The Process of Setting goals to Become a Personal Trainer

The Process of Setting goals to Become a Personal Trainer 

Introduction: How many times have you heard someone tell you to set goals? But setting goals won't do anyone any good without developing them. In this article you will be expected to set some goals, develop objectives toward reaching those goals, exact details what each will look like, when it is accomplished, and a date for a deadline. Whew!! Being a personal trainer is not for the weak at heart.

Just as way of introduction, think of a goal as something big, far away that will take many steps to attain, like getting a job, making and having your savings account with your first $100,000 or going to Europe. Goals are fun to think about, fun to write down, and fun to reach, which often just doesn't happen. The reason for that is, a goal is just a goal. A "developed" goal is one that guides you step by step, holds expectations and keeps you focused. Rarely does anything you want badly just happen. It takes some work on your part. Goals without development are merely "wishes."

The meat of the goal is the behavioral objective. Behavioral because it signifies exactly what you have to do or what you will physically do. It requires concrete action with deadlines. Not that those deadlines or actions cannot be altered, tweaked or moved, but concrete action with deadlines, none-the-less. As each objective is accomplished you step closer to your goal. In developed goals your progress can be seen, noted as successes, and create positive feelings that you are doing something to make your life happen. It gives you a way to take charge of your life.

In this article the focus will be on goals for your career as a professional personal trainer, but it is a great thing to keep a developmental goal journal for everything, because you will achieve more of what you want to do in life, as opposed to just sitting back and waiting for them to happen. 

A. Set your goals.  Hopefully one of those was about becoming a professional personal trainer. On a new page in your class journal or a new document in your digital folder, label it as Goal #1. Take one of your goals that you wrote for your job, for example: I want to become a professional personal trainer. Give it a date. "I want to be a professional personal trainer by March 15, 2017." Now think for a minute what the words "to be a professional personal trainer" mean to you. To some it may mean having accreditation, for someone else it might mean to be working full time in such a job and for another person it might mean opening a new fitness center.

Take the goal and write it again only this time be specific. "I want to have a full time job as an accredited professional personal trainer at City Fitness Center by March 15, 2017." That is a specific, concrete goal. Anyone, come March 15, 2017 will be able to look at your life and say, "yes he accomplished his goal," or "no, he did not accomplish his goal." There is no doubt. You have stated exactly what you want, specifically what it will look like and a deadline for it to happen. It really isn't hard once you get the hang of it.

Take another goal. "I want to make lots of money." What do you mean by make lots of money? Make this specific, concrete, something you can actually measure and give it a deadline. "I want to build a solid client base of 25 regular clients, with 5 regular classes at two different gyms." This is better but still lacking. There is no deadline. "I want to have 25 solid and regular clients with 5 on-going classes by March 15, 2018." This will bring in money but gives the goal more substance than just saying your goal is to make more money. On March 15, 2018, there will be no doubt if you accomplished this goal or not. You will meet your goal, or have changed it along the way as you learn more, or you will not meet it and adjust the deadline. Even if you don't meet your goals exactly, you will be closer than you would have been had you not set a goal and developed it. There is no secret to this. Write a goal so anyone who reads it can know and understand exactly what you hope to accomplish, how it will be done and under what timeline. You can pause for a while now and work on your three goals or wait until the article is over. Each goal should have its own worksheet, page or document.


B. The whole objective becomes clear. Now that you have the idea about writing goals, the next step is to write the objectives that come under each goal. The objective is also written in behavioral terms, specific, and concrete and have a deadline. These take the goal and break it down into manageable steps. Each goal may have many objectives. Whatever it takes to accomplish your goal is what you develop. Think of it like a checklist, a set of steps that guide you.

Use that first goal and mark it as #1.

1. "I will have 20 solid and regular clients signed up to work with me, and 5 on-going classes by April 15, 2018."

Now, below it, write each step you will have to take to achieve this goal, in order or not.

Interested in learning more? Why not take an online Personal Trainer course?

a. I will get at least one accreditation with ____________(the place you chose) by January 1, 2017.

b. I will get a job working in a gym in any capacity (janitor, towel folder, desk clerk) by November1, 2016.

c. I will shadow a personal trainer at the gym where I work for one month by March 1, 2017.

d. I will gain employment at some gym as a personal trainer by May 1, 2017.

e. I will receive a good evaluation from my supervisor for skills, client interaction, and ethics by August 1, 2017.

f. I will teach no less than 3 classes either at the gym or in my personal time at a community center, nursing home, assisted living center, preschool, or recreation center, by November 1, 2017.

g. I will sign up 5 personal clients to work with in the gym, at individual homes, in a park, or at a recreation or community center, each once a week, by January 1, 2018.

h. I will begin 2 more classes to add to the three I already teach by February 1, 2018.

i. I will sign on 10 more personal clients by March 1, 2018.

j. I will increase my client base by 5 more before April 15, 2018.

As these goals were written, the original goal for March 15 was set forward to April 15, and the goal of 25 changed to 20 clients as reality closed in and it was clear that working toward that initial goal was too much too soon to be realistic. That is another purpose for developing goals. If forces you to look at what it will take to reach that goal and cause you to make appropriate adjustments rather than simply have an unachievable goal. The fun part is checking off each objective as it is achieved. You have 10 chances to be successful on the way to your goal. It is a positive and motivating experience, a guide for you to follow and a plan that takes you in the right direction for your life.

C. A man, a plan, a canal - Panama. It could be said, "Rome wasn't built in a day," but the Panama palindrome is just more fun to use. It is easy to see how using developing goals and setting up the objectives toward reaching those goals is the only logical way to get anywhere in a timely and organized manner. You can in fact make some smaller steps beneath each objective and call it a list. If you do use sticky notes that you can carry with you to review and move yourself along daily.

The final part of a "developing" goal is that you have to review them on a weekly if not a daily basis. Keeping your focus on these goals means you have to see them, know them, look for the opportunities, and not let "stuff" get in your way. That is not to say that you should put blinders on to keep out the rest of life. There is a balance you must find with the rest of your life, and it is just as important that you understand that balance, know how to maintain it and function well within it.

There are some people who are so driven toward their job, making money and pushing themselves to achieve more and more that they lose that healthy balance and with it their friends, their health, and often their families. These parts of your life must work together like pars of your body. They certainly can work separately, but when you get your body parts to work together, everything is smoother. That is why goals are meant to be rewritten, adjusted, and yes even changed as you move through your life. Life is, and so must your goals be, a work in progress. Things happen that might move the accomplishments of your goals closer and other things happen that might move them further away. Accidents are part of life and can affect you and those you love. Everyone is affected by illness of themselves or others, by mother nature's rampages, by new regulations, community changes, and so many other possible interferences that they cannot be listed in this space.

As you progress through life, what is important to you may change. Be prepared and be willing to adjust your goals. You are in charge of your goals. No one else is. So you have to take up that charge and move as you see fit. Your values and your visions will build new connections and let go of others. That is meant to happen as a person matures and builds relationships, learns new things, and finds other ambitions.

Don't see adjusting your goals as a defeat. It is not. In fact, it is refining them to fit the refinement of yourself. Life has a way of bringing the important things more into focus as one moves along. Adjustments are a good way to flow smoothly on your journey.

D. Conclusion and Assignments: Writing goals and objectives is not difficult, but you should give them some serious thought. This will be important to work on before you get to the business plan. A business plan is just a footnote to a life plan and your life plan should be based in your goals, not just for you career, but for all things. 

To sum up your assignments for this article:

1. Write three goals that are specific, concrete, and with a deadline

2. Develop objectives for them that are behavioral. They tell exactly the behavior you will perform, what it will look like and employ a deadline.

3. Take time to read over them, make sure there will be a way to know or measure if you have achieved each one.

4. Adjust as necessary, do a bit of research both on line and in your local community

5. Your goals can be short term or long term or in between. Some people think of their objectives as short term goals.

6. And, again, keep your work organized because you will be referring back to it as you progress.

P.T. Tips  
Know yourself. Some people are happy and content in the employee of others.Some people want only to become their own boss. Some like the consistency of the paycheck the normalcy of routine and the accountability of reporting to a supervisor. Others like to be free to take charge of what they do, are more self-motivated, handle stress well, and want the ability to push the limits. If you are organized, manage well, motivated, and business wise, goals to eventually work for yourself may make sense. Until you acquire these abilities, desires and skills, you might do well to seek out an established gym for your first few years or longer. Your health and happiness ride on following a plan that works with your temperament and personality.