It’s late at night and I am surrounded by dark. My heartbeat pounds in my ears and a cold sweat beads on my forehead. I can barely stand for the shaking in my legs and all I want to do is get out of there but I am paralyzed. A low creaking noise comes from the heavy box in my arms and I wonder how I ever allowed myself to get into this situation.
Suddenly the lights snap on and I look up the stairs. My 18 year old son squints down at me. “Mum?” he says, looking both incredulous and annoyed as only a teenager can do. “What are you doing? Do you need help with that box?” He thumps down and whisks the box out of my arms like it’s nothing at all. I take a few deep breaths and sit down on the stairs, wiping the sweat off my forehead. No, I wasn’t trapped in the basement with an axe-murderer. It’s worse than that.
Apparently, I am horribly out of shape.
Turns out the creaking was my knees. “Really?” says a voice in my head. “Half way up a flight of stairs with a box of junk and you’re in full muscle failure?” I stand and slowly make my way to the top of the stairs, my so-called quads shaking like a scared puppy. “Are you alright?” my son asks. “I’m fine,” I gasp. “Just a little out of breath. I’ll be fine. Just need a minute or two.” Or 60, I think to myself. I crawl to the sink for a drink of water. “Hey!” says the voice, “Have you heard of this new breakthrough for people like you? It’s called exercise. You should try it before you have a heart attack”. I try to block out the annoying voice but it’s too late for denial.
12 hours later and I have signed up for Boot Camp at Crystal Pool and Fitness Centre with Jonathan Carpenter of MIJO fitness, also known as the “Fitness Ninja”. You may have heard of him – he’s the one who whipped Suzie Spitfyre into shape in 2013. Suzie was a participant in the Times-Colonist Health Challenge and took the concept of weight loss and fitness to a whole new level, dropping a whopping 158 pounds to go from 296 at her heaviest to a low of 138. You can read all about her experience. It’s very inspirational.
Jonathan also took on this year’s Times-Colonist Health Challenge participant for the Crystal Pool and Fitness Centre, Troy Wilson, who dropped 93 pounds in eight months under Jonathan’s expert guidance. Troy can’t say enough great things about Jonathan and holds him responsible for “single-handedly changing my life.”
While I don’t have quite that much weight to lose, I could certainly stand to drop a few pounds. But, more importantly, I need to get to a point where reaching for a tissue doesn’t put my back out.
I’ve got a few days to prepare for my first class and I’ll admit I feel a little panicky. I’ve already envisioned myself doing all the things I dread: tripping on nothing while walking in a straight line, dropping weights on my head, dropping weights on someone else’s head, passing out, catching on fire, you name it, in my head I’ve already done it. Now it’s time for real life.
You should join me and sign up for a class with the Fitness Ninja at Crystal Pool and Fitness Centre.
I’ll let you know how it goes. If I make it out alive… – Jane Potter.
Jane Potter works in Citizen Engagement and Strategic Planning and will be providing updates about the joys of burpees and facing her own fitness fears.