We struggle to answer this question every day. I mean: it’s a workout, right?
But to many, it’s more than that, and it’s hard to explain.
Today I had an experience that made it a little easier to answer that question…
When my family vacations, everyone is happier when I get to workout. It’s exciting in a place like Naples, FL, with many varied studios to try! Today I took a boot camp class touted as “an amazing workout!” I sweated. I worked hard. And I learned ‘What makes Method 360 different’.
Understanding the “Why”:
Ryan, a friendly trainer who inquired about injuries before class, warmed us up without any explanation why we were starting with these exercises in this particular way. From my Method 360 education, I knew that the jumping jacks work the frontal plane, mountain climbers work the sagittal plane, and bicycle crunches work the transverse plane.
It helps me immensely to know that I’m using all planes of motion so nothing gets overworked or under-utilized. Maybe others don't give a shit about this, but since we were starting with all 6 degrees of motion, I anticipated a great workout for my whole body! However, I really missed the…
Ryan knew his clients’ names and connected by high fiving and cheering people on. I was encouraged! This is good stuff! This is what people need in a group fitness class! And then…I heard pockets of silence punctuated by “motivating” and “helpful” comments such as:
“Don’t stop now!”
“You’re halfway there!”
Over and over. The same thing! It was so….un-motivating. I desperately wanted him to ask, “What choices are you making?”, “What does your body need?”, or empathize with, “This this is hard! Ask yourself why you came here today!” Nothing terribly profound: just someone pushing me from inside my head instead of meaningless platitudes.
Most Method clients will tell you they check in and out of the trainers’ chatter, and I’m the same! But WOW! Did I need it today!! It was incredibly boring and made a tough workout tougher!
Instead of doing the cardio exercise, I chose BOSU push-ups. I was proud to get 5 full-body push-ups in before going to knees-down!
Ryan, however, was not impressed. He came over to show me ‘the right way’. I explained I was purposefully choosing a resistance-based exercise. He shook his head: “If it’s because of your feet, here’s a modification.” I explained I wanted to manipulate my heart rate. He shook his head and said, “We design the workout this way, and that's the way I want you to do it.”
That’s the way I had to do it. Wow.
Whether I choose yoga, boxing, running, or Method 360, it’s been a long time since I haven’t been allowed to make decisions based on what’s best for my body!
I wasn’t in anyone’s way, didn’t impede anyone else’s progress, and didn’t require special equipment. I wasn't hurting anyone else or myself.
I’m not a moron, but I sure felt like one.
Duration: This was supposed to be a 45-minute class. Warming up started at 9:38; the circuit started at 9:45. Class finished at 10:15. Bored & pissed, I had obsessively watched the clock. 30 minutes of training?! My heart rate had been unrelentingly high, putting me out of my fat-burning zone. Why cares, right? Regardless of how much fat I burned, I hadn’t enjoyed myself! It was a miserable 30 minutes, and I didn't feel accomplished or powerful at the end. I hadn't walked out in a better state than I had entered.
Method 360 trainers say that it’s easy to get someone sweaty. Many people think that sweat equals a great workout. Today proved that theory wrong! I used my body but not my brain. I was sweaty but incredibly unsatisfied! To me, that wasn’t a good workout. Perhaps I’m ruined for traditional fitness.
I left feeling grateful for Method 360 and all I have learned here.
Consider this an ode to our Method 360 trainers: I’m so grateful that you’ve discovered how to intrinsically motivate us while teaching us to understand what works best for our bodies and allow us the autonomy to choose!
Obviously the work you do is very difficult and nuanced, or more places out there would be doing it!!
On another note: if I ever move out of Syracuse, I am screwed. I can’t break up with this place.