Essential reading for personal trainers who want to get ahead

As a personal training career becomes more popular, you must increase your profile to stay ahead of the competition (and there is always competition, however safe you feel). Since not all gym buffs are meatheads it stands to reason that a bit of reading might be a good idea to stay relevant and on top of the game.

Blogs are a great source of information because they are constantly updated. The blog attached to the NerdFitness website is definitely one of the best out there because it offers in-depth articles about a range of subjects. Often bloggers will cap their content at under a thousand words, but the NerdFitness posts are all ultimate articles aimed to leave you armed with a complete understanding on every subject (even the niche ones). The language used is simple and humourous, so even if the articles are long, they are almost never boring.

NerdFitness blog

Alright, we promise we aren’t discriminating against women here by saying this is essential reading. As it happens, a lot of the information in this book can be applied to both sexes. This should be your bible as a personal trainer – it ought to be next to your bed, dog-eared and well-read. This book is a no-nonsense guide to stripping fat and building muscle, which is the first thing you should know inside and out. The best thing about this book is that it doesn’t recommend a lot of supplements and complicated eating rules, just simple guidelines to live your life by.

Bigger Leaner Stronger: The Simple Science of Building the Ultimate Male Body (Michael Matthews)

Whether it’s blog articles, library books, magazines or Tolstoy, there is no reason to stay away from literature. If heavier books are more your thing, then curl up in front of the fire and slip deep into a narrative, but don’t be concerned if you prefer a quick flick through the newspaper over breakfast instead.

How to Win Friends and Influence People (Dale Carnegie)

This is a classic, and just because it isn’t related to fitness doesn’t mean it won’t apply to you. As a personal trainer you are also running a business and, even more crucially, your business depends on you as a front man. You are the marketing team, the sales guy, the customer service operation and everything in-between. You need to have a handle on dealing with people and negotiating relationships, otherwise you will sink and never recover. Dale Carnegie outlines simple rules to live by in this book, and you will find them endlessly useful both in your professional and personal life.

OffPeaks blog

OK, OK, we had to include the OffPeaks blog in this list. Not just as a vanity measure though, promise! Checking up on the OffPeaks blog regularly is in your best interests if you want to continue learning while you enter the professional world. Each article is written by an expert in their space, and researched in order to provide the most up-to-date information. The blog is an all-round port of information, so you can read about everything from rest-days to PT admin. Bookmark it on your computer and keep checking in. Trust us.

Spark (John Ratey)

Everybody understands the effect that long-term exercise can have on your body – increased lifespan, a healthier heart, ripped abs. But less often talked about are the effects it can have on your mental health. Ratey has changed all that with his ground-breaking book that explores the world of psychology in relation to exercise. The beneficial effects on mood, the way that it can ease depression and anxiety are all explored in this book. As a personal trainer you can gain valuable knowledge to arm you in convincing your clients (and the rest of the world) that exercise is always the right choice.

This website is the only website you need if you have anything you need to fact-check. There is far too much content for you to be able to read everything on there (but go ahead and try!). The best thing about Greatist is that there articles are informed and researched, so you know that you aren’t just reading something that has been thrown together by a pseudo-scientist. If you want quick reads on a range of fitness-related subjects, then have a browse through Greatist to broaden your horizons and ensure you are up-to-date on everything from post-workout snacks to how weightlifting can ease depression.

If you aren’t much of a reader then plug yourself into some podcasts – there are some really informative and diverse programs out there, but it takes some searching. Whatever you do, just spend a certain amount of time every month, every week, every day improving yourself and broadening your knowledge of the health and fitness industry. There is always more to know, so don’t get left behind!

About the Author Kitty Harris

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