There are some things in your life that you can learn on your own. In fact many things can be self-taught. I have been trying for over one year to achieve a new level of fitness mainly by running and free weights and after all of this time I was not pleased with my results. I worked hard, very hard, but was not achieving my goals. So I bit the bullet and I hired a professional personal training to prepare for my upcoming skills seminar (https://www.rmiguides.com/ecuador-seminar/ ) with RMI in Ecuador. (One of the people I have trekked with, Lee Hoedl, shot a great video of Ecuador from his trip: https://www.youtube.com/v/xHH6I2U6ZsM&hl=en&fs=1&rel=0&autoplay=1 ).
Upon hiring the personal trainer I arranged for her to train me at my home gym. On the first day she arrived I was cocky of course and figured in advance that I would show/tell her what I did and she would tell me how to improve my workout. So I told her about my running six (6) miles a day and how it was great for endurance. Oddly after I explained my run she disagreed. At first I was a bit taken back because I knew what I could do and I was sure she was wrong. I then demonstrated what I did with weights and she said “OK but your form is all wrong”. I said in response, “OK but my muscles are growing”. So after that we did an assessment so she could help me train.
At the end of the assessment I was in shock at how little I did compared to what she was having me do. I basically convinced myself that she was wrong and that instead, my accomplishments proved that what she was talking about was unimportant. I described my goals clearly and then on every exercise asked her how is this going to help my goal. A one (1) hour session turned into two and I realized that I was not as strong as I thought. While I had achieved more than most people I know I did not have the strength to complete my goals. I was really sore the next day, more so than I remembered ever. What is funny is that I thought back to my past and recalled many exercises that made the ones she was doing seem like child’s play. Somehow I had forgotten them and just let my conditioning fall apart over the last 25 years. I also ordered new gym equipment to match the exercises that I was doing. Mats, Bands, Box, etc. Thanks to Amazon Prime all of it came free and in time for our next session.
In our next session she did a whole new set of exercises and again I felt weak and unqualified. Everything she said to do, I quickly said either, “I have never done that” or “I cannot do that”. I simply did not know how and it all seemed impossible. But with effort I found I could do it, and over the reps my form improved. I actually thought that at two to four hundred sit-ups a day my core would be better. She watched me do the sit ups and said; “what muscles are you using”. I responded “my core” and she responded that “you are using your hip flexors”. You will find that hip flexors are not mentioned in the core.
So we continued and continued and we are now up to our third week. It is very hard. I still say I have never done that or I don’t do that but I always end up doing my best and progressing. It was very hard for me, I am normally the expert at whatever I chose to do, but I have wasted close to two years doing exercises that no matter what did not prepare me for my task. It was interesting for me to reflect, I actually did not want to listen to what I was doing wrong. I even argued my position that what I believed was correct. I resisted evidence in front of my face. However that is over and I am now training daily and learning. In my last session I was doing single leg step ups while holding a 30lb dumbbell in each hand. When I was focusing on this workout it occurred to me that this was how I felt with a 60 pound pack on my back as I was fatiguing. Everything is a progression and I will hit my goal soon, yeah I am sore a lot but I am progressing. I only wish I had hired a personal trainer two years ago when I started down this path. However, Lesson learned, sometimes you need the guidance of a professional to be successful!