Movement, Mental Support and Making Gains: Optimizing Your Physical and Mental Health with a Personal Trainer


By Jaime Joshi Elder

With the prevalence and popularity of boot camp style workouts – everything from barre to cardio circuit – people often conflate working out with a trainer as a grueling experience but this couldn’t be further from the truth.

“Trainers aren’t there to hurt you, scare you or push you too hard,” said Orville Smith, Director of Fitness at Retro Fitness in Wellington. “Trainers are professionals who guide you on the most efficient path to achieving your goals. The trainer will coach you in a way you’re comfortable with that will keep you motivated to keep training and show you that fitness can fit into your lifestyle and who you are.”

Smith has been captivated by the mechanics of the human body for years and uses sports as a means to connect to the world around him, participating in everything from team sports to martial arts and eventually, becoming certified by the National Academy of Sports Medicine. 

For Smith, training is just as much about social interaction and mental support as it is physical optimization. 

“Of course, working with a trainer gives you structure and expert guidance but some lesser known benefits of having a trainer are the accountability, emotional support, and motivation you get by having one,” Smith said.“Trainers are there to help make sure you show up to the gym. Trainers are there for you on your good and bad days, coaching you and helping you use fitness as an outlet.”

His philosophy echoes that of Retro Fitness Wellington owner, Ed Jurado. 

“At Retro Fitness, our trainers get to know people — their goals, their history, and any body mechanic issues they might have — to develop a workout plan completely tailored to their needs and desires” said Jurado. “Health and wellness aren’t monoliths. We understand that and strive to serve our community and their health needs.”

Smith understands that novices to the health and wellness lifestyle might feel a little intimidated and unsure about their place and strives for inclusivity and a non-judgmental atmosphere. 

“New comers require care and patience. I want to make sure that the client becomes as comfortable with the gym, our staff and regulars as they are in their own home and community.” Smith said. “Creating a base of comfort and familiarity in a space of fitness goes a long way to coaching someone into making fitness a natural part of their lives.” 

“So many people operate under the misconception that exercise is a punishment or punishing,” Jurado said. “It shouldn’t be like that and we, as providers, should be engaged to find a physical activity that a client enjoys — be it running, climbing, weightlifting, or Pilates. When you come into Retro Fitness, our trainers give everyone a functional fitness assessment to evaluate the functional movement of the hips, shoulders, and ankles. Eventually, we want everyone to be able to do a deep squat, reach overhead and have a full range of motion comfortably.”

To alleviate the concerns of novice gym-goers, Smith likes to outline expectations early.

“On the first day you can expect lots of conversation and physical testing to see where you are and what your starting point is and where you’d like to go,” Smith said. “During the first week – a lot of fundamental movement coaching, laying the foundation and framework you’ll be working with for the duration of your training.”

During the first few weeks, Smith works with his clients to cultivate a deeper understanding of a health-focused and active lifestyle. 

“In your first month, a big focus will be changing key habits and also making training and an overall more active lifestyle more accessible,” said Smith.

Once these habits have started taking roots and clients are on a consistent schedule, the changes become evident and tangible. 

“You’ll see a substantial development of strength and mobility as a novice trainee,” he said. “You’ll see loss of body fat and development of muscle tone and feel a boost of confidence and self esteem.”

While he enjoys working with beginners and helping new members get acclimated, Smith stresses that personal training isn’t just for novices and that good fitness habits should be a lifelong practice. 

“There’s always room to grow and develop. Being a professional doesn’t mean you know everything. It means you’ve gotten very proficient in what you do know,” Smith said. “Getting a trainer could go a long way in broadening horizons and pointing out missed opportunities of growth or seeing what the professional doesn’t see.”

Growth – physically, mentally and in a broader sense of the word – is central to both the personal missions of both Smith and Jurado as well as the professional mission of Retro Fitness.

“We are really interested in engaging our high school athletes. The Wellington community has some amazing talent here — wrestlers, volleyball, baseball and football players — and we are working with them to help supplement their workouts with basic movement and weight training,” Jurado said. “A love of fitness is an investment in longevity and Retro Fitness strives to provide that for our community.”

“From a young age, I’ve always had a passion for moving,” said Smith. “With the knowledge and experience I’ve gained, I plan to dedicate myself to help people become the best versions of themselves through their own goals.” 

To learn more about Retro Fitness Wellington, please visit their website at:

Retro Fitness is hosting a Back To School Drive for Benoist Farms Elementary School students on August 7, 2023 between 5:00-7:00 pm at their location at 816 S. State Road 7, Wellington, Florida 33414.

Come on out, meet the team and support our students!

For more information, email

Jaime, founder of Rosewood Media, is a West Palm Beach resident, creative and contributing writer to The Well of PBC. With a decade of experience in non-profit communications and a lifetime of experience as a writer, Jaime’s work focuses on behavioral health, diversity, equity and inclusion, travel, music, food and parenthood through a pop culture lens.