I was traveling a lot for business when I first started working out with my personal trainer, Elizabeth. Because I was new to yoga, pilates, and weight training, I needed a lot of help from her to be sure I was doing the exercises correctly, both for maximizing the benefit and avoiding injury. So, when I had to go out of town, Elizabeth would carefully write out on a piece of paper what my workout should include. And she would draw little stick figures to remind me how to do each of the exercises.
It worked okay, but it was time-consuming and couldn’t, of course, provide me with her expert advice about exactly how I should do the curl or where to put my arms and legs when doing Warrior 1. I probably didn’t always do what I should have been doing.
Now, those pieces of paper with little stick figures are a thing of the past. I’m gonna get Wello. And, I am going to try to get Elizabeth on Wello too. It’s what you call a Win-Win. I will get Elizabeth anytime, anywhere and Elizabeth can get new clients anytime anywhere. I love the Internet. And, I love Wello.
According to the Wello press release, it is “the world’s first website offering live personal training over two-way video.” It sounded good enough to me to get me to go over to the Wello website to sign up. It’s a nice, clean website – well laid out and easy to use.
Lots of personal trainers to choose from
There are about 70 or so personal trainers participating in the site, all of them with some type of certification in personal training. They also have photos and descriptions of what type of training they specialize in. Some, but not all, have videos. There are star rating on many and testimonials from customers on some. But of course, we all know these need to be taken with a grain of salt as friends, family, and alternate personas have been known to fill them out.
I perused some of the trainers on the first few pages. I really liked Liza Kovacs video:
But who wouldn’t want to work out on a beach in Panama – chaturanga with a gentle wave tickling your feet?
I was pretty sure that the two Jason’s were not my cup of tea – look at those muscles! These guys are serious serious serious – and not that I am not serious about training, just not that serious.
Finally, I decided to use the ”Find Your Fit” function and let Wello pick out a trainer for me. Here are the boxes I checked:
- Specializes in busy professionals
- Does wellness/prevention training
- Focused on form
- Fun and friendly
I did not check the boxes for “Drill Sargent” or “All Business.”
In the end, Wello picked Kimberly Fleming for me:
Watching her video, I decided she was definitely looked fun and friendly, so I decided to give her try. I picked her “ABS…olutely Sexy” package of four 25 minute sessions. It was only $60. Pretty reasonable. So far, so good.
Some technical glitches, but good customer service
Then I hit a minor glitch, the scheduling function wasn’t working properly. So I shot an email to the Wello’s Trainer Guru as instructed.In less than an hour, the glitch had been fixed and I received an email from Leslie Silverglide, one of the founders – a serial entrepreneur with an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business. This was pretty astonishing for an Olympics Sunday midday. I am pretty sure Leslie and her co-founder, Ann Scott Plante, another Stanford MBA and former Bain & Company strategy consultant, have probably been hovering like mother hens over their site since its recent launch. I know I would be if I were them.
I scheduled my first session with Kimberly for 5 pm the same evening. Once scheduled I was able to use the Wello Session Preview function to determine that my trusty ultrabook had all the features needed for the session. I received an email from Wello with a link to my session making it easy to log in once the hour arrived.
However, once I tried to sign in, I discovered that the devilish Shockwave Flash on my computer kept crashing – ugh! I hate Shockwave Flash. I was eventually able to make a connection, but the audio had an annoying echo so everything I said was repeated over and over and over before finally fading away. It didn’t faze Kimberly however. She said, “let’s get started, we’re doing circuit training.” She proceeded to kick my butt, sorry, kick my abs and core, for the entire 25 minutes. I was panting when I finished – but I did do everything she asked. That is the difference between doing live video training and working out to an exercise video that you can simply ignore when the workout gets too tough. Go Wello Go.
I do need to get my technology figured out – perhaps link my ultrabook to my big screen TV or use my rarely used desktop. Any suggestions you have, dear readers, would be greatly appreciated.
I will reschedule with Kimberly later this week – exactly when depends on just how sore my “ABS…olutely Sexy” abs are tomorrow.
Update: Wello was acquired by Weight Watchers in 2014.