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by Casey McIlvaine

On a daily basis, those involved in the fitness industry are bombarded with questions. Whether someone desires tips on

losing weight or has a few questions about rehabbing injuries personal trainers hear it all. Today we’ll share the top 12 frequently asked personal trainer questions and spill the details with the correct answers.

Q: I hit the weights, but I’m wondering about my muscles? Does weight lifting automatically mean bigger muscles?

Frequently Asked Personal Trainer Questions

A: Building muscle is a process. In fact, the rate at which you build muscle depends on three basic factors – genetics,

gender, and training intensity. Males have greater amounts of testosterone, so they are automatically more genetically inclined to gain muscle vs. women. The only thing you can control is training intensity.

Q: What type of exercises do I need to do to get into shape?

A: There isn’t a one-exercise-fits-all option. It all is dependent upon your ultimate goals. Start by eating well – fitness starts in the kitchen where you fuel your body. Then speak with your trainer to create a specific training program.

Q: I’m hitting cardio daily – why am I not getting results?

A: So you hop on the treadmill daily, but see no results whatsoever. When was the last time you changed up your workout routine? Challenge yourself by switching up your pace and incline, as well as integrate weight lifting and strength training. This will get calories burning and help your workout.

Q: How do I get a flat stomach?

A: Again, genetics play a major part in whether you can obtain a flat stomach or that desirable six-pack. Two types of exercise play a big part in this – strength training and cardio. With this combination, you will decrease your overall body fat percentage while simultaneously building abdominal muscles.

Q: Should I start with cardio or do you think weight training is better?

A: This all depends on your goals and what exactly you’re trying to achieve. In most cases a combination is best.

Q: Are supplements worth it?

A: Unless you’re suffering from a vitamin deficiency or you don’t consume a balanced diet – you do not need to take dietary supplements.

Q: What should my heart rate be?

A: Determining a target heart rate depends on your age and weight, as well as the intensity and duration of the exercise. There are formula trackers online to provide you with a specific number to help figure out your goal heart rate.

Q: I’m not sure what weight machines do compared to free weights.

A: Free weights keep resistance on muscle through ROM (range of motion) while weight machines use variable resistance – with the resistance constantly changing throughout ROM.

Q: Why are my muscles so sore after working out?

A: Soreness is a direct result of high force – the higher the resistance, the more sore muscles will be. Muscles will usually be sore a few days after working out because they are repairing themselves. It’s very important to stretch before and after workouts so muscles are not stiff and can heal properly.

Q: How do I get rid of flabby arms?

A: Unfortunately, we cannot dictate where our bodies will decrease the amount of fat. Any exercise that decreases body fat will help you lose fat on arms.

Q: How often should I work out?

A: Try to hit the gym 30 to 60 minute at least three days a week.  However any physical activity that gets you up and moving, whether it’s a long walk or a quick 10 minutes of circuit training on your lunch break.

Q: How do I choose a personal trainer?

A: Make sure you find a trainer that works with your goals and your objectives. You should also feel comfortable around them. Don’t be afraid to ask them questions and interview them a little bit – a trainer needs to be a mutual fit!

What are some of the most common questions you’ve been asked as a personal trainer and how did you respond?

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