Thursday, August 4, 2011

You Are Strong

I started off the day having a phone session with my virtual coach. This was the orientation session where she told me our phone calls would be 30 minutes, I'd be given 12 sessions (more if needed) and we'd set goals at the end of each call. She had me set a goal at the end of this one. I said I'd do something active every day. We were done after 20 minutes. I don't know, I'm hoping this gets a little more specific so I can get more use out of it.

Today was my training session with real-life trainer Ian. I got to the gym early so I could get my cardio done before we started. I rode the bike for 25 minutes and tried level 4. Level 4 is where it's at! It was a challenge but I was ready for it. Six weeks ago I couldn't even attempt level 4 so I'd say that's pretty good progress!

The session with Ian went well. We re-vamped two out of my three workout routines in the hour allotted. We ran out of time mostly because he kept making me exercise! What kind of trainer does that?! And I think he's all about the pain. I told him I just did legs yesterday and rode the bike for 25 minutes before I met him so go easy on the legs. Ha! At one point I was pretty sure my quads were going to burst into flames.

So here's a quick run-down of the new and improved legs/shoulders and back/bicep workouts:
Legs and Shoulders
Reverse (hack?) squat - this thing felt like some sort of Russian torture device. Little did I know this was just the beginning of my leg torture.

Leg extensions - it's been a while since I've done these. His special bit of pain is to hold the position for 8 seconds on the last rep of the last set. I literally had to cover my face in agony.

Butt blaster - this machine wins the prize for best name, easily. I tend to favor exercises that feel at least somewhat natural. This is about as unnatural as it gets. We'll see if I keep them on the agenda. The other thing is this is done one leg at a time and, therefore, is time consuming. I'm not a fan of time consuming so I've got my eye on the butt blaster for the chopping block.

As far as shoulders I'm keeping my front and lateral raises the same.

Back and Biceps
Rows and Bicep Curls - I'm now doing this "compound" thing where I do bent over rows immediately followed by bicep curls. I like that because it seems faster.

Lat pulldown - no changes there.

Single arm cable curls - Basically a bicep curl but with a cable. Again, I don't like the one arm at a time thing because it wastes too much time. I might have to convert this into a bar so I'm doing both arms at once. Unless I'm missing something I don't see how this would be any different.

To wrap up he showed me a new ab thing. Scissor kicks followed by leg raises.
Oh, and cable twists to work the obliques.

Seriously, I am worried about my ability to walk tomorrow. I feel ok right now but you know how it is. Oh, the other interesting thing is he broke down my reps into, I think he said splits. So I increase the reps and decrease the weight with every set.

"You are strong." That's what Ian said while I was doing biceps curls. I couldn't help but laugh. Ian asked why I was laughing. I thought for a second and said that when someone tells you something that is so categorically against your self image - well, all I could do was laugh. It reminded me of when Jean, the swim teacher, told me I had an athletic frame. I just went back and read that post and it made me teary. Some things just stick with you and I am going to try and make the "you are strong" stick. I am strong. I am STRONG.

If you are tired of hearing me try and convince myself that I'm strong, or able, or remotely fit, remember this - I spent the better part of 30 years fat, and more important than the external fat, I was fat on the inside, in my head. The fat on the outside might go away but getting that fat girl out of my head is going to take a little more work. Especially because of this new baby fat. Ok, I'm going to end this blog before I get all emotional and start crying. Miguel will walk in and ask why I'm crying and I'll feel silly trying to explain myself ;)


  1. I know Id never tire of hearing it as I need to remind ME of it as well.

    not always fitness---definitely in facets of life.


  2. Yes you ARE strong, Michelle -in body, mind, and spirit. Some of those leg and glute exercises look like they have the potential to aggravate your back. Not trying to rain on your gym parade, just hoping you'll be careful so you can keep going


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