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OneShoo Guest Blog Post: A Day in the Life - Weights & Wine

Emma Cooke recently qualified as a personal trainer - now she tell us what her average day as a PT looks like.

So I guess I should start this by saying I have two jobs, I work as an operations manager in Manchester and I also work as a personal trainer. I have had my ‘full time’ job for almost 10 years now and I fit in my personal training clients around my 9-5 hours. This is a snapshot of one day in my week to give you an idea of how it works when you attempt two careers and are starting out in the personal training industry.

So here is what an average day looks like for me – brace yourself:


Wake up and coffee – the coffee is essential at this point, I love my coffee. I have a bag packed the night before with my office job gear in, client training programmes and notes and I’m straight into gym gear and out the door to get the tram into Manchester.


My first PT client of the day, we’re working on his flexibility in today’s session which I’ve planned out in advance. I block book clients in for sessions and like to plan their training based on their aims and aspirations, it gives me something to work towards that I can change and improve as the training progresses and we have more sessions together.


Quick change into office clobber and I’m across the city centre for my office day job as an Operations Manager.


Assuming I haven’t eaten my own arm off at this point it’s breakfast time, today I’m having scrambled egg and beans (It’s Manchester and the weather is grumpy today) but this is a fairly standard breakfast for me. If I’ve trained myself first thing I’ll have a protein shake I make at home, normally chocolate brownie diet whey powder, frozen banana and berries and soya milk and then follow up with porridge or yoghurt and fruit.


Lunch is any time between 12 and 1 based on my day, client meetings and general state of hunger. Today I’m having lunch I made at home which I normally do during the working week. I’m having Quorn chicken coated in pesto with carrots, green beans, broccoli and kale. This is a go-to for me, it’s easy to cook and prep the night before and is also super quick to heat up.

I try when I can to have a wander outside to get some fresh air and time away from sitting at my desk, normally to panic buy stuff I don’t need, today I went for a walk around the shops. My credit card was not harmed on this occasion.


Normally the time of day when I get the munchies so it’s snack time, I’m currently obsessed with the cacao flapjack graze snacks so that’s what I’m having today. Other days I will have yoghurt and fruit with a drizzle of Sweet Freedom liquid chocolate shot which if you follow me on Twitter you will know I am obsessed with right now.


I am back to the gym but this time to train myself before my second client of the day arrives. I’m currently doing a workout based on supersets of opposite muscle groups and building my strength by increasing weights and reducing repetitions. The workout was deadlifts, shoulder press, lat pull down, swiss ball crunches and lunges. Ouch. Quick shower in the gym before my next training session.


Time for PT client number two, I planned out a high intensity circuit, 4 rounds of 5 exercises, 45 seconds work with rest in between each round. I like to finish sessions with 10 minutes of Ab and core stability work with a cool down and stretches.


Personal Training done it’s time to get the tram home.


FOOD! Absolutely starving as you can well imagine, after a long day I am going for a seriously quick an easy cheese omelette with peppers and salad. It may not be exciting but I inhaled it!


Wind down time before bed so I’m sofa surfing in front of the telly with a Sweet Freedom soya hot chocolate and some dark chocolate. I also like to constantly make notes from my Personal Training sessions so that I can keep track of the workouts we’ve completed and the progress we’ve made. This helps me plan and tweak my future sessions to look at increasing weights and making sure the workouts are always different, challenging and enjoyable.


It isn’t rock and roll but I’m not going to lie, its bed time folks.

So what does this tell you? Well, I guess that to do personal training around a full-time job is challenging. The time commitment is hard work and often means that early mornings and late evenings are a given. I know so many people who are starting out in the industry and have to juggle careers like this and it isn’t easy. The social life can take a bit of a nose dive – again, not going to lie here.

Planning is everything, planning in advance for clients, planning meal prep, planning your own training. Everything has to be sorted out before the week starts and normally a Sunday afternoon is dedicated to sorting my life out for the week ahead.

Personal Training sessions are never a given, people chop and change and move around and there needs to be an element of flexibility in your approach, without you sacrificing your entire life to keep clients happy. I’m still learning this.

It isn’t easy and it certainly isn’t rock and roll, as if my 5am wake up and 9pm bedtime didn’t already make that very clear!! However, I absolutely love it. I love my clients, I love the results and the satisfaction when someone tells me they feel great and they can see a difference. That is everything to me as a PT.

Train with me:

Emma is a freelance personal trainer and is currently taking on new clients at a personal training gym in Manchester city centre just off Albert Square and also in Didsbury. If you would like to discuss personal training sessions, buddy-ups or classes with Emma please get in touch and find her on Oneshoo.

Follow Emma:

Instagram :@weights_wine

Twitter :@Weights_Wine

All photography images in this post are by Alexander Ward (@RuggedWisdom). Please visit for more of his work.

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