Personal Trainer? Personally, I'll train myself.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

A few months ago I witnessed two women working out with their trainer at a park and have been thinking about finding a trainer ever since. They seemed to get so much from the workout and it did not hurt that this was taking place outside on a beautiful Florida morning. I have been thinking about finding my own trainer ever since. So, when I recently joined a gym right near my home thinking only that I'd have a reasonable plan B for any missed opportunities to ride my bike during our rainy season, my chance opened up! I was so excited to meet with and be worked out by a trainer, I was sure I'd sign up and finally be like those women in the park!
The reality did not live up to the fantasy. I went in on Friday evening of Memorial Day weekend and weighed in and talked about goals and motivation and accountability. I went into this meeting so proud of myself having lost over 160 lbs, become so much more active than I had been, and joined sparkpeople.com to help me maintain and started strength training too. Surely I deserved some credit for coming this far. But no, according to my weight, some hand held device and quick math my body fat percentage is a whopping 27 % and I really should be at the target percentage of 17. I told him I was at my goal weight and could not see a reason to be smaller than a size 6. I had, in fact, gained a couple of pounds and lost a couple of inches working out at home with sparkpeople,com. He said it was impossible to have gained lean muscle mass in the month I'd been happily strength training and doing my boot camp workouts on top of all my cardio. He went on to say it would take 10 -12 months to replace all that excess fat with lean muscle mass, strength training with them. I'd be accountable to someone and that would help me stick to my program. I found myself being taken in and becoming disappointed with my progress up to that point. Oh, well, I thought , historically, I'd done better with actual goals for weight loss than maintaining my weight.
We went out to the gym and I joked with him saying,"Perhaps the timing of this workout is a bit off, as this weekend is my anniversary, and I sure don't need to be hobbled with post workout soreness!" He quipped back, "Ok. we'll focus on the upper body!" I really liked the super set I did and I was really surprised at how well I kept up and was extremely encouraged about the prospect of signing up and wanted to know all my options and the costs. The minimum commitment was 2 sessions per month for $80.00 a month. Quite frankly, tightening our belts, my husband and I could possibly come up with that, especially for my health, and because of my time and energy commitment I'd made to myself of late, it seemed like a good idea. Besides, I just have not managed to do well enough, thus far. I made an appointment for the next Wednesday to discuss signing up.
As I rode my bike home I became more bummed out that I had such a body fat percentage, was I really that far wrong about the state of my own body? Had I become so happy with not being plus sized, so sure my original goal was appropriate and attained, that I could not see how far I had left to go. No, I thought, I'm ok, there's no reason in the world that I should need to be smaller than a size 6, is there? Well, maybe if I'm unfit and unhealthily thin. No, I can palpate of very firm muscle, even at rest. Could I be so wrong? Probably, how else did I get myself morbidly obese? Unrealistic self image, yeah, that's it, I don't see myself as I really am, as others can. I guess I could use the help.
When I did wake up pretty paralyzed and depressed on Saturday morning, I got moving right away so I'd alleviate the stiffness. On Saturday, Sunday and Monday, I continued to work out in a minimal way, gently, but I did not want to, not happily, as I had before Friday. My heart wasn't in it. I rode my bike far less than I wanted to and I always want to ride. This feels, for something that's supposed to be the right thing for me, so wrong. I'm unhappy, unmotivated and uncomfortable.
By Monday, I was finally able to move almost normally and became happy to be doing my boot camp videos and favorite strength exercises again. I also wanted very badly to take the yoga class that my town offered at the rec. center. Cool, I thought, I'm still thrilled to be moving around and finding other activities that could be fun and healthful. I'm not doing so badly on my own. I feel good doing things that are good for me, for my mind, for my body and for my environment.
I'm happy about what I've done in the past 20 or so months, and here's the key:
I've done it because I wanted to do it, I am accountable to me, and no less importantly, I have found the help, resources and support here, at sparkpeople.com, to keep on the right track.
And my appointment? Sorry, yoga class was offered at the same time, and the need for a mind/body celebration of my wellness won out. I called and cancelled at the gym, my DH and I pedaled over to the Rec Center, enjoyed the splendid class together, got our rec cards and signed up for the next month! NAMASTE!!!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I ran across this and had to comment.

    Often times trainers at gyms are there to sell you product rather than to train YOU. I have a trainer from a private gym. No contracts, open schedule, we meet when I can. He works with me and my abilities and has realistic goals for me. He supports me and challenges me all at the same time. And when I lose 1/2 a pound, or I maintain, or whatever . . . there's always a high five, a pat on the back and a "ok lets bust some butt!!".

    You have a FANTASTIC program . . . and I totally think you should continue what you've been doing. 160 lbs lost? HOLY SMOKES. That trainer should have put your frickin name in lights for all the other slackers at the gym to see. Because that is INCREDIBLY AWESOME!!!!!! I say continue what you're doing . . . but don't completely write trainers off after one bad experience. That guy wasn't for you! But if you get to a point where you're stuck and you still think you can improve . . . do some research. Get online . . .read reviews and find the right guy (or girl!) for you if you need it. It's amazing the doors they can open up for you. :)

    Enjoy your Rec Center . . it sounds like they have some FANTASTIC classes. :)

    3312 days ago
    Hey it sounds to me like he was trying to find an excuse to sell you sessions that you don't need. You have a good program on your own. You are already a success!
    3312 days ago
    Good for you. Sounds like they really pushed a 'sales pitch' at you in the gym. It's good you realized that that is what he was there to do - it was a sales pitch to sell you 10 to 12 months of personal trainer time. You have done extremely well and will continue to do extremely well on your own. Kudos to you!
    3312 days ago
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    Disclaimer: Weight loss results will vary from person to person. No individual result should be seen as a typical result of following the SparkPeople program.

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