Bad Harry, Bad Mr Medicine Ball

Harry’s been training me for, oooh nearly four months now.

In that time I’ve got to read him pretty well. We do hard on the muscles session followed by more on the speed sessions. I know that.

I think he knows me. If he says ‘be careful jumping back, it’s slippy’ he knows (NOW!) to stand behind me so I don’t fall over.

And now I know ‘well, you have worked pretty hard’ that means two days of ‘ooohing’ and ‘ouching’ around the office. I’m ok walking, once I’ve warmed up, but every time I get up from my desk the guy I share an office with gets to hear me run the gamut of grumbling expletives.

Remember Sunday’s run with medicine ball, do squats, repeat session?

Not only do I now have inner thighs packed with burning rocks but my core muscles are deeply unhappy about my laughing. Or breathing.

And it’s not those front muscles that make up a six-pack, or in my case the soft squidgy bit at the front. No, it’s the side muscles that run from your armpit to your waist. You use these quite a lot in running because when you run you make a kind of twisting motion and that engages these muscles, so having them strong; no bad thing.

Of course walking like a furious robot means I’ve not been able to run yet this week. And I have had half a mind to text Harry and have a whine.

But then the other half thinks he wouldn’t push me further than I could take and I do like pushing to my limit.

Did I mention I’ve been thinking about buying a medicine ball?

Am I completely out of both halves of my mind?!


Behold my nemesis – the kettle bell

There was a point this morning when I pondered whether Death By Kettle Bell was to be my end.

It was right about the moment when I completed my eighth one-arm swinging squat thing on my second set of 20 reps and I realised I had eight kilogrammes of solid metal approaching my head and I needed strength I didn’t think I had left to keep control of said flying kettle bell.

But I am alive. I didn’t die and Harry the personal trainer is still alive too. Even though I wanted to kill him after 30 minutes.

If you’ve never used them, they are great for building muscle using natural body movement. I’d advise kettle bell supervision though, these things are lethal in the hands of an idiot like me.

To get an idea of kettle bells in action, these guys do stuff with kettle bells that I’m familiar with.

I know they’re not as funny as they think they are but the squat-type exercises, swinging the kettle bell with both hands or one hand, and around the worlds are just what I was doing this morning. Together they create stronger legs, stronger core, stronger arms and that equals faster running.

If I’d thought about what Harry said when he arrived, that his football game was off and he thought he’d train with me instead, I would have been prepared. But no, I went blithely skipping into the park like a lamb to the slaughter.

This week was all about the kettle bell and this medicine ball thing with two handles that you can do press ups off and hold over your head while you do lunges. Backwards as well as forwards. Tricky.

We always do two sets of everything and then run down a track and back. Lots of ‘excellent’ and ‘well done’ keep me going but the last 20 minutes spent running at 5.2 – 5.7mph pretty much finished me off.

And now I’m lying on the sofa already bored with the aching thighs and arms and knowing tomorrow is going to be worse. But you know, stronger = faster. And that is the point to all of this, after all.