My Career Plan
If you’ve been following me on Instagram, you will have heard me mention (once or twice) that I have just started my personal training course. As you know, leading an active and healthy lifestyle is something that I am passionate (yes, that over-used word) about. I love to work out and I love the many benefits that exercising brings. I’ve been writing my own workouts and have enjoyed training the odd family member (occasionally) for several years now, so it seemed like the obvious thing for me to do was to get the qualification I need to train others. I want to help people to get fitter and lead healthier lives, whilst spending my time doing a job in the industry that I love.
My other main interest is nutrition – again, something which I’ve always been aware of. I am lucky to have grown up in a family where nutrition has been a focus, and I’ve always come home to home-cooked, wholesome meals. This passion is also something that I want to pursue, so as of September I am planning on going to university to study nutrition, with the aim of eventually becoming a registered nutritionist. I understand that an issue for many people looking to becoming healthier and fitter is that personal trainers are unable to give detailed nutritional advice, and nutritionists are unable to design exercise programmes for their clients. My intention is to combine these qualifications so that I can offer my clients both. It makes sense for me to do this because nutrition and fitness go hand-in-hand; you cannot separate them because in order to see results, you need both. It doesn’t matter if you’re training 6 times a week; if your diet is poor then you won’t see the results you want. Maybe I’ll want to specialise in an area, such as sports nutrition, but for now I’m just going to try and enjoy the journey and I’m excited to see where it takes me.
Whilst I hope to enjoy the learning process over the next few years that I’ll spend in order to begin my career, I’m looking forward to being able to offer my services both as a nutritionist and as a personal trainer, to write useful and helpful blog posts with my knowledge and to help people achieve what they are capable of.
Personal Training Course: Week 1
Now that I’ve explained my plans, I thought I’d tell you a bit more about my personal training (PT) course, as I’ve had several people message me to ask about what exactly it is that I’m doing.
At the beginning of this week, I began my PT course with Premier Global. It’s a full-time, 6-week course with 1-2 days of home study per week. Days of attendance are from 9am to around 5pm. In order to record my experience and also to share it with you lovely readers, I’m going to be uploading a weekly blog post based on how I found that particular week of the course.
Several days before my course started, we were sent reading material in order to prepare us for the content of the first section of the course. Some of the information you are taught at the venue, but some you must learn by yourself. There is quite a lot of content – if you’ve done A levels or been to uni then you’ll be used to having to learn a lot of information. Particularly if you’ve done Biology or PE A level – I did Biology and found that certain familiar topics, such as the heart, the nervous system and muscle contraction are all part of the PT course, but luckily in less detail than you need for Biology A level. I didn’t do PE A level but a girl on my course did and unsurprisingly said that it was very useful. I’ve never covered some of the key topics, such as anatomy, in this much detail before, so it’s taking me a while to get my head around all the names of the bones, muscles, and joints…..But I’m finding it all very interesting.
Weeks 1-2 are for a Level 2 qualification, which is where you can be a gym instructor, and weeks 3-6 are for a Level 3 qualification (personal training). Level 4 personal training is a separate course which you can enroll on if you want to be eligible to work with special population groups, such as those with disabilities or mental health issues. I am going to stay with Level 3 personal training, at least for the time being.
Week 1 also involves a lot of admin-type tasks. Although you do spend some time practising with the machines in the gym and listening to interesting lectures, the truth is that you’ll be spending the majority of your time sitting down indoors (ironic when you’re learning about how harmful inactivity and sedentary lifestyles are). A lot of this involves completing some less exciting worksheets which you’ll be assessed on. Like most things, it’s not all interesting and fun. For example, I never knew that coaching someone to get on to a treadmill could be so complicated – who knew there is a specific way to do this?!
I found the whole process a little confusing at first and would have liked a bit more structure and more detailed guidelines, such as a timetable and clearer instructions for certain tasks. Nonetheless, I’m keen to learn more and the course has made me realise just how much information there is out there to do with movement and the body – it’s practically infinite and this course only covers a tiny percentage of it all. I fully intend to enroll on further courses in specific areas once qualified as I want to learn much, much more about it all.
Next week I have theory exams and practical exams (already!) and unfortunately my practical exam falls on the same day as my A level Results Day, so I can’t say I’m really looking forward to this coming week as I have no doubt that my stress levels will be at a rather unhealthy level. This weekend has involved quite a lot of revision for my upcoming exams – heads up, the course is time-consuming!
Whilst I’m on the topic of time, I would just like to add that this course is also pretty energy-consuming. Commuting in and out almost every day alone is tiring and after getting up at 6am and getting home at 6pm-ish, it is really hard to motivate yourself to train. Ironic, you might think – as I did. I’m training to become a personal trainer, I love fitness and yet sometimes I don’t have the time or energy to train. But, as I’m still learning, sometimes you have to go with what your body is telling you. For example, after a couple of sessions already this week, I had full-body DOMS and came home feeling shattered on Friday, so I knew that training simply wasn’t on the cards.
Despite being relatively sedentary throughout the day and training less during the week, my appetite levels are through the roof (which, if you know me, is VERY high) and yet I’m probably in my best shape. My nutrition is very good at the moment – I enjoy eating healthily and by preparing my snacks and lunch the night before (#tupperwarelife) I make sure that I’m getting what I need and not snacking on rubbish. I don’t track macros or count calories, I simply eat when I’m hungry, stop when I’m full and make sure that I’m consuming plenty of vegetables and protein, along with wholegrain carbohydrates and not too much naturally-occurring sugar (such as fructose), as things like fruit are very easy to over-snack on.
Alright, I’m going to wrap up this rather long post now! I hope this was helpful and if you have any questions about the course that I’m doing or if there’s anything else you’d like me to blog about, then please comment below!
Thanks for reading!