As I told my better half goodbye this morning and headed for the door, he commented that the instructors would probably take it easy on me at the gym today since it was my birthday. "Not likely," I responded. "They won't know that and I don't plan on telling them."
I didn't have to; my workout neighbor (i.e., our mats are usually next to each other in class) did.
While I knew there was a possibility Linda would know it was my birthday thanks to Facebook, I guessed we'd be long done with the gym when that took place. Little did I know she gets birthday notifications on her phone about the time she arrives at the gym. So much for an anonymous birthday gym day.
The birthday wishes were nice, however, and even having Happy Birthday sung to me by everyone in yoga was fun. It was appropriately subdued and somewhat Zen-like coming at the end of class like it did. I'm not big on being the center of attention but the classes are small and, for the most part, filled with people who, like me, have been attending for a while. It was much more intimate and relaxed than say having a restaurant full of strangers join the wait staff in singing.
I wasn't prepared for what happened in the strength class though...but then I don't think Linda was either after having informed our instructor of the occasion. Apparently the practice in Crossfit is to give women's names to workout routines and the exercises in those routines match up to the letters in the name. Now we don't do Crossfit but for today anyway we borrowed that naming scheme. In the hour I was doing yoga, our instructor Lisa was coming up with the BRENDA routine.
The number of repetitions we'd be doing was tied to my birthday too. Lisa picked 46 to match with my birth year. I think we all were glad she hadn't chosen my age! Actually, we usually do three sets of fifteen so it really was only one extra. At the end of that third set, however, getting just one more can be a challenge.
So we squatted and curled, raised and lunged our way through the hour. Seven combinations is really more than we can accomplish in that time so I got to choose whether to finish with the "D" or the "A." I picked the abs.
As we're putting the weights away, Lisa warned everyone else not to plan to skip the gym on their own birthdays in the hopes of avoiding a similar fate. She said she would be developing workout routines to correspond to the names of all the regulars and would be springing them on us at random times. It's a dubious honor to have everyone else in the class suffering through a workout bearing your name.
In case you're wanting to take on the BRENDA on your own, here are the components:
Plie wall squats with stability Ball/Upright rows
Reverse lunges/Lateral raises
Negative bicep curls (emphasis on lowering or negative motion with static hold)
Abdominal crunch extensions/Abdominal flutter kicks
Who'd have thought I'd be spending my birthday doing this...but I wouldn't have it any other way. The benefit to my health is worth every bead of sweat and sore muscle that workout produced.