MY legs are stiff, my back aches, my arms are useless... and that's two days after I've been put through my paces by a Premier League strength coach.
Sam Pepys, 31, invited SunSport to the Motus Strength Gym in Fulham, West London, to give us a workout he's given football's top athletes.
Always one to rise to a challenge, I told the former Crystal Palace trainer to go as hard on me as he would one of their super-fit players. Boy, did I regret it.
For the next 40 minutes I was put through rigorous exercises designed to keep the professionals on the pitch and injury-free.
While we were being pushed to our fitness limits, Sam shared what it was like working for the Eagles.
The 6'4" Chelsea fan, who personally trains Joel Ward and Jordon Mutch, also told us how an arm wrestle helped him command the respect of the dressing room.
We began our exercise with a warm-up intimidatingly called the R.A.M.P. protocol.
The exercises here are designed to raise the heart-rate, activate muscles and mobilise joints.
You're also "potentiating" the hamstrings, quadriceps, groin and calf muscles... more of that later.
I start off with a simple exercise, so I thought, of lateral ball work.
With the idea of getting my heart pumping, it was simply a case of catching a ball bounced against a wall.
With my back to Sam, he launched the ball in front of me, I caught it and bounced it back while staying low on my toes.
Easy. After we finished, I wanted to find out how he got into the fitness business.
Sam revealed: "I've been qualified for seven years and worked in football for three of those.
"Football was always my sport. I tried to pursue it when I was I younger and nearly had a bit of joy at QPR.
"But then I stayed in education and found this was my calling.
"When I discovered SAC I knew it was what I had to do to stay in the sport.
"I worked for a Premier League football club, which was a childhood dream for me.
"Your job is to keep the players on the pitch, so it's in their best interests to turn up, work hard with me to stay injury-free."
We returned back to the warm-up and continued with the Thera Band complex.
With an elastic band holding my legs together, I simply had to lift my legs up and remain balanced.
The job here is to activate muscles and mobilise joints. I can't tell you how difficult it was with that pressure against your legs.
It was also tough trying to remain balanced, and admittedly I struggled.
The third part of the warm-up saw me do what Sam calls "the World's Greatest Stretch".
My legs were a bit wobbly at this time, and not being the most flexible, I may have toppled over a couple of times. No lie.
Finally, we ended with some jumps and some lands, which is the potentiate part of the process.
Latest football features
I took my chance to grab a breather and asked Sam what it was like being at Crystal Palace.
The Londoner told us: "It was surreal, but it's amazing when you become accustomed to something that you don't realise.
"At first I was pinching myself and then it's just a job that you crack on and do.
"I was working as an assistant SAC for the under-23s and I worked with the first team as well.
"Since I left the club, I've been working privately with Joel Ward and Jordon Mutch.
"Athletes are specimens, they just get it done. They're easy to work with.
"There's always going to be a tricky one, but I won't mention names.
"If it was a walk in the park, it would be boring. But you want that challenge if you're a top footballer.
"Ideally, you'd want to wrap up the sessions in 40 minutes because you don't have much time with them."
Sam also divulged what it's like being among the Premier League's elite.
"It really depends on how the team's doing," Sam said.
"If tensions are high because of a run of bad results, it's an interesting place to be.
"You've got to stick to your guns and just keep quiet.
"It's not like you're going to be celebrating on a Monday if you've lost for the fifth game in a row.
"That said, it's a great place to be. I loved it."
And back to the task at hand. We moved on to the main exercise area and the trap bar deadlift.
I am not a lifter by any stretch of the imagination and this is as tough as I imagine hell is.
Five reps done five times, with a quick chance to catch my breath inbetween. I'm told to squat, bend, lift the bar and bring my hips through to straighten up.
Sam revealed that this improves player's abilities in jumping, their change of direction and balance.
My face seeped with sweat, I was well aware by now that it wouldn't be finest 40 minutes. But I refused to give up and continued with my questions.
Does a manager have any influence on strength and conditioning training, I ask?
Sam said: "They have a massive input.
"Football has advanced so much over the years and sports science has become such a big part of it.
"So everything from loading what the players do on the pitch, the distances, high-speed running, all of that contributes towards stress.
"Once again, the external work they do through us in the gym adds to that stress.
HAVING A BALL Premier League clubs race to snap up fitness device after Manchester City introduced it to training centre
"The idea is that we all meet in the middle and find a perfect combination that creates a training system that makes them fitter and stronger.
"It works from a top-down approach. The gaffer dictates. Everyone else has their input, but he'll have the final word.
"And you do see it in the Premier League. Some managers do prefer those big, strong players.
"Mourinho has always liked a big striker, wherever he's gone.
"So it does depend on what the manager wants. Rationale is important from us, you just have to justify how you are training them.
"But they don't really get involved in the gym though as much as one might think."
We moved on to a lateral lunge Romanian deadlift that saw me stepping from side, holding a kettlebell and then balancing on one leg.
I changed this to working with a sturdy pole instead because I kept falling over. True story.
I took on seated box jumps next, which Sam told me replicates muscle actions within a game situation.
Four reps, four times and I had completely lost my spring.
I might've thought I was fit, but that chip on my shoulder when I walked into the gym had well and truly disappeared along with my dignity.
Sam explained how impressed he is by footballers like Paul Pogba and Romelu Lukaku who train hard during pre-season.
"You see it more and more every year now that players are continuing to work hard in the gym," Sam explained.
"Ultimately, because it's a long season, you want them to decondition a little bit.
"That's part and parcel of it. But you don't want them to go completely stale and do nothing for five weeks, eating crap.
"You allow them to decondition for a few weeks, then you ramp up their training.
"You introduce the exercises, running and things like that.
"But the amount of people that break down in preseason when they're not prepared for it is crazy.
"They need to be ready and have done that preparatory work. If they're not, they'll break down."
Feeling like I'd broken down, I chose to continue the interview fearing my editor's wrath.
I wanted to know what it's like personally hanging out with footballers.
"When you haven't had one-to-one exposure with them, you build up this image of what they're like," Sam confessed.
"When you get to know them, they're just human beings. But one thing I will say is they've got good banter.
"Some of them are quite quick-witted, but I didn't have any pranks played on me."
I interjected, "Well, they wouldn't mess with you, you're massive!"
Sam laughed and told me the real reason why.
"Well, I won the arm-wrestling competition at Crystal Palace. It was a team-bonding exercise between the staff," he revealed.
"I think after winning it, with a few players watching, it meant they left me alone!
"It was just after their lunch, so all the players were there and saw. I beat the other SAC coach at Crystal Palace."
Technology has meant that fitness levels are monitored to the finest detail.
Sam said: "The game has evolved so much in the last ten years.
"Players are running faster and covering larger distances.
"And the numbers game is such a huge part of it, week in and week out.
"It's monitored from when they finish a game to what they do up until that next game.
"The players would be incorporating the load, peaking by Wednesday so they're good to go Saturday.
"And they do that throughout the year to push themselves as much as they can.
"They're such small margins you work with. If someone exceeds their workload, does too much, then you increase the likelihood of getting an injury.
"The metrics play such an important role because it gives you license to push the player to his potential.
"I know when some subs come on, if their distances are a little lower, you will get them doing a bit of running at the end of the game.
"Sports scientists love that, they're at their computers and they're constantly monitoring fitness levels of the players."
Able to catch my breath again, I continued pushing my body to stupid limits.
The anti-rotation cycle exercise saw me working on my core, pulling on a resistance band with by arms and lifting my opposite leg.
Thankfully, this was easy enough and I (un)happily completed the task.
Finally, it was all about the ring fall out. An exercise that stretches the abs as you lean forward on your knees,while holding onto the rings.
After 12 reps, done three times I had managed to survive a Premier League footballer's workout.
Needless to say, I was exhausted.
Sam is in talks with Unique Sports Management to work with them as a consultant SAC coach.
With 120 players in the UK, ranging from the Premier League to football league stars, he could well have his hands full.
His dream is to work with the next best thing rather than an already known talent.
"What would be great would be to work with a young player who blossoms into something great," Sam said.
"That would be very satisfactory and the ultimate dream - turn a player who is handy into a worldy."
And would the former footballer ever be convinced to put on his boots again?
"I would be too chunky for a footballer... I'm 100kg, which is too heavy to be carrying around the pitch," he told us.
"You see sturdy centre-halfs like Gary Cahill, they're probably late 80 kilos and sturdy. But you don't want them too big.
"Essentially, when it comes to programming, you don't do too much muscle-gaining exercise with them in season.
"It's something you would do with them in the off-season, unless they wanted it throughout the season.
"You have to be very careful with that, because of the amount of damage it causes to the muscle fibres.
"If a player comes in screwed after a couple of heavy days of training, then they can't carry their legs around the pitch.. what does the manager say?
"You''ll probably be sacked!"
Sam's strength and conditioning workout
Raise - Lateral Ball Work
Activate - Thera Band Complex
Mobilise - World’s Greatest Stretch Complex
Potentiate - Jump & Lands
A1) Trap Bar Deadlift 5 x 5 - build up to 5 rep max
A2) Med Ball Slam 5 x 5
B1) Lateral Lunge Romanian Deadlift 4 x 8 each leg
B2) Seated Box Jump 4 x 4
C1) Anti Rotation Cycle 3 x 14
C2) Ring Fall Out 3 x 12