Arin is a professional – he is prompt and helpful and he always follows through on the things he says he will do. That alone isn’t what makes him a good trainer, but I feel like a lot of fitness professionals have the tendency to be a bit flaky, and he definitely is not. Arin’s fitness routines seemed rooted in his knowledge of anatomy/physiology not the pseudoscience that seems really prevalent among some athletes and fitness professionals. He’s knowledgeable about human anatomy and ensures that what you are doing is properly executed to reduce the risk of injury.

Arin is friendly but he’s there to work, as was I. I appreciated his straight-forward demeanor and focus on the workouts. If you are expecting a more “cheerleader” type of trainer (just to clarify, that’s not intended to be a value judgment if that’s what you’re seeking), or someone to be your buddy, he may not be the right fit for you. That’s not to say he isn’t a friendly/amiable person – he is absolutely friendly, professional, approachable, etc., but socializing during training doesn’t seem to be his primary goal and it’s not mine either. You should also know that Arin’s training sessions aren’t technically one-on-one, there is usually another individual training at the same time. With that said, he was very clear about that from the outset. You do different workouts, and very little (if any) time is spent waiting for Arin’s attention. At most, you will have enough time to get a drink and wipe the sweat off your brow before he returns his attention to you. This system works great.

Month 1: One month in, I am very happy thus far. I came in with decent baseline cardio fitness, but poor abilities in strength. My goal was not necessarily to lose weight (though I did want to reduce my body fat a bit) as I had already lost 30 pounds on my own, so I can’t speak to that aspect of training under his guidance. One thing I appreciated most is that Arin was attentive to my needs and desires. He asked about my own goals and what I wanted out of our time together. I really resented when trainers would put me on a treadmill for part of our session or spent our time doing exercises I was fully capable of doing correctly without guidance. I always felt it was a waste of my money, and the trainer’s expertise. Luckily, Arin was willing to focus on strength with me and didn’t waste our time together by putting me on a treadmill or doing jumping jacks or whatever. It’s not that those exercises are without value, it’s that I didn’t want to spend my money on those aspects of my fitness which were already in good working order.

Month 3: Update — My time with Arin is unfortunately coming to an end, but I really, really enjoyed the experience and hope I will be able to return in the future. I now feel very comfortable executing strength training workouts on my own, and I can definitely see changes, especially in my arms and shoulders. I’d say training with Arin was absolutely well worth the cost, and if you’re willing to put in the work during and in-between sessions, I think most would feel similarly.

Arin helped me develop a litany of varied exercises that I could do during our workouts together to strengthen my body, and the exercises he gave were also things I could do on my own at the gym. My goal was never to be ripped by the end of our 16 weeks together, but rather to feel stronger, gain more definition, and be empowered to continue to work on my strength after our sessions were over by feeling knowledgeable about how to execute a varied strength training routine safely and properly. If money were no object, I would see Arin more often and for the foreseeable future. Alas, training is an expensive luxury, so I needed something that was sustainable for me long term. It goes without saying, but you should expect to put in work on your own time if you expect results. Training with a trainer is great, but sustained effort is imperative if you want to really want to see meaningful changes. If I can finagle it financially, I will absolutely seek out additional sessions with him to keep my routine fresh and evolving. In the time spent working with Arin, I demolished my marathon PR time twice in two weeks, and PRd my half marathon as well without increasing my running load (and actually by reducing it substantially). I don’t know if I would attribute these accomplishments exclusively to strength training with Arin, but I do feel confident it has helped significantly because I feel less fatigued during the long distances and my recovery is much easier now. The gym also feels like less of a chore now that I have a wide variety of exercises I feel comfortable doing on my own. I highly recommend working with Arin – he’s an expert at what he does. He’s by far the most competent fitness professional I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with.