Thursday, October 23, 2014

Trainer to English Dictionary

I've been seeing a personal trainer for many years.

My adventure in exercise started in the late 90s.  I'd been working for software companies for several years.  Not being even slightly interested in sports or exercise and working in front of computers (and enjoying a sedentary lifestyle), I atrophied at an alarming rate.  I've always had back pain , but it wasn't until I turned my head one day and threw out my back that I realized I needed help.

"I'm fine.  I always walk like this."
Then I changed my mind.  I wasn't thrilled with the idea of going to the gym.  The kids who worked out were the same ones who picked on me in high school, and old resentments die hard.  After I threw my back out two more times and spent weeks walking like Quasimodo, I agreed to a session with a trainer.  We'll call him "Daniel"* to protect my ego.

Training started from the most embarrassing possible place.  Standing in a corner of the gym's free weight room, surrounded by men and women trying out for roles in a Schwarzenegger biopic, Daniel gave me a beach ball.
Even she made me look bad.
"Hold this at arm's length and twist from side to side," he said.

"That's it?" I said, affronted. "Twist?"

After twenty twists, I was lying on the floor, covered in sweat, panting, seized up in agony.  My triceps had cramped so badly, Daniel had to help me into a stretch to make the pain stop.

I kept seeing Daniel, and working on building my strength.  It's taken me years to become the giant, gorgeous mass of muscle I am today.  And...  Hm...

Oh, right, there was a point to all this.  After many years and thousands of dollars spent on training, I've learned a few things that will help you, should you choose to visit a trainer.  The most important lesson I can impart is this: trainers don't speak English.

Well, it's a special version of English that uses words differently than we normal humans (or "flabby, girly men") do.  Here's a quick chart to help you translate:

Trainer says
Trainer means
Five more.
How many more push-ups can I make you do?
Three more.
I bet I can make you have a heart attack!
One more.
You're still breathing.
I'll call 911
How are you feeling?
Do you have a will?
Try it more like this.
I think I heard a bone snap.
Good work today.
I thought you were going to die.
You need to work out at home.
You get bigger every week.
Looking good!
Wow, you're fat.
See you next week.
I look forward to hurting you.
Any sentence with nouns.
You're too fat.
Any sentence with verbs.
This is going to hurt.

Hope that helps.  See you at the gym!  I'll be the guy in the corner with the beach ball, looking sexy.

*His real name.

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