“Okay, so sit down on the mat, now hold this straight above your head with your right hand…” He says as he hands me a 15 pound dumbbell. “…look up at it, yup that’s it.” He nods completely straight-faced and encouragingly. ”Now lift your left leg out straight… no your LEFT leg, and raise your hips. Yup, that’s right… keep looking up at the weight in your hand, now raise your hips up and down. Higher!”

I immediately crumple to the floor in a fit of hysterical laughter.

“No Eli!  You are SOOO making that one up! I know you are!” I squeal.

I actually gave myself a Charlie horse in my side as a result of this action… and I’m pretty darned fit! Apparently just not terrifically coordinated.

I honestly believe that my trainer makes exercises up to see how silly he can make me look. I wonder, in fact,  if it’s something that all trainers do. Then at the end of their work days they get together at some protein drink bar and regale one another with their antics of the day. Slapping each other on the back in congratulations and high five-ing over what they managed to persuade us to do throughout the day.

That one is apparently called a Turkish Get Up. I kid you not! Or is it Eli who’s kidding?

I should point out that I started with Eli, my hilarious trainer, about 18 months ago. I see him twice a week and he always shakes things up. I’m quite certain that we have never done the same routine and he almost always introduces new moves to the mix. So I tell myself to do the math. How many exercises can there possibly be in the world?

I’ve got his number though. If I think the move he instructs me to perform sounds too ludicrous, I make him do it first. He smiles indulgently at me and drops to the floor, or hangs from the bar, or wherever he is convincing me to begin, and does it. He always makes it look effortless too. Damn him!

As I’m at the gym at least two or three more times during the week when I’m not with Eli, I enjoy having the opportunity to witness him (surreptitiously of course!) with other clients. He is generally offering encouragement, making notes or fine tuning a technique, much as he does when he’s with me. But every so often I think that I see his shoulders move in the universally understood signal of suppressed laughter. One cannot help but wonder!

Regardless of whether or not he is having a moments fun at my expense, the results speak for themselves. Even the moves which I’m convinced he makes up to amuse himself have definite benefits… even if they are only laughter related core work.

I cover a wide range of body parts… errr should I say topics… over at www.staciacarlton.com

Happy Lifting!

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