10 Trainers Share Their BEST Strength-Training Tips

In 2011, I was both shocked and honored to be named America’s Top Personal Trainer to Watch in the first-ever contest of its kind, which was run by Life Fitness and the American Council on Exercise, and I have continued to be involved as a judge and consultant for the contest in recent years. It has expanded outside of America to search for and name the best trainers across the globe. A few weeks ago, Life Fitness crowned 2014’s top personal trainers to watch and a new winner in yet another amazing competition.

I recent caught up with the top 10 finalists (and the winner himself)—the crème de la crème of fitness pros—to share their best exercise tips with you! From time-saving exercise techniques to the best workout you can do when you’re short on time, these must-read ideas are like consulting with the most inspiring and credible fitness trainers around the world without leaving home.


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  • On Making Morning Exercise a Habit. “First, be sure to get enough sleep (at least seven hours) and wake up an hour before you plan to start exercising. Eating a good breakfast is important, too, as well as picking an exercise activity that is revitalizing and not stressful or grueling. For beginners, I advise walking or running at a constant and rapid pace, approximately 30 minutes a day. For an added challenge, alternate running, biking or swimming during different days a week.” – Isaac Rojas Rivero.
  • On Staying Motivated to Stick to an Exercise Program Long-Term. “Understanding the way our body works internally, in a very deep way, is something I’ve found motivates and keeps people working out long term. With this knowledge, people will start doing it, and will feel the need to keep doing it. To become a consistently active person, study your body.” – Cristiano Arthur S. Parente.
  • On the Muscle Group Too Many People Ignore. “Everyone ignores the back! It is one of the biggest muscle groups in the human body. People tend to forget about this part of the body because they can’t see it in the mirror and if it is out of sight it is usually out of mind. When you pay attention to developing your back your strength, posture and overall functionality will improve. Don’t ignore back day!” – Austin Toloza.
  • On How to Get Back on the Fitness Wagon. “A quick and easy way to get someone motivated after a long absence from the gym is to start with a smaller goal. Most people can handle devoting just 20 minutes to fitness to start out and then from there can start adding more. This could be logging their food, intervals of cardiovascular, strength, or abdominal exercises. Twenty minutes is realistic for anyone and will give people the push they need to get back in the game!” Andreya Tornes.
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