I don’t like to work out. I mean, I got into it a little bit in college but it was mostly an obsession with being too skinny rather than the fun of exercise.
I really never understand how some people truly enjoy sweating profusely and using parts of your body and muscles that make you feel like you just might die.
OK. I am exaggerating to an extent but I’m starting to realize it’s more the satisfaction of working out and the resulting effects that draw people to this insanity.
I admittedly had put on more pounds than I have liked over the last couple years (sorry, but I’m looking at you, Alabama food!) and have decided to merely complain about it and feel miserable.
Until, alas! I had the wise notion to, I don’t know, do something about it. On a whim, driving home 10 hours from Ohio and pondering all of life’s problems, I decided to call up Michelle West, owner of Studio West. Before I could change my mind, I booked eight personal training sessions and PayPaled Michelle my money so I was obligated.
I was smart enough to postpone my first session until after the Fourth of July weekend but Monday morning rolled around and it was go time.
I was prepared too. I had done some healthy grocery shopping over the weekend, tried to get to bed at a reasonable hour and kept my wine consumption that night low — OK, lower — because I figured if I’m going to commit, I might as well go all in.
I walk in the door with a new lease on life and her first question was, “What do you like to do for cardio?”
Feeling proud of myself, I knew I used to run outside on very rare occasion and enjoyed it — to some extent — so next thing I knew I was taking a lap around Strand Park to ‘warm up.’ Well I warmed up quickly all right. I barely made it up the questionable staircase back to the studio and still had 40 minutes to go.
Between lunges, squats, pushups, situps and donkey kicks (gotta make that butt look good) I’m pretty sure I yelled out multiple times that I was going to die.
Michelle’s response, “I haven’t killed anyone yet. It’s bad for business.”
She had a point. It was time to buck up and stop whining. I’m not actually going to die. But for about three days afterward it sure felt like it.
Every muscle in my body hurt — EVERY SINGLE ONE. Muscles I didn’t even know existed. I mean, total and utter pain to sit, stand, walk, lift, the whole nine yards.
I strongly contemplated not going back but realized this is what it takes to get in shape and when you haven’t worked out in more years than I’m proud to say, this is normal. Plus, you can’t just expect results overnight and without a little struggle along the way.
I wobbled back in on Thursday after warning Michelle of my defeat and she promised to go a little easier that day.
I won’t lie; I still struggled. And I still felt sore the next day but it did get a little better.
Along with the workout plan, I have been sending a daily food journal, which also holds me accountable to what I’m eating. Honestly, it does me no good to eat ice cream and conveniently leave it off my list. As if the ice cream doesn’t count if I don’t write it down and tell my trainer about it? If only…
Anyway, it’s another aspect to losing weight and toning up so if I want to be serious it’s on me to do so.
All kidding aside, I will say committing myself to this training has made me focus on my unhealthy habits and pushed me to do better in all areas of my life. Healthy eating, exercise, drinking more water and getting better sleep really are the perfect equation for improved health.
Honestly, I attempt to play about every sport possible from elementary through high school but none were my forte. People always say, ‘Oh you’re tall; you’ve got that lanky build great for running, swimming, basketball — you name it.’ But it takes more than a look to be athletic and I will say I have a strong appreciation for those that are and those that put in the hard work to get there.
Plus if I can commit to this (and tomorrow is only round three so check back with me) than I can pretty much guarantee you can too.
Amy Passaretti is a staff writer for The Outlook.