I have old sports injuries and arthritis. Knees. Ankles. Feet. So I went to see Doctor Bob – a good friend and orthopedic surgeon – a few weeks ago for some ideas. While physical therapy was mentioned, one thing that came through loud and clear was that I should do “strenthening exercises.” He said a personal trainer might be helpful – to concentrate on strengthening my wobbly legs.
Over the years, I’ve exercised two or three times a week. I do the elliptical (on which I sometimes fall asleep). A few weight machines and some situps. I consider myself in okay shape. I’ve seen others at the fitness center walking around with a personal trainer, but for me? Harrumph! What for? After all, I know how to use the elliptical. Then again Doctor Bob said to “strengthen.”
The health club where I belong had a “buy 6 get 7” offer for personal training sessions. So I signed up. I’ve had two sessions so far. And in this short time, I have come to realize that I have muscles I never knew I had. My body is going “what is he doing to me?” My muscles are deep in conference “let’s cramp up” “no – let’s sprain. That’ll show him” . . . . .
I’m accustomed to lifting weights. Nothing heroic. Up down (or down up) ten times or so and that’s it. Move on to another machine. My trainer, Marta, smiles and puts the weight on 20 pounds. I think to myself 20 pounds? Are you kidding me? But I go along. And after three minutes my muscles are screaming for mercy. Sweat pours from my brow. My body is going to Defcon 1. Why? Because instead of “up down up down” Marta says “up – and hold.” After 10 seconds, my arms are quivering. Then it’s “down.” “Slowly.” “And not all the way.” Three sets of ten. In two sessions (with some workouts in between), my knees are feeling better. Maybe a wee bit stronger. Lately when the elliptical gives me that longing “come hither” look, I snort, turn my head and walk on by. . . . .