We know a personal trainer- he's been training E's dad for something like 20 years. A bit ago E bartered some legal advice or something like that for some free sessions with this guy.
Any how, this guy is totally awesome.
Sure, his plans work well. He makes them short and just intense enough to do the job. He makes sure they're entertaining enough / interesting enough that you'll actually do them. E is totally buff now, more so than when we were in the Air Force.
And sure, his dedication is amazing- really he has done twice as much as expected when the barter was made.
What I really like about him is that he never fails to give you an ego boost. He's always happy to see you, and always says something positive about how you look. With E he says, wow, look at those shoulders! You look great! How do you feel-do you feel stronger? With me he says, wow, you look great! It looks like you lost a little weight- I can see it in your face. His expressions are very open- when he is expressing surprise at your progress, you don't just hear it in his words, you see it in his face and through his body language. It's a total message of surprise and/or delight.
And he also knows when you need a little extra boost.
Today we ran into him at the neighborhood Starbucks (one of them anyhow), and we sat with him a bit. After the usual round of compliments, he asked me to pull against his hand (thus flexing my bicep), and while I was doing that, he poked my bicep and was like WOW! E, feel this! and of course E poked my bicep, and the trainer was all- that's freakin amazing. I had been feeling disappointed that I hadn't seen results as soon as E had. I guess I was looking for more visual results and didn't notice the actual strengthening of my muscles.
Of course part of this behavior must be vital to his job. I'm guessing most people don't want a trainer who is down on them. It's about forming a trusting and positive relationship. He remembers that I'm worried for my weight, and he remembers that I wanted Michelle Obama arms (have you seen how defined her arms are? Politics aside, you have to admire the work that goes into keeping such definition!). Even knowing that his behavior is grounded in good busienss practices, it still makes me feel good.
And isn't the whole idea of weight training and climbing stairs to make me feel good about myself? Well, ok, that and staying healthy...