A couple of weeks ago I was at the gym on Sunday morning, like I do, and was half-heartedly lifting some weights on the machines while waiting for my awesome R&B/gospel spinning class to start. A trainer approached me and pointed out how I was using the machines incorrectly, then he said he could show me some moves that might be better the next week. Ok fine, I said.
The following Sunday (last Sunday) I found the trainer and he put me through the paces, to the point where I was still sore four days later. The highlight was when he said I had really good form with squats.
The unfortunate part, though, came when I was doing dead lifts and he said my back wasn't flat enough. This turned into a broader discussion of posture, and how apparently I should be puffing my chest up and out at all times. (I tried this for a little bit at work and felt uncomfortable.) He gave me some stretches to do to improve my posture -- basically reverse-humping a doorframe, then repeating it three times -- and I've even altered my computer monitor and tried to be more conscientious about how I sit and stand.
At one point during the session he said, "Just wait, you'll see, when you stand up straight you'll get more respect at work, people will treat you differently."
I let this sit for a moment while I continued the painful stretch he had me holding for a minute. Finally I said, "Just so you know, I do get respect at work. It's not like I get picked on in the hallways or anything."
"Whoa whoa I don't even know you! I'm just saying, it makes a difference."
"Okay, I'm just saying. It's not like I'm getting beaten up at work."
So I have spent this last week trying to stand up straight, uncurl my spine, flatten my back. We'll see if it takes.