I tried personal training at the Wellness Center so you don’t have to

So I’ve never been a skinny-mini. I enjoy my greasy Rat food and trying every new Instagram-worthy ice cream place available. As my campus involvements became more significant, my time spent at the gym became non-existent. During winter break, I realized it was time for a change and made a conscious effort to start eating better and getting some sort of physical activity in at least three times a week. I did that for a couple weeks before I realized I was going to need someone to really push me to reach my goal, someone who knew the right exercises and what part of the bodies to work to get everything toned: I needed a personal trainer.

And luckily that is one of the Herbert Wellness Center’s many services.

The Introduction

For students, you can buy one, one-hour session of personal training for $32, or eight sessions at a discounted rate of $224 (they also have a Buddy session where you can do the session with a friend and it becomes even cheaper!). The first step in the process is completing two simple forms to complete a Fitness Assessment exam. The process costs $20 (but it gets refunded to your session costs, so consider it a down payment). During the fitness assessment, you work with a Wellness Center representative and they monitor and evaluate your physical abilities to create a Customer Profile. They measured all parts of my body so that at any time during my training, I could come back and re-measure myself to see where my progress was. Next, they shared my results with me and told me where I landed amongst other 20-year-old females so I could get a sense of where I was in comparison.

Afterwards, they said they’d contact me once they found a trainer whose schedule coordinated with mine. The whole process took about 20 minutes and it was easy to schedule in between classes. That being said, with my busy schedule, it took longer than anticipated to find a trainer with a correlating schedule – if your schedule varies from week to week, you may experience this as well.

Day One: Friday

I was assigned to Trainer Lauren. She is a second-year graduate student who (casually) also helps train our Miami Hurricanes football team. She was super nice and explained my personally designed workout plan and what we would focus on each day. We started with basic stretching and then did a lower-body focused session. The whole time she taught me proper form to avoid injuries and would adjust the weights as necessary so I could do the exercises right, but with enough weight to work out. I left training sore and sweating but feeling great after the three circuits we completed. After the first session, I knew not only was I matched with the right trainer for my needs, but that it would help me in achieving my goals. She was conversational and made the environment friendly. It felt as though I was working out with a friend.

One thing that I found kind of awkward, though it’s not the trainer’s fault, is that you’re working out in the Main Gym – you’re not in a private training room. So if you feel you may be embarrassed if your friends or classmates see you with your trainer, this may not be for you.

Bonus Day: Saturday

Something I was surprised about was that my trainer checked up on me the following day, a Saturday no less, to see how I was doing. She also suggested an app, “Couch to 5K”, that I can use on the days we don’t meet to work on my cardio. I thought it was incredibly sweet and liked the personal interest she showed in how I was doing.

Day Two: Monday

Day two was infinitely harder. We worked on upper body strength and did pull ups, dives, Supermans and then back to doing weights and the bike. Having never done a pull up, I was terrified of potentially falling, but she helped me until I was confident using the machine. While assisting me, she kept encouraging me to keep going and complete the reps, and by the end of it, I was doing it on my own (and well, according to her!). She did it in a way that wasn’t intimidating, but supportive enough to push me to meet my goals, which is something I appreciated. Like our first session, I left sweaty and sore, but feeling great having done something I hadn’t done before.


Though it may come off as pricey, if you need guided help, have a goal you want to achieve in a moderated way and want someone to help push and motivate you --- go to the Wellness Center and start personal training. Try it once and I guarantee that you’ll fall in love.