Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, oh my!
My quest to lean put to bodybuilder proportions continues unabated this week, despite the NFL playoffs, despite the holiday season and despite the winter blahs that have firmly gripped us collectively by the short and curlies, my schedule has remained demanding and even though I was in absolutely no mood to lift on either Saturday and Sunday of last week, I got my work done. I stayed disciplined in my nutritional approach and I didn’t let either those aforementioned winter blahs get me down, nor did I turn to food as an emotional crutch in times of despair, of which there were a couple, if I’m being completely honest, which is clearly working for me as far as accountability goes.
My training days on Wednesday are fairly gruelling. I’ll train heavy at 6:30 a.m. with a client, and I’ll teach a 9:15 class at the Dollard des Ormeaux Seniors Club, and so I’m pretty drained already as the clock strikes 10 a.m. I’ll see a few private clients before a standing 4 p.m. appointment for a metabolic resistance workout. High-intensity training involving medicine balls, TRX suspension cables and HIIT-style cardio work for an hour. I’ll finish my day coaching basketball and walking my dogs at a rapid clip for almost two hours in the evening. It makes for a great way to end the day and give me a much-needed hit of endorphins before bed. The fresh air is also a great way to feel better when your energy is low and you maybe are struggling with self-esteem. The dogs and I generally go out regardless of weather.
Thursday morning, I see clients with standing appointments at Club Midtown le Sanctuaire, which without a word of hyperbole is the best and most luxurious gym in Montreal.
At 11 a.m., it’s my training time and I get to spend an hour and a half training in an environment that is just too good to be true, if you’re a person who is into that stuff. We have EVERYTHING there you could possibly want to use as far as training goes and both my colleagues among the trainers and the members themselves foster an environment that lends itself to a great workout. There is never a moment where I’m not in a training mindset when I’m in that building. It’s also conveniently located in the heart of uptown Montreal and is fairly accessible and easy to reach by car from just about anywhere.
So I put in my time and get cleaned up in the locker room, where there are individual shower stalls, a hot tub, a sauna and all the towels you could ever need.
It’s a nice way to get my faculties back about me after a tough workout and then it’s back to the West Island where I have standing appointments at 3, 4 and 5 p.m. After I get home and I make supper for my family, I’ll usually put in an hour on the rowing machine, which is an excellent way to get more cardio and to do get a bit more upper body strength work, which is why I normally make Thursday a chest/triceps day to get the balance in the upper body. (In the rowing motion, the back muscle called the latissimus dorsi and the biceps, as well as the rear deltoid are the main muscles worked; the chest/triceps muscles literally are forced to relax with every pull of the rower).
Friday morning is also an exciting day because it’s usually the most physically demanding day of the week as well as one that spaces four workouts over eight hours, or one workout every two hours, more or less. I’ll start with a heavy lift in the morning at 6:30 a.m. and teach a step class at 9:15, followed by a strength class at 11:15. Then it’s refueling time with a protein shake and I run off to look after a private client at 12:30. Another workout with a client is set for 3 p.m. on most Fridays, but it’s not heavy and is usually heavy on metabolic training, with many unweighted squats, planks and other sundry fun exercises.
By Friday night, my legs are usually jelly, but if my son has a hockey practice, I’ll walk the stairs up and down, over and over around the rink until the practice is over. Unless he’s at Bob Birnie Arena in Pointe Claire. Then I pay the nice lady at the front desk of the adjacent Malcolm Knox Aquatic Centre and she lets me ride the elliptical trainer for an hour while he practices. Then, it’s time to walk the dogs, which I’ve come to realize is gigantic in helping my legs recover for the next day of training. Cause tomorrow is always another day of training.
I haven’t taken a day off since Nov. 10, but the fact of life is that I’ll probably have to take a day or two off in the near future. Just haven’t decided when that’s going to be.
I’ll cover how I handle the weekend and the kids’ sports schedule in my next post, but rest assured, I always have a plan.
That’s the best advice I can give anyone who likes working out and wants to do it every day as a matter of principle. Have a plan. Travelling? Work out early before, or schedule something at the end of the day. Know where the fitness centre is, wherever you’re going, or find a gym close by. Whether you decide you can or you can’t, you will definitely be right. That’s a promise.