Working with a personal trainer is a growing fitness trend for 2015. There is good reason for this interest. Great trainers can jump start your success by helping you develop a plan that meets your unique needs and goals. If hiring a trainer isn’t in your budget you can still enjoy some of the benefits. For example, set up just one session to get advice about training and form. You can also check with your fitness center about free training with membership. Group training is another money saving option. If none of these options works for you take this advice from a personal trainer to nail a new personal best.

Meals matter, so don’t skip

Egg sandwich.Good nutrition is an important building block for optimal fitness. Your diet should include a healthy mix of protein, fiber and complex carbohydrates. Personal trainers advise eating small, regular meals throughout the day rather than skipping. Select nutrient dense options because food is fuel for your workout. Adequate nutrition gives your body the energy it needs to build endurance and muscle. Missed or poor quality meals rob you of the energy you need to go the extra mile or push through another rep. Don’t forget the post workout snack. Good choices include low fat chocolate milk, low-fat Greek yogurt with berries or a protein shake with bananas.

Watch your form: Less can be more

It is far better to do 10 bicep curls or push-ups with perfect form than it is to do 20 with poor form. When it comes to exercise, go for quality over quantity. Trainers warn of the top two reasons to get your moves right. First, poor form puts you at greater risk for a sidelining injury. Stay in the game with good form. Second, poor form means your workout probably offers reduced or little benefit to the muscle you are targeting. Get the most from your workout with slow, controlled movements. Check your form in the mirror and adjust as needed.

Add variety: Don’t get stuck in the same old routine

Personal trainer helping woman at gymOur ability to adapt is a tremendous asset in terms of survival but when it comes to exercise, not so much. If you’ve hit a weight loss plateau, you know what I mean. Because our bodies are engineered to adapt the workout that worked so well two months ago is now a breeze and the scale won’t budge. Personal trainers advise changing up your workout by adding new challenges. Add more running intervals or sprints to your miles. Trade a day of spinning for kickboxing.  Changing up helps you build endurance, burn calories, engage different muscles and boost overall fitness.

Know your why: Identify reasons, not excuses

A big factor in developing a successful fitness habit is appropriate motivation. Personal trainers have heard just about every excuse in the book. They have also seen people make exercise a priority despite crazy busy schedules. The difference is motivation. When we are captivated by the why of exercise, the how of it feels more possible. In other words, if you have a compelling reason to lace up those sneakers you will be less likely to succumb to the siren call of the couch.

Take this advice from personal trainers and take your fitness to the next level.