Saturday, September 19, 2009


The universe has an interesting sense of humor.

Today was the day I decided to use the most in-shape chick at the gym as my fire unbeknownst to her. Well, I say she’s unknowing but in all honesty, there’s always a silent competition between people in the gym or those doing any physical work for that matter. We all have egos and there’s nothing wrong with that. We need them, they help us push further. So, just as much as I’m using her to fuel me through, oh I know she’s using me as well. I don’t mean to sound arrogant in any way but I work hard to keep myself healthy and in shape. I appreciate myself for this and so do others. So, whomever she happens to be today, just the mere fact that I know she’s going to push herself to the limit is enough to fuel me through, as long as I can make it through.

I walk in the gym, say my hellos, and head to the rowing machine. Hmm… who’s here today? … God I miss having a personal trainer … who’s helping me get through this today? Then I turn the corner. Please forgive me for sounding corny here, yes, I said corny Briana (my niece who I know is reading this and always makes fun of how I speak), but as soon as I turn the corner, I swear everything pauses. I told you, corny. Anyway, without physically stopping in my tracks, there is a snapshot, that instant moment when I see Simone…

Simone is in amazing shape, she’s nice, and to me she’s beautiful. Simone is a beast in her work. Like, I wanna be her. Each time I see her, I sit back and watch... IMPRESSIVE! So universe, this is what you’re dishing out to me today? Funny. Thanks. No really, I mean it. I know this is about to be an insanely good cardio session. God please just don’t let me suck wind!

She’s getting geared up to step onto the treadmill as I make my way over to my rowing machine. Please let there be one close to her. Yes! I settle into the machine – water, Gatorade, towel, iPod – that’s the load I carry into the gym. I make sure my shoes are tied well; this can never be used as a reason to stop. Though using Simone as my juice I just might need a freakin’ break! I make sure my Wheaties© cap is on snug and put my water and Gatorade at a comfortable reach. I look in Simone’s direction as she’s preparing to get on the treadmill. I’ve seen her do a few treadmill workouts and she always has the incline set on The Himalayas. She’s crazy and I don’t think today will be any different. She looks up, sees me watching her and winks at me. I wink back and now it’s go time! I’m focused on my goal which is to push strong through to the end of the workout because I know I can and Simone is going to make me prove it.

10 minutes in and the warm-up is over. Push a little harder, pull a bit faster, breathe! 28 minutes in… feeling great. 37 minutes… just keep moving because it’s easier than starting over. 44 minutes… at this point I’m assuming she’s going for an hour and that’s only 16 minutes away. I’ll have an hour of solid cardio but I’d also be more than happy to stop right now! CAN’T! Simone is still going and I refuse to stop before her! No more count down, just watch Simone. Her legs are incredible. Arms… shoulders… perfect! She’s dropping her incline. Whew! But she’s still going. Don’t watch the clock Candace, just keep it moving. Incline falls a bit more… keep going. She’s done… I’m done… 1 hour! OMG!!! WTF!! That was serious. Take a breather before standing up, get some electrolytes flowing through my system, much better. As I lift my head Simone is looking at me. She winks again and mouths ‘thank you’. I lift my Gatorade to her, bow my head and reciprocate the thanks.

I knew I wouldn’t be hard pressed to find someone to feed from to get through my workout. But the universe gave me something else entirely… Ms. Simone. Thanks for the sizzle darling!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Ahhh... Relief!

I'm going to be completely honest with you ladies... I've been a lazy bum lately and because of this, my back is flaring up, yes, more than usual. Can I blame it on the economy? I mean, it is affecting us all and I'm no different -- I've lost a few clients because of it. And being that I still need to eat, keep my clothes clean, buy my contacts lenses, and pay $3.17 a gallon for gas, I now have a part-time job. Thank you God! But in doing this, my workouts began to fall off, or I began to neglect them I should say. I had legit reasons of course - 'I'm tired'; 'Just 5 more minutes and I'm up'; 'I promised my girlfriend I'd meet her for coffee this morning so I'll get my workout in later, PROMISE!'; and when later comes - 'Oh it's too dark to go for a run now'. Yeah, a complete lazy bum! As a result, my back began to tighten and even the slightest movements made me grimace. OUCH! Not good... no es bueno!

I did continue my stretches though but I can feel weakness in my hips, my back and my groin. Ok ok, so I can’t blame the economy and I know I’ve spiraled in this madness long enough so it’s to the drawing board, time to plan out tomorrow’s workout. There’s no better way to get back into the groove of things than to just jump in – tomorrow I’m doing legs!

I wake up early, not allowing myself to hit snooze, and have a good breakfast. Rested and fueled it’s time to get to work….

Most of you know that I really don’t like going to the gym but I choose to go in this instance because I need some accountability. Everyone at the gym knows I’m a Personal Trainer so I figure it will be impossible for me to go in and be a slouch. Yeah, there’s a bit of ego involved but in this case, the ego gives a nice boost.

I walk in, say my hellos and pick my treadmill – the first one on the corner, the one everyone has to walk by. I plug in the iPod, set my speed at 8.0 mph, and with Madonna exploding in my ears, I go! I imagine people are saying, ‘She just got on that thing. I know she’s not breathing hard already?!’ I suck it up and keep it moving. 10 minutes, an elevated heart rate, and a few sweat beads later, the warm up is done and it’s time to work.

I position myself on the leg press, set my weight, take a deep breath, push, exhale. Again… and again… and again… 20! Shake ‘em out, go again. Presses… Lunges… Lunge Jumps… Squats… Hamstring Curls… Box Jumps… Whew! Now there are a few gentle streams of sweat rolling from the top of my head, down my back, to the waist line of my cotton shorts which soaks it all up. I mentally tell everyone, ‘How you like me now?! Slouch? I don’t think so!’ Three more sets and I can rightfully claim my crown as ‘Queen of the Gym’.

That last set was killer! Breakfast is wearing thin but I don’t stop until the very last hop onto the 18” box. ---- DONE!!!!

I finish my work on the floor and I stretch everything; my butt, my legs, my back. Umm… that’s good stuff. As I’m walking out of the gym, I realize that my back isn’t hurting. I stop, do a kick body scan, no pain.

I’m always saying that it’s keeping my body in shape that helps to alleviate most of my back pain. What, did I forget this? I guess I did for a minute. I was too busy wallowing in the fact that I’d lost clients; money was dissipating and basically ‘whoa is me’. Well, here’s proof positive that I was right and that endorphins are no joke!

Ahh… relief. Relief from the wallowing because in these times, I’m extremely grateful I was able to find a part-time job, and one I actually like, and relief from the weakness I felt overtaking me. I have too much pride to feel feeble for too long.

I think I’ll go to the gym again tomorrow and pick the most in shape, hard-working chick to be my inspiration. I want to use the rowing machine and I have to stay on it as long as she’s working out. If I can do open ocean rowing where the water is constantly pushing me around, I think I handle a stationary machine.

I’ll let you know…