I should start today’s post with a disclaimer. I don’t know anything about sports. I watch about 1/8 of a football game each year – the Super Bowl – and that’s only because I go to Ben and Rachel’s party since they always have great food, and I know a lot about great food. The football viewing is both incidental and accidental. The same rule applies to hockey, basketball, baseball, polo, lacrosse, cricket, golf, curling, or any of the major or minor sports. Being married to Brian Sano has made me peripherally aware of English soccer, but mostly what I know is that the Premier League Soccer Review Show is sucking up valuable space on the DVR and that if Brian doesn’t delete soon, I will. I also know that some of the players are very good looking. Like Cristiano Ronaldo, whose picture I am posting now for your viewing pleasure.
So, today, when a famous football player walked into the studio, and when Julian told me the name of said famous football player I’d be observing him work with, I had absolutely no idea who he was talking about. All I know is that he was gigantic and could probably crush my slender neck with a single hand. Turns out, though, that size doesn’t make Pilates easy.
I’d tell you his name, but honestly, all you need to know is that he was well over 6’4, more than 200 pounds, certainly could crush me with a single hand, and he struggled through a workout as much as nearly any of us would. That being said, someone so well trained to work their body (and probably so accustomed to doing physical therapy from all of the horrendous injuries that occur on the field) is really good with corrections.
After the giant left, it was time for me to start. From yesterday, I was feeling it most at the connection of my hamstring and glutes, since that’s where we focused so much attention yesterday. First up – going through Julian’s current program (i.e. workout), which is a killer hour-long session that takes you from reformer to chair to arm chair to ladder barrel to wunda chair to cadillac to slant board (not an official piece of apparatus). I made it through ok. I may not have done all of the reps of some of the exercises. Ok, I didn’t. But if you’ve taken my class, or especially my bootcamp, you know that “your 10 might not equal my 10.” So, my 10 was occasionally 6.
The workout ends with… pushups. 50 of them. So, those of you who grunt and groan through a Fuse Pilates class because we do a lot of pushups need to stop complaining. Because I have never once made you do 50 in a row (the last 20 with one leg out to the side, and all of them with your feet elevated about 3 feet above your head). Of course, I’m doing this mentorship to come up with more ideas for you, so watch out. That means you, Mike.
There was a rockstar woman there today – 60 years old, so tiny I could put her in my pocket, who did those 50 pushups beautifully. I did get a compliment from one of Julian’s teachers on my form for my pushups as well. Yay for me and all the gals out there who know that pushups aren’t just for boys.
Next up – quick lunch outside in the San Diego sunshine and then back to work. 2 hours of more hamstring/glute exercises and then another one of Julian’s sessions after that.
Sometimes in a class, you’re running on exercise endorphins. Sometimes, it’s the fat cells you’re burning. And then there are the times where it’s pure pride that keeps you going. For me, this was one of those times. Needless to say, I lived to write this post. But, I did got to bed at 9 p.m.
Throughout the day, I spent a lot of time just talking to Julian. He’s an incredibly open and generous person, who’s been through some tough times and some life-changing events and isn’t hesitant to talk about them. He even shares his chocolate. He sees Pilates the way I do – a system that needs to evolve because we know more now that Joseph Pilates did when he came up with all these great exercises in the 1920s. After all, without a doubt, Joe would have made changes, too. He would have developed more exercises. He would have changed the way he taught others.
The day ended with Men’s Bootcamp, a punishing hour long class that I observed. The four guys there had an amazing camaraderie, which included guessing who was going to cry first, calling each other “girls,” and passing out avocados from a gigantic bag one of the guys brought from a tree in his yard. Remind me to move to SoCal someday. The entire class was a non-stop onslaught of intense ab, glute, shoulder, and back work, all done on the tower without a single break. The guys were dripping. Some of that might have been tears. But they all left smiling with plans to come back next week.
I asked Julian afterwards if he would have done soooo many lat exercises if he had a class full of women. He paused for a moment and answered, No… I would have done more triceps
My hero! I wonder if he’ll agree to work with me forever.