Personal Training + Why I Chose NASM

When I first decided to become a certified personal trainer (CPT), I didn’t want to tell anyone. Honestly, I was a little embarrassed to admit that I had no immediate plans to actually work as a trainer. Now that I’ve spilled the beans, I guess it’s time to explain why I made this decision. I guess I’m really going with the “personal” part of personal trainer. As in, I’m doing it just for me. I love to work out, but I don’t really know all that much about the science behind it all. I educate myself when it comes to other aspects of my life, so it only seems right to know what I’m doing when it comes to my body. I want to be active for life, so I better be treating it the best that I can.


I went back and forth for a while about committing to a personal training course. Eventually, though, I realized that it couldn’t possibly turn out to be a bad thing. Even if I never in my life use this certification to make any money, I’m still using it to better myself. There is no doubt in my mind that I will craft better workouts as a result of what I’ve learned. I mean, think about it like this: People spend insane amounts of money for gym memberships, personal training, and fitness books or magazine subscriptions. I’m no different. But what if you knew what you were doing? You could take your health into your own hands. I feel like that justifies the price of the certification right there.

And while I have absolutely no plans of quitting teaching, I do like knowing that I would have the option of a summer or part-time job in the future. The growth of the fitness industry isn’t slowing down, so it’s nice to know I could find a little place in it if I needed to. And I hope that ultimately it makes this blog a little better, too. It needs a little more brains behind it, don’t you think?

As far as certifications go, there are a lot of options. There are only a few that I would even consider, though. I weighed the pros and cons of a few different options, talked to some friends of mine who work at one of my favorite gyms, and thought about which one would be most beneficial to me. In the end, I went with the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM).


It wasn’t that difficult of a decision, to be honest. It’s one of the most widely respected and accepted certifications, it’s super science-heavy (<-technical term…), and the representatives I spoke to seemed the most legitimately concerned with how their students did throughout the process. That was my favorite part. They made it clear that questions were welcomed. And let’s be honest, I’ll probably have a ton. Especially since I chose to go the self-study route. Yep, I chose is the CPT Self-Study Package. It includes a textbook, online CPT materials, and a flashcard bundle.


It also came with a sweet backpack, though, so it’s all good. There are several options on the website, but the Self-Study seemed like the best choice for me. Since I’m doing this for me, I might as well do it on my own, right?

I guess I’ve probably rambled enough for tonight, but I’m excited to start this whole learning process pretty soon. If you’ve studied for the NASM-CPT or are currently studying, I’d love to chat! I need some study buddies, for real.

Question: Have you ever taken a course or studied for a certification solely for personal growth? Sometimes I think I might be nuts, but it seems like a good call…

Full Disclosure: after choosing NASM and speaking with them to express my interest, they offered to waive my fees in exchange for discussing the process with y’all. They rock for that, but I really want to stress that I made my decision prior to that discussion. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.


  1. says

    There’s definitely no need to hide that you wanted to be a personal trainer—or at least train to be one. I think that’s awesome. I actually decided the same thing a few years ago-I wanted to explore my career options and wanted to learn more about the field before committing! I actually started with ACSM. It was hard but I learned a lot. Didn’t finish though-teaching licensure took up my time soon after :)
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  2. says

    Yep, I like you am doing a personal training course and to begin with only had intentions of using it for myself. Now I’m a third of the way through the course and am getting excited to give up my office job (even if only part time) in pursuit of actually doing some pt work!
    Amanda @ Move Love Eat recently posted..Mountain Biking ThoughtsMy Profile

  3. says

    I think it makes a lot of sense to learn more on something that interests you. That’s why I became RRCA certified. I didn’t take on runners to coach for awhile but eventually runners read my blog and asked for my coaching and now I love it! You never know where this added certification will bring you : )
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  4. Rose says

    Yes! Last year between f/t jobs I did my Pilates instructor training. I have been practicing yoga and pilates for like over a decade (ugh I’m getting old!!) and just decided to do it for me. I have subbed here and there at the studio I trained at, but I’m back to working f/t now, and I don’t really plan to be a f/t teacher. I just like having the knowledge for me and hope to make it a side job :)

    • Presley says

      I love that you decided to learn more about yoga in particular. I am so interested in it, but I am severely lacking in the knowledge part!

  5. says

    Actually I just signed up to get certified to teach Body Pump! I am so so excited, and honestly, I don’t even care to hurry into a teaching job right away. Yes, this is a huge step for personal growth for me! And I want to get certified to teach yoga at some point too – that would be a HUGE milestone for me. It’s going to happen :)

    Congrats on your personal training certification too!
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  6. Addie says

    I think it’s so awesome that you are doing this to better yourself! How inspiring! I can’t wait to see what your blog has in store has your knowledge grows. Congrats!!!

  7. says

    I think it’s awesome that you’re going through the training to become a certified personal trainer! Like you, I totally believe that doing something to better yourself is never a waste! I would probably be certified in all sorts of things and take all kinds of training if they didn’t cost so dang much money! :p I had to get my CPT for my job, even though I’m not a personal trainer, and I loved all the things I got to learn! Good luck with your education! PS – Love that they gave you a backpack too! haha
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