Monday, August 25, 2014

Gotta Start Somewhere...

Tonight was my first night functioning as a trainer.  I've corrected my workout partner's form before, but we were always partners.  But she bravely said she'd let me train her as I learned how to do this. (Which is maybe like letting someone practice drawing blood or wax your eyebrows.  Probably nothing good comes out of that, but everyone has to learn somehow.  All this to say, my "client" rocks!) I designed her workout and instead of training with her, I trained her.  I watched her form and took her through the workout and got feedback from her.  And got a look that said "You have lost your everlovin mind".  I guess that means I was doing something right, because I sure give he-who-trains that look a lot.  And he doesn't even have the decency to hide the fact that he considers that a badge of honor when I walk by, dripping with sweat,  trying not to die, and gasp out something not tremendoulsy friendly.  At least I am not that bad... yet!  I had empathy, because I knew that as soon as she was done, I was doing a version of the same workout-- and I knew I wasn't going to have any more fun than she was.  I'm not sure how she felt about me as a trainer, but I really enjoyed doing it. I'm grateful that she is willing to be my guinea pig and I think practicing on her will help me feel a lot more comfortable as I begin working with people that I don't know.  Of course, it's also a safer place for me to start, because we've been working out together for months-- I had a pretty good idea of what she was capable of doing.  Besides, trying not to die several times a week serves as a pretty good bonding experience!

When I was doing my own workout, He-who-trains (who is now training me to be a trainer) was carefully scrutinizing my form.  I was exhausted, mentally and physically, and I was blowing it on an exercise.  It was my last set, and truth be told, I wasn't watching my form as carefully as I would otherwise do.  And he called me on it, saying "You're a trainer now.  People are watching.  There is no room for error."  He was right-- I'd felt it as people who normally joke around with us were watching me train my workout partner, and then do my own workout.  It was new for all of us, but they were definitely watching me in a different way.  Suddenly there is a new level of accountability to my own working out. I'm gonna have to suck it up, even when I'm fried, and be conscientious about the way I do things. I don't ever want a client to come up to me and be able to rightfully say, "But that's not how you do it."   With a few minor exceptions, being a trainer is definitely not a "Do as I say, not as I do thing."

I know I still have a lot to learn-- and will spend years mastering this craft, but I'm really excited-- and grateful for the people who are helping me get started.  Also pretty glad I didn't make my "client"  do anything awful like pass out.  That might have been a rather ominous start...