Personal Trainer for a Day–Trainer Courtney

This morning right after posting, the clouds parted and the rain stopped. After a quick check with the weather channel, I saw there was a break in the rain for a little while.

I too advantage and laced up my sneakers for a quick run:


3 miles and done. I had an itch to run outside, and it was a good one! Followed up by a little Niko walk and training some clients.

Now I’ve got a few more hours of work for the day, but I have a special treat for you guys! – the third week of Trainer for a Day Series!



Today, we’re talking to trainer Courtney, from Sweet Tooth Sweet Life.


I had the pleasure of meeting Courtney at Healthy Living Summit 2010 (and again in 2011.) Back when she told me she was thinking of becoming certified, I knew she’d be awesome. In fact, some exciting news for her today – she was just announced as Best Personal Trainer Blog by The Fitterati Awards through Fitness Magazine. Congrats, girl!

Take it away, Courtney!

1. How long have you been training?

A little over three months. I’m a newbie!

2. What’s your schedule for a "typical" work day?

Haha, I don’t think I have a typical work day! My schedule changes from day to day – some days I go in from 6-9am, then leave and come back at 3pm. Some days I
don’t start until 3pm. It’s ALL over the place.

3. What’s your favorite part of being a personal trainer?

Interacting with the clients, definitely. I love being able to help them work toward their health and fitness goals, and know that I played somewhat of a part in that.

4. What’s your least favorite part of being a personal trainer?

The “selling myself” aspect. I am not a natural seller by any means, nor am I pushy. I have no problem talking to new people, but when it comes down to asking them for money, I tend to struggle with that a bit. It’s something I’m still working on.

5. What’s your training "style?"

This is funny, because depending on which clients of mine you ask, you’re most likely to get different answers. Overall, I try to keep a strong presence, pushing when needed, but not in a “woah, in your face” kind of way. I’ve had some clients (jokingly) tell me I’m a masochist; I’ve had other clients tell me I was “a lot harder than I thought.” Unfortunately, it seems like because I’m a girl (and somewhat of a girly girl, I guess) people perceive me as “easy” or someone who isn’t going to push them hard. But I’ll tell ya…it’s the BEST feeling when they find out otherwise!


6. How does a typical personal training session go? (format, is there a training log, type
of exercise, etc)

First, the client will fill out my training log. Next, we get into our exercises, which usually progress similar to this basic outline: foam rolling & stretching, 5 minute cardio warm up, core exercises, balance exercises, reactive exercises (jumping, etc.), and strength exercises. Depending on the client, the exercises will vary, but just about everyone I see will do some form of this.

7. Do you have a training "niche" or specialization?

Hmmm, I don’t know? I think I’m still trying to figure that all out. I do, however, like to use as few machines as possible when I work with clients. I’d much rather have them do exercises incorporating bodyweight and other equipment (i.e., dumbbells, stability balls, resistance bands, medicine balls, etc) because they end up working so much harder.

8. How many clients do you train in a week on average?

Right now, I’m at about 7-8 one-on-one clients, but I also teach group sessions which can include anywhere between 2-12 people, and that changes all the time. The group session are fun, but I really enjoy the one-on-one interaction better.

9. Do you participate in another job at the gym in addition to training? (group fitness,
employee, etc) If so, how does that work around your training schedule?

I teach a 30 minute Tabata class at my gym, which I pretty much build my personal training schedule around. I teach that class five times a week, so I started using that as a guide for when I wanted to create somewhat of a “loose” schedule for myself.

10. What advice would you have for someone thinking of signing up with a personal

Know in advance what type of a trainer you DO want, and what kind of a trainer you DON’T want. All of the trainers I work with are very different in their training styles, and we all tend to have the clients that we have because our personalities don’t clash. You want to be able to have a good rapport with your trainer, which will make your sessions together that much more enjoyable and productive.

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  1. I kind of love learning about the different styles each trainer has. I really like how she says she is a intense, there when you need it kind of presence. I feel like that one would be the most helpful for me. Thanks for doing this post!

  2. I adore you and Courtney both! Hopefully I will be a full-time trainer soon after being only part-time for 5 years!

  3. Great to see Courtney hear! She is awesome and deserves her award :) looking forward to meeting her this week in NYC at Fitness!

    When I train I try to use as few machines as possible too. I think working with balls, dumbbells, etc works your whole body more and is way more efficient. Plus I feel like people rely too much on the machines. It’s good to have a ball or dumbbell around at home – you can do so much with it and train outside of the PT session. If you only know how to use machines, you won’t be doing much training outside of a gym!

  4. I would totally love it if you and Courtney trained me! I’m sure I would get amazing workouts :). Love you both!

  5. Thanks for featuring Courtney today, she is one of my favorite bloggers! I would love to someday get a personal training license, but no plans as of yet. We will see what the future holds though!

  6. Great post! I’m hoping to get my certification sometime this year so I love these posts you are doing :) I also love Courtney’s blog too

  7. Don’t you just love it when the weather does exactly what you want (or need) it to do!? 😀

  8. I am so happy for her award! How awesome is that? I have been thinking about getting certified and you both are making me want to even more! :) I read both of your blogs religiously and so happy to see good things happening to both of you!

  9. I haven’t read her blog yet, but I already love her! This was such a great segment! Thank you for sharing this Paige!

    • She is, Sarena! You’ll love her blog. Can’t wait to hear what you have to say for the answers! :)

  10. Great post and guest post!


  1. […] by Paige on May 8, 2012 Pin itMorning, Sunshines! Glad ya’ll enjoyed Trainer Courtney’s day in the life of a personal trainer post! She mentioned some great tips if you haven’t had time to check it out […]

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