A suggestion for aspiring personal trainers: study your supplements.
I chose personal training for this month’s Learning the Ropes feature because it’s a fulfilling line of work that gives you the power to do whatever you want. Just remember what Uncle Ben Parker famously told his nephew, Peter Parker: “With great power comes great responsibility.”
Peter became Spider-Man; you can become a responsible trainer.
A large part of your job will consist of discovering what works for your clients and helping them achieve their goals that way. You’ll instruct them in the gym or at home, and you may even recommend products they can try in or out of a workout to help them out. That’s where I want you to be careful.
It’s not that there aren’t any safe, effective fitness products and supplements out there. You can walk into a Southern Muscle or GNC or similar shop and buy things that actually work as advertised. While I can’t stop you from doing this, I just hope nobody who reads the feature and decides to go down this path plans to hawk the popular placebo products seen in many of the multi-level marketing schemes (which happen to be shaped like pyramids) people clog your Facebook feed with every day.
Many of these things either don’t work as advertised or don’t do anything but make you think they’re working. I’ve written about this in the past, but it bears repeating. I hate seeing people buy into scams not knowing or not caring that they only exist for some schmuck at the top of a pyramid to make a bunch of money off of them and everyone who sold a product and recruited X number of people to sell as required. Before you recommend something, please do your research to make sure these things actually work.
There are companies out there that claim their stuff’s scientifically proven to work and can provide studies, but here’s the kicker: those are bought and paid for. People were hired to give the appearance of “outside confirmation” that these products really work, but following the money says otherwise. Look for independent studies instead — anything not financed by the company whose products are the focus of a study. If you can’t find anything online, ask your doctor about a product’s listed ingredients and whether it could actually work.