Personal trainers seem to have many “secrets” to help their clients lose weight, get in shape, prepare for an upcoming season or attain whatever fitness goals the client may set for themselves. These trainers earned their certifications through studying and hard work, so it’s no surprise they seem to have an edge when it comes to working out. They are taught the most efficient ways to tackle any weight loss obstacle or stubborn fat problems. They maintain a good understanding of human anatomy, exercise physiology,  applied kinesiology, nutrition, and the physiology of training. In other words, they know how the body works, and they know what works and what doesn’t work when it comes to working out.

There are many different areas in which a personal trainer can focus their studies and a wide variety of clientele to choose from based on something that interests the trainer. Each personal trainer is going to bring something new and special to a client based on past experiences and areas of study. Styles will be different and methods of teaching will vary, but there are a few secrets that all personal trainers share. These secrets allow the trainer to help the client get over a weight-loss plateau or strength gain wall that may have been hit. They motivate and inspire the uninspired, unmotivated or wavering gym-goer who can’t decide whether or not to fully commit to an exercise program that could potentially change their lives for the better.

Here are some of the best kept personal trainer secrets:

Adherence: Adherence, or the consistent active involvement in an exercise program, and how personal trainers seem to get people motivated to stick with a program, is a major secret. The vast majority of training sessions aren’t free, and a number of people are not fully committed to change their behavior in a way that is going to bring about regular adherence to an exercise program. So how do personal trainers seem to continually get people to shell out the cash? The secret lies in the ability of the trainer to understand who they’re working with. For you, you have to understand what it is you really want. The trainer decides someone’s level of motivation and exercise history before setting exercise guidelines. You must do the same for yourself. If you find motivation and adherence difficult, your exercise history is probably limited. Because of this, you may start a program that it entirely too involved and advanced for you. The next step is usually to stop working out. The excuses roll out, and the often-heard phrase, “This is too hard.” begins to ring out. You have to start small with daily attainable fitness goals. This takes the “too hard” excuse away and leaves room for adherence. Personal trainers know this, so they set small goals that can be met. Once met, the client starts to see change, and he or she will start to see goals being met and see consistent exercise occur. Self-efficacy, or positive thinking is established. This is the first secret that must be discovered. You have to think positively and believe that you can accomplish your goals. Once you believe, the actions taken next will lead you to your goals.

Track your progress: You must record your goals and set up a record-keeping system to record workouts and track progress toward goals.

Proper resistance increase: Your goals will never be met if you are not increasing the resistance properly. This is completely relative to your goals. The secret is simple: to continue getting stronger, add more resistance to your workouts as you get stronger. It sounds elementary, but you would be surprised at the huge number of fitness members who level-out or plateau due to the fact that they never increase their weight, or increase it too seldom. Whether you are performing 20 reps or 6 reps, once the weight you are pushing, pulling or lifting becomes easy for the last few reps, it’s time to increase weight and get stronger. You can add as much as 5% per week if you are working out three times per week.

Work fatigued muscles: To really get the most out of your workouts during a workout, don’t allow your muscles time to fully recover, and they’ll learn to withstand fatigue better. As a result, over time you’ll improve your ability to churn out more repetitions. That means more muscle. When you start to “feel the burn”, it’s not time to stop, it’s time to push yourself. Always rest when necessary. Personal trainers are effective because they bring out something in their clients that they may not have known they had. If you want to steal that secret, you must push yourself.

Keep the heart rate up: Losing weight and getting in great shape is all about burning calories. When you are working fatigued muscles, your heart is maintaining it’s proper exercise rate. A great secret is to keep moving from machine to machine. If you work your hamstrings on a machine, while they rest between sets move to an arm machine or free-weight exercise for the upper body. While the arms rest, move back to the leg exercise. This simple addition to our workout can work wonders for your fitness.

Rest & Stretch: Allow proper rest time between workouts. Drink plenty of water and get plenty of sleep. Your muscles will recoup more efficiently and you will be able to work harder during the next session, in turn getting the most out of your workouts. Lengthened muscles and flexible muscles are more adept to strength gains. Stretch after a warmup and again after a cool down.

You have just learned some of the best kept personal trainer secrets. Add them to your workout program and reap the benefits.