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The Arm Crank

Posted Apr 26 2012 12:00am
Two sides of the same coin. The sides are me & my trainer. The "coin" is our workouts. Here we go...

Workout Date: Tuesday April 24, 2012


I read a cool quote today that I really feel summarizes the early morning workout:

I feel this exact same way about early morning workouts. I set my alarm for 6:15am with the best of intentions to be out the door by 7am. However somehow at 7:15 I am leaning over the sink trying to chug my coffee and grabbing some chicken and nuts to eat in the car (for those grossed out by the idea of eating meat and nuts like the paleolithic man, you’re not alone, however I am under qualified to explain why this is a good idea). I know I will be late, the question is how late. As I mentioned earlier I hate letting Kyle down, but that doesn’t stop me from being consistently late-even if it is only be a few minutes. I am so complicated. Having the accountability of someone waiting for you for your workout, is one of the things I love (and hate) about personal training. I am so much more likely to let myself down and sleep in when I know I am the only one that will notice if I don’t go to the gym. Simultaneously, I am much more likely to spend less time in my cozy, warm bed.

Today, I wanted to ask him something if we could warm up on something other than the torture mill...oops I mean step mill.  I was a little nervous. Would he think I was a weenie for wanting to warm up on something else? Would he even allow it? Surely not. Not even thinking that the alternate option might be worse that the step mill. How bad could it be? A warm up is only 5 minutes, right?
The conversation went like this:
Me: “Can we warm up on something other than the step mill?”
Kyle: “Yup”
Me: “Ok what?”
Kyle: “Nevermind. Come with me.”
Uh oh.
We ended up using the rowing machine + the arm crank.
My internal dialogue looks like this as the news of which machines we will be using sets in...
…I am going to look like a weirdo on this crank thing Ive never used it what if other members are looking at me why do I even need to warm up my arms I am SURE someone is going to think I look silly I don’t even know how to adjust this thing…
Truth be told, it was a pretty decent warm up. I ended up warm but not hot and generally felt ready to crush this early morning workout (I love saying that I crush things, when in reality this rarely happens. Except at McDonalds. I do not eat McDonalds. I crush it.)
Today our workout consisted of:
4 rounds alternating split squats and chest press 10 reps each
3 rounds alternating swiss ball hamstring curls, step ups 10 reps(with 30 lbs) and lat pull downs 6 reps (with some little contraction things as well)
We take pretty strict timed rest in between each exercise. 60 and 75 seconds. Just enough time to start a conversation and then have to stop it and then forget what we were talking about for the next break.
I will often begin a sentence with “Kyle’s so great because….” In this case, Kyle is so great because he knows that I can do it, even if I don’t think I can. How cool.
During out workout I overhead another personal trainer having a conversation with their client. The client was trying to explain that it was her sons fault she ate a bunch of cookies last night because he was the one who brought them home. The trainer said the most amazing thing to his client. He said something like “Don’t blame yourself or your son. It’s ok you had the cookies. Let’s figure out a way so next time it’s easier for you to say no or just have one.” That’s is what personal training is all about. It’s about helping people find a solution. It’s about support, trust and caring.
Working out early in the day gives me a false sense of superiority. I find myself asking others “so what time are you working out at today?” just so I can smartly respond “ Oh me? I’ve already worked out today”. I did this three times to three different people. I guess it doesn’t matter when you work out as long as you do it. I guess working out in the morning simply guarantees that nothing else will be able to distract you or prevent you from working out. Because it’s already done.
P.S. When I asked Kyle if he wanted to help me with this blog, his response was “What’s a blog?”

My Trainer:

Tara’s workout on Tuesday was great!  She’s a lot of fun to train because she works hard, is capable of almost any lift in the gym, and rarely complains … I mean, come on.  Everyone complains a little. 
Because we hadn’t worked out in 5 days I had no fear of overtraining and had a clean slate of exercises we could do.  She first started her primary lifts with her elbow and knee extensors (flat, thick grip bi-acromial bench press for chest and low pulley split squats for quads) for 4 sets.  These primal movements are done with a slow eccentric tempo and in a Hypertrophy Time Under Tension (40-70 seconds comprised  8-12 repetitions).  She did well, so well in fact her split squat went up 15% in weight !!!  Next the focus was on her posterior chain.  She worked her hamstrings, glutes and lower back with a combination series of hamstring curls and step ups (one of my favourites), and she worked her scapula retractors with a shoulder width supinated lat pulldown.  Tara did 3 great sets of these lifts and was ready for her remedial lifts (external rotators) to finish up.
It never ceases to amaze me how fast the time flies in our sessions (and that says a lot because my time management in training sessions borders on obsessive).  It was funny to read Tara’s blog about the workout because it reaffirms that every member in the gym notices the little things.  Those little conversations/interactions between Trainer and client are one of the reasons this job is so great!  I can’t wait for our next training session and even actually look forward to blogging about it … in case you didn’t get it from Tara’s entry, this is new to me.
Happy Reading,
Me + My Trainer

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