personal training session

My Ass-Kicking

I finally got to try out my old trainer’s gym. Christian is an amazing personal trainer. I bought sessions with him probably a dozen times over the years and every single time he kicked my butt–in a great way. I remember the awesome workouts followed by about four days of being crippled. It was worth it! He’s a very positive, encouraging person and I feel like he has my best interests in mind when works me. It was a million times better than that awful personal training session I had at 24Hr Fitness.

I set my alarm early on Saturday morning, ate a Bagel Thin and some Kashi Puffs cereal and drove out near the airport where his gym was.

It was a big space with lots of equipment. He’s doing a great job collecting props for any kind of workout you can imagine. There were big white boards on one wall with all the different workout routines. There were bars all over the place for things like pull-ups or stretching. Christian told me about a Crossfit competition he was preparing for and lifted (I think) 75 pounds?

I’m pretty sure I would struggle just doing that with the BAR! Another couple arrived for the 9am class and Christian’s cousin was also there helping him out. First up was some stretching. Then we did a warm up to start:

3 rounds of the above was the warm up. 10 Squats (holding the squat position for 10 seconds, then standing up for 5 seconds, repeat). 10 Jump Squats. Then the Samson Stretch and Shoulders. Followed by 10 medicine ball squats and then 10 burpees. Repeat 3 times. THIS is the warm-up?! Holy moly! My legs felt like jello by the time I was done with the warm up.

The above photo was the shoulder stretches with a PVC pipe. It was great! It really stretched things out and I felt a bit looser after that. Everyone went at their own pace. The other two people did some modified exercises according to their skill level and injuries they had. Christian then described and demonstrated what the actual workout would be.

Of course once I got home I realized I forgot to take a photo of the workout. I’ll try to recount it the best I can from memory. First was a 400m run (twice around the building).


I felt good running. It was a good warm up. Once I finished that and was back in the gym I did the pull-ups with a stretchy cord as an assist. WOW. I did pull-ups! For REAL!

It was HARD. I could do about 7 or 8, then I had to rest a moment before I could do the rest. I did 15 total and then moved on to the next part: Jumping up onto the big tire and then back down.

Haha that picture is really funny of me jumping onto the tire. 15! Towards the end of the workout I would do 5 jumping and then the other 10 stepping up and then down. I modified it because I was worried about the jumping and my knee.

Next was throwing a 10 pound medicine ball up on the wall, catching it and squatting. Ouch. The yellow “X” is where the girls aimed for, and red “X” above it was for the men. I could do about 3 or 4 before I had to rest a moment. It was hard to do 15. Then I did the Kettle Bells (15 pounds). Swinging them 15 times.

I LOVED the Kettle Bell workout. It was a lot of fun, I really felt like I could do it without much coordination or skill, and it was easy to do 15 of them. I suppose I should have tried the 20 pound Kettle Bell instead of the 15 to see if it was harder but I didn’t want to overdo it too much.

Repeat! Back out to run 400m and do the WHOLE THING AGAIN. 3 more times in fact. A total of four times through the workout.

My time for 4 sets of the workout: 31:56. Not too shabby. The run totaled 1 mile after 4 times around.

My legs were very jello-like by the time I was done with the four sets. I had most definitely worked up a good sweat. It’s funny because I originally thought I’d go for a run after my Crossfit workout. There was no way I needed to. I got in a fantastic workout with Christian.


Time: about 1 hour and 10 minutes.

Calories Burned: 680

The workout ended with more stretching and then I used the Foam Roller and a Lacrosse Ball on pressure points. It worked wonders. I had such a fantastic time at Christian’s gym. It was a killer workout and I definitely got my time’s worth. It makes me a little sad to go back to my crappy (but paid for) gym. SIGH. I do plan on dropping in to Christian’s gym maybe once a month to get in a good sweat.

I got home and made myself some Navy Bean and Ham soup for lunch (lots of protein) and I’ve been sucking down gallons of water to prevent soreness tomorrow. But I must say it’s been a few hours now and I’m already hobbling a bit. It hurt so good at that gym! Any Portlanders that want to join me sometime, let me know! Let’s sweat!

QUESTION: What’s the best workout you’ve ever had? And if you’re in the Portland area do you want to try the StrengthFit Gym?


Personal Training and Versatility

Yesterday’s post about my horrible personal training session seems to have struck a nerve. I was really surprised to read that a lot of people have had bad experiences too. I think that’s sad. And dangerous! A bad personal trainer can cause injuries. Not good. It also seems like the consensus was that I should notify the gym manager or assistant manager about my experience. When I was in the “heat” of the moment I was totally going to forward the link to yesterday’s post to the manager.

After a few days now, I’m not sure what to do. I know I won’t use a personal trainer at 24HR Fitness ever again. But do I really need to get “Misty” in trouble? I really feel like she just doesn’t know bed-side manner. She’s new and clearly very green.

On another note, after my personal training session on Tuesday, I had another great Pantry Challenge dinner.

What I love most about polenta is it’s versatility. It can be a Mexican dish, an Italian dish, fried, baked, grilled, vegetarian, creamy. It can be anything you want it to be.

Since I had leftover polenta from last week’s dinner, I sauteed it in the skillet.

While it was cooking, I heated up some leftover spaghetti sauce from the fridge.

I also discovered some Trader Joe’s Meatless Meatballs in the freezer–long forgotten about. They still looked okay so I plopped those into the sauce to cook too.

They are really tasty and taste just like real meat!

The meatballs are 140 calories for six. Once the polenta was cooked, I topped it with the sauce and meatballs.

I grated some Parmesan cheese on top, a little freshly ground pepper and dinner was served.

It was really, really good. The sauce was a little bland. Next time I will add some garlic and onions to it. Nothing really compares to homemade pasta sauce but there are ways to jazz up jarred sauce. The veggie meatballs were good too. Another Trader Joe’s Great!

Speaking of vegetarian meatballs…yesterday’s post about Why I Sucked at Being a Vegetarian got lots of awesome comments! I was fully expecting to get some negative comments by defensive vegetarians but it sounds like other people have had the experiences I had. I think if I tried to be a vegetarian NOW, I’d do a much better job at it.

Mediocre Workout

On Wednesday during my lunch hour, I hit the gym at work.

I was going to attempt the elliptical again. I wore my knee brace just in case.

I looked at myself in the mirror wondering where that 11 pounds is on my body. Then I got mad at myself for even letting that Ding-Bat Trainer get into my head!

I think I look FINE!

My old (awesome) personal trainer Christian emailed me yesterday and said that I don’t need to lose 11 pounds and that I need to focus on strength training. I’m looking forward to meeting up with him soon.

The elliptical was okay until I hit the 25 minute mark. My knee started to ache a little and I couldn’t tell if it was pain or what. I stopped working out and did some stretches and ab work before calling it a day. What a disappointment.

Gym Stats:

Time: 36 minutes

Calories Burned: 325

QUESTION: Should I notify the gym manager or let it be and just move on?