"What's that?" I asked my personal trainer, gesturing at a new piece of gym equipment.
"We can have a go on it later, if you want," he said, smiling.
And, eventually, after lifting heavy things, and lunging and all those other silly things that boys do in a gym, we got around to the plate.
It just sits there, a treadmill crossed with a mushroom. There's a nice marketing poster of an older woman doing serene yoga on it, the faintest hint of a grin on her face as though the secrets of the universe were unfolding around her.
Lovely John made me stand on it, like I was skiing - it felt vaguely like squat thrusts or something - a bit stretchy, but basically, fine.
Then John switched it on. And the plate began to jiggle, causing my calf muscles to quiver in agony. I glared at the picture of the serene woman. She just smiled calmly back.
It was the same doing push ups on it - I thought my hands were going to fall off.
Finally, John made me lie on it, paused halfway through a sit up. "Now, tell me what you think of this one," he said. And switched the machine on.
For the first ten seconds, all I could think of was the burning pain in my abdominal muscles. And then the sensation changed direction. It moved down... and.... oh... reader, it was so good I told it my pin number there and then.
After a minute, John switched it off. "How do you feel?" he said, regarding me strangely. Slightly like the look my Dad gave me after I'd shaved for the first time.
I tried to say something, and instead giggled.
"Yeah," said John. "You can go and shower now."
As I walked out, I finally realised what the Old Lady's smug grin meant - "You'll be back."