’!
Working with a trainer is sort of an extreme form of therapy. The aims are general, yet amazingly, the effects can be highly specific. While individual exercises usually aim for a specific muscle group, all seem almost inadvertently to enhance the ‘core.’ Strengthening the core muscles plays a role in everything you perform while training; and the benefit can be as dramatic as it is surprising. I happen to be subject to some pretty bad lower back problems; however, effectively training my core has helped immensely in avoiding bouts of serious back pain. Wouldn’t you rather spend the money on training than on drugs?
Finally, I have learned that the body has an innate desire to “cheat” or to find the easy way out. This cannot be helped; it’s practically instinctive. Vikki is there to be watchful and to point out exactly how and where my body is trying to ‘cheat’ when performing an exercise. This is important because any cheating in movements undermines the training process, preventing me from reaching my best potential. In this respect, working with Vikki has been invaluable.
I find working with Vikki to be a luxury experience. She has more faith in me than I do in myself. It’s part of her professionalism. She focuses on me during our time together, which in turn, helps me focus on myself. And I’m delighted that she calls the agenda – it is always a surprise, so there can be no dread, nor false anticipation. When training with Vikki, I live entirely in the moment, no extraneous worries, no apprehensions. That’s what I call a luxury service.