20 motivational quotes to inspire greatness in the gym.
Lacking motivation to get back into the gym? Back in the gym already but feel stagnated? Or maybe you’re just looking for new inspiration for a the new year. Whatever your situation, reading words of wisdom from successful people can be super-inspiring.

With that in mind, here are 20 amazing motivational quotes from notable figures to help you kick start your new year — and your fitness goals.

Some are from sports people, some entrepreneurs, world leaders and famous thinkers, but in each of these quotes is something to inspire you in your fitness pursuits.

1. “The last three or four reps is what makes the muscle grow. This area of pain divides a champion from someone who is not a champion.”

— Arnold Schwarzenegger, seven-time Mr. Olympia

2. “Success usually comes to those who are too busy to be looking for it.”

— Henry David Thoreau, poet and philosopher

3. “All progress takes place outside the comfort zone.”

— Michael John Bobak, digital artist

4. “If you think lifting is dangerous, try being weak. Being weak is dangerous.”

— Bret Contreras, sports scientist

5. “The only place where success comes before work is in the dictionary.”

— Vidal Sassoon, hairstylist and businessman

6. “The clock is ticking. Are you becoming the person you want to be?”

— Greg Plitt, fitness model

7. “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t, you’re right.”

— Henry Ford, industrialist

8. “The successful warrior is the average man, with laser-like focus.”

— Bruce Lee, actor and martial artist

9. “You must expect great things of yourself before you can do them.”

— Michael Jordan, basketball player

10. “Action is the foundational key to all success.”

— Pablo Picasso, visual artist

11. “Things may come to those who wait, but only the things left by those who hustle.”

– Abraham Lincoln, 16th President of the United States

12. “Well done is better than well said.”

— Benjamin Franklin, American Founding Father and inventor

13. “All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them.”

— Walt Disney, film producer and entrepreneur

14. “A champion is someone who gets up when they can’t.”

— Jack Dempsey, professional boxer

15. “What hurts today makes you stronger tomorrow.”

— Jay Cutler, pro bodybuilder and four-time Mr. Olympia

16. “If something stands between you and your success, move it. Never be denied.”

— Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson, actor and pro wrestler

17. “If you want something you’ve never had, you must be willing to do something you’ve never done.”

— Thomas Jefferson, Third President of the United States

18. “You have to think it before you can do it. The mind is what makes it all possible.”

— Kai Greene, pro bodybuilder and artist

19. “Things work out best for those who make the best of how things work out.”

— John Wooden, basketball player and coach

20. “Success is walking from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.”

— Winston Churchill, British statesman and Prime Minister of the United Kingdom

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For me one of the biggest struggles in being a group instructor is cueing and knowing what to say. I tend to talk about what muscle group we are using and why we are doing what we are doing. But once you have a class regulars they know already know your go to vernacular, so it’s important to switch things up.

It’s moving beyond the basics where I get tripped up. Everyone has different things that motivate them, and finding a loose script that works for everyone has been an interesting journey.

I teach a WIDE variety of classes and age levels. Now that I’m not feeling new at this game, I’m getting more adventurous. I’m subbing at additional facilities and adding a few certifications I never thought I would have enjoyed. It’s true what they say…. try everything!

I subbed for a group class at a facility that wasn’t my home gym recently and was shocked by the warm and positive feed back from the members. And left with a Oh ya! finally have the hang of this feeling. Then I subbed at my home gym for a class and was told by one lady ” you say good job keep it up far too much we aren’t children you know!” And my soul was once again crushed.

Finding the script that works is a topic I wish more bloggers and instructors would talk about. I understand sometimes people are protective about what they say because it becomes their kitch, but I do think it’s a topic that is a great discussion.

We each are different and like different styles. I don’t like to be yelled at, or grunted at I find those options tend to make me laugh rather than work harder. But I also don’t like instructors who offer nothing, like you aren’t there after you are told what to do. And sometimes I phase out of classes I used to enjoy because they never change.

There is a fine art to the script of a group class.

Some people want to be left alone.

Some people want there to be an element of competition.

Some people want positive reinforcement.

Some people want you to personally call them out, some people don’t.

Believe it or not there are people who enjoy being screamed at.

There are people who just want to be told what to do.

Group fitness is in the people business which is often the most difficult category of work. It’s truly about the PEOPLE in the class not the instructor, but finding the right words to motivate each person can be hard.

I decided to enlist the help of some of my Idea Fit Blogger friends and Girls Gone Sporty instructors for some of the things they say in their group classes. They had some great ones!

Click on the image to visit these bloggers pages and learn more about them.

Zumba instructor Jennifer Lauren,offered some great advice as well. Less in the words we use but in our actions as instructors, she also has a great post here you can check out.

You can agree that an instructor can make or break a class. Energy and enthusiasm for what you are doing is important, and so are the words we choose to motivate.

Some of my go to’s include:

Lunges and Lace posted this post recently on learning from the bad instructors, that was interesting as well.

Now I want to hear from you whether an instructor or group fitness fanatic, what words motivate you?

Question of the Day: What saying in a group class motivate you for an EXTRA PUSH and Charge!

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If you are looking for personal trainer quotes, you’ve come to the right place. Here are what we think are the 10 best motivational personal training and fitness quotes.

Some of them are funny, all of them are very motivational. And you’ll find some quotes from the biggest players of the fitness industry, like Arnold Schwarzenegger or Jack LaLanne.

Feel free to share the one you like the most with your friends. Just hover your mouse on the picture and pin it to your favorite motivational quotes board.

Personal Trainer Quote #1

Let’s start with a highly motivational quote. This is as good for personal trainers as is for anyone trying to get in shape.

Don’t limit your challenges. Challenge your limits.

Personal Trainer Quote #2

A very funny one for personal trainers. Did you ever have problem answering the question what your job is?

My job? I kill fat for a living.

Personal Trainer Quote #3

This one is from the late Jack LaLanne, a.k.a. “The godfather of fitness”.

Exercise is King. Nutrition is Queen. Put them together & you’ve got a kingdom

– Jack LaLanne

Personal Trainer Quote #4

If you need some motivation whenever you want to give it up, just remember this quote.

The moment when you want to quit is the moment when you need to keep pushing.

Personal Trainer Quote #5

And speaking about motivation…

The motivation comes from within. No one can hand it to you, but no one can take it away, either.

Personal Trainer Quote #6

You don’t have to believe in yourself. Just believe in your personal trainer.

Personal Trainer Quote #7

If at first you don’t succeed… Try doing what your trainer told you the first time.

Personal Trainer Quote #8

This one is from Arnold Schwarzenegger, 7 times Mr. Olympia winner.

The last 3 or 4 reps is what makes the muscle grow. This area of pain divides the champion from someone else who is not a champion.

-Arnold Schwarzenegger

Personal Trainer Quote #9

Your body can stand almost anything. It’s your mind you have to convince.

Personal Trainer Quote #10

And at last one fitness quote which is funny, somewhat ironic, but true.

The best ab exercise is 5 sets of stop eating so much crap.

Fitness Quotes Book Tip

If you’d like to see more motivational fitness quotes, check out this great resource on Amazon: The Great Big Fitness Quote Book: Over 365 Motivational Quotes To Get Back In Shape!

You know that working out makes you feel good, but it’s easy to forget about that endorphin-fueled post-workout bliss when you’re tired, stressed, or just don’t want to get to the gym for whatever reason. Motivational mantras—those little phrases you repeat to yourself when you need a kick—can be just what you need to get yourself going.

“Mantras are excellent for honing intrinsic motivation and positive self-talk,” says Baltimore-based strength coach Erica Suter, C.S.C.S. “Not everyone is going to have a perfect day in the gym, but repeating an uplifting mantra in your head will allow you to tune in on something positive and motivational.”

Looking for a phrase to get you through your next tough workout? We asked fitness pros to share what keeps them going day in and day out. (Our fans on Instagram liked the mantra “Didn’t Happen Overnight” so much that we put it on a tank top. Get yours from theWomen’s HealthBoutique.)

Alyssa Zolna

“For me, I just think about how good I feel after I work out, how it affects my confidence, how it inspires my clients when I take care of myself, and how I set an example for my own kids.” —Harley Pasternak, M.Sc., celebrity trainer who’s worked with Megan Fox, Jennifer Hudson, and Khloé Kardashian

Check out Khloe’s Revenge Body workout here:

​ Alyssa Zolna

“Love, love of sport, and enthusiasm are much more powerful and healthy tools than anger and negative self-talk, so focusing on the goodness is the most potent source of energy. Reminding myself why I’m doing what I’m doing, ‘my dreams,’ helps me to focus on the long-term reward versus the short-term pain or distraction. And remembering all the people that can’t do any number of the sorts of physical training I do because of their health issues, permanent injuries, or loss of life gives me a sense of gratitude for movement and life that, like love, fills my sails.” —Cris Dobrosielski, American Council on Exercise (ACE) senior consultant on personal training and owner of Monumental Results

Related: This Fitness Blogger Proves Weight Ain’t Nothing but a Number

Alyssa Zolna

“This phrase inspires me to shift my perspective about exercise and to see the beauty in it at all times, even when it feels challenging, by acknowledging and celebrating the fact that I am able to mindfully and purposefully move my body in ways which improve my health and wellbeing not only physically but also mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.” —Jessica Matthews, M.S., senior advisor for health and fitness education for ACE, yoga educator, master trainer, and health coach

Alyssa Zolna

“This phrase reminds me that in order to grow, become stronger, and evolve as a human, I must push past what is ‘comfortable’ and really challenge myself. It serves as a reminder that it is totally okay to get comfortable with being uncomfortable because that is how we improve. I believe when it comes to working out, going through the motions only takes us so far, and then we have to continue to take on new feats of strength, challenges, and limits. The body is so smart that it adapts to training quickly, so new stimulation will not only help it transform but will set it up for long-term resilience as you age.” —Erica Suter, C.S.C.S., Baltimore-based strength coach

Related: I Hit the Gym in Just a Sports Bra—Here’s What Happened

Alyssa Zolna

“As women, we tend to judge ourselves harshly with ‘I’m too old to start that,’ or ‘I’m not athletic,’ or ‘I’m not flexible,’ etcetera. The inner judge can be relentless! I’m reminding people the only person who puts a timetable on health, strength, and fitness is you. I started Brazilian jiujitsu when I was 40. It was one of the most empowering things I’ve ever done, and I turned an athletic corner I never thought I could reach in my forties! Focusing on what you’re capable of is a much healthier mindset as opposed to focusing on comparison. Each of us sets our own finish lines. You can start any new habit or sport at ANY time. It’s never too late.” —Ashley Borden, celebrity personal trainer and author of Your Perfect Fit

Alyssa Zolna

“This phrase inspires me because I see many trainers in the industry that don’t set a good example for their clients. This is what I feel has contributed to my business being so successful. Being a healthy role model for my staff and for my clients is something that keeps me going and pushes me to work harder.” —Mark Langowski, personal trainer and author of Eat This Not That for Abs

Alyssa Zolna

“By continuing, by finishing what I started or set out to do, I am a better person. I’m healthier, I’m more resistant to illness and injury, I’m absent less (like, never), I’m more patient with my wife, I have more energy for my kids, my mental acuity is better, which keeps me on point at work, and I feel better. Actually, I feel GREAT. I feel GREAT every damn day. That’s because I am inspired to stay the course. And that’s because my little catch phrases catch me if I start to slip.” —Gunnar Peterson, C.S.C.S, C.P.T., celebrity trainer

Related: The 18-Minute Fitness Routine That Will Totally Change Your Body

Alyssa Zolna

“All things, good and bad, must come to an end. We go through light phases of life, just like we endure heavy phases of life…all of which do indeed pass. Same goes for working out. Just like we will make it through the tough (or heavy) life events if we endure and persevere, we will also make it through the toughest and heaviest of workouts if we have the same determined mindset! The hardest of hard workouts WILL pass…but you must keep chipping along, just like we must do in life. And without a shadow of a doubt, we will come out stronger EACH and EVERY time.”—Heidi Powell, co-host of Extreme Weight Loss

“Pain is nothing compared to what it feels like to give in!”

Now that’s one of my personal trainer quotes I love! And it can be used in every facet of your life, not only when it comes to fitness!

Hey everyone, Coach Tyler here! And today, I have a blog post with a bit of a difference.

If you have worked as a personal trainer, you know that clients not only need to tackle fitness from a physical standpoint. They need to approach it from a mental aspect as well. Because more often than not, the body might be willing but it’s our minds that keep holding us back.

No doubt you’ve experienced it as well. Your alarm goes off, waking you out of deep sleep. It’s early morning and time for an intense workout. But no matter how hard you try, you just can’t pull yourself out of bed.

And that’s natural, it happens to the best of us. It’s at that time, that I like to remember that quote above. It’s about getting up, working through that mental barrier (a pain if you must) and getting to the gym to start your workout.

And it’s those workouts that are often the best, right?

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I have done plenty of research into personal trainer quote and no one takes credit for my favorite above. It’s a pity because it’s such a brilliant quote, I am sure you will agree.

But let’s find a few more that you can use to give both yourself and your clients a boost when needed.

Quotes That Will Motivate You

I want to start with some quotes that will help provide some inspiration for you, the personal trainer. While we love working with people and helping them reach their goals, we are just like everybody else.

Some days, motivation levels are low. And we struggle. But we can’t let that affect how we deal with our clients. They need 110% from us all of the time. Why, well we are guiding them to a new, healthier lifestyle.

So when you struggling to motivate yourself, remember some of these!

“I want to inspire people. I want someone to look up at me and say, ‘Because of you, I didn’t give up.’” – Evan Carmichael, Entrepreneur.

Wow! Now if that’s not a motivation to keep on doing what you are doing, then I don’t know what is. As personal trainers, we need to inspire people to be their best. It’s what we do on a daily basis. Remember this quote and keep at it!

“There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work and learning from failure.” – Colin Powell, former Secretary of State and U.S. General.

Well, it’s not fitness related specifically but its a special quote. In all aspects of life, doing the preparation and putting in the hard yards gets us to where we want to be. And yes, we all fail along the way but it’s about how you recover and learn from those failures that makes us better at what we do.

“The most important thing is to try and inspire people so they can be great at whatever they do.” – Kobe Bryant – American basketball legend.

I love this quote! And who is going to argue with one of the greatest basketball players ever? As a personal trainer, one of your most important tasks is to inspire your clients to be the best they can be – to put in their very best efforts. When they do, they see results. And results drive motivation, that’s for sure.

“Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be a success.” – Albert Schweitzer, Philosopher.

As a personal trainer, I love my job. Even when things are a little tough or when motivation is slightly lacking. it’s important to remember that you are doing what you love. So many people sit in jobs that they hate! We are so lucky that we can continue to not only help others but have a smile on our faces doing it.

“Combine your natural ability with a mission to help people and you will have a rich, fulfilling life.” – Bryan Krahn, Physics Coach.

Part of the reason I became a personal trainer was to help others. I am sure that it’s one of the reasons you did as well, right? And yes, Bryan Krahn is right. It sure does lead to a rich, fulfilling life.

Quotes That Will Motivate Your Clients

Now onto some quotes that will provide inspiration for your clients (but you could use them to inspire yourself as well). You can use these whenever you think you need to. Learn a few of them, mention them in workouts, when things are getting tough.

Or better still, send them to your clients as reminders that if they stay on track, they will meet their goals, whatever that may be. You could send them as a text message, a few hours before their workout. It’s up to you how you use them, just make sure you do!

“Exercise is king. Nutrition is queen. Put them together, and you’ve got a kingdom.” – Jack Lalanne, American fitness pioneer.

Jack Lalanne is one of America’s fitness pioneers. In fact, he opened one of the first gyms in the country way back in 1936. Jack understood the correlation between exercise and nutrition, something that we as personal trainers base our lives and that of our clients around still today. This is an awesome quote to use on our clients, especially to get across just how important both exercise and nutrition are.

“It is not the size of a man but the size of his heart that matters.” – Evander Holyfield, Boxing Heavyweight Champion.

Without a doubt, everything comes from the heart. I love this quote because it’s so true. If you truly want something and are prepared to fight and push for it, it can be yours. And that’s something that you can get across to your clients as you train them every day.

“You can have results or excuses. You can’t have both!” – Bret Contreras, Personal Trainer

This is something I try to get across to all my clients. Excuses stand in the way of progress, that’s for sure. It’s part of your job as a personal trainer to motivate your clients to a point when they crave results over any excuses their minds can come up with!

“Sore? Tired? Out of breath? Good, it’s working” – Anonymous

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Buy the ISSA CPT and get the ISSA Nutrition Cert for FREE. This nutrition cert will increase your overall earnings as a PT
Save 25% on NASM with my personal code PTP25
Save 40% on the ACE CPT with only $20 down
50% off study materials for NASM, ISSA, ACE, CSCS or NSCA and ACSM For Early 2020
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A little harsh… maybe? True… for sure! When the muscles are sore, the training is working!

“It’s not about being the best. It’s about being better than you were yesterday.” – Stephanie Chappa, Fitness Competitor.

For clients just starting out on their fitness journey, things can be a little daunting. I like to use this quote as a way of guiding them to take little steps, session by session. And it’s by doing that, that they will reach their ultimate fitness goal.

“Today I will do what others won’t, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can’t.” – Jerry Rice, Super Bowl Champion x3.

This is an incredible quote to help your clients get into a mindful space and focus on the present. And by focusing on the present and doing what needs to be done, future success can be assured. And it can be applied to personal training as well as life in general, don’t you agree?

“The only place where success comes before work is in the dictionary.” – Vidal Sassoon, Businessman.

Ain’t that the truth. In your personal training career, or when a client applies it to what it is that they want to achieve under your guidance, only hard work will lead to success.

“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t, you’re right.” – Henry Ford, Founder of the Ford Motor Company.

They always say that “can’t” is a word not found in the dictionary. It should be a word that you try to banish from your life. I believe that a “can-do” attitude paves the way for overall success. So did Henry Ford and he just had a tiny bit of success, didn’t he?

“A champion is someone who gets up when they can’t.” – Jack Dempsey, Professional Boxer.

You all know that at times, our clients struggle with the exercise tasks that we put in front of them. When I can see someone struggling through their workout regime, I love to pull out this quote. When taking to heart, it gives my clients an amazing boost!

“If you want something you’ve never had, you must be willing to do something you’ve never done.” – Thomas Jefferson, U.S. President.

No pain, no gain, right! Even before they have had their first workout, I like to tell new clients that at times, they are going to find the going tough. If they want the end goal so badly, they need to be willing to push themselves as much as they can. And use this quote to drive that home.

“You have to think it before you can do it. The mind is what makes it all possible.” – Kai Greene, Pro Bodybuilder.

I love this quote because, at the end of the day, our overall performance, the ability to push ourselves to the maximum is all in our head. Your body will go where your mind takes you! The sooner your clients realize that, the better for them.

“The last three or four reps is what makes the muscle grow. This area of pain divides a champion from someone who is not a champion.” – Arnold Schwarzenegger, Actor and Bodybuilder.

What’s a list of personal trainer and fitness motivation quotes without something from Arnie, right? And this one is brilliant. Again, it’s about putting in as much as you possibly can to reap the rewards.

“The clock is ticking. Are you becoming the person you want to be?” – Greg Plitt, Fitness Model.

This is a motivational quote you can use on your clients whenever they need a pep talk. It’s all about becoming the person you always wanted to be. And while the transition is hard, the end result is incredible.

“Once you learn to quit, it becomes a habit.” – Vince Lombardi Two-time Super Bowl champion coach.

We’ve all been there. Even the top personal trainers in the world know that feeling of wanting to quit. So we can relate when our clients hit a wall. It’s at that time when trying to help them push through that I always remember this quote to spur them on.

“I hated every minute of training, but I said, ‘Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.’” – Muhammad Ali, Boxing Heavyweight Champion.

And what a champion he was. In many people’s book, the greatest boxer of all time. While training is our thing, sometimes our clients probably hate it (and us as personal trainers) just a little. Encourage them to work hard so they can become champions for the rest of their lives.

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do.” – Mark Twain, Author.

An amazing quote for clients when starting out, this just puts everything into perspective. There is no time like the present for making changes in one’s life. Don’t put it off till tomorrow. Start today.

Last words…

I hope you had as much fun reading through these wonderful personal training quotes as I have had in collecting them over the years. Not only are they brilliant as motivation for us as personal trainers but more so for our clients.

And while you have all the knowledge to lead people down a physical path to better health, as a personal trainer, sometimes knowing how to motivate them properly through the ups and downs is an awesome trait to have.

As always, if you have any questions about these personal trainer quotes, please comment below.

Thanks for reading!

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Quotes about personal training

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