Last night was my second visit to the gym. And it was the first day that I actually did some exercises under the guidance of my trainer. No firm "routine" has been set yet -- it was basically a chance for him to see what level of fitness I was at. For me, it was like a whirlwind tour of every machine in the building. He would take me to a machine, show me how the exercise was done, the I would switch places with him and start performing reps. Sometimes he would stop me to change the weight, increased the number of reps, or change my body position based upon what I was doing.
Some of the machines are not my friends.
There are a number of them where you almost have to fold yourself up in half in order to just get into it. That is just sick and twisted.
The first one he had me try out had me sitting in a seat with my feet placed on a floorboard-type thing which was almost at the level of my head and had me crunched up so that my knees were resting on my nipples. The object of the thing was to push out with your legs to strengthen some muscle group. Personally, I think the whole purpose was to prevent the damn thing from crushing me into a little square such as one would see being ejected from a trash compactor at a junkyard.
But that was how the hour was spent. He would show me the exercise I needed to do, I would fight the machine so I could live to see another day. By the time I was done, I was still feeling pretty good and my muscles weren't that tired. Rule number one when dealing with a personal trainer: Don't ever tell them that it was easy. That is when they have you do it again, only they increase the weight limit.
Actually, it still wasn't that bad — at least last night. My body was a little tired by the time I went to bed. This morning they added a bit of soreness to the sensations. But I'm feeling pretty good about it.
A number of things were discovered last night: I do quite well with dumbbells. (I call it years of Richard Simmons DVDs.) We both love to sing. (He's a baritone, I'm a tenor.) And he is graduating college with a degree in acting. (I told you we had a lot in common.)
After all the weight-training, he led me to the final exercise/cooldown of the session — the dreaded treadmill. I told him that I have some equilibrium problems with the machine, but he insisted that I try it again. So I did. That was when I blew his mind.
He started off the machine at a relatively slow pace and I started walking. After a couple minutes he adjusted the incline and I kept walking. Then he increased the speed slightly and I kept walking. He then lowered the incline and I kept walking.
"How was that?" he asked. "Can you feel the burn?"
"From that?" I responded. "Hell, that isn't even my maximum walking speed."
Stupid mouth doesn't know when to shut up and be quiet.
With a devilish twinkle in his eyes, he sped the machine up. I was still walking. He increased the speed again. I kept walking. He did it again and still I was walking, albeit at a pretty good clip.
"Wow," he said incredulously. "You weren't kidding about your walking speed."
"Told you," I replied. "Although I won't be able to keep up this pace for very long." He just smiled and let the machine keep going at that speed until I was finally forced to jog.
Eventually he slowed the treadmill down and had me stand on the sideboards. He told me to turn around and face him. "Now, I want you to walk backwards."
The guy on the treadmill next to me just turned to look at me with this surprised look on his face. I just shrugged my shoulders and proceeded to step on the tread and walked backwards. He smiled and said, "That was pretty impressive! Very smooth."
We finished the session with another jog and then a 5-minute cooldown walk. And yes, I still had problems getting off the machine. My equilibrium was off again, but after a few minutes I was once again able to walk back to the locker room to shower, change, and go home.
Until next time!