The Diet Detective: How to Be Your Own Personal Trainer

Good personal trainers do more than just teach you about exercise: They make sure that every visit to the gym counts, monitor your goals, keep your workouts at a steady pace, and offer motivation when you begin to run on fumes. Follow these tips, and you'll be on the way to becoming your own personal trainer.

1. Set Very Specific, Targeted, Achievable, Motivating Goals

Ask yourself the following: What exactly do I want to achieve with my routine? Have a body like a swimsuit model? Look like an old high school photo? Be able to run a marathon in under five hours? Lose weight? Feel better? Walk longer? Run 5 miles?

Once you have that goal, you need to figure out if it's achievable. Can you look like a swimsuit model? Possible? Then fine. Will you be able to run 26 miles in less than five hours? Maybe, or it might take several years to get there. Make sure your goals are "doable" within the time frame you've allotted.

More: 6 Tips to Stick to Your Weight-Loss Goals

2. Write Out Your Exact Workout

There is no messing around if you have your exact workout written down. Bring a chart to the gym to check off each and every workout, or use a phone application. Use a stopwatch for exercises that involve time.

3. Review Every Week

Goals should be measurable, so you know if you're on the road to success. For example, weighing yourself once a week tells you if you're heading in the right direction. WRITE IT DOWN, or use an app to keep track.

4. Take Measurements

It's really important to look at measurements, in addition to the number on the scale.

Most good personal trainers will take body measurements during your first session. No reason why you shouldn't do the same.

Neck: ________________ Abdominal: ______________ Waist: _________________
Shoulder: _______________ Hip: _________________ Chest: ___________________
Thigh (Mid): ________________ Arm: (L) _______________ (R ): _____________

Blood Pressure: ___
Resting Heart Rate: ___

Take these measurements every month to track your progress. Again, keep a log and write it all down.

More: 3 Tips to Measure Fitness Health

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