Saturday, August 18, 2012

Stupid Things People (Always) Say to Personal Trainers

It's 2012 and we've the largest amount of research and greatest access to fitness information than ever before. Still, there are so many people who just don't get it. Here are a few nuggets regarding what people say every minute, every day, and every hour to personal trainers (that drives them nuts), as well as what the personal trainer thinks but never says about it:

Personal Trainer (PT): "What are your target areas?"

Client (CL): "Stomach, thighs, and maybe the back of the arms" (she says as the trainer acts like those are different areas they every single person he EVER works with).

What a shocker. 


PT: "What are your goals?" (the trainer again pretends to be interested although almost everyone, especially female, has the same goals).

CL: "I'd like to tone and maybe lose a little weight."

PT: "I see." What a shocker. I think I just threw up in my mouth a little.


CL: "These weights are heeeavy! I don't want to get bulky!"

PT: "Oh don't worry, you won't. You still need to push yourself to get that tone and definition, but bulking is a different way to train. Besides, females aren't really designed for that." Shut your ass up. I hear that all day long. Just do what I say. It's only a 5 lb. weight for God's sake.


CL: "I'm so sorry I missed my session today. I was [insert valid excuse here]."

PT: "I understand. It's just that [insert speech about priorities and consistency here and how it's just courtesy not to just no-show your appointments]." Lady, I don't give a shit. I'm not your babysitter, nor am I a teacher grading your high-school paper. You don't get graded for this. This is YOUR health. Either you want it or you don't. Personally, I don't give a shit. This is a job for me.


CL: "Is that bad?" (the client asks after fitness assessment and body-fat percentage is taken).

PT: "Well, you're good at some things and we need to work on others. A good goal for you would be [insert goal here]. Holy shit! That sucks ass. You're a fat little Oompa Loompa, aren't you? Damn lady, have some self-respect and a shred of self-control!


CL: "Where's the machine that helps you lose weight? I really want to lose the fat around my stomach. What's a good ab exercise for that?"

PT: "Well there's no single machine that will really do that...or for your abs. You can't really spot reduce. It's really all about good diet and exercise overall...and doing the right things." Oh shit. I don't know where to begin. I should just point to a random machine like the lat pull-down and tell her that's the one. I haven't the energy for this. Here's a solution: eat less.


CL: "I just weighed myself and I gained two pounds. Clearly, it's your fault."

PT: "Well, let's troubleshoot this. What's your diet been like? Tell me what you've done this week." Shit lady, do I have to hold your hand? I have no idea why you gained two pounds. But it might help if you actually do what I say. Walking by a gym doesn't help; you've got to go in. Two boxes of cookies last night didn't help. If you so start pointing fingers so help me...


CL: "I've heard that if I just want to tone I should do higher reps and lighter weight..."

PT: "Well..." Why bother... 

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Today's "Racism"

Half of those murdered are black. 90% of those who murdered those blacks are black themselves. Where are the hoards of Jessie Jackson disciples and their torches then? If a white man killed a black man, it’s automatically racially motivated. 

There's a huge difference between actual racism or contempt, and merely people who are tired of being called racists when the vast majority of racism today is practiced, spoken, and lived by the supposed victims of racism. And yes, everyone knows what I mean.

Some people aren't racist; they're just assholes.

"Sir, do you mind trimming your shrubs? They are overtaking my property."

"Is it cause I'm black--the reason you're on my case all the time?!"

"No, it's because of your shrubs."


Sunday, May 20, 2012

Want a useless ego-inflating degree? Follow these celebrity examples.

While I commend such celebrities as Eva Longoria and Shaquille O’Neal for returning to school, you have to wonder why they are doing it. It isn’t for career (their respective degrees have nothing to do with their jobs of actress and now “analyst”), and it isn’t for money (they have truckloads without the degrees). It is because they have a thirst for knowledge? I doubt it. It is probably because they get to announce it on every talk show and in every public appearance, as they walk around feeling a bit better after having inflated their worth.

Shaq, for example, is going for his PhD in “Organizational Leadership.” Certainly, leadership is a good skill, but a doctorate? For what?! And Eva Longoria’s Master’s Degree in Bullshit “Chicano Studies”? No, that’s not a joke; that’s her actual degree. Let’s be honest. It’s not like these celebs are trudging snow-covered roads to be on-time for their 8 a.m. class. It’s foolish to think they are attending classes just as every other student, given their schedules. 

Furthering oneself is a good thing, but it would be nice if they weren't always announcing their fancy-pants degrees as if they needed everyone to know. And this is not to say they their careers are necessarily on the downturn, but I think it’s something to think about when one loses an outlet for validation; they need to replace it with something that still makes them feel relevant, important, and worthwhile.    

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Entitled. Everyone wants a free lunch, and we allow it.

Of course, it would happen with any administration; there will still be people lining up. It's more of a cultural thing. This is our mental shift as a society.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

I guess we’ve all different perceptions of hard work, like Ann Romney’s and that of every mother who isn’t stinking rich.

Mit Romney’s wife, Ann, was recently criticized for having “never worked a day in her life.” She fired back, and understandably so, stating that she instead stayed home to raise her five children, which was plenty hard. I could hear every stay-at-home-mom echo such statements. I agree; raising children is incredibly difficult, and I can’t imagine raising five. And it doesn’t get the respect it deserves. Of course, such a statement really shut everyone up about her “not working.”

But here’s the thing: raising children in the Romney household was no doubt unlike raising children in Jane Doe’s household down the street. I could be wrong, but 85 million bucks in the bank probably makes things easier. It’s as if, when she stated how hard she worked raising the kids, we all pictured her with a scarf holding her hair up as she put some elbow grease into the scrubbing of that toilet. I’d really like to know when the last time it was she scrubbed a toilet. What, you don’t think that with 85 million they had some help? I’m not saying she didn’t work hard. I’m simply saying that it’s a mistake and an insult for her to put herself on the same level as Jane Doe, who doesn’t have the same mansion or resources, or maids. But no one has anything to say about that, I guess.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

The Reason Why OWN Is Not Doing Well (Is Staring You In The Face)

By A Regular Person

Dear Oprah chum/cyborg mail-checker,

Now I doubt very seriously this letter will capture anyone’s eyes except those of Patti The Mail-Checker Lady as she so gleefully discards it into the abyss (without having read it), but I almost feel compelled to write it. I keep reading reports about how OWN is, at the very least, not living up to expectations. This leads me to two conclusions. Now, assuming you all don’t want to fail and considering you’ve many marketing experts at your disposal, you’ve either got to be missing something, or are just plain crazy.

I also know that many “experts” have been “telling you like it is” in their effort to get you folks at OWN to attract more viewers. But let’s be honest, sometimes “telling you like it is” ain’t really “telling you like it is.” I can imagine, since Oprah could very easily own (no pun intended) much of the free world with her kind of power, it being hard to have anyone around you who isn’t a yes-man. When all of your advisors love you and admire you (a good thing) like good ole friends, again, they aren’t “telling you” anything. No? They are, at the very least, biased, and yes, every mega-fan can’t see a thing wrong with the programming.

First, I am writing this letter because I believe Oprah. I believe that she, unlike most celebs, is a genuinely good person who really does want to help people so to make their lives better. I believe she has a good heart. I do want to see her succeed. I know about her background, and she’s worked hard for her success.

Now, onto the truth (don’t kill the messenger). Although I am only one guy, I’m willing to bet if you took an honest poll (not on OWN), and solicited the opinions of common folk (you know, people you want as viewers), they would agree with me hands-down.

OWN seems like an Oprah shrine. The thing that made her series on ABC successful is that it was a fresh show that offered VARIETY for ABC, and people weren’t OVERSTIMULATED by the same darn thing over and over again. In that case, ABC offers a more diverse fare.

When I turned on OWN today (now a rare occurrence), I noticed 8 bagillion (an exaggeration, but I’m not far off) Oprah commercials in 10 minutes for just as many “different” shows about the exact same thing (who are you kidding?). This is your genius marketing, to solicit viewership, I’m assuming? News flash: too much of a good thing is not a good thing. You love watching your favorite movie, but don’t want to watch it 24-hours-a-day, do you? Master Class, First Class, Next Chapter, and so on… I thought the yes-men and mega-fans demanded more Oprah. Well honestly, I know you’re trying to keep it fresh, but all the shows are the same. And while we’re at it, we all feel like peasants watching the Bourgeoisie ramble on about how great they are. Even when they’re helping people (Sean Penn), or adopting one child from each continent and they sing their siren-song as violins play in the background, it isn’t enough that such celebs provide a service so as long as people know it was them that provided it (ego, maybe?). I see this often in celebrities, and society is beaten-down with celebrity news all day long. That’s what we see.

Forgive me, but it seems like the network was created for Oprah. I’m confused. Was it for Oprah, or for viewers? It’s “Oprah and Friends” all day. Life Class, Dr. Phil, Gayle, Rosie, Master Class, Oprah’s Next Chapter, Oprah again, Oprah’s Childhood Chum, Behind The Scenes, Dr. Oz, Dr. Oz and Dr. Phil, Touch-of-Class, then Behind The Scenes of The Behind The Scenes. Add in the Oprah commercials (3 during my pee-break), it really seems like we’re watching her all day, everyday. Again, for her (and friends), or for people?   

What happened at ABC? We got fresh quality in concentrated doses. We went long enough without 80 commercials in-between to look forward to the next show. After a day’s departure, the audience was primed for more. And for the love of God, leave the word “class” out of your show titles from now on.

We are tired of one show after another with the same Kum Bah Yah, do-gooder, hold-hands while violins play theme. Don’t get me wrong, helping people is great. But please, you’re really hell-bent on this overkill/overstimulation thing aren’t you? We get it; there are many celebs that have overcome great odds and overcome many things as they now enjoy their marble toilets and twenty-car garage. I know, Mr. Master-Class was raised by wolves, trekked many lands, and despite being outcast as a child on a tiny island, carved a canoe out of wood and then, over a 6 month sea-voyage and surviving only on fish and drinking his own urine, finally made it to America. We get it!  But I know many people who have overcome many things all day long and are unknown and don’t own a Lamborghini. Yes, it’s good to watch someone who’s “made it,” and serves as inspiration, but again, you don’t get this overkill thing, do you? Between the shows and the marketing and the theme, we almost want to vomit. I mean, seriously, Sweetie Pies? That is what you’re saying good programming is supposed to be? Who on earth would think this programming was a good idea?   

Might I humbly suggest ONE Oprah show (change the Godforsaken title), and let’s not talk to saints or those who have been knighted all day long. Let’s talk about some fresh issues with people more relatable to viewers. Otherwise, let’s survey what’s doing well out there.

Here’s an example: the History channel had been known for its repeated and over-run World War II segments and other such programming (bor-ring). After the thousandth special, I think we got it. What did they do? They looked at what was doing well; they got creative. Enter Pawn Stars. To be honest, I hate pawn shows, but I guess I can’t help but watch (which is the idea). They opened their eyes to what was doing well (i.e., reality and relatable), and stayed true to their roots by giving little history lessons about their main focus of things being pawned (old historical stuff). The show is doing great. Oprah’s shtick? Helping people, making a difference, etc. Create fresh ideas around that, and bring in fresh faces. Lay off “Behind the Scenes” and shows with “class” in the title.

I’ve much more to say, but assuming I’m writing only to myself, I think I’ll get something done today. I’ll conclude by reiterating that indeed, I do what Oprah to succeed with this. But the harsh truth is that sub-par viewership is related to sub-par programming. The viewers, not the yes-men are telling you something. What do you do? More of the same. If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you always got.


 Ryan, a guy who’s getting things done now, because programming stinks

P.S. I liked In Searching for... and Unfaithful. I just don’t think they caught on. But it was fresh and on the right track. For now, I can’t watch another second of “Oprah and Friends” (the basis of your whole network). See, you really are helping people. They’re living better lives because they don’t want to watch  TV. Thanks!