After I’d been on my fitness escapade for about a year, my progress seemed to stagnate and I figured that maybe I’d better think about a couple of sessions with a personal trainer to see if I could get some ideas.
I’ve never been one for going to classes although I did go to a lunchtime beginners Pilates class at my local gym for a while and quite enjoyed those. Until the day when the usual instructor was off and we had a stand-in/replacement who pulled some intermediate moves without giving those of us who weren’t very experienced the beginner alternative so I was pretty much stuffed for that session. And boy did that tick me off. I left the class halfway through and went back to work in the most stinking foul mood. I felt like I’d been robbed!
Anyway, back to the PT story (I do tend to get distracted and waffle easily – sorry!) As usual, I talked to my favourite search engine and found a few trainers in the local area. I tend to go on gut feel quite a lot, which probably sounds a bit strange when you’re talking about looking at something online but it’s served me pretty well in the past.
I found a chap a few miles from where I live and called him up for a chat. I liked him. He wasn’t some young buck freshly qualified with bugger all life experience and so I booked an appointment to go and see him and see if he could help. This was a completely new experience for me. In my head “personal trainer” was the remit of the rich and famous and not for the likes of me but I figured I was worth investing the money, especially as I’d recently gone from smoking to e-cigarettes, so I used the money I was saving from fags and put that into a budget for personal training.
So – one of the things I was worried about was that I’d be barked at. If you’ve read any of my other posts, you may have an inkling that I’m not exactly a shrinking violet and don’t take kindly to being told what to do. Bootcamp style training would not suit me. At all. Unless it included a freeform session of box the trainer’s ears – I somehow thought that sort of thing may be frowned upon.
So my first “try it and see” session was interesting. Firstly I had to get over the discomfort of doing exercise in front of a complete stranger and puffing and panting like a steam engine but his whole attitude was supportive, non-judgmental and encouraging and I knew I was in the right place. He also scored major league brownie points when, 15 minutes before the end of the first session, he asked me whether I’d ever done any boxing. I said “no, but it always looked like it might be fun” and he got out a pair of boxing gloves. Yay! Licence to beat the shit out of something – I was totally up for that!
Over the following weeks and months, my fitness improved at a much better rate than I’d managed to achieve on my own and I got braver and stronger until it got to the point that the cardio stuff we had to do in order to raise my heart rate sufficiently was really starting to bore me. He asked me what I wanted to do and I asked if we could do anything with weights. He then worked that into the program for me and always kept in 10 minutes of boxing at the end of each session. I started to see definition in my arms and shoulders and my collarbone started to make an appearance – it was fabulous.
Although I’ve now had to take a break from the PT for financial reasons, I’m fully intending to book some more sessions as soon as the money allows and would recommend anyone who’s looking to improve their fitness or stamina to go find a good PT who listens to what they want to achieve – they’ll help you get there. I didn’t know what I’d enjoy doing to help me work towards my own fitness goals and now I have it in mind to carry on with boxing (for fitness purposes only!) and maybe to look at kick boxing as well as that looks like so much fun – I’ll let you all know how I get on when I start!