hashtag Mortified

I was so excited to get to the gym this morning! We were going to meet with a personal trainer and get started on strength training. Several people, and their shoes, have told us that this concept of cross training- not only focusing on the running, will be a huge part of preparing for the half marathon. It won’t hurt any efforts to get into shape all the faster. Sounds like a win/win to these sneakers! It wasn’t just me either, my person was excited too. Up, out of bed & in the car, all before 9am. She even ate a granola bar as breakfast in route, and had a bottle of water.

First a quick meeting with a staff member about goals and then our personal trainer took us for a walk to show us around and find out what we were hoping to get from these workouts. Her sneakers, an equally bright pair of Brooks, told me about all the experience with fitness and running her person had and I knew we were in good hands. Even when the two of them were sitting on the floor, playing with a huge pool noodle. I’m not kidding. I guess it’s called foam rolling and its supposed to be really good for her muscles, but really, it totally looked like all fun & games.

Next it was on to one of those machines I had spied on our previous visit. This did not appear to be fun, or games. It looked like hard work. There was a loop to be slipped around her ankle and each time she pulled her leg back, or up or out, she would be using different leg muscles to raise the attached, adjustable weights. The weights began at 3 lbs and went way, way higher. We started at 10 pounds. 20 reps (that gym-speak for repetitions) per leg for each of three different directions. Half way through, I could feel her falter, but after a quick swig of water, she got right back to it. It wasn’t especially difficult, nor particularly taxing but she started go far more slowly and looked to check on her and she was sweating. Like, a lot. Like, more than when we run. I also thought maybe there was something odd about the lighting because she was super pale. The trainer noticed and suggested she shed a layer, perhaps the ginormous sweat shirt she has yet to work out without. When she didn’t put up too strong of a fight and pulled it over her head, I knew we were all in trouble; she’s never without her security sweats and here she is, in public, in only 2 sports bras, a tank and a huge, long sleeve shirt. Sure enough, she grabbed on to the machine’s rails and tried to back off of it, feeling for a place to sit down. Her eyes were wide open but I could tell she couldn’t see anything. Ronnie, the personal trainer guided her to a near-by machine with a bench and no sooner did she lowered herself on to it, did she plunge her head between her own knees. I got a real good look at her face then, and it wasn’t pretty. She was soaked with sweat and as pale as the day is long with the exception of dark half moons under her eyes.

smelling salts

As soon as she was feeling ready to move, Ronnie and another woman helped her into an actual chair by the offices and coaxed her into a consuming half a banana that appeared from out of nowhere and much of her water bottle. All while she repeatedly put her head between her knees. One of the women rubbed cold water on the back of her neck. I could see the color come back into her cheeks and each time she mopped her brow, there seemed to be less sweat than the last. She apologized, a lot. She kept saying that she felt extremely queasy- which is a word I don’t know, and to be honest, don’t ever want to feel. Queasy, or adrenaline, which is what they kept saying was making her feel so sick.

15 hours later, or perhaps it was only 15 minutes, she said she was feeling better enough to walk around a bit. Turns out that this is something that sometimes happens to her, this ‘fainting’ and to Ronnie as well. The two discussed and came up with what they think may have caused this morning’s instance and in an effort to avoid a repeat of it, a full breakfast will be consumed prior to any future gym visits annnnnd my person is going to start incorporating more salt into her diet. Newly vegan, they both hit upon the fact that no processed foods meant a lot less salt- which is, apparently, quite necessary.

Sigh. So much for today’s work out. Strict orders to take it easy for the rest of the day will be followed to the letter. There’s a bright side though, a really big one- she is doing fine now. I don’t know what I would do with out her, certainly not run anywhere. Besides, I have grown quite fond of her, running aside. Tomorrow is another day.

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