I’m working with a new trainer, Adam. During our first workout he asked what I needed to work on. I was honest: I need stability work that gets me a good full-body workout and works my core at the same time. I hate doing ab work. And I want to do an unassisted pull-up on 10/16.
Our workouts give me exactly what I asked for. I wake up looking forward to them and never know what to expect from one day to the next. Well, except that he is going to kick my triceps/shoulders/ chest and back. Adam is, I think, now almost AS invested in this pull-up thing as I am.
We’ve become comfortably friendly which is nice. It’s different than when I worked with Guido; but each relationship we develop with someone is different than any other. I dearly loved Guido (heck, he’s listed as one of my emergency contacts if I were to be in an accident.), I genuinely LIKE Adam (heck, he told me about a .. well, that’s a topic for between friends…)
My workouts with Adam, though, always keep me guessing, and never (sadly) seem to spend much time in the free-weight section of the gym. So the one or two workouts a week I do on my own need to address both my fondness for the free weights and leave me able to deal with whatever Adam throws my way.
I’ve decided to go fairly basic for a while.
I picked up Gunnar Peterson’s THE WORKOUT from the library on a whim. (I was there picking up one of the latest Dresden File novels… because sci-fi and mysteries are my preferred reading materials.) I like the Peterson book. While he talks about the four main points of fitness: aerobic conditioning, nutrition, strength training, and rest, the majority of the book is dedicated to strength training.
He offers that a completely body workout can be achieved with 13 moves which offer near infinite variety through simple change ups. The moves really are basic strength training moves like squat, press and pull-down. The fun comes when he reminds (me) that these can become completely different moves by:
- changing your position (standing, sitting, using a stability ball, etc.)
- changing your “tool” (dumb bell, kettle bell, barbell, cable system, etc.)
- changing your grip or stance.
By simply altering these three things, he offers 22 different ways to do a squat and 60 different ways to do a chest press. Variety that can last a life time. Another nice thing about the book? All the models photographed doing the moves are women. Women who look like fit but ordinary women.
Right now I’m not seeking a lifetime of variety (though it’s comforting to know it’s there). In the past few months, I’ve had changes enough in the gym; I feel like I’ve lost my rhythm. I’ve felt off-balance and outta kilter when I’m not working out with Adam, but a bit frustrated when I am. Like I’m on spin cycle…
I’m looking for something simple that I don’t have to think hard about. I just go in, check 1-13 and do them. Do them the same each workout for a few weeks just to get in rhythm again.
Breathe in. Breathe out.
One. Two. Three.
And once I’ve found my rhythm, I’ll be looking for that variety again.