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​​Workout Wisdom: 89 Funny and Thoughtful PT Motivational Quotes

I know what you’re probably thinking, “How are personal trainer quotes going to make me a better coach and help me grow my business?”

At first glance, motivational fitness quotes seem cheesy and ineffective. However, they can be a valuable tool for personal trainers to feel more inspired, build rapport with clients, and motivate them to keep working hard toward their goals.

To that end, let’s dive into the best personal trainer quotes and why you shouldn’t overlook them in your practice.

The Importance of Motivation in Personal Training

Your job is to train your clients, but that’s not all. You must also know how to motivate them if you hope for them to stay consistent, continue working with you, and reach their goals. 

Motivation is kind of like the fuel that keeps cars running. Just as a car cannot go without fuel, we cannot move forward and reach our goals without motivation. It is the driving force that gets us to take action and, more importantly, push through challenges.

However, like the fuel in your car, motivation isn’t something you can fill up on once. Motivation depletes over time, especially when we face challenges or feel like our goals are too distant or downright unattainable. Because of that, we must replenish our motivation stores regularly. 

Fortunately, there are many ways to motivate ourselves and our clients. A few kind or supportive words can ignite your client’s motivation and make them feel like they are moving in the right direction. 

Personal training motivational quotes are also effective because they sound good and often make us feel like we are pursuing amazing things.

Moreover, motivational quotes are like nuggets of pep talk. They remind us (and our clients) why we started and provide the extra push to help us persevere through the challenges.

How Words Influence Us

Do you know how listening to a cool song can pump you up and get you ready to take on the world? Or how a few kind words from a friend can turn your bad day around? Words have that power––they can influence how we think, feel, and act.

For instance, imagine you’re going through a grueling set of squats. You’re barely at the halfway point, but your legs feel like jello, so you think, “Oh man, there is no way I’m getting five more reps!” Guess what? You’d be right.

Now, imagine flipping the script:

  • “I can do this.”
  • “I’m stronger than I can even imagine.”
  • “I’m getting those five reps no matter what.”
  • “Come on; it’s just five more reps. One, two, three, four, five.”

You suddenly feel stronger and far more capable.

That’s not just about us and our internal dialogue. It’s also about coaching others and helping them reach their goals. Part of your job is to make your clients believe they can do more than they previously thought was possible. Achieve that and watch as they train harder, become more confident, and reach their goals.

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20 Motivational Quotes from Trainers, Coaches, and Inspirational People

All motivational personal training quotes serve their purpose, but they are especially powerful when they come from prominent people in the fitness industry. To that end, here are 20 quotes from trainers, coaches, competitors, and fitness personalities:

1. “It’s not about perfect. It’s about effort. And when you bring that effort every single day, that’s where transformation happens. That’s how change occurs.”Jillian Michaels, fitness expert and TV personality

2. “What we face may look insurmountable, but what I learned is that we are always stronger than we know.”Arnold Schwarzenegger, bodybuilder and actor

3. “Every champion was once a contender who refused to give up.” Rocky Balboa, iconic movie character

4. “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. That’s what most people lack. Having the guts to go on and just say they’ll go through the pain no matter what happens.”Arnold Schwarzenegger

5. “Don’t count the days, make the days count.”Muhammad Ali, legendary boxer

6. “I’ll never be perfect, but I can be better. Today, I’m focusing on improvement, not perfection.”Bonnie Pfiester, fitness expert

7. “If it doesn’t challenge you, it won’t change you.” Fred Devito, fitness instructor

8. “Train insane or remain the same.”Jillian Michaels

9. “Remember this: your body is your slave; it works for you.” – Jack LaLanne, fitness pioneer

10. “Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths.”Arnold Schwarzenegger

11. “When you feel like quitting, think about why you started.” – often attributed to David Goggins, an ultramarathon runner and retired Navy SEAL

12. “There’s no such thing as bad weather, just soft people.”Bill Bowerman, co-founder of Nike and former track and field coach

13. “Strong people are harder to kill than weak people and more useful in general. A weak man is not as happy as that same man would be if he were strong.”Mark Rippetoe, prominent strength coach

14. “Don’t limit your challenges, challenge your limits.”Jerry Dunn, marathon coach

15. “If you’re tired of starting over, stop giving up.”Shaun T, prominent fitness trainer

16. “Exercise to stimulate, not to annihilate. The world wasn’t formed in a day, and neither were we. Set small goals and build upon them.”Lee Haney, former Mr. Olympia

17. “I don’t stop when I’m tired. I stop when I’m done.”David Goggins

18. “The clock is ticking. Are you becoming the person you want to be?” Greg Plitt, fitness model and actor

19. “No matter how many mistakes you make or how slow you progress, you are still way ahead of everyone who isn’t trying.”Tony Robbins, motivational speaker and fitness advocate

20. “Great things come from hard work and perseverance. No excuses.”Kobe Bryant, legendary basketball player

Motivational Quotes for Different Aspects of Fitness

Are you looking to inspire your personal training clients in a specific way? Below are five prominent categories to pick from:

10 Motivational Weight Loss Quotes

1. “Every journey begins with a single step.”

2. “Weight loss doesn’t begin in the gym with a dumbbell; it starts in your head with a decision.”

3. “You didn’t gain all your weight in one day; you won’t lose it in one day. Be patient with yourself.”

4. “If you keep good food in your fridge, you will eat good food.”

5. “Every pound lost is a victory.”

6. “The only successful way to reach and maintain a healthy weight is to find what works for you.”

7. “Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live in.”

8. “Don’t reward yourself with food. You are not a dog.” 

9. “It’s not a diet, it’s a lifestyle change.”

10. “Every meal and workout is another opportunity to improve.”

10 Motivational Strength Training & Bodybuilding Quotes

 1. “There’s no secret formula. I lift heavy, work hard, and aim to be the best.”

2. “The resistance that you fight physically in the gym and the resistance that you fight in life can only build a strong character.”

3. “The iron never lies to you. You can walk outside and listen to all kinds of talk, get told that you’re a god or a total bastard. The iron will always kick you the real deal.”

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

5. “The barbell is an incredibly honest tool. It will always highlight your weaknesses.”

6. “The pain you feel today will be the strength you feel tomorrow.”

7. “Everyone wants to be a beast until it’s time to do what real beasts do.”

8. “In training, you listen to your body. In competition, you tell your body to shut up.”

9. “There are no shortcuts—everything is reps, reps, reps.”

10. “Light weight or heavy weight, they all must be lifted.”

10 Motivational Quotes for Endurance Athletes

1. “Run when you can, walk if you have to, crawl if you must; just never give up.”

2. “The race always hurts. Expect it to hurt. You don’t train so it doesn’t hurt. You train so you can tolerate it.”

3. “The miracle isn’t that I finished. The miracle is that I had the courage to start.” 

4. “Running is the greatest metaphor for life because you get out of it what you put into it.”

5. “Remember, the feeling you get from a good run is far better than the feeling you get from sitting around wishing you were running.” 

6. “Your body will argue that there is no justifiable reason to continue. Your only recourse is to call on your spirit, which fortunately functions independently of logic.”

7. “Our running shoes have magic in them. The power to transform a bad day into a good day; frustration into speed; self-doubt into confidence; chocolate cake into muscle.” 

8. “Triathlon doesn’t build character. It reveals it.”

9. “When your legs can’t run anymore, run with your heart.” 

10. “Running is nothing more than a series of arguments between the part of your brain that wants to stop and the part that wants to keep going.” 

5 Physical Therapy Quotes

1. “Recovery is not a race. You don’t have to feel guilty if it takes you longer than you thought it would.”

2. “Rehabilitation is to be a master word in medicine.”

3. “The road to recovery will not always be easy, but I will take it one step at a time.”

4. “Physical therapy is the key to unlocking the door of disability.”

5. “Physical therapy is a key to recovery and to the development of strategies to prevent recurrence, or worse, the development of chronic conditions.”

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5 Mental Well-Being Quotes

1. “You’re only one workout away from a good mood.”

2. “The groundwork for all happiness is good health.”

3. “Your body hears everything your mind says. Stay positive.”

4. “Don’t wait until you’ve reached your goal to be proud of yourself. Be proud of every step you take toward reaching that goal.”

5. “It’s up to you to start making healthy choices today. Not choices that are just healthy for your body, but healthy for your mind.”

14 Motivational Personal Trainer Quotes

Now look at a few quotes to inspire you: the coach, teacher, and leader. Re-read them whenever you need a helpful reminder of why you’ve chosen this career path and what it takes to be a great coach.

1. “The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.”

2. “Coaching is unlocking a person’s potential to maximize their growth.”

3. “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”

4. “A good coach can change a game. A great coach can change a life.”

5. “The best coaches really care about people. They have a sincere interest in people.”

6. “A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way.”

7. “Great coaching is about understanding the people you’re leading and constantly moving them towards their goals.”

8. “Being a great personal trainer means being invested in your client’s progress. Push them to leave their comfort zones and to keep going, even when they think they can’t.”

9. “Every day you step into the gym, you are influencing someone. Make sure it’s a positive influence.”

10. “Success as a trainer isn’t measured in pounds lost or muscle gained. It’s measured in the confidence and determination that grows in your clients.”

11. “To be a successful trainer, one must not only instruct but inspire. Motivate your clients to push past their perceived limits and reach new heights.”

12. “Being a personal trainer is about teaching others that strength isn’t just about what the body can do, but what the mind believes.”

13. “You are the director of change, the motivator of transformation, and the guide on a journey of self-improvement. Take pride in your role.”

14. “Training others is not just about executing exercises, it’s about being a guiding light in someone’s journey to better health.”

Funny Personal Trainer Sayings and Light-Hearted Motivational Quotes

Humor can be a fantastic source of motivation and stress relief on a fitness journey, especially when clients are pursuing long-term goals and going through workouts that push them well beyond their comfort zone. 

To wrap up the long list, here are a few light-hearted and funny sayings you can include in your personal training sessions:

1. “I don’t stop when I’m tired. I stop when I’m done. And by ‘done,’ I mean when I’ve finished my post-workout snack.”

2. “They call it a ‘personal trainer.’ I call it a ‘personal terrorizer.”

3. “Sweat is just fat crying. Let’s make it sob!”

4. “Exercise in the morning… before your brain figures out what you’re doing.”

5. “Remember, if you lose motivation, chocolate is always at the finish line!”

6. “The only bad workout is the one you didn’t do… or the one where you forgot your headphones at home.”

7. “You are one workout away from a good mood. Two workouts away from feeling like a superhero. Three workouts away from considering opening your own gym.”

8. “The word ‘aerobics’ came about when the gym instructors got together and said, ‘If we’re going to charge $10 an hour, we can’t call it jumping up and down.”

9. “I’d like to thank my personal trainer for the muscles. And my pizza delivery guy for the motivation.”

10. “I’ve got 99 problems, and they all involve carbs.”

Even the physical therapist can incorporate some inspirational quotes to support positive thinking and help any patient dealing with injuries and limitations. Here are a few suggestions:

1. “I’m a physical therapist. I solve problems you didn’t know you had in ways you can’t understand.”

2. “Doing my best impression of a pretzel at physical therapy.”

3. “Physical therapists have their patients’ backs… and necks, and knees, and hips.”

4. “Physical therapy: because sometimes ‘walk it off’ just isn’t going to cut it.”

5. “Physical therapy motto: They poked me, they prodded me, and then they had the nerve to call it ‘therapeutic touch.”

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Final Words

Personal training motivational quotes might seem cheesy (some of them are), but that doesn’t mean we should discount them. Words can evoke emotions, motivate us, and push us to improve.

As a coach or personal trainer, you should use every tool available to elevate your practice, build rapport with clients, and break up awkward silences. 

Of course, that doesn’t mean you should become a quote-aholic and bore your clients with endless quotes and motivational sayings for every situation. Use quotes when they seem appropriate and fit into the situation.


Before you go, check out Hevy Coach––our all-in-one platform for personal trainers and coaches. Create workout programs for your clients, make adjustments when necessary, track their progress, and answer questions, all from a single dashboard. No need to jump from one tool to the next to organize your roster––test Hevy Coach for free with one client.

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