Tonight's session with Pinochet was one of those pivotal ones you don't see coming.
Firstly, the thought of pumping weights after a day of work - nah. It wasn't on. To race home, bolt some food, change and get to the gym. Nup. Not interested. And to share the session with somebody. Nup, don't want to. Stick out the bottom lip and stamp the feet. Thats about all I was up for.
Somehow, I did all of this, getting myself to the gym, noticing that my blue training top is getting baggier. Hmm.
It's been hard sticking to the program for the last ten days. Being sick made exercise impossible. Starting work meant getting my head around the new schedule, something I'm still trying to do. And I'd forgot how tiring this work stuff can be. I know it will get easier when I've got my head back in the game- but still, I turned up and begged him to let me see him Saturday instead. I was told it wasn't an option - now was it.
Bah - I wanted to go home and curl up in front of Heston Blumenthal.
An hour later, I came out feeling great, well trained, well massaged and feeling so much better.
Surprising factoid number one: I'm now a person who needs exercise. It's more than something I do when I feel like it - I feel better when I get at least four reasonably intense workouts in a week. Who'd a thunk it?!
In the past two days, the most exercise I'd had was a walk to the post office box - about a kilometre round trip. A little mortifying for somebody who's being doing 1-2 hours a day for the last three months. I was feeling flat.
Pinochet saw it differently. He said to JFDI (our current 12wbt motto) and I'd perk up. He can't get over the changes in my body. He worked me firmly, but gently - and after the hour 400 calories were chalked up on my heart rate monitor. He had me doing all of these strange isometric exercises. Isolating deep tissue muscles. Squatting down to inches from the floor (body weight squats). About ten minutes in I kicked my shoes off. Don't ask me to stand on one foot in runners. It made all the difference. I was humming along wonderfully.
Now we're concentrating on deep fitness and deep toning. My heart can pump at 150 beats a minute and I don't get breathless. We do short, sharp ballistic interval stuff and deep muscle toning. It's a bit of a revelation.
And to make matters more fun - I needed to get new training shoes.
You can't do the exercises we do in runners. Runners are for running. They're padded and control rolling and just don't give you floor stability.
So on ebay tonight I sourced a pair of Vibrams:
Actually, they're sensible - they let me go "barefoot" at the gym. Allegedly, they're good for running in to. And I have fetching red and black ones - not the ugly commando style ones...
Still a result. Pinochet was going on about how he's on to getting my posture better, working the deep muscles under my lats and getting things to move better. It's quite cool.
Surprising revelation number two. Finally, I'm really liking my body. It's still a work in progress, but its really getting there. The back fat is going. The stomach is receding. I have a jawline! And collarbones.
I let myself get photographed. I look at myself in the mirror now.
For somebody who's avoided both of these activities over the last forty years, it's pretty amazing. And surprising.
I'm loving this part of the journey.