Gold’s Gym

Ups & Downs- Life is Apparently like Running on Hills

Another Personal Training appointment at Gold’s Gym this morning, and I could barely fall asleep last night just thinking about our prior visit. My fears were somewhat alleviated when I first opened my eyelets to spy her making breakfast. Seriously, she was barely awake, still in her robe, preparing an early morning meal. She finished it too- an entire bowl of oatmeal with peanut butter, and bananas, and blueberries, and almond milk. A far cry from last week’s pre-workout ‘meal’ of a granola bar. Her gym bag now also houses lots of provisions in addition to water; a bottle of Gatorade, a slew of granola-like bars and a banana. The only thing missing is a salt lick.

By the time we arrived at the gym, I was feeling much more confident, because I could sense that she was. Having warmed up already, we were able to get right to the machines and Ronnie showed us how to use a few different ones to assist in building my person’s leg muscles. Right away, she said she could feel a difference in how it felt compared to last week. I noticed that she didn’t even reach for her water once, whereas last time, we did barely a third of the work and she had quite a bit before actually passing out. Lesson learned, breakfast IS important.

After we parted ways with Ronnie, off to help guide another person to meet their own fitness goals, we headed upstairs to the indoor track. Really? The past few, freezing, months we’ve been hitting the pavement and today, a cool finally spring-like day and we’ve got the option to run inside. I will say, at first, it was pretty cool. The track circles over half of the work-out area below and you can see a lot of what is going on, from the lower weight-lifting space and machine areas to inside several of the class rooms that were this morning home to an aerobic-type group and a spinning class (side note- I sooooo want to try that!). I have already noticed that for the most part, few of the people make eye contact during the whole of their work out. Not out of rudeness, they’re just concentrating on doing their own thing . So, when another runner joined in our pace, I was surprised. I was even more surprised when she & my person started chatting. It was hard to follow what was happening in their convo above me as her sneakers were crying. I did manage to figure out that they are Sparrow’s Nest teammates for the half marathon in the fall. I also deduced that she is far more advanced in her training than we are, and NOT just because she lapped us earlier, several times. Anything other than that though, I missed, because I was trying to figure understand just what her crying sneakers were so upset about. Except that it was then time for us to walk and they pulled ahead. Thankfully, our people continued with their conversation and with they’re having to yell to each other, I could catch the last of it.

“I definitely need new ones, I like to put it off as long as I can.”

To which my person, to my horror, replied,

“Your new sneakers will see Disney!”

Which would explain the tears. However, raises a ton of my own questions:
Why would she need new sneakers? Additional, sure, I get that, I guess, but new? How come her clearly loved and loyal ones get the ax? Before the Disney Half Marathon no less!
& what, exactly, happens to her sneakers? Where will they go?
Is that going to happen to me?
Ever? Aren’t we in this together, forever?
Am I going to get to participate in the race this fall? Is all this training for naught?

Yay, another sleepless night ahead, tossing & turning in box. Sigh.


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.

An ass out of you and me.

I know you’re all dying to know about the big date so without any preamble…

For the first time that I can ever recall, my person didn’t even hit snooze when the alarm went off this morning. She got right up, fed the pups and hopped directly into the shower. When her husband left for work an hour prior she was all “Love you, too. Have a good day at work.” like it was a normal day. I was all set to have the morning off, fully expecting her to emerge from the bathroom all dressed up, or at the very least, in jeans. To my surprise though, she was in full workout gear- less layers than usual but she was clearly planning to wear a ginormous sweatshirt to meet this guy. Odd, yes, but what do I know about clothes or dating even? Maybe breakfast dates are super casual? Bright blue socks and then myself completed her attire and I figured maybe she just really wants to wear me (I may not be the hottest shoes that she owns but I am definitely the cutest pair of sneakers!) and the rest makes it look less obvious? Again, what do I know?

Except, I start to doubt it’s a breakfast date when she grabs a banana and a bottle of water on our way out the door.

One thing I hate about the car- not being able to see out the windows. I am so over the novelty of working the pedals- big whoop. Let me try a hand at the steering wheel! Driving is the only time I ever think it might’ve been fun to be a glove. Sorry, I am getting off track, but my point is that I had no idea where we going. A half an hour later, when we finally do arrive, I can hear her mumbling to herself about parking and its another 5 minutes before we’re out of the car. Excited, I jump out along with her and what do I see but the back of ginormous building and lots of cars. No signage, or clues. We are so far from the entrance that I think maybe this is why she brought me along, are we going to run there? But no, we walk and when we eventually get to the doors, I can’t see what the logo says, its too high up. Once inside, it is chaos! There are, well, as many people milling about as there are cars in the parking lot, which is, I guess, how that usually works.

She approaches a front desk and states she has an appointment and just as I expect her to say Jim, she says Kim. Kim? Who the hell is Kim? I know that I did not mishear her, she clearly said Jim multiple times during that phone call. Thankfully, we are asked to take a seat and wait, which I was hoping would give me a few minutes to get my thoughts together. 5 minutes turned into 10 and I notice that the place is positively teeming with sneakers. Seriously, every single person who walked passed was wearing a pair of athletic shoes- it was like the department store, only more so because everyone was so animated and full of feet! Few make eyelet contact but there really wasn’t time as each was rushing about. Maybe this a job interview. I didn’t take my person for a factory type of chick, but that seems to be where we are. Just beyond the seating area was a large glass enclosed space full of all sorts of machines. I didn’t know what they could possible produce here but everyone seemed to be hard at work making something or other. I’m mulling this over when Kim arrives- blond and decidedly female, she is definitely not a Jim. They introduced themselves and we all headed up a short flight of stairs to her office.

The conversation that ensues is way over my head- both figuratively & literally and I only catch a few words: sponsorship, charity, Sparrow’s Nest. Someone else joins in the meeting, also not possibly Jim as she too is obviously a girl, Veronica they call her, and she is just as excited about whatever it is they are discussing. The words half-marathon, training and team float by me and then, apparently, the meeting is over. Everyone is happy to have met each other and my person is falling all over herself to say thank you to Kim, who is leading us back down the stairs and to another desk. Where a man is waiting for us. Jim!! I knew it! I am not crazy.

Only his name is Phil. He takes some information from my person like her name, address & date of birth. (Now I know: Nicole, we live in the Hudson Valley of NY annnnd I am pretty sure if I reveal herĀ  age on the internet I am breaching some sort of girl code.)

Phil input all these details into a computer, then asked Kim for a expiration date to which she responded with, ’til the end of the year’. A few more keystrokes and hands my person, oh, I mean, Nicole, a key fob.

Welcome to the club!


Then I see the keychain & it all makes sense. I am a moron…

I guess that would be G Y M not J I M.         Oh.

I guess that would be G Y M not J I M. Oh.

Turns out, the locally owned gym will be sponsoring Nicole (& me, by proxy) with a membership to aid in her, our, efforts to prepare for the Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon we’ll be running in November to raise money for Sparrow’s Nest. Additionally, they’re going to brainstorm some ways they can help with the whole of the team’s training. Awesome, right?

I couldn’t have been more wrong. Lesson learned- don’t assume. What is it people say about that?