… I have succumbed to the vanity of engaging a personal trainer . He’s great, but I must be a challenging client. At 60 (or about 5 minutes away from it anyway), here’s how a personal training session starts:
Tony: What would you like to focus on today?
David: Well, I’m still having this issue with the pain in my arm when it moves in certain directions, so no push-ups, no bench press and no pec fly.
Tony: Anything else?
David: Yeah, you know that thing you lean over to do upside down sit-ups? Well, I didn’t have it adjusted properly when I was using it on Saturday morning and got my kneecap stuck under the pad. Now I can’t straighten my leg out so none of that jumping stuff.
Tony: Okay, we’ll work around that.
Tony: (Aside to another of his ageing clients) That’s the trouble with this gym, there are too many old farts.
Old fart: You’re not that young yourself. You wait till it catches up with you too.
So the sixtified version of personal training turns out to be:
- Train whatever parts of your body are currently functioning at better than 75%
- Something is better than nothing
- Love it that you can still do anything much on those infernal machines anyway
- Don’t give up, because there are still those occasional moments of magic when you realise you’ve just done something you couldn’t do a few weeks ago.
If the state of your body gets really disheartening, a couple of inspirational examples can always help, like these.
The first one is from the SMH Fitz Files:
“Don Riddington – the 68-year-old grandfather and oldest Australian to swim the English Channel. He did it in 19 hours and 45 minutes.” That’s a long time to doing anything physical, and there wouldn’t have been any black line on the bottom to follow, either.
The second one popped up on Pinterest when I was getting a dose of vicarious mountain bike thrills from other people’s photos:
“Robert Marchand from France, who set a world record for cycling non-stop for one hour, in the over 100 year old category at the Union Cycliste Internationale velodrome in Aigle, France February 17, 2012. Marchand, born November 26 1911, cycled 24.251 kilometres around the 200 metre indoor track to set the record.” He was born when?
There may thus be hope for this old body still to crank out a decent performance somewhere down the track.