So it's official, I'm a National Academy of Sports Medicine Certified Personal Trainer! (NASM-CPT) When I set out to become more health conscience I never thought that this was where it was going to take me. I've always been a "Bigga Figga" and throughout my life I've studied many martial arts. My love for martial arts is what kept me somewhat active. I loved going to the School/Dojo to do the workouts and to congregate with like minded folks. The gym on the other hand was a different story. I never liked going to the gym. It was a place that I perceived was filled with jocks pumping iron just so that they could look good. Not learning any real skills or achieving anything beyond their vain pursuits. Every time I had the itch to get healthy I always looked for a martial arts school or something of that nature. But every time we moved it was harder and harder to find those so I had to join a traditional gym. And just like clockwork, it was like pulling teeth to get there, I hated it, so I'd quit. As time went by I came to realize it wasn't the gym, it was me. I didn't like the gym because I didn't know what I was doing. It felt like a waste of time being there because I didn't get the same type of result I was getting in martial arts. I could practice a technique over and over, since I could visualize my progress it gave me motivation to continue. At the gym I wasn't getting that same visualization in the same time frames so to me it was no progress, thus killing my motivation.
So here I am about to hit 40, we have been on lock-down this past year and I get hit with the "get sorta healthy" itch again. This time it was different, this time I had a plan. Check out the "Why I decided to become a Certified Personal Trainer" blog for that story, but the hunt was on. I asked around and researched different fitness programs and I really couldn't find any that fit my needs. Then I heard that one of my co-workers was on a 24hr Fitness billboard and when I ran into him I asked him about it. He told me he had worked as a CPT and gave me the overview of the course and it seemed like exactly what I was looking for. That's where the real footwork began.
I did what any respectable person would do and I went straight to YouTube. I watched hours of CPTs talking about the pros and cons of the different certification programs. It came down to the American Council on Exercise (ACE) and the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) certifications. These certifications were almost identical so I primarily came down to YouTube reviews, word of mouth recommendations from fitness professionals I know and study materials/methods. Every video I watched that had NASM in it, accredited them as being the top rated and most recognized certification. The trainers I know echoed the same message and either were taking a specialization course with NASM or wished they got their certification through them. That sealed the deal for me.
NASM offers physical and digital copies of their books along with podcasts and video demos. I learn more out of a book than on a screen but I primarily used their on-line book to get through the course. Their information was packaged and presented very well and they are always updating their curriculum. The podcast and videos really drove in the major parts of the material and broke up the monotony of just reading as well. What got me really hooked was their Optimum Performance Training (OPT) Model. I'm overweight and deconditioned and the way they market this model of training really spoke to me. They don't just throw you into a High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) workout, they start you slow and get you conditioned to start an exercise routine. Since I wanted to be my first client, this was an important aspect to me personally. Could I do the workouts that I was planning for my future clients, with NASM the answer is yes.
In the end the test was super nerve racking and is something I will explain in a future YouTube Video so stay tuned for that. Ultimately I'm extremely happy with NASM for my CPT certification and will be starting my Nutrition Certification soon. Thank you for taking the time to read this far and I'll see you in the next post.