I have always dreamed of being a personal trainer. What could be better than getting to spend every day in the gym environment, helping people achieve their goals and become stronger versions of themselves? Just the possibility that I could help improve someones health and their quality of life has just always been an incredible thought to me.
About a week after I graduated from college this past May, I was ready to make that dream a reality. After researching many different certification programs, I finally chose NASM because it is very highly respected and well known throughout the country. I also read about others experiences and could tell that it was a high quality program that would provide useful information to me even if I never actually choose to be a trainer as a profession.
Since I have been so caught up with doctor’s appointments and just simply not feeling very good this summer, I am honestly not as far along with the program as I would like to be. But I wanted to share my experience so far so that maybe it will help others who are considering signing up for the program, because it really helped me to read about others experiences when I was choosing my program.
To prepare for starting the program, I got a three ring binder with some page separators. I printed out the syllabus, study planner, and exam study guide, and gave them each a section. I then put blank lined paper in the back of the binder for my notes on each chapter, and printed out the corresponding chapter guides. I think being organized with all of the study materials and having a plan is key to success with this program.
The syllabus contains a 75 day study planner, which tells you what chapter to read and the assignments that go along with that chapter. There is an online platform that goes along with the program that has presentations to watch and quizzes to test your knowledge of the material. I have been reading the chapters, taking notes, and then doing the quizzes to make sure I have absorbed the information.
As far as the actual content goes, I have actually found it pretty interesting. Before starting this program, most of my fitness knowledge was from my own personal experience, friends, and my own research online. It is interesting being able to tie that knowledge to the information in the NASM text book, and learning the actual terminology. It is also really helpful to learn how to strategically construct an individualized fitness plan for someone based on their age, gender, goals, and current fitness level.
The chapters are honestly not that long and go by pretty quickly. The program covers 20 total chapters, so you could techically get it done in 20 days if you did a chapter every day, which I think is actually doable. I am currently doing 1-3 chapters per week, but this will probably increase now that I’m finally starting to feel better!
If you are thinking about biting the bullet and signing up for this program – I say do it! It feels really good to do something that will positively impact my future, and it’s awesome to be able to do this certification from home. Almost all the materials are available online except for the text book, which is mailed to you. I hope this review of my experience so far was helpful, and I’ll definitely write another post once I fully complete the program.