A Pump class by any other name…

A Pump class by any other name…
Ow. It’s been a while since I had a good gym rant, right? I’m in some serious pain here, people. I meant to go to Pump class last night (with the instructor that I like) but by the time I got there it was full. “No problem,” I thought. “I’ll just run tonight and tomorrow I’ll try out a new guy.” Bad idea. First, a little background for you non-gym-rats:

Body Pump is a class where a bunch of people do synchronized weight lifting to music. It’s pretty low-impact and it targets all the major muscle groups, so it’s a good workout for me. The thing is, it’s like franchised. The company that invented it makes gyms pay a license fee to use the name. My new gym must have had a falling out with them, because we don’t have “Pump” class anymore… We have “Flex” class. It’s the exact same workout though and that’s all that matters. I mean, the whole point of having this standardized routine is that you pretty much know the workout you’re going to get before you go, right?

Wrong. This guy tonight apparently decided to do a little innovating. My suspicions were raised when he had us each get some extra equipment (“Two extra bars??”), but everyone else in the class was either an old lady or a scrawny Asian, so I figured I’d be able to keep up. Right off the bat, he had us doing aerobics to warm up. Aerobics! I don’t have a good track record with that. Plus it was like eighty degrees in that gym. I was sweating like crazy. (It reminds me of that yoga crazy people do in a heated room.) As for the actual lifting, he went too fast and combined groups together and pushed me beyond where I could go. He had us doing weird things like using the extra bars as ski poles for doing calf raises. He made me do pushups on the floor without my towel and I got carpet burn on my knees. (Yeah, I do girly pushups. But at least I can do more now than I could six months ago!) Halfway through it I was literally trying to come up with a good enough excuse to leave. It was like yoga all over again. Every time I looked around I could see that everybody else was doing fine, while I just couldn’t get into it. I had no energy and I was flailing, and every time he’d exhort us to go a little deeper or hold something longer I could tell he was directing it right at ME. And he went so fast! I was trying so hard to keep up that I knew my form was suffering. Now I’m feeling it. My legs hurt and my neck feels seriously screwed up on one side. I’ve probably slipped a disc or something. Stupid man. I should raise a complaint or something… *grumble grumble*

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  1. Yuck–time to dip into your ibuprofen stash, Kris. Instead of leaving a complaint, just do what I do and trash-talk about the instructor to your gym buddies. In all seriousness, when I am at the gym waiting for a class to start and a different instructor (one I’m not expecting) walks in, I just grab my towel and head for the treadmill. I’ve had too many bad or unsatisfying experiences with instructors that I’m not used to. Call me stuck in a rut, but I’m not going to put myself through it. I hope you recover quickly.

  2. don’t feel bad, RT- i went to an aerobics class once only to realize that i am even more awkward and uncoordinated than i had previously imagined. I couldn’t follow the steps so i ended up just jumping up and down like an idiot. I’ve stuck to the machines and weights ever since.

  3. I respect your bravery. I’ve been to the gym that I joined 6 weeks ago ONCE; mostly because I’m afraid of new things.

  4. I’m imagining the two of us doing aerobics, Eileen, and in my mind it looks a lot like when we used to go crazy and dance in our dorm room to “Enid”. We had to be the two most uncoordinated girls at ND. 🙂

    HA! Now I’m envisioning the “Whippin’ Post” dance.

    I’d feel bad about trash-talking him, Max, because everybody else in there seemed to like him just fine. I got the impression that they were all regulars. Maybe it’s just that I wasn’t used to his style. I don’t know. I’m feeling better today. A little sore, but not so wiped out. I think the best plan is just to avoid him in the future. (Which sucks, because I think he also teaches the boxing class I was interested in. But if it’s anything like his Pump, I’m not too disappointed.)

  5. Correction: My calves have gotten exponentially more sore every hour since I got up this morning. I’m feeling definitely less charitable to the instructor man. 🙁

  6. The instructor was doing what he was suppose to. Haven’t you ever heard of the saying “No pain, No gain”. When you lift weights your suppose to be pushed beyond what you want to do, so you can get into better shape and get stronger. It seems to me that you work out for something to do rather then to improve your body.

  7. I shouldn’t feed the trolls… but Mike, I’ve been working out for two years now to LOSE WEIGHT. Get with the program. You can’t possibly know my entire fitness history from reading one post on my site. Personal trainers and fitness instructors are supposed to push you, yes, but they’re not supposed to cause injury. I’ve even seen some of the rules the gym sets for them – no letting beginners do dead lifts, etc. If you don’t know what you’re doing, you can get hurt. Should you put an absolute beginner down on a bench with 200 pounds with the argument that they’re being “pushed beyond what [they] want to do”? No way. You’re just being silly. My complaint is that I took a class that was franchised and therefore was expected to follow a set routine. Instead an egotistical steroid-enhanced jerk decided that he knew better what was right for *every* person in the class than we knew ourselves. I got hurt trying to do what he wanted to do. That’s unacceptable. (I doubt you read any further in my archives, because you seem to be just a troll, but I actually wound up with second degree strains in both my calves. I couldn’t walk for a week. Not because I’d exerted myself, but because somebody had me doing the wrong exercise with the wrong form for far too long.)

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