M2M Day 277: Paying for intensity

This post is part of Month to Master, a 12-month accelerated learning project. For August, my goal is to complete one continuous set of 40 pull-ups.

To help me with this month’s challenge, I hired a personal trainer, Matt, who I’ve been working out with once per week (every Friday) since February 2017 (as part of my preparation for this month).

Matt will continue to come once per week, but we are working together to create a program that I can follow for the rest of the week.

While I could theoretically pursue this month’s challenge on my own, I prefer working with Matt for a few reasons:

  • Knowledge: Matt has a much deeper understanding of fitness, the human body, and the range of possible exercises. When I work out on my own, I tend to repeat the same exercises over and over. Matt helps me build programs that are more diverse and better targeted.
  • Intensity: In the past, when I work out by myself, I tend to only push to about 90–95%. Matt is very good at pushing me until failure, ensuring I’m getting the most out of each movement. (However, it seems that I’m also finding extra internal motivation as a result of the stakes of this month’s challenge).
  • Structure: I like having one workout per week strictly scheduled, allowing me to structure the rest of my week around this constant. For some reason, I find it much easier to mentally plan my week of training when I have this anchor point.

Since today was Friday, Matt came over and we worked out together for an hour.

I mentioned to him my struggle with my ego and bad form (as I explained yesterday), and I tried to focus on quality pull-ups today (slower, pulling from my back, increased range of motion).

I still haven’t fully escaped my ego, but today was a step in the right direction…

Read the next post. Read the previous post.

Max Deutsch is a product manager at Intuit, the creator of Somebody.io and Rightspeed, and the guinea pig for Month to Master.

If you want to follow along with Max’s year-long accelerated learning project, make sure to follow this Medium account.