Five Reasons to Meet with a Fitness Trainer



A few weeks ago I told you all about my first experience working with a fitness trainer. I had a great time working with East Side Athletic Club's trainer, Vicki. She was encouraging and made me a personalized fitness plan that I could follow on my own time. She also told me about all the groups and offerings that East Side West Side Athletic Clubs offer their members in regards to making a personal fitness trainer a reality for your workouts and budget. 


It got me thinking seriously about WHY someone might want to visit a fitness trainer or have regular meetings with fitness trainers. I came up with five reasons why it is important to me to try to see a fitness trainer whenever possbile. I wonder if some of the reasons might be the same for you. 




  1. It's Personal. This day in age it seems like there are countless different workouts, plans, and apps available to tell you the best way to work out. But, there isn't quite anything like getting a one-on-one with someone who knows your specific goals, sees your current fitness level for what it is, and knows what they are doing. Getting a fitness plan that was specifically made with my goals in mind made a huge difference in my workout. Sure, someone else could have the same exact workout as I do, but I know without a doubt that doing my personalized workout as planned will help me reach my goals efficiently and safely. 
  2. It gives accountability. I'm quite talented at finding excuses to not go to the fitness club to get in a workout. I know that end the end I'll enjoy myself, but I still manage to work myself out of working out 80% of the time. Unless, that is, I have someone waiting for me for the workout or checking in with me often. Even though I am not currently working with my trainer (crazy busy Summer... told you about the excuses!) every time I see Vicki she is checking in on my progress. 
  3. Safety. I don't know a single person who wants to get hurt while working out. However, I do know many people who don't know the proper way to lift or how high is too high for a heart rate. In my very first meeting with a personal fitness trainer we went over the ways to be safe while working out. 
  4. You'll have a cheerleader. Having someone on your side, encouraging you when you think you can't go on, and praising you when you reach a goal is like nothing else. 
  5. Your first two fitness sessions are FREE at East Side Athletic ClubWhat!? Yep, I said free. Meet with a fitness trainer as part of your East Side Athletic Club membership. Might as well try it out and figure out your own reasons for meeting with a fitness trainer!


Over the next few weeks I'll be talking with several of the fitness trainers and letting you in on some of their secrets. 


Photo credit: Photos courtesy of and copyright Free Range Stock 


About the Author: Jenni Bost is a freelance writer living in Portland, Oregon with her husband and toddler son. She is the author and owner of the lifestyle blog A Well Crafted Party. Follow along as she works with East Side Athletic Club and shares her journey to fitness. 

10 Things I've Learned in My Fitness Journey




The funny thing about journeys... you go on them expecting to reach your destination. And, while you may get to your destination in the end, the part that makes it a true journey is the unexpected experiences and lessons learned along the way. My fitness journey so far has been many new experiences and lots of unexpected lessons. While my journey is far from over, I wanted to share ten things I've learned about myself throughout the past couple of months of work. 


workoutjourney1. My body can do a lot more than I thought it could. Before I began my fitness journey with East Side Athletic Club I was at the most unfit I had ever been in my life. I didn't believe that I would be able to make it through an entire fitness class and I was embarrassed to get in front of a trainer. Not only did I complete group fitness classes, but I loved them! My experience with my trainer left me feeling encouraged about where I was and motivated to get fit, rather than embarrassed by my deficiencies. 

2. I enjoy going to the athletic club. I've always considered working out as work. I have had no problems coming up with excuses to not make it to the club for a workout. Every time I get myself out the door and to the club I find that I not only feel better after my visit, but enjoy the visit itself. 


3. I am more likely to visit the athletic club if I schedule it. I'm notoriously bad at making excuses to not get a workout in. I've found that if I schedule a time in my calendar to go to the athletic club then I am more likely to go. Putting group fitness classes in my calendar really gets me out the door beause I have something to look forward to that begins at a set time.


4. I prefer working out with other women over co-ed workout spaces. During my tour of the athletic club I was surprised to see the women's only section of the club. I had never worked out in a space that wasn't co-ed. Now I automatically go to the women's section of the club for my cardio and free-weight work. I feel more comfortable working out among other women.


5. I like free-weights! I never in a million years thought I'd enjoy working with free-weights or lifting at all. In the past I'd used weight machines, but I generally stayed away from the free-weights. After meeting with an Eastside Athletic fitness trainer and getting a personalized workout plan I use the free-weights during all my full-body workouts. 


6. I'm glad I am working out at an "Athletic Club" rather than a "gym." Before touring East Side Athletic Club I really didn't understand what made it an athletic club rather than a gym. I've been a member at gyms before and found the experience fine and effective. But, the amenities that Eastside Athletic Club brings beyond a normal gym— such as child care, massage therapy, group fitness classes, personal trainers, etc.— have made my journey more enjoyable and much more likely to stick as a lifestyle change.


7. I use the Athletic Club to get some kid-free me time and don't feel guilty at all. Being a parent of a toddler is hard. I rarely get anytime to myself— it seems that even the bathroom is no longer off limits now that my child can open doors! I often take advantage of the on-site child care so that I can take some guilt-free time for myself while my son enjoys playing with toys and interacting with other children. The experience is good for me and him both! 


8. The sauna is a great place for meditation and relaxation. I'd once read that ten minutes of meditation a day can help make you more successful. I'm not sure yet if it works, but I'm willing to try it! Because I am a freelance writer and media assistant I am on-line non-stop, all the time. Because I can't bring my iPhone into the sauna I really end up being able to disconnect, reflect, relax, and meditate. I'll let you know if it contributes to success down the road!


9. I still have a ways to go. While I have discovered a lot about myself, my body, and my habits by starting my fitness journey at East Side Athletic Club, I've also discovered that I am further off from my goals that I originally thought. This journey is not going to be completed with a quick fix weight-loss, but rather a full lifestyle change. I have to dedicate myself to the process. Thankfully, I have help when it starts to get hard. Both my fitness trainer and the club manager has expressed their desire to see me succeed in my goals and check in on my journey frequently. I know that when things get really tough I can go to them for a pep-talk. 


10. I need to utilize more of the Athletic Club to achieve my goals. I get comfortable in my routines and stick with them rather than reaching out to try new things. I feel that in order to really achieve my get-fit goals I need to utilize the parts of the Athletic Club that I've not been using as often. I want to try more of the group fitness classes, venture out into the co-ed fitness area, and even try out the swimming pool. 


Thanks so much for reading my journey and what I've learned along the way. I'll keep you updated as I hit milestones. I'm excited about the new series coming to the blog in the upcoming weeks that will introduce you to fitness trainers of the East Side and West Side Athletic Clubs. 


Author Bio: Jenni Bost is a freelance writer and media assistant living in Portland with her son and husband. She is the author of a lifestyle blog featuring all the celebrations that make up the party that is life called A Well Crafted Party. Follow along as she works with East Side Athletic Club and shares about her journey to fitness.



A Club Member's Journey: Getting a Personalized Fitness Plan



Do you ever feel like you've just hit a plateau in your fitness journey? It doesn't matter how hard I feel like I work sometimes, I just can't lose the weight or push the extra mile. I get bored of one cardio machine and will switch to another, just to get bored again. I've been sharing a bit about my fitness journey over the past few weeks here on the Club Blog— and I have finally found a way to NOT get bored, and to push past my plateau. I finally have a personalized fitness plan that pushes me forward, and keeps me from getting bored.  


Getting a Personalized Fitness Plan 


Last week I shared about my first meeting with a fitness trainer. I was so scared going into the meeting. I ended up feeling incredible after meeting with Vicki, and implementing her suggestions. The fitness plan that she set me up with wasn't easy, but it wasn't too hard either. I felt the burning of my muscles during each exercise. But, I was still able to make it through a full workout session, accomplishing each of my goals. 


Vicki Web



I didn't go into my second session with Vicki fearful at all. I was excited to see what else she could bring to my workout. And, boy, did she bring it! We began our second session in the fitness area, after I had accomplished a quick warm up. She put me right to work on four weight machines, working my arms and back. She showed me the proper way to work on the machines, and watched as I did three sets of 12 reps on each machine, switching machines between sets.



As I was huffing and puffing away, Vicki and I talked about the food component of my fitness plan. She first explained a bit about calories and how all that worked in relationship to food and fitness. It was a lot of information that I already knew, but she presented it in an easy to understand way. She calculated the amount of calories that I could eat and maintain my weight. And, we found a good goal amount of calories that will help me lose weight.



Before finishing up, Vicki also talked to me about the many different training programs and opportunities that the fitness club provides. Beyond the two initial (FREE) meetings with the fitness trainer there are options for individual personal trainer sessions, group fit sessions, and many fitness games. The FitGroups sound great to me because they meet twice a week, provide some accountability, and are really affordable.


My Personalized Fitness Plan


Vicki helped set me up with a personalized fitness plan that will help me achieve my goals of losing weight and feeling healthier.



I haven't been able to hit all of these goals every week since we set up the fitness plan, because of holidays and vacations. But, the list has helped me stay focused and has given me purpose in my workouts. It has completely kept me from getting bored, as well.



Check back next week when I tell you all about my first experience taking group fitness classes at East Side Athletic, how I survived, and which ones I can't wait to go back to!


Author Bio: Jenni Bost is a freelance writer and media assistant living in Portland with her son and husband. She is the author of a lifestyle blog featuring celebrations of everyday life, called A Well Crafted Party. Follow along as she works with East Side West Side Athletic Club in meeting her fitness goals and writing about her journey.

A Club Member's Journey: My Six Week Fitness Challenge Recap




I've been on my fitness challenge for over six weeks and I've had a lot of fun discovering East Side Athletic Club, my many fitness options, and a little bit more about myself. Even more exciting though is that I've seen a difference in how I look and feel after these past six weeks. 


My fitness goals included losing fifty pounds in 2013, to be able to complete a workout without needing to take breaks for breathing, and change my lifestyle to include healthier eating and fitness habits. While I still have a long way to go before I finally reach those goals, I am well on my way. I've discovered that achieving my fitness goals is not only doable, but likely something I will achieve this year with focus and dedication.


workoutThe fitness plan that I laid out for my first six weeks of getting back to a fit and healthy lifestyle was to:

— Visit the athletic club three times a week.

— Try different things— don't get stuck in the same routine every time I work out.

— Track my food.

— And, get help when I need it.


This part of my six-week challenge has not been as successful as I'd have hoped. I've found that over the Summer it has been hard to fit in the time to get to the athletic club as much as I want. I haven't been great about tracking my food at Summer party after Summer party either. I have, however, been able to stay out of a workout rut by joining in on group fitness classes and getting an adaptable fitness plan from my fitness trainer


At the end of this first part of my journey I feel like I have a better plan going forward, more realistic expectations of myself, an increased ability to complete (and enjoy) a workout, and smaller pants. That's right! Even though I wasn't as successful as I had originally hoped in my six week journey, I've still lost some weight and seen a difference in the fit of my clothing. It just goes to show you that even when you don't get the results you were hoping for... you still get results by even the smallest changes in lifestyle!


I'll be back next week to share ten things I've learned about myself in this journey. Then, as I'm working on the second part of my fitness journey I'll be interviewing the fitness trainers of the East Side and West Side Athletic Clubs and sharing those interviews here on the blog. I can't wait to let you get to know the awesome team of East Side and West Side a little bit better! 


Author Bio: Jenni Bost is a freelance writer and media assistant living in Portland with her son and husband. She is the author of a lifestyle blog featuring the celebrations of everyday life, A Well Crafted Party. Follow along as she works with East Side Athletic Club and shares about her journey to fitness.

Jenni Bost Picture

A Club Member's Journey: My Fitness Goals



Hello! My name is Jenni and I am a local writer and mother working with East Side and West Side Athletic Clubs in reaching my fitness goals and sharing about my journey to better health. I, like many other people, recently had the “come to the treadmill moment” after seeing a photo of myself online.
My friends and family were complementing the photos (as they do) on Facebook when I kept looking at the photo not recognizing the face looking back at me. Life changes—such as having a baby and leaving an on-my-feet job to sit in front of the computer for hours—have contributed to a steady weight gain that has now put me at my current weight of 214 pounds. The slightly heavier face than I was used to, was urging me to get back to working out and eating right. The desire for change brought me to East Side Athletic Club looking to set my fitness goals and get motivated to lose my extra weight and feel healthy again.
My Fitness Goals:
1. Lose weight! I'm not going to lie to you and say that I don't want to lose weight and am just concerned about getting in shape. I am overweight. My weight directly affects my health. So, after speaking with my doctor, I've made a goal to lose fifty pounds this year . After speaking with a trainer (provided in with membership!) at the East Side Athletic Clackamas location I feel like this is a very achievable goal for me.
2. Be able to complete a workout without needing breaks for breathing. It is embarrassing to admit, but I have a lot of trouble running on a treadmill, walking up stairs, or finishing a class without breathing difficulties. I hope to slowly (but surely) work on my stamina.
3. Change my lifestyle. I'd like to make this a journey that doesn't end. Too often in my life have I started a fitness journey to reach my goals and then stop living a healthy lifestyle. I plan on trying different types of workouts to find ones I enjoy enough to want to keep in my life even after I reach my goals.

My Get Fit Plan:


4. Visit the athletic club at least three times a week to encourage myself to work out more often. I'll be scheduling the time in for hours when there are childcare or for evening classes. 
5. Try different things! I am going to push myself to try each and every class offered, visit the pool, lift weights and use the machines. I am looking forward to finding that “something” that I love that will motivate me to lace up my shoes and head out the door.
6. Track my food. I've done every fad diet in the book. The one thing that actually works for me is watching portion sizes. So, I'll be tracking the food I eat during the day on my iPhone using the MyFitnessPal app.
7. Get help when I need it. Being able to sit down and speak with a personal trainer was something I had never been able to do before starting membership with ESAC. After working with Vicki, (ESAC Clackamas Trainer) it’s great to know I have a professional to go to when I need one as I make my fitness plans and hit the inevitable plateaus.
Over the next six-weeks I'll be sharing the ups, downs, and upside-downs of my fitness journey with the other members of East Side and West Side Athletic clubs. I hope that by sharing my journey I'll stay motivated to reach my fitness goals. Maybe there is also someone out there similar to me that can use the extra motivation and know that they are not alone in their journey. I'd love to read about your journey in the comments or on the Facebook page!
Author Bio: Jenni Bost is a freelance writer and media assistant living in Portland, Oregon with her son and husband. She is the author of a Lifestyle blog focusing on celebrating the everyday called A Well Crafted Party . She also works with bloggers in the area as she leads events with the Portland Bloggers. Follow along as she partners up with East Side and West Side Athletic Clubs in meeting her fitness goals and writing about her fitness journey!

A Club Member's Journey: I Survived (and Loved) Group Fitness Class 



Anyone who knows me, knows that I am not the most graceful or coordinated person around. I might even be described as "clumsy." Due to my lack of the ability to move my limbs just the way that my mind wills them to move, I was not looking forward to taking a group fitness class. However, many people have told me that fitness classes were the way to stay motivated and meet new people at my fitness club. I decided to push aside my fears of tripping into the person next to me and go ahead and give a few classes a try. I survived, and in the end, I even loved it. 


My Tips on Finding, Attending, and Enjoying a Group Fitness Class:


I have been doing all of my workouts so far at the Clackamas East Side Athletic Club location. The group fitness schedule was a lot to take in at first glance— there are so many classes to choose from! Even after delving into the class descriptions, I couldn't decide which class would be the best for me to try. I'd highly recommend asking one of the Fitness Club's team members for their class recommendations! I was given a couple of really awesome suggestions for classes I will be attending again. 


1. Ask for Class Recommendations


My very first group fitness class was "Middle Management: A non-cardio, functional training class, that concentrates on strengthening and reshaping your legs, abdominal and back muscles". It was hard-core! I don't know if I would suggest this for someone's very first class. But, I am so glad that I did the class and that I made it through the entire 30 minutes! My abs felt the workout for a week afterwards. But, the coolest part about this class was the moves that I was able to incorporate into my full-body workout. 


weights2. Talk to Teacher


In my orientation into the fitness club, it was suggested that I speak with class instructors before class to let them know that I was new to the class, get any pointers, and feel more comfortable. I was a little uneasy letting the instructor know that I was a class newbie. But, I'm glad I did! 

I introduced myself to instructors in EVERY class that I attended over the past few weeks. Each of the instructors were friendly and supportive. They were great about giving slightly easier moves among the more advanced moves so that I could participate in all of the exercises. It was nice to see that I wasn't slowing anyone else down or having to sit it out due to being lost. Some of the classes require that you have certain equipment (all provided by the Athletic Club). The instructor can tell you which items, such as weights or mats, you'll need to use in class.


3. Watch the Instructor, Not the Mirror


This rule may only apply to me... but, I get ridiculously self-conscience when looking at myself in the mirror. Instead of watching my uncoordinated self jerkily moving in the Zumba class, I watched and tried to imitate the instructor’s smooth moves. I imagined myself doing the same moves with such ease. I'm hoping that someday I'll be able to see a graceful Zumba machine looking back at me in the mirror. But, for my first few classes, it made it much easier on me to just watch the instructor and try to get my body moving like theirs. 


4. Push Yourself


Obviously, you need to know your body and not push yourself too hard. I recommend getting a heart rate monitor to really gauge when it is time to slow down. But, I discovered for myself, that there was a time in each class that I just wanted to stop. I thought, this is enough, I've gotten my workout. I'd then look at the clock and see that I still had many minutes of class to go! I'm so glad that I pushed myself to keep going through those minutes. At the end of the class I felt GREAT physically, but also proud of myself for pushing through that moment and finishing strong. 


5. Chat with Other Class Members Before and After Class


Many of the members of the classes I attended chatted happily back and forth before and after the classes. 

"My daughter is having a girl!" one lady said happily to another. 

"I just bought a new table and chairs," said another lady to a friend while stretching. 

"I heard you just got a job, congrats!" said a workout ready lady as she passed by a stretching gentleman. 

I could see why these friends kept coming back to the classes, it wasn't JUST for the exercise. Several of the members chatted with me as well and it made me feel so much more comfortable than if I had gone in and no one had said anything. Making friends in the classes not only makes the class more enjoyable, but it will give you a reason to get back to class the next week. 


All in all the above five tips are a great start to beginning in on group fitness classes at East Side West Side Athletic Club. I talked a little about my two favorite classes above; Middle Management and Zumba were challenging, but fun. I can incorporate them fairly easily in my personalized fitness plan that Vicki, my fitness trainer, put together for me. I can't wait to try more classes!


Author Bio: Jenni Bost is a freelance writer and media assistant living in Portland with her son and husband. She is the author of a lifestyle blog featuring celebrations of everyday life, called A Well Crafted Party. Follow along as she works with East Side West Side Athletic Club in meeting her fitness goals and writing about her journey.