YMCA Adventures Day #1: Machines, Muscles & ActiveTrax
The Texan and I are getting married in 45 days. Guess who is undertaking a little fitness makeover prior to the big day? Since I’m posting, you know it’s not the Texan. So, it’s 6:45am and I’m headed to the YMCA at Duck Creek for a new member orientation to learn how to be a more fit, fabulous me. Of course, I got a little turned around on the way there. Got a nice morning view of Seven Hills School (found their resale shop, BTW, which is legendary for their amazing deals) and toured around the Coca-Cola parking lot before finding the Y tucked back in the corner.
Walked in – and it’s time for my first workout with Amy Walla, personal trainer/guru of all things YMCA.
Amy started by sitting me down to talk fitness – specifically how much I have and have not done. Since I’m only slightly more fit than a couch potato, I mostly fall into the “beginner” category as far as using weights, knowing how to do exercises, etc. She also went over my fitness goals. I was very honest, told her that I tried WW once, had a lot of luck. Stress, life and things happened, and I gained back the 50lbs I lost. I tried it again – fail. So now, on to working out to try and get myself into better shape. She said that was doable – YAY!
The goal of today’s first work out was to test my strength on various machines, as well as setting up ActiveTrax, the fitness tracking software the Y uses. ActiveTrax lets you customize the type of workout, the type of exercise and most importantly, a specific timeframe for your workout. Since I’m working out in the morning, it’s helpful to know that I can set it up for a 45 minute workout, and get done in time to get to work.
I like that ActiveTrax will track all of your workouts – tell you how much weight, how many reps to do – and most importantly, tracks the placement of the seat of the equipment. I hate having to remember where to set up the seat. Speaking of setting up the seat – using the little yellow-marked knobs to set things up was a breeze. The knob makes it easy to spot what part of the equipment needs to be adjusted. As far as I can tell, there’s no way to accidentally drop a stack of weights or mess up the machine by adjusting the fit.
All in all, I think I did okay – not the weakling of the bunch, but not nearly as strong as I should be during the strength test.
At the end of the workout, Amy led me to the floor exercise (not gymnastics, but where you actually lay on the floor) area, and explained we were going to do crunches. Since I ususally do these on the exercise ball – when I do them – I wasn’t sure what she was going to teach me. She showed me how to crunch properly by finding a spot on the ceiling, and crunching my body while keeping an eye on the spot. Voila. I didn’t pull on my neck, and I was able to do a meager handful of crunches during the one minute test.
After I was done – shower time. Not really though. One BIG word of wisdom. Bring a towel – preferably a nice sized one. I didn’t, and the Y doesn’t supply them, so no shower for me. The locker rooms were nice – clean since the Y at Duck Creek is new- but not fancy. Metal lockers, both half-size and full-size are there. Second word of advice – bring a lock. The Y doesn’t supply locks.
There were only a handful of people in the locker room, so getting ready wasn’t tough. The Y doesn’t supply any H&B stuff – so best bet is to pack your travel pouch with your toiletries. Got ready, left and was at work in 20 min. Not even late!