Monday, November 15, 2010

Just Do It...or something like that

I may have lost my mind…or perhaps this is just part of finding it. What I’ve done is so clich├ęd, its almost embarrassing to bring up. I joined a gym. And then I worked out.

If you can call it that. The room at this gym is filled with all kinds of ridiculous looking equipment. Torture-looking equipment. Why we pay to do things that make us hurt and sweat, I can’t explain.

It started so innocently. Join now for $1. Yeah, right. But no, I was lured in. Everyone (these are second cousins to the infamous "they"), everyone says if you exercise, you’ll feel better, have more energy, blah, blah, blah. So, in I walk with the oversized mailer I received in the mail. What are your goals, they ask me…um. I just want to feel better, and have more energy, blah, blah, blah. Excellent, they say. (Whew, it’s so nice when you get the right answer!). Let me just show you around.

I walk past the machines…back, legs, arms, glutes, and God knows what else. The treadmills, the ellipticals, the bikes…the free weights and the machines that use free weights. I’m shown the showers – ok, I walk through here on my own…my male guide does not enter the female area. I take a quick peek in the room used for Pilates and Kickboxing and whatever else they can think of to put to music. And then I sign up. Come soon, he says. We’ll call and set a time to show you each machine. But in the meantime…come in, and start with some cardio, say 30-45 minutes, on the treadmills or elliptical machines.

I returned today. I approached the first elliptical and could not make the buttons do anything. Hmmm. The few folks around me were already sweating it up on machines that lit up and measured this and that. Must be the machine. I should move to a different one. And, yes, I feel stupid not knowing how to get the blasted thing to work. Yet, I channel some unknown store of testosterone and refuse to ask for directions… er, help.

Moving to the adjacent machine did the trick. Or maybe pedaling backwards until lights flashed and all but the sounds of hitting the jackpot in Vegas erupted. Regardless, the machine likes me. I think it laughed. Or sneered. And so I begin. Water bottle in place, cell phone balanced, keys in one pocket, and…oh, yeah, my Ipod. After digging it out of the pocket of my sweat pants, I finally get the plugs in my ears and the thing playing. Off I go, calories a burning, steps accumulating, time is being kept. I have to be careful not to sing out loud.

Five minutes and twenty-seven seconds later, my legs are burning. A fine line of sweat has formed above my lip…perhaps in other places, too. My breathing is…not comfortable. I really am THIS out of shape. Will I make it to 30 minutes, much less 45?

I did. At least, I did 30 minutes. I’m not sure there is a graceful way to step down from this beast of a machine and walk to my car. I did the best I could…with legs that were as wobbly as a newborn colt. I hoped…and prayed, no one was watching my exit. I don’t know how long I sat in my car before I finally found the strength to drive home.

I did it, though. The key will be in making myself go back again…and again. I will, because for some weird, inexplicable reason, I have decided this WILL make me feel better, this WILL give me energy, this WILL blah, blah, blah.

Is it bedtime yet?