I recently signed myself up for regular PT sessions. And for once, it doesn’t mean physical therapy. Nope. I am locked in to a year of personal training sessions. You know, as if I was just a normal, non-fibromyalgia person. La di da! Look at me! I’m just going to lift some weights! Whee!

Except, I suspect, my fitness goals are rather different than most other people at the gym. I’m not trying to lose weight or get rid of that weird side butt thing going on by my hips, although I won’t complain if that happens. When my trainer asked me during our first session what my fitness goals are, I said I have two: 1) To be able to lift a bag of groceries without pain and without injuring myself and 2) To be able to kayak for 15 minutes without serious pain that lasts for days. The trainer, who I will call Ronnie because that’s not his name, nodded his head sagely. Then he said, “We can do that.” Points for Ronnie! He also gets points because when I asked him what he knew about fibromyalgia he didn’t say, “Ummmm . . . let me google it on my phone . . .” Yeah, that happened. True story.

So I had my first session with Ronnie this week. And it went kinda like this:

(Ronnie demonstrates how to use a machine. Then I try.)

Me: Whoa! I’m awesome! This is a lot of weight!

Ronnie: Don’t forget to breathe.

Me: But I’m lifting things! With my arms!

Ronnie: Focus on your form. Keep the elbows in.

Me: I’ve already done five and my arms aren’t shaking!

Ronnie: You’re doing great!

Me: I didn’t know I even had this much muscle!

(Ronnie looks at his clipboard, almost like he wants to avoid eye contact)

Me: How much weight am I lifting?

Ronnie: Don’t worry about the weight, just focus on your form.

Me: But look! I’m lifting something! How much? What, 20 – 30 pounds?

Ronnie: Well, technically you’re not lifting any weight.

Then he went into some long-winded explanation of how the machine has no weight on it and a counterbalance so I’m not even lifting the bar-thing and how he just wants me to get used to the machine and proper form blah blah blah. It took me a minute to get over the shock that lifting nothing really felt like lifting something. I decided I could feel bad about my lack of muscle or I could feel . . . not bad.

Me: But I look like I’m lifting something, right?

Ronnie agreed. So that’s what we’re going with: looking like I’m lifting something. And it’s better than where I was before: forlornly looking at things I couldn’t lift. Soon I will actually be lifting something. That’s right, baby, I’ve got no where to go but up!

Screen shot 2013-02-28 at 1.51.55 PM


22 thoughts on “Weight

  1. Carly

    I like Ronnie already. Between your ability to look awesome even while not lifting anything and his knowledge, I bet you will be building muscle in no time.

    1. joslyne Post author

      I *do* look awesome. Thanks for reaffirming that for me. You should, like, do social work or something . . .

  2. kate cotton

    Stick with it! Any exercise is better than none. And if nothing else, it gives you fodder for funny blog posts. 🙂

    1. joslyne Post author

      Holly, we would make great exercise buddies. Clearly anyone who can move their arms as well as we can is a force. A FORCE, I tell you! 🙂

  3. Cathy

    Very inspiring!! I like Ronnie too for not treating you like you have a problem that will somehow hold you back. And also for giving you building blocks, like proper form, that will help you rebuild your strength without causing additional injury and working the muscles more efficiently. Workout smarter not always harder 😉 Keep up the great work!

    1. joslyne Post author

      Yeah, Ronnie gets total points for working with me where I’m at instead of where a normal person *should* be at. I’ll be buff in no time! Not sure I’ll be able to do 100 sun salutations in a row, but still. 🙂

  4. Kate

    I have totally been there! And my muscles were really sore after using just the machine! You will be amazed though how quickly your body will get stronger. You can do it (said out loud in an Arnold Schwarzenegger voice).

  5. Anne

    1. Wonder woman pic was the perfect end to this entry!! 2. I think you are wonder woman. Will tell Linda Carter to get a new job. 3. Totally made my day to see you are blogging again! More please!!

    1. joslyne Post author

      Yeah, I totally want to be Wonder Woman next Halloween. And all the days from now ’till then . . .

  6. Carrie

    Jos- you completely crack me up! I could not stop chuckling as I imagined you trying to convince your trainer that you were indeed lifting something. I totally think it counts! You go, Wonder Woman – you are amazing!

  7. Niki

    Okay, that’s seriously awesome. I love that you’re educating the world, one person at a time, about fibromyalgia. And I am so proud of you for working out! I have no chronic pain excuse ad I still can’t get off my butt.

  8. Erin

    Dude, crocheting tires me out. How in the world are you even able to move your body like that? You’re my hero.

  9. Pingback: Gym Mishaps and a General Lack of Progress | Zozo's Mom

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