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"I Must Sound Like a Horrible Parent"

As noted before, I've been watching what I eat and exercising every day for a while now -- I'm currently at nearly 20 weeks of eating properly and 108 days in a row of exercise. I've proven to myself that I'm serious about this, and so decided to visit my new gym last night for a consultation on training. The first step is going to be full assessments of my resting and active metabolic rates, which will help me in planning my nutritional requirements (in the case of the resting rate) and will give me specific guidance on how to structure my cardiovascular workouts for maximum benefit (in the case of the active rate). After that, I'll make a decision about when and how to use a personal trainer.

During the consultation, the trainer I met with, Matt, asked me about my goals for strength training (I already lift weights three times a week):

Me: Well, I'd like to be able to lift without some of the nagging pains I've had in my elbows and wrists.

Matt: We can help you with that. What else?

Me: In general, I'd like to see how strong I can get. I'm making reasonable progress on my own, but I think I could go much farther with someone to help guide me.

Matt: We can definitely help you there, and that's the kind of goal we like to work with. That's good. Anything else?

Me: I'd also like to keep the ability to lift more than my sons. We're very competitive.

I paused for a moment.

Me: Oh, gosh, did I just say that? I must sound like a horrible parent.

Matt: No, you don't. It's something we see a lot of. Our clients tend to be successful people, which means they're usually driven, competitive types. So you're not unusual and you're not horrible.

I'm sure it still sounds bad, but at least I'm not alone.

Matt: So you can lift more than them now?

Me: Yes.

Matt: How old are they?

Me: 20 and 18.

Matt: Not bad!

Now, in my defense, when I compete with my kids -- whether at bike riding, weight lifting, a pickup soccer game, one-on-one basketball, or anything else -- I figure I can't lose. If I win, then I feel good about myself. If they win, then I'm happy to see them pushing themselves and doing well. And even when I'm telling myself to push harder, to try to win, I'm also cheering them on, wanting them to do their best and try to win. It's kind of complex.

Am I the only parent who thinks like this?


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