I told Molly today that the best thing about Fat Camp and personal training is that I have found myself being pushed harder than I would ever in a million years push myself. I just don’t have that kind of internal motivation.
My body says “Hey lady, this hurts.” I say, So stop. It feels good to stop. I should know. I’ve been doing it for years.
Molly looked at me with a bit of satisfaction. And then had me grab a 30 pound barbell and hold it to my chest. And squat.
What is it with these people and squatting? With weights? Last week, it was 17.5 pounds. In class last night, it was 24. And today it was 30. I might have reached my limit. I’m pushing it anyway.
I arrived early and did 20 minutes of treadmill on my own as a warmup. Funny how a 5% at 2.8 doesn’t hurt like it used to 2 weeks ago. It’s merely a warm up now. My heart rate barely leaves the 120’s. Molly finds me and we go to the rowing machine. Which is deceptively easy, at least to me. We did 5 minutes and I had to keep it at or above 30 rows per minute. My ass? Hurts. Not in an internal kind of way but the muscle somewhere around where the ass meets the thigh? Hurts.
We wander past all the machines to man-land. Nothing but barbells as far as…the wall. We find a quiet corner.
Thus, I give you the torture device du jour: the mirror.
We started with bicep curls. She wanted me to watch myself breathing. Keep my toes pointed straight ahead. Back straight. Elbows in. This was all about form. And 30 pounds gets really heavy. And it’s not pretty to watch.
I know I’ve mentioned this before, but I’m fairly certain that I haven’t voluntarily looked in the mirror at myself in quite a few years. I think I was great with child (Amelia) and admiring my giant belly. Since then? Not a chance. I duck around corners. Sit with my back to the mirror at dance studios. Pick the treadmill behind a pillar. Pee in the dark. This was almost a Bob Harper moment.
We went from bicep curls to squats (barbell basically in my neck), to military presses (straight up overhead), to squats (barbell behind my neck) to Romanian Dead Lift. 8 of each. Not stopping in between, just shifting grip.
Romanian Dead Lift?? What the hell? This is a back injury waiting to happen. And if you don’t squeeze your shoulders together at just the right time you might just herniate a disc. Or so I would guess. Hold the barbell with your arms straight down. Bend down as far as you can, keeping a straight back. In order to keep a straight back you must stick your ass out at the same time that your boobs (chest) are facing front and head up. Straight back. And then stand back up. Doesn’t seem like much to it. Not a very deep movement. But I thought I was going to die.
Here I am, sweating my ass off, watching myself in the mirror. I don’t have proper workout clothes (almost a cardinal sin at this particular gym) so I am wearing an old swag tshirt from some Nickelback concert 6 years ago. And hot pink capris. Like basketball shorts only longer. My legs look awesome. The muscle bulges in all the right places. From the legs down, I actually look athletic.
And then I bend down and squeeze my shoulders together to stand back up just like I was told. And there it is. The giant belly that housed many children, only to be filled in by peanut butter, vodka and Jimmy Johns.
Oh man, do I miss Jimmy Johns. I almost can’t take it.
How embarrassing. My arms look great too. Shoulders strong. Face…thinning out. Hair…still needs highlights. It’s just that middle part.
“They” say I should be proud of my body. After all, I grew children. And, God willing, I hope to grow a few more. I can’t blame this entirely on the children but they didn’t help.
In all honesty, I’m not that far off in actual weight from before I had kids. Things are just…rearranged.
But that mirror? Did not do much for my (lack of) self-esteem. It made me want to be done. Walk away with whatever dignity I had left. Instead I did 3 more reps. And I am in pain again. All over. Which is what I get for rejoicing that the pain was gone.
Turn out, it’s just a different kind of pain.