Don’t Know How to Start Your Fitness Journey? Our McLean Personal Trainers Can Help

Starting anything new can feel overwhelming. But starting your fitness journey in a world where everyone on social media is a fitness influencer and “Hot Girl Walks” are a thing can be downright terrifying. You need someone who can help guide you through all the gym jargon and motivate you when self-doubt creeps in. You need a personal trainer. 

At Train, our elite coaches are ready to partner with you every step of the way on your journey. But whether or not you’re in Northern Virginia, this article will cover the benefits of having a personal trainer who can help you hit your health and fitness goals.

The Role of Personal Training in Your Fitness Journey

A personal trainer isn’t just someone who’s in really good shape or someone who really likes working out. They are fitness professionals who study for hours and hours to learn the science behind building muscle, losing weight, rehabbing an injury, post-partum recovery, and so much more.

Here Are 3 Ways a Personal Trainer Can Positively Impact Your Fitness Journey 

A personal trainer giving a high five to two female clients with gold weight chains on their neck.

1. They Are Your Accountability Buddy

Usually, the thing you need to do is the last thing you want to do. Like after a long day at work, all you want to do is go home, sit on the couch, and binge-watch Netflix. But is that going to help your weight loss goals? On the days you need a little extra push, or you need to hit the heavy bag a little harder, your personal trainer has your back with the extra motivation you need to crush your workout.

A personal trainer coaching a female client in a group fitness class. The client is laughing with the trainer.

2. They Take the Fear Out of Training

If you’re a beginner–like an “I’ve never been to the gym a day in my life” beginner–working out can feel intimidating. You don’t know what the machines do. You’re afraid of looking silly trying out that viral TikTok exercise. Your goals feel too far away. Enter: your personal trainer. They make working out less intimidating. They’re always there to answer your questions, show you the right way to use equipment, and help you keep track of your goals so they are always within reach. 

(Plus, at Train, you never have to worry about feeling silly trying a new exercise because your entire workout is done in a private training lane). 

A male trainer coaching a female client in bulgarian split squats in a gym.

3. They Cater to Your Unique Circumstances

Just had a baby? No problem. Tore your ACL 3 months ago? We’ve got you. The beauty of personal training is that it’s just that – personal. Whatever life event, injury, or phase you’re going through in your fitness journey, a certified coach has the knowledge and experience to create a plan that works for you. (And not to toot our own horn, but we have some of the best, most qualified personal trainers in Northern Virginia.) 

Our Personal Training Philosophy at Train

*See above*… Kidding, kidding. While we absolutely believe our personal trainers support you on your fitness journey in those ways, our philosophy of training is more than that. 

We don’t believe you should have to wait around to use equipment during your training session. We don’t believe you should have to wipe someone else’s sweat off a bench before your set. We don’t believe you should have to train in a dark, dingy, overcrowded big-box gym. Period. 

What we do believe, is that you should feel like a celebrity while you train like an athlete.

You should feel like a VIP every time you show up for a workout, getting 1-on-1 attention and everything you need to work out is ready and waiting for you. 

You should be matched with an elite coach who specializes in your goals, not with someone who will waste your time and won’t get you results. That’s why we created our unique “training lanes” concept. So everything you need, from a squat rack to a full rack of dumbbells, is in the dedicated training lane reserved for you, and only you.

To learn more about our concept and our training philosophy, check it out here

Strength Coaching: More Than Just Lifting Weights 

Everyone should lift weights. Whether you’re a beginner or a D1 athlete, a male or female, or you’re 20 or 60 years old, you can benefit from resistance training. One study even called resistance training medicine, claiming that it may help prevent and manage type 2 diabetes, reduce blood pressure, promote bone development, and ease pain associated with arthritis and fibromyalgia[1]… Do you see our point

So what is this magical “medicine”? Resistance training is any form of exercise that applies resistance to your muscles to improve strength and endurance. 

  • For a powerlifter, this might look like training “the big 3”: squats, bench presses, and deadlifts. 
  • For an Olympic weightlifter, this might look like training snatches and clean & jerks. 
  • And for a beginner, this could simply be doing some bicep curls or rows with a pair of resistance bands. 

But we know lifting weights can be intimidating. Having a dedicated personal trainer who specializes in weightlifting and strength training can help you get started. Here are some of our favorite strength training tips to keep in mind: 

  • Focus on Form Over Weight:: The correct exercise form is crucial for effective strength training and injury prevention. If you notice your form is slipping during a set, it might be time to drop the weight and focus on volume. 
  • Incorporate Compound Movements: Compound exercises, such as squats, deadlifts, and bench presses, work multiple muscle groups at once and are highly effective for building strength. 
  • Stay Consistent: Consistency is key to seeing results. Try to stick to a routine that allows you to get 2-3 strength training workouts per week. Bonus: working out at the same time every day helps you build a habit. 
  • Rest and Recover: Allow adequate rest between strength training sessions to give your muscles time to recover and grow. Overtraining can lead to fatigue, decreased performance, and a higher risk of injury.

There’s no right way or wrong way to strength train, the key is to find the kind you enjoy. Our McLean coaches come from diverse fitness backgrounds, so no matter your goals or interests, they’ll help you find the perfect fit.

Nutritional Guidance: The Missing Piece

You’ve been putting in the work in the gym. You’ve spent hours lifting weights and running on the treadmill, yet you’re still not seeing any results. What gives? 

Weight loss is 80% diet and 20% nutrition. 

Abs are made in the kitchen. 

Your nutrition and eating habits are likely holding you back. Say you burn an average of 300-500 active calories during your strength and conditioning session with your coach. But then on your way home you “refuel” with a double cheeseburger and fries from Mickey D’s. That’s a net +1,000 calories before you even reach your front door. A healthy diet is often the missing piece in a well-rounded fitness plan. And we get it, tracking your calories, counting macros, following the latest fad diet – it’s a lot of work! 

That’s why we offer guided nutritional coaching at Train. Our certified coaches will create custom meal plans according to your health and fitness goals, complete with sample recipes and lifestyle hacks to take the guesswork of healthy eating. 

Here are some of our favorite nutrition tips:

  • Stay Hydrated: Drink plenty of water throughout the day to stay hydrated. Water is essential for digestion, nutrient absorption, and overall bodily functions.
  • Limit Processed Foods: Listen, we all love a good cheat day. But for everyday eating, try to reduce your intake of processed foods, which are often high in added sugars, unhealthy fats, and sodium. Opt for whole, unprocessed foods whenever possible.
  • Listen to Your Stomach: Pay attention to your body’s hunger and fullness cues. Eat when you’re hungry, and stop when you’re comfortably full.
  • Balance your plate: Your plate should be a healthy mix of lean protein, whole grains, healthy fats, and plenty of fruits and vegetables. Here is a visual of what your plate should look like:
Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

Starting Your Journey with a McLean Personal Trainer 

If you’re ready to start your fitness journey (whether it’s for the 1st time or the 21st time), it’s as easy as 1,2,3 – and that’s not a Jackson 5 reference. 

1. Schedule Your Initial Consultation: You should always start with an initial consultation with a new trainer. It’s the best way to determine if they’re a good personality match and the best fit for your goals. (Think of it like a first date, but for your fitness). When you fill out our consultation form, we’ll do our best to match you with the right trainer for your needs. 

2. Come On In: Once you’re matched with a trainer, you’ll come in for your free 30-minute consult. This is where you’ll go over your health and fitness history with your trainer (see, we told you it’s like a date) so that they can give you accurate training and nutrition recommendations. You’ll also get a complimentary InBody scan at this appointment. This will show your trainer exactly where you are holding the most fat, water, and muscle mass throughout your body. 

3. The Fun Part, Train: This is where you’ll put all those recommendations to good use. After your consultation, your trainer will be ready to schedule your first session with you. You’ll get a custom workout based on your goals, InBody results, and health history. And you’ll get to experience the luxury of having your very own training lane. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About Personal Training 

Why is personal training so effective?

Personal training is effective because it provides a customized approach to fitness. Since no two bodies are the same, no two workout plans should be the same either. A personal trainer designs a workout plan according to your unique health history, fitness goals, activity levels, and eating habits. This 1-on-1 attention ensures that you perform exercises correctly, maximizing the benefits of your workout and reducing the risk of injury

What are the benefits of a personal trainer?

There are tons! But the most beneficial reasons to hire a personal trainer are for the custom workout plans, expert exercise guidance, motivation, accountability, and nutritional advice. 

What qualifications should I look for in a personal trainer?

Look for a personal trainer with a certification from a reputable organization, like the American Council on Exercise (ACE), National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), or International Sports Sciences Association (ISSA). Additionally, check for any specialized certifications or experience relevant to your goals, such as strength and conditioning, weight loss, or injury rehabilitation.

What’s the difference between a personal trainer and a strength coach?

A personal trainer focuses on helping individuals achieve their overall fitness goals, like weight loss, muscle building, or improving general health. A strength coach specializes in developing and implementing strength and conditioning programs, often for athletes or individuals looking to improve their performance in specific sports or activities, like Olympic weightlifting or powerlifting.

What is the average price for a personal training session?

Each trainer has their own rate, but a personal training session typically costs between $120 to $160 per hour.

Finding Your Perfect Fit

If you feel like the scale has been stuck for months, you’re sick of nagging injuries, or you want to start training like an athlete again, getting matched with one of our Mclean personal trainers can be a game-changer. Your fitness journey is a long one, so why go at it alone? Having a partner who’s as committed to your success as you are can make all the difference. If you have any questions, you can call us at 703-213-2900. And don’t forget to follow us on Instagram! We love sharing updates about our gym, our trainers, and our clients on there.  

Ready to get started? Click here to fill out a contact form so we can connect you with the perfect personal trainer for your goals!

[1] Westcott WL. Resistance training is medicine: effects of strength training on health. Curr Sports Med Rep. 2012 Jul-Aug;11(4):209-16. doi: 10.1249/JSR.0b013e31825dabb8. PMID: 22777332.