When you enter the fitness area at the FFC West Loop club, you may get the instant impression that there are a lot of personal trainers. They seem to occupy much of the open space available and at times, can have their clients doing some interesting exercises.

And at one point, it has probably crossed your mind to wonder who these trainers actually are and what their backgrounds are like. There can be a lot of assumptions and common misconceptions about personal trainers.

It’s natural to assume they are all athletes or body builders, studied exercise science, and probably have been fit their entire lives (maybe even came out of the womb with a six pack). If you’re not interested in becoming the hulk, they probably don’t have much to offer you, right?

While this is an understandable assumption, the reality is the average member can relate to and benefit from a trainer much more than they think.

We’re Not All Fitness 24/7

Many of our trainers did not enter college thinking they would be in the fitness world. In fact, quite a few had other jobs before becoming trainers. Whether it was working in management, being a business owner, marine, accountant, lawyer, or dancer, the diversity of backgrounds of the personal training staff at West Loop is impressive.

In terms of education, several trainers have experience in graduate school, including master’s programs, dental school, pharmacy school, and law school. Undergraduate educations range from chemistry to architecture, criminology, business management, Spanish, and psychology.

You might be wondering how a degree in architecture is going to help you get in better shape, but the relevance is that we are not the typical fitness enthusiasts that many people think we are. Clients also sometimes assume that trainers are perfect, healthy specimens that stuff kale and coconut oil in their pockets and exercise three times a day when in fact we face the same difficulties as everyone else. Several trainers at West Loop have been overweight during their lives, usually because their old jobs were stressful and made living a healthy lifestyle very difficult. Sound familiar?

What Our Trainers Can Offer You

The trainers at FFC have been hired because they are very qualified and knowledgeable, but experiencing success with a trainer is about much more than their knowledge. Knowing that your trainer has experienced significant weight loss, has suffered the same injury as you, or understands the challenges of eating well while balancing school and work puts them in a better position to help you overcome similar challenges.

Related: on the flip side, trainers also learn a lot from their clients. Check out this recent post to see a first-hand account!

The reason why we ended up at FFC is because we are passionate about helping people improve themselves. The training team at West Loop has created a unique culture: we teach each other, learn from each other, and are excited to share what we know with anyone who is interested in learning more. Whether you decide to invest in us or not, we are here to help. Throughout the day, odds are you will see several of us hanging around, working out together, or reading up on continuing education resources when we are not with a client.

So what can they do for you?

In reality, less than a tenth of members at FFC work with a trainer. But your membership isn’t just access to equipment. It also is a subscription to all the health and fitness knowledge that the personal trainers have. So take a chance and get to know some of those trainers you see every day, and you may be surprised at what you find out.

Post written by FFC West Loop personal trainer Paras Patel.


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