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PBR – Certified Personal Trainer

First things first, I apologize for waiting so long to get this post up but this is literally the first moment I’ve had to stop and even think about my blog since Saturday.

So…the big news is that I am a certified personal trainer through the National Academy of Sports Medicine!

Let’s back up. Getting my personal trainer certification is something that I’ve talked about forever (likeΒ  years and years). I can’t tell you how many times I said, “the plan is to get my personal training certification…” but didn’t really do anything about it. I finally decided a few months ago (after yoga teacher training!) that I was actually going to take the test this summer and started studying back in April using a book loaned to me.

I passively studied on and off until finally in mid-July my yoga teacher asked what the hold up was. I didn’t really have a good answer and his reply was, “stop showing fear and go after what you want.” Something finally clicked in my head and I officially signed up for the certification that day. That’s when the whole Take Responsibility for your Life post happened. It all makes sense now, huh?

I felt energized and determined. I have spent the last four weeks recalling all of those study skills from college that I had long forgotten about.

I wanted to go with a respected and challenging certification so I chose NASM for its excellent reputation and focus on postural alignment. I love that the heart of their training program is looking at the whole kinetic chain and building a strong foundation. Lots of work on flexibility, balance and correcting muscle imbalances and postural dysfunctions.

I logged many hours in Starbucks fueled by countless soy lattes. The final week before the test (last week when I was MIA!) I rose at 5 a.m. every day to study before work and stayed up until midnight reading and doing practice tests. I traded in runs and yoga practices for highlighters and outlines. Over the past month there were many moments when I felt too busy to stick with all the studying but I’m so happy that I did!

I took the exam last Friday at 1 p.m. and I PASSED! I had read so many stories online about people failing the first time they tested so I was pretty nervous. All of my hard work paid off though and I not only passed but felt like I really understood the material I was being tested on. (And for the record…I didn’t receive a 70 on the test. They just tell you that it is the passing score and that I exceeded that. They don’t tell you your actual score. Boo.)

The first thing I did after the test was go to Earth Fare and eat a gigantic salad and drink a kombucha and then I came home and laced up my running shoes. I had a weeks worth of anxiety, stress and emotion built up. I knocked out five easy (and pain-free!) miles. I SO agree with many of you that a run is one of the best ways to relieve stress.

And then we went out for our celebration dinner! A goal I set almost FIVE years ago – accomplished! I am so excited to start training clients. Stay tuned for more details!!!

{ 73 comments… add one }
  • Matt @ The Athlete's Plate August 22, 2011, 10:10 pm


  • Leah August 22, 2011, 10:10 pm

    CONGRATULATIONS! That is such an amazing accomplishment … πŸ™‚

  • Jennifer@ knackfornutrition August 22, 2011, 10:11 pm

    Congratulations Jen!! I remember when I passed my test I was SO relieved! Anyone would be lucky to work with you as their trainer!

  • Annie August 22, 2011, 10:12 pm

    Congrats, Jen! What a great accomplishment!

  • Debra August 22, 2011, 10:12 pm

    Congratulations, Jen! What a wonderful accomplishment! It’s so odd, because I was looking at the NASM site Saturday night, doing some research on what it would take to become a personal trainer. There is definitely a lot of work and cost involved, and with as busy as you already are, this definitely took commitment! Clients will certainly be lucky to have you πŸ™‚ CONGRATULATIONS!

  • Laura August 22, 2011, 10:14 pm

    Congratulations! You are such an inspiration with your go-getter attitude!

  • Holly @ RUST BELT RUNNER August 22, 2011, 10:20 pm

    Way to keep us in suspense! Haha. I was thinking you had quit your day job to become a full-time yoga instructor πŸ˜‰

    Great job! I like the concept behind what you mentioned with fixing muscle imbalances. Similar to what I have gone through in my own running journey.

    Way to go!!

  • Lindsay@ In Sweetness and In Health August 22, 2011, 10:24 pm

    Yay!! Congrats!!! My bf is certified through them πŸ™‚

  • Diane M August 22, 2011, 10:37 pm

    Many congrats to you Jen! Can’t wait to hear more details!!

  • natalie August 22, 2011, 10:39 pm


    I’m so proud of you!!

  • wymberley August 22, 2011, 10:40 pm

    Way to go girl! Im impressed. And what a great thing to embrace! I love the quote from your yoga teacher. GO AFTER WHAT YOU WANT! Love.
    i just changed up my blog. I hope you come check it out! http://www.atallorder-wym.blogspot.com

  • melissa August 22, 2011, 10:40 pm

    Congratulations Jen! That is really great! Who knows where this could take you!

  • Sarah August 22, 2011, 10:46 pm

    Congratulations!! Being a personal trainer is one of my goals as well. =) I’m going to check out this program.

  • Katie August 22, 2011, 10:48 pm

    That is amazing! Definitely take some time to enjoy your sense of accomplishment, you deserve it! : )

  • Bess @ Bess Be Fit August 22, 2011, 10:55 pm

    congrats!! that is so exciting and so YOU! it sounds perfect. I know you probably feel glad that test is over! I know I was sure relieved!!

  • pamela August 22, 2011, 11:13 pm


    You are such an inspiration to me! I adore your blog and have learned so much about moderation from you:) I love how much heart you bring to your own life and this beautiful act has inspired me to lead with my heart as well!


  • Cate August 22, 2011, 11:29 pm

    Congratulations!!! That is awesome – you will be a fabulous trainer!

  • Joanna Stebing August 22, 2011, 11:31 pm

    Jen, I would love to hear more about this program and what you thought of it! I’ve really wanted to find a good program for certification the past year or two, and simply had no idea where to start. You mind getting in touch with me sometime (via email if you don’t want to clog up the blog at all) when you aren’t so insanely busy? it would mean A LOT to me.

    By the way, keep up the wonderful writing. I’ve been reading your blog regularly ever since a friend of mine posted a link to it a month or two ago. πŸ™‚

    • Jenn August 23, 2011, 2:44 pm

      Way to go Jen! I have been saying I want to get certified for years too! Just recently I went online to do some research on certification and found that NASM had the best program, in my opinion. I honestly couldn’t go through with it because I just don’t have the extra cash laying around. I see you received some study material on loan, did you find that online somewhere or where you lucky to have a friend who had the material? I would also love to hear your opinion on the time and effort it took to complete the certification and any advice you may have on actually starting a clientel base (Your teaching body pump and yoga classes offers up so many opportunities to train your current class attendees, but I have no teaching experience at all).
      Congrats again and keep up the good work!!

  • Jacqueline @SmartSolitude.com August 22, 2011, 11:38 pm

    Congratulations! You’re an inspiration, Jen!

  • Brittnie (A Joy Renewed) August 23, 2011, 12:25 am

    Congrats! I am sure you are thrilled. Your attitude and enthusiasm for life is so encouraging. Way to go!

  • Holly @ Pink Runner August 23, 2011, 6:25 am

    Congrats! Kristy was right at HLS when she guessed you were going to take the test! I can’t wait to hear more about personal training!

  • Stephanie L August 23, 2011, 6:40 am

    CONGRATS! I’ve been meaning to post a comment about your Take Responsibility post. It was so something that I needed to hear and I literally have read a portion of it a zillion times since you posted it. Just wanted to thank you- your posts really do resonate with your readers! Congrats again on an amazing accomplishment!

  • kat August 23, 2011, 7:04 am

    Congrats to you! Great accomplishment. I, too, have tossed around the idea of becoming a personal trainer for years. I actually even took and passed an online “certification test” but didn’t want to pay the money for the actual certificate, and I’m pretty sure it wasn’t the best/most reputable certification entity…ISSA? I just never felt confident that I could support myself doing it and have not been in a position to try. Maybe once Joe starts making his millions I’ll give it a shot. πŸ˜‰ Congrats again, you will be wonderful!!

  • Chris August 23, 2011, 7:18 am

    That is exciting news! Congratulations!

  • Kristy@RunTheLongRoad August 23, 2011, 7:25 am

    CONGRATS JEN! I had a feeling you were going to tell us that you were a CPT! You are going to be great at it!!!

  • Tracy August 23, 2011, 7:27 am

    Congrats Jen! That’s awesome news. You’ll be great!


  • lindsay August 23, 2011, 7:34 am

    that awesome!!! so happy for you jen! youre so well qualified!

  • Sarah August 23, 2011, 7:43 am

    Yay!! Congrats. You are such an inspiration… In a few years I’d like to be following in your footsteps with teacher training and personal trainer cert. I had to skip this round of teacher training as I’m getting married in a few weeks so the timing wasn’t great, but hope to be ready for the next one or at least the next assist bootcamp. You keep on rockin girl, can’t wait to follow you through this next journey!

  • Jill August 23, 2011, 7:57 am

    Congrats!! That is great news. I am the same way you were, always saying I am going to do it, but I STILL have not done anything about it (getting certfified as a personal trainer). Hopefully this will give me the motivation and kick in the butt I need to do something πŸ™‚

  • Jen August 23, 2011, 8:07 am

    Congrats Jen! I know you’ve wanted this for so long. I know without a doubt that you’ll excel at personal training. I cannot think of a better person for the job. I’m so happy for you πŸ™‚

  • Brittany (A Healthy Slice of Life) August 23, 2011, 8:07 am

    Congratulations! What a great accomplishment with a well respected program πŸ™‚ Can you get my butt back in shape after baby? Any tips for thighs you have would be appreciated!! I’m looking into the Tracey Anderson method?? Thoughts?

  • Courtney August 23, 2011, 8:14 am

    Congrats!! That’s so exciting and you will make a great trainer!

  • Sarah August 23, 2011, 8:23 am

    I am so happy for you! You are going to be a fabulous trainer girlfriend!! I also enjoy how you celebrated with a kombucha πŸ˜‰

  • Dana August 23, 2011, 8:56 am

    Congrats, Jen! That’s awesome!

  • ashley August 23, 2011, 9:10 am

    SO HAPPY!!! I knew you were up to something but I wasn’t sure exactly what. You will be a fabulous personal trainer!

  • Josie August 23, 2011, 9:13 am

    Congrats, Jen! So excited for you!!

  • Krista (kristastes) August 23, 2011, 9:19 am

    AHhhH! Congratulations, Jen! SO awesome. You’ll be an amazing personal trainer, especially with your yoga background…and your future clients are very lucky people!!

  • Samantha @ the more i run August 23, 2011, 9:25 am


  • Lori August 23, 2011, 9:40 am

    That’s awesome! Congrats!!

  • erin August 23, 2011, 9:43 am

    How exciting! Congratulations! If I lived in Charlotte, I’d be signing up to train with you asap πŸ™‚

  • Lynne August 23, 2011, 10:19 am

    Congrats girl! Your motivation is inspiring!

  • Sara August 23, 2011, 10:20 am

    Congratulations Jen!!! That is GREAT news!

  • Sara August 23, 2011, 10:22 am

    (and I know if your training is anything like your yoga classes at Y2, your clients are in for some hardcore workouts! – oh, and I’ll be back to your yoga class soon! I’m using up a new student pass at Charlotta Yoga and then I’m getting the new student pass for Y2!)

    • Jen August 23, 2011, 1:21 pm

      thanks sara! can’t wait to see you back at y2!!! πŸ™‚

  • Anastasia August 23, 2011, 10:45 am

    Congratulations! That is awesome and you will make an amazing personal trainer!

  • Kamaile August 23, 2011, 10:48 am


  • Jen W August 23, 2011, 11:04 am

    Sweet! Congrats Jen! πŸ™‚

  • Courtney August 23, 2011, 11:47 am

    Congrats!!! What a great accomplishment!

  • Ash August 23, 2011, 12:41 pm

    Congratulations!!! Your a wonderful instructor in BP and you will be an excellent trainer!

  • Marian August 23, 2011, 1:15 pm

    CONGRATULATIONS JEN! I am so happy for you. Congratulations on pursuing your dream and taking control of your own happiness – I just know you’re going to be such an amazing personal trainer! Your desire to help and teach others really shines through in your yoga classes. Hopefully this week will be a little less stressful!! πŸ™‚

  • Clara August 23, 2011, 1:24 pm

    Congratulations, Jen! If I lived any closer to Charlotte, I’d be your first customer!

  • Jen@foodfamilyfitness August 23, 2011, 2:00 pm

    WOOHOOO!!!! YAY! I’m so happy for you!!!! Congratulations!!!!!

  • Michelle August 23, 2011, 2:34 pm

    Congrats! That’s an amazing accomplishment! You’re an inspiration.

  • Lexy August 23, 2011, 2:59 pm

    I am sooo happy for you! Congratulations to you! Loved reading how it all came together. You continue to motivate and inspire me…. πŸ™‚

  • Beth S. August 23, 2011, 3:03 pm

    Congratulations!! I know first hand how hard you worked…I am also NASM certified. It’s the “gold standard” and awesome. Just started reading your blog and really enjoy it!! You will obviously make a great CPT!! If you haven’t already, you would love the blog “Shut Up and Run”. She just wrote a piece on “doing something everyday that scares you”. Thought of you:) Enjoy your hard earned accomplishment!

  • Diana August 23, 2011, 4:26 pm

    That is such an amazing accomplishment, especially considering everything else you put on your plate – congratulations!!

  • Alaina August 23, 2011, 4:55 pm

    Congratulations Jen!!! That is so awesome!! I’ll be your quinea pig! πŸ˜‰

  • LBM August 23, 2011, 5:17 pm

    Congratulations! Inspiring postβ€”I have wanted to embark on pilates teacher training for a long time, but it’s such a commitment…we shall see!

  • Anne August 23, 2011, 6:55 pm

    Congratulations! I’m trying to study for another certification through NSCA, so it’s a great motivation to know you did well!

  • Hannah August 23, 2011, 9:21 pm

    congrats!!! πŸ™‚
    such a big accomplishment! i guess all the hard work was worth it!

  • JennyV August 23, 2011, 9:49 pm

    Awesome!! Congratulations to you! It is so neat to see that you jumped ALL IN and went for it and that all efforts totally paid off. You are going to bless so many people with this extra certification too. Wishing you the best!

  • Katie August 23, 2011, 11:56 pm

    Congratulations Jen! That is sooo exciting and a great thing to be proud of for sure! I can tell just from reading your blog that will make an amazing personal trainer! I have been debating back and forth whether I should get my certification for awhile but always find some excuse so 1. you are a total inspiration and 2. might have to ask you a few q’s on the process πŸ™‚

  • Win August 24, 2011, 10:45 am


    That is so awesome! Congrats–you rock!


  • Kelly @foodiefresh August 24, 2011, 2:50 pm

    Congratulations! I’m so excited for you! I might want to pick your brain about the certification one day when you have some time or want a running buddy. πŸ™‚

  • Q. August 25, 2011, 5:06 pm

    Girl I am so proud of you!!! That test is FREAKIN’ HARD!!!! Welcome to the ranks;) Look forward to seeing where your journey takes you!!!

  • Brittney August 25, 2011, 9:21 pm

    Just seeing this now Jen! Congratulations!!!! πŸ™‚ We should get together soon and I’ll buy you a celebratory drink!

  • Danielle August 26, 2011, 12:43 am

    Congrats !!! πŸ™‚

  • Karla @ myhighonlife November 15, 2012, 10:24 pm

    I am returning back to the blog world and always loved yours πŸ™‚

    I am going to get my CPT but not sure which program to do… looking back on your experience would you change it now or still make the same decision that you did?

    Any advice to share?! πŸ™‚

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