We all know that being in shape has it’s benefits. But were you aware of its financial benefits? When I meet with a new client, I hear a lot of reasons for why they want to start training with a personal trainer. Often, They site vain reasons first such as “I want to look good in a bathing suit”, or “I have a wedding coming up, and I want to look good for that”. However, what I find to be far more motivating than that are far less superficial reasons. One of the most exciting aspects of being fit is that you have a LOT more energy and are substantially more productive! Additionally, fit individuals will not spend nearly as much on healthcare as their sedentary, obese

According to a report from a professor at George Washington University’s School of Public Health, obese individuals will spend upwards of $8,365 per year more than a fit individual (1)! This value is determined by their costs for direct medical costs, absenteeism, lost productivity, short-term disability, workers compensation, personal costs, and premature mortality! In addition to all these costs, their own personal value is likely suffering. Many therapists cite lack of exercise as one of the main culprits for depression and anxiety(2). Can you imagine living that way long-term? What if this person decided to not do anything about it for 10 years? That’s $83,650 that is literally lost simply because they are out of shape!

What I would like to do is compare this cost of being out of shape and obese with the cost of working with a high-end personal trainer for a year! I’m going to estimate on the high-end here and assume this trainer really knows his/her stuff and charges more because of it! If you were to work with a trainer like this, one-on-one, for a year, do you believe you would be in better shape? I would hope so! Let’s say the personal trainer cost $75 per session and you committed to working with this trainer for 100 sessions. I know, I know, it sounds outrageous, but honestly so does the cost of living as someone who is out of shape! So, your new plan is to train one-on-one with this trainer twice per week for a whole year. What do you think the result would be after a year (other than having $7500 less)? How about we do a comparison. Let’s pretend Person “A” is out of shape, obese and decides to do nothing and stays as is and Person “B” is also out of shape but decides to train with the high-end trainer for a year.

Person A:

After 1 year of no personal training

Current Weight: Obese

Healthcare/Employment Costs: for being Obese $8365

Personal Value: Depressed, likely on additional medication for it

Employment Status: Tentative, likely out on disability or unemployed

Cost for Personal Trainer: 0 (never trained)

Total costs: $8365, plus depression as an added bonus!


Person B:

After 1 year of personal training with a high-end trainer

Current Weight: Low end overweight zone, possibly normal weight

Healthcare/Employment Costs: for being only overweight $524 (1)

Personal Value: Extremely high for having so much energy and losing a significant amount of weight!

Employment Status: Highly employable, likely ready for a promotion because of how efficient this person now is!

Cost for Personal Trainer: $7500

Total Costs: $8024, this person is also very likely making a lot more money too because of how much more productive, efficient and high energy he/she is!

Person B Saved: $341 after the first year of training!

If we were to continue to project that out after 10 years, even if we factored in some more personal training for a few more years after that, Person B is light years ahead of Person A! So, is it worth it? Person B is saving more money, and there is a much greater likelihood that Person B is making more money because of higher productivity, not to mention their own self worth is substantially higher! What do you think!? If you are thinking of ways to save money and increase your personal value and productivity, consider hiring a high-end personal trainer! If you choose not too, well, you may be making an $83,650 mistake!


“For the Lord gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.” Proverbs 2:6 (NLT)

Jon Arnold
Owner and CEO of Integrated Fitness of Dover LLC
ACE Certified Personal Trainer, NASM CES, B.S. Nutrition


(1) “Heavy Burden” Dor, et al http://www.stopobesityalliance.org/wp-content/themes/stopobesityalliance/pdfs/Heavy_Burden_Report.pdf

(2) “Exercise for the treatment of anxiety and depression”, Carek PJ et al, Int Journal Psychiatry Med.