Don't Arrive In Certain 'States'
Always arrive to your session prepared for an intense workout. Avoid showing up on an empty stomach, little to no sleep, or when you're coming down from having the cold or getting over a stomach bug. It wastes everyone's time. You really can't do anything worth while if your body isn't fueled, hydrated, and ready to work.
Your personal trainer is probably going to have you keep a food log and bring it in. Often people feel embarrassed about what they eat because they know that it's not good for them and they have it anyways. Basically, it's not uncommon for people to lie about what they're really eating. It's also easy to leave out snacks that you have here and there throughout the day. Be forward and honest on your food tracker, your trainer is a human (sometimes) and understands how hard it can be to get into the routine of things and eat right.
The more honest and open you are about your diet, the more your personal trainer can help you achieve your goals.
Small Group Sessions
Personal trainers are expensive, I don't need to tell you that. If you're on a budget but you feel like you need the extra kick to get going on your new lifestyle, recruit some friends for a group session. Often personal trainers will have group sessions with a maximum of five people for lower fee's. Not all trainers offer this, but a vast majority do - and it never hurts to ask!
It's frustrating for both you and them when results and goals are slow or not being met. Keep up the maximum effort, it's okay to have cheat days once in a while, just make sure you aren't going out every weekend for pizza and alcoholic beverages.
When Your Late It Wastes Their Time…and Yours
Not only is it disrespectful to show up late, all it does is waste your money. Showing up late makes it difficult to reach your 'goal weight' by a certain set date. It's a good idea to even show up a little early and get started on that warm up so you're 100% for the 'hardcore' workout stuff when your personal trainer arrives.
Pain Is Not Gain
This old saying is dead wrong. Working out can make you sore and cause muscle fatigue, but it should never cause shooting pains. If a workout hurts in any way, tell your trainer. Injuries also put you behind your goal schedule, and chances are you'll end up mad at your trainer; despite the fact that they didn't know it was causing you pain until it was too late.
As a stubborn person that always feels the need to look 'tough', I understand that it can be hard to tell people that you need to stop because it hurts. Just put your pride away. It's not worth a possible long lasting injury.
Obviously your trainer isn't going to suggest that you wear flip flops to your session, but then again they may not suggest that you buy a better brand of shoes. Quality is important and the shoes you need for cardio versus the shoes you need for weight lifting differ. It's a wise decision to make the shoe investment. Do some research about what shoes work best and even consult your trainer about what would be a good fit.
You Can Pay For Less & Still Get Results
A 30 minute maximum effort session is better than a slow paced 60 minute session overall. Also, going for just the 30 minutes can cut your costs in half.
I'm Not Getting Rich
This mainly applies to trainers that are working at commercial gyms, and while you may be paying a lot for your training sessions, the trainers themselves don't usually make much. The median annual income in 2012 for trainers and instructors was around $31,720, which is about $15 an hour. That's not a bad pay for the trainers, but it just goes to show that the majority of the money goes towards the facility.
So next time you feel annoyed with the price, remember that your trainer is handing 40% to 60% over to pay for the gym that employs them. And on that topic, certain "big-box" gym facilities only pay $12 an hour even though clients pay around $30 for an hour session.
I've always held the view (even before I decided that it's what I want to do) that it's better to hire self-employed trainers. And while they have overhead costs (including liability insurance) at least they're making a decent living - especially if they have a family.
It's Okay To Fire Me
If you listen to all the advice your trainer has for you, and you follow it strictly but never see any results, you can fire them. It's like dating, if it's not working for you, just simply say "I appreciate all you've done to help (because most of them really are trying) but I won't be coming anymore/as often".
The same applies for behaviors/strategies. If you expected a motivational trainer and ended up with a drill sergeant and feel unhappy with their behaviors/techniques in this aspect, it's okay to leave and find someone else.
Just remember, it's always best to put in max effort as well as be honest!