I mean that literally. So literally that I have evidence for why this cliché is actually good advice – and I will get to that in this post, but you must be patient.
Yesterday was my “Early Rise Circuit” class number two, and it was great. At least I think it was great, mind you, I wasn’t the one being forced to run, skip, and complete a bunch of strength stations at 6:15am. Anyway…I designed a cycle this week where I split the participants into three different groups, and set up three different activities: running, skipping, and strength training. Each group completed their activity for one minute, while the other two groups worked on the other two activities, and then we switched so they moved on to the next activity. Within the “strength training” activity were six “stations” including things like stability ball push ups, hamstring pull ins with the stability ball, and side lunges off the BOSU. The idea was for the ladies to complete one strength station, move on to the running and skipping, and then come back to a different strength station the next time around. It worked pretty well, encouraged the ladies to work hard, and kept their heart rates up, so I would say my circuit design did its job. Near the end of the workout, one of my participants said, “I knew you were going to kick my ass today!” Score one for me! I don’t want to be a total hard-ass, but hearing that I kicked hers tells me that I did my job – and that feels pretty good.
What does not feel nearly as good is not actually getting to work out. Turns out that when you are leading other people through a workout that you have to pay attention to what they are doing, and then give feedback and provide corrections when participants need them. This means that for each “one minute” station, you will get to do the activity for approximately twelve seconds – not exactly conducive to working up a big sweat. Oh well, these ladies are paying me to help them workout; I owe them my undivided attention, and will find some space somewhere else in my life to fit in some sweat time for myself.
The other thing that does not feel so great is my neck. At the end of yesterday’s workout we spent a few minutes on some ab work. We did a few yoga planks, followed by basic crunches, oblique crunches and then bicycle crunches – great moves that I do all the time. I gave some pretty darn good instruction…you know – belly button to spine, eyes and chin to ceiling, shoulder blades raise slightly off the floor – that sort of thing. All of the instructions necessary to keep my participants (and their necks) safe. So what is the problem, you ask? Because I care about making sure my participants stay safe, I wanted to make sure they were doing the moves correctly. So while I was doing my own crunches I twisted, lifted, and turned my head to watch how they were doing with theirs. BAM! Sore neck and grind-y, pinch-y vertebrae goin’ on. Stupid fitness instructor. Do what I say, not what I do.