I'm not invincible?
As a personal trainer I am constantly telling my clients that if something hurts, stop doing it or you may risk more serious injury. I also repeatedly tell them to rest 48 hours between sessions, the dangers of overtraining and the importance of warming up and stretching.

I teach Pump 3x a week – M, W & F. I also teach Healthy Backs right before Pump on M & F. I train clients 4 to 5 x a week, and while working with them, will also do some of the exercises with them, like abs, core work, etc., no weights though.

Last weekend, I noticed my left shoulder beginning to hurt. Just a little. Even so, we went for a 30 mile bike ride, I mowed grass (with a push mower!), helped clean out the garage and pulled weeds. No slowing down for me – I won’t get injured. After all, I’m indestructible!

While teaching Healthy Back on Monday, we do a move in a prone position called Y, T, W, & L. It’s an exercise to help strengthen the scapula muscle. When I tried to do it I noticed a bit more pain so I did stop and just talked everyone else through it. Then came Pump. Everything was going great until I got to the tricep track. As I was on my bench I realized I needed to slide down or else Craig and I would be bumping barss. As I slid down – a pain shot through my back. I barely made it through the rest of the class. I took some aspirin and over the next couple of days started feeling a tad better. So – Wednesday, I decided that the living room needed to be rearranged. Bad move. Thursday I woke up in pain severe enough to make me call the doctor. She said I had torn my trapezius muscle and that I could do no upper body lifting until it healed – The worst news a fitness instructor / personal trainer can get is that you can’t work out. If I follow doctors orders, I could be back teaching by Monday.

I have learned a valuable lesson. If you feel pain – stop. Don’t over train. Warm up and stretch before / after workouts. Where have I heard that before….? I did teach Pump today with Craig using a bar with no weights. Not cool. I felt so whimpy!

So now I sit here in bed, feeling groggy from the pain meds and hoping Craigy will fix me dinner tonight.

As instructors, I think sometimes we feel nothing can ever happen to us physically, after all, we are in shape. But it CAN happen. We need to take our own advice and take care of our bodies. Do we teach too many classes? Work out every day? Skip the warm up because we are in a hurry? If we don’t take care of ourselves we won’t be there for our class members.

Speaking of taking care of our bodies I would like to mention an instructor at our club. I will not give her name but she is amazing. She had a baby about 2 years ago and like most of us, put on weight. Well, she has lost around 80 pounds! She has worked so hard, never giving up, teaching classes and taking classes. She has such a great attitude and always has a smile on her face – a great person to have in class because she likes to make a lot of noise and just have fun. Kudo’s to you TD!!!!!!
Our 58 Launch (w/pics)
After months of speculation, the time has finally came for us instructors to get on with life without Mike. And yet he's still with us, as head choreographer for the BodyPump 58 release. So while the bad news may be that we won't be seeing one of our favorite international trainers presenting future releases, the good news is that his shoes are already being filled with some very capable athletes.

So, on to our launch. As with past mid-summer events we weren't completely full, especially since Blacksburg is a university town. But our attendance lately has been consistently much higher than past years, no thanks of course to my propensity for regularly botching choreography. Naturally the 58 would be no exception; not less than two minutes into the warm-up I called squats instead of overhead presses. You don't suppose the class noticed that set of 32 2x2 squats seemed a bit excessive, do you?

Well once we got that little gaffe out of the way, the rest flowed pretty smoothly. It seems the combo squats in Republica's Drop Dead Gorgeous caused a bit of consternation, as did a dizzying array of presses during that B52s classic on the chest track. Once we got through those numbers it was smooth sailing through the back & hamstrings, triceps, biceps, and lunges.

The party really got into high gear with the shoulder track. If you're a ZZ Top fan, this Bodyrockers' track combined with a round of MAC Raises serves up a mean rijsttafel that won't soon be forgotten. The MAC Raise, incidentally, is named after legendary New Zealander Paul McDonald who developed the exercise for training kayakers. The abs track proved equally challenging, with a seemingly endless set of reverse crunches that challenged even (Ms. Abs) Tami. Only when the cooldown stretch commenced did I finally breathe a sigh of relief.

To our way of thinking, this was definitely one of the more enjoyable (and, yes, playable) releases. Yeah Mike, you went out with a bang on this one: just when we thought we'd seen all the moves that could possibly be fit into ten tracks, here comes a release with a slew of combos and that nifty MAC Raise for our exercise enjoyment.

Which leaves us with one question: How's Glen gonna top this one? We'll find out soon enough - 59's right around the corner!
Our launch for 58
We finally did it! I feel like we are so behind everyone else - are we the last ones to launch?

It did turn out pretty well. Learning this release, as most others posted, was fairly easy. For the very first time since I have been teaching I did not use my big dry erase board to recopy the notes. I just put my glasses on, picked up my notes and did it. Of course I practice using "air weights" so when I do teach its hard to know exactly how difficult the track is. I thought that using medium plates was almost too much for the shoulder track - especially in trying to cue good form with the new "Mac Raise". I felt it was kinda like rubbing my belly and patting my head. It can be done - if you start slowly. Today I encouraged everyone to use small plates if they had had trouble on Monday and they felt that it helped. I don't feel like it was a "WOW" release, but it was right up there. We did take some pics and if I can talk Craig into posting again I will get him to put those on.

Does anyone have any info for BP59? Always anxious for the next release!
Here we go again...
And I don't mean the song. Our club opened up in the summer of 2001 and I have been with them since November of 2001. I have seen lot's of changes over the past few years. Instructors come and go, department managers have been replaced, owners have changed. For the past year or so, things have been running very smoothly. Our GFM has done a terrific job in organizing and managing a difficult department. She is able, and does, teach numerous classes and is always there to sub. Monday evening, at a spur of the moment employee meeting, it was announced to us that as of August 1st we will be under new owners. We are a small town fitness club - very family and community oriented. And I like that. I know sometimes that changes are good but I think I had gotten into my comfort zone and dread seeing yet another dramatic change. It wasn't long ago our club was swaying towards BTS. I got the shivers. Fortunatly we stayed with Les Mills and I breathed a huge sigh of relief. The new owners have promised good things and I will keep an open mind, but my big toe is beginning to tremble...

Thanks for all the great tips on clean and press form. Today in class I had everyone use a partner standing in front of them and practice. It worked pretty good, but as usual, some slowly went back to the reverse curls. I have told them that when they all get it right I will quit nagging them!

We launch BP58 this Monday so I am listening to it as I write. I really like it!

Our trip was great - just very wet. Also, we did not manage to visit any BP classes. We were nerver close to any. We did manage to ride our tandem alot - over 120 miles total. One day was a grueling 45 mile trek with a lovely 2 1/2 jaunt up a mountain. 30 minutes to get up, about 8 minutes to get back down! And here is an interesting observation: last year Craig and I did alot of hiking on our summer trip. No biking. We missed two weeks of Pump and when we taught for the first time when we got back, neither Craig or I could get out of bed the next day. On this trip, all we did for exercise was ride the tandem and after we taught again after two weeks - we had very little soreness! So the moral of the story is if you go on vacation - take your bike! Next year we plan to go to the midwest where hopefully it will be a bit dryer!