Tuesday I was in the gym for PT with my trainer. My back was/is still bothering me so she had me working my lower/upper body on the machines. I rarely get to use machines when I train with her. She hates them (as do most trainers at my gym and likely everywhere). Machines are “easier” in that you don’t have to engage your core and lower back as much so they’re great for when you’ve got back pain but they’re not good for a true all over workout. However, when you’re working on machines, you can typically get a heavier load because you don’t have to lift it to get in position to really work. Ya know?
So, I was working on machines and apparently one of my trainer’s other clients was on the treadmill behind us. She made the comment, “How come she gets to sit down?! That’s not fair.” My trainer immediately said, “The only reason is because she’s having back trouble, otherwise she’d be off these machines, too! She normally is.” The woman still sounded pouty but whatever. It got me to thinking though about other comments I hear from folks who have trainers or even just go to the gym for a class or a treadmill workout. So many of us (myself included at times) whine about exercise. We don’t like it. We certainly don’t like it if someone doesn’t seem to be working as hard as we are. Really, though, why do we give a shit what anyone else is doing? If it’s more than us, we should use it as motivation for ourselves to do our best. If it’s less, we shouldn’t assume it’s because they’re lazy or are taking the easy way out. Maybe that’s really hard for them. Maybe they’ve got an injury. Maybe, maybe, maybe. Whatever it is, we should all be supporting each other because we’re all exerting ourselves, even if it’s small. It’s more than we’d be getting on the couch.
Comparing myself to others makes me crazy. I can’t help but do it. But, I’ve found that I don’t do it as often with exercise as much as I do with my eating habits. But that’s for a different post. When I watch people exercising/training, I’m watching for reasons other than seeing if they’re working as hard. I’m watching for new ideas to either try myself or ask my trainer about. I’m looking for motivation to push myself. That’s what we should ALL be doing. Pushing ourselves. Worrying about ourselves. So I leave you with this little girl’s “advice.” (Side note: This is often what I tell my trainer when she tries to help me at the end of a set with a heavy load.)