About 90 percent of my clients are female. I think of myself as an expert on women and weight loss for a few obvious reasons: I am female, I have traveled on my own fat loss journey and stayed true to it in the real world. I’ve walked at least a couple of miles in my client’s shoes. I also study things specific to women and fat loss: hormone balance, pregnancy and how to strength train to meet a woman’s unique goals and challenges.
I am of the opinion that most women are better off with a female trainer. I don’t mean to sound sexist and I am not implying that male personal trainers are necessarily any less educated.
Except when they choose not to be. That’s the problem. I’ve seen it too often. The male trainer carries his body building techniques over to his client’s sessions. Take Goldie, one of my most awesome success stories, as an example. She wanted to lose fat. She wanted to have energy to play with her granddaughter. Her previous trainer had her hitting each body part one time per week, doing a lot of isolation and machine exercises. He told her to stay on the elliptical until it said she had burned a certain number of calories (an inaccurate measure and one that left her on the elliptical for way more time than she should have been). While this maybe great for him, a competitive body builder, it wasn’t working at all for her.
The other thing is guys just don’t get some of the things we go through.
- He doesn’t get that you don’t want to weigh at “that time of the month”.
- He doesn’t understand when you burst into tears because your frustrated or angry when reviewing your food log or miss a goal.
- He doesn’t get the frustration of a trying to be superwoman, of putting everyone else first.
- It’s hard to feel comfortable doing fire hydrants in front of the opposite sex.
- He’s not going to have a good sports bra recommendation.
These aren’t things that necessarily make up a fitness program (with the exception of the fire hydrants) but they can be just as important. A good personal trainer/client relationship is based on comfort level and trust. For you to be successful, to let yourself be challenged out of your comfort zone, you need to have a good connection with your personal trainer. You need to feel safe and free to be open about your body. I believe that can be challenging for a female with a male personal trainer. It’s not their fault (unless it is), it’s just hard to get it if you’ve never lived it.
Am I wrong? Ladies, if you’ve worked with a male trainer tell me how it went?