How To Start Online Personal Training – When the gyms closed in March, I’m not going to lie – I was gutted. I finally got back to swinging things at the front of the workout (a
A happy Christmas break and a trip to Lisbon where I ate enough Portuguese custard to feed a family of twelve for a week). I found a happy routine of going to the gym three times a week, spinning and playing netball. Overall, I felt very active.
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But then he faced a blockade. Suddenly, I had to completely rethink my workout routine and change what I did to work up a sweat, given the equipment at home. Luckily, I have enough savings for a decent session in kindergarten, but after three months of doing the same weights over and over again, it quickly got boring. My motivation to exercise began to fade. Did I miss waiting for someone to get on my back or my PT yelling at me to push harder because my leg almost fell off during spin class?
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I wanted to try something new, get out of the plateau and find motivation to work again. Basically, I wanted to push myself and get excited about exercise – not for Domino’s sake. I had never done distance training before, but when I was offered a few extra sessions with Body Beautiful founder and online strength and conditioning coach (barre and Pilates specialist) Aimee Long, I jumped at the chance.
I’ve done PT sessions in the past and loved planning your session and coming in instead of being asked to work while someone else counts your reps and rest times. It was absolute bliss. I can’t wait to do this exercise again, but I have a few concerns…
The first is injury prevention. If there isn’t a personal trainer there, how are they going to tune me up or make sure I don’t injure myself? Netball has plagued me over the years with torn ligaments, broken fingers and crooked legs, making training difficult even after recovery. Although I could adapt, at the beginning of an IRL class I would always raise my hand and tell the instructor about my snoring, and they would watch me and offer to adapt.
I was concerned about the booking process and any inconvenience. We all know scaling meetings can be a little awkward at first, never mind adding Lycra. However, booking with Aimee was very easy – she takes potential clients on Instagram, sends an email or schedules a call. After a few messages, we set up a time to talk on the phone before my first session so he could clearly see my current fitness and the goals I wanted to achieve in our three weeks of training together. As soon as he greeted me, my nerves calmed down.
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“In addition to the PT sessions, I was able to attend one of his daily Zoom classes”
I easily told Aimee that I wanted to lose weight, improve my endurance, and work on my glute strength. Fortunately, he said that all of my goals seemed achievable over time. She also provided a nutrition guide, including daily meal plans, which was very helpful, and along with our private sessions, I was able to join one of her daily Zoom classes. To say I was happy to leave would be an understatement.
With only a hip strap and two bottles of wine ready to act as arm weights, I adjusted my laptop to a comfortable angle (as per Aimee’s instructions) so my form showed. As we waited in the Zoom lobby for our session to begin, I felt another nervousness – it’s always a little intimidating to “meet” someone for the first time via video call, but Aimee was really welcoming and put me to work quickly. anxiety.
Considering how active I was, she decided to do an “advanced” class that mixed yoga and strength training. A little intimidating, yes, but I love a challenge, and with my experience lifting heavy weights like a silent gym rat, I thought the lesson would be a breeze…I was wrong.
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I clearly underestimated how difficult small movements can be with high reps (the main purpose of barre). As I lifted my legs to different angles and positions, moved my legs in circular motions, then changed direction and made slight up-and-down pulses, my whole body vibrated and the beads jingled around my nose. I’ve been told countless times by PTs and physios that I have “lazy” glutes (sorry guys) and it takes a long time to burn them.
For the first five minutes of this session, my stomach was *very* awake. Here and there, bursts of cardio (hello mountain climbers, my old nemesis) are interspersed with an hour of exercise. Aimee corrected my form or gave me some other moves and I was also sweating profusely due to the injuries I mentioned above and compared to a private PT session. By the end I felt like an absolute beast – and using only the bare minimum of all the equipment. Who says wine is only for drinking?
His quads were still sore. Always a good sign. It takes a long time for my gut to get DOMS (Delayed Delayed Muscle Soreness), so I was surprised. My second and third sessions with Aimee were similar to the first, requiring minimal equipment, the now familiar deep muscle burn, lots of climbers and lots of sweat.
I loved how much the online sessions made my day. From quickly changing into activewear to setting up your laptop five minutes before the call. Compared to a gym or a real-life class that’s an hour or two away (that’s London for you), I feel like I can fit in and get the most out of it. my girlfriend, not a part of her, was staring at strangers.
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That being said, I still miss having other people around me when I train; In spin class, I push myself harder and watch the person next to me resist. A lack of extra motivation meant I skipped a few reps or ended the workout earlier than planned and left it to my home equipment—another reason Aimee recommends screen-breathing. He forced me to be a little more patient and overcome any difficulties. This was probably my favorite part of the sessions.
“Before I started Aimee I felt like I had hit a real wall with my fitness. Nothing has changed.”
When it comes to equipment, even though I’m a little uncomfortable with all the machines, weights, and gizmos that a gym membership offers (especially when the treadmill cuts it outside), that hasn’t stopped me from reaching my goals. Success: After following Aimee’s meal plan and training with her twice a week for three weeks, I felt incredible and even hit a 5km personal best that I had been trying to achieve for months. I have noticed that my shoulders have gotten stronger and my mobility has improved, which was a challenge for me due to previous serious injuries.
Before I started working with Aimee, I felt like I had hit a real wall with my fitness. Nothing changed, I was doing the same thing over and over again and not seeing the results I wanted. I was very bored – I think partly because I was working with the little equipment I had while I was isolated at home. But Aimee’s classes were fun, tough, and I loved coming in not knowing what the next class was going to be like.
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I doubt this will make me give up my gym membership entirely. I like to have access to other equipment, but if you’ve hit a plateau in your training like me, virtual sessions may be the perfect fit for what you need. I still practice in Aimee’s daily classes, on the days I don’t go down the center line or just lie down. I’ll be the red-faced girl who swears under her breath as she starts the next round of climbers. See you later?
A virtual session with Aimee costs £75, but there are also discounted bulk packages including unlimited online lessons, a meal plan and regular registration. For more information, visit his website here.
Ree tries to practice with the boy. I took 10,000 steps every day for a month