Having Trouble with Your Workout? Get Personal

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Regardless of whether you're a novice or a veteran in the gym, it doesn't hurt to have a helping hand when it comes to taking your workout to the next level. This is where a certified personal trainer comes into play.

For many people, trainers are the ultimate workout buddy. Of course, they come at a price, which is sometimes higher than people prefer to pay. Usually, a certified personal trainer charges $50-$60 an hour, although gyms sometimes offer discounted packages for buying sessions in bulk. Most gym facilities offer one free session with an on-staff trainer when you purchase a gym membership. Some people opt to hire a trainer who's employed by their gym, while others may seek out an individual based on the recommendation of somebody else. But it's important to proceed with caution. Just as you wouldn't consult with a doctor who hasn't undergone the proper schooling, the same goes for your personal trainer. Make sure that the person you hire is certified by a legitimate organization such as the American College of Sports Medicine, the American Council on Exercise, IDEA, YMCA or other respected boards. So why get personal? For starters, having a trainer makes you accountable to someone. It's not so easy to blow off a workout when you have a standing appointment with a person who you're paying.