Monday, August 8, 2011

my personal trainers

While doing my postpartum workout today, I realized something funny I consistently do.  I make friends with my DVD workout trainers.  Obviously we don't go out for sodas or have playdates with our kids (although that'd be so cool if we could!)  However while pulling my knees to my chest, completing the last stretch in today's workout, Erin O'Brien grinned and said, "You did it!" and I replied with my own smile, and said with a sigh, "thanks Erin!"

I didn't say it just to be cute.  There was no one else in the room, who would I be sounding cute for?  I felt sincere gratitude for Erin coaching me through the workout, and found myself thinking, "That Erin, I really like her.  She's cool. She's my friend."

In my defense we do see each other almost every day - every day I find time to workout anyway.  She gives me advice, tells me a bit about her life, and motivates me to be a better person.  That's what friends do, right?  It just so happens she says and does the same things every time we're together.  That and I paid $13.99 for her friendship.   

I'm not crazy.  Not yet anyway, although with the extreme shortage of sleep that comes with raising two little girls and a newborn, I'm probably close.  I can't blame this behavior on that though, because I've felt the same way about my other DVD trainers, who I knew and worked with back in the days I used to get plenty of sleep.  Denise Austin was my girl during my last pregnancy, as we did low impact aerobics, and she coached me through special workouts for the second and third trimesters.  Erin O'Brien is my new friend now.  I used to use the Wii Active Personal Trainer program, and I even felt grateful for the motivation given by the animated digital trainers.  They'd respond to my motions with pre-recorded phrases like, "way to go!" or "I can tell you've been working on that" and "I know you can do this!", and I'd nod my head and say, "Yeah!  You're right, I can do this!"

Perhaps this is a sign I need to get out of the house more often.  I probably would enjoy an aerobics class with real people, and adults to converse with.  Classes cost money though, and don't answer the question of what to do with the kiddos.  With my DVD and Wii workouts, I can nurse Benjamin, put the girls down for naps, cram a bologna sandwich, and then pop in a DVD before everyone wakes up and needs me again.  I can exercise on my schedule (or lack of) without leaving the house.  The convenience is too immense to attempt anything else.   

Exercising releases positive hormones, and that bit of time dedicated to just me feels so great!  I'm happier on the days I workout, and have more patience with my messy house and noisy kids.  Can I help it if gratitude for my improved mood goes to the friendly TV image of a trainer who is guiding me down the path of a healthier, stronger, more energetic me?

So thanks guys.  Thanks Denise, thank you Erin, and thank you Wii digital person who has no name!  This post is dedicated to you.  You guys are #1 in my book, even though you don't know me, or don't really exist.     


  1. Oh make me smile! I have to say I am a bit jelouse that I'm not friends with a trainer because I definiely should be. hehe. I need to start working out. To be honest I'm way than I like to be...but I have the hardest time finding motivation to eat right & exercise. I'm so happy for you & that you can find the time to have that personal relationship with your trainers...that's awesome! :o)

  2. On our Wii we have lots of family and friends to work with, including Annwii, Merrywii, Lizwii, Cindwii, Joewii, Petewii. We even have a Scottwii. Of course there are Momwii and Dadwii. Did I mention Katewii and Brentwii? I have to confess that they do not get visits nearly as often as your friends do, though.

  3. I do the same thing, but my girl is Leslie Sansome and her walk away the pounds dvds

  4. I like working with the Wii's male athletic trainer, or MAT, as I like to call him. When he compliments me on my great yoga position, I smile and say, "Thanks, MAT." The girl one just makes me feel intimidated with her perfect figure and monotone voice. I feel MAT's a bit more personal. And Brenton and I have started doing Turbo Jam with Chalene Johnson together. She's great. Happy exercising! And thanks for the motivation for me to do more than I am. I love you.

  5. Ok. I am laughing out loud to an empty room. That is so funny.
    Yep, I do that too. Or if I don't like the guy, I started glaring him and think, "Bite me Ab Ripper guy. Some people have lives OUTside of the gym".