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Online Personal Trainers: What Are Your Options?

weights on computer

With everyone becoming busier by the day, it's getting harder and harder to make it to the gym, let alone abide by your personal trainer's schedule. 

This is one of the main reasons why online personal training is vastly growing in popularity. It offers the convenience of a personalized fitness program from the comfort of your home that is tailored to your specific goals.

The best advantage is that since you can work out at your convenience, you are more likely to stick with the training and, therefore, realize your goals faster.

There are many advantages to using an online training program that you wouldn't get if you hired a "real" personal trainer.

1- The program is created for you instantly
This is a big advantage for those who really want to start something right away. A "live" trainer, on the other hand, may need to take a few days to come up with your routine.

2- Online programs are developed by a group of professionals
This is far superior to getting a program from one single person, as you only benefit from what they themselves have learned. Also, along with many people contributing to online programs, you can be sure that only programs that have seen success will be recommended, so you can take comfort knowing that whatever program you are given, you will likely see results.

3- The program can be updated as you go
Many online trainers will allow you to type in how many days you wish to work out, or how many sets or different exercises you wish to perform in a single session. This makes it much easier to adapt your workouts to your changing schedule and also reduces the chances of reaching a plateau.

4- It is available 24 hours a day
Finally, the best advantage to using an online personal trainer is that it is available 24 hours a day. Even the hardest working personal trainer needs to have time to rest; computer programs, however, do not. This means that no matter what time you want to workout, the trainer will always be there to guide you.
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More From AskMen:
Why You Need a Trainer

What to Look for in a Personal Trainer 

8 Reasons Why We Fall Off The Workout Wagon 

Cure Boredom at the Gym 

Find a Workout Partner 

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There are a few disadvantages to using online training programs that you should be aware of.
1- No one can spot your form
Since there is no actual person with you, this could potentially set you up for a higher chance of injury -- unless you are knowledgeable on proper technique and have good mind-body awareness.

2- You can't ask specific questions
Often, these trainers will come with answers to general questions you may have, but if this isn't exactly what you are looking for, you will need to research the answers yourself.

3- Online trainers can't always judge your progress
Although you can type in the weight you are lifting or what exercises you are completing, online trainers will not be completely accurate in judging all aspects of your progress. For example, you may have lifted a higher weight one set, but it could have been the result of taking a longer rest period.

4- Online programs can't be tailored to your needs
There may be special considerations you need when getting your program (injury, limited equipment) and unless the online trainer goes through all the different possibilities out there, chances are you might end up with a program that doesn't quite match your specific needs.
before signing up

There are a few things you need to remember before signing up for your training program.

Ensure that you don't have any health problems that you aren't aware of. Set up an appointment with a doctor to ensure you are clear to start
training.

Are you going to need to have a nutrition program set up as well? Some guys get to the gym regularly without any trouble, but don't have a clue about the proper way to fuel themselves to see results. If this describes you, you need to look at an online trainer that will target this aspect of your program.

Remember to take into account how much money you are willing to spend on a program. The cost of training programs can vary considerably, so you need to get the price up front before starting. Otherwise, you could be making a much larger financial commitment than you need to.

Take into account what happens after your training program subscription or trial has expired. Are there options to keep going, and how much does this cost? This is especially important, because fitness is a lifelong journey. If you plan on stopping after you reach your goals, you will slowly return to your former condition.

Train Online or Offline?
When looking at an online personal training program, always be sure to check the credibility of the site. Anyone can create a site and market themselves as a trainer, but this doesn't mean they know what they're doing.

Finally, as with any commitment, check out what their refund or cancellation policy is in case you're not happy with the workouts or are just not interested in continuing. With the proper research, you should be able to find just as good a trainer online as you would in the gym.