No, it is not that kind of private club. I’ve been a member of those clubs and they are too stuffy for me. This is the type of club full of hot sweaty women and men. Humm? It does sound like that “other” club.
I probably should say, “I went to the gym.” Though it is just a big warehouse full of torture devices, everyone there is looking for one thing – better health.
This is not the first time I went to the gym. I joined one with a family plan some years ago after my wife had a heart attack. After she went through her rehab training, we got on the “let’s keep healthy” path. For her it was a shopping paradise of new clothes, shoes, yoga mats, videotapes, weights, and even machines for home use. We got our schedule and started to attend a regular basis. Thirty minutes on this machine, over to that machine and then that machine. Mop the brow with the towel supplied and drink some water and move on. End on a cycle spin and shower. It wasn’t a bad routine but it was a short routine.
A few years ago a new gym moved into what used to be a department store in my neighborhood. I thought about joining, but had too many other important projects. I did stop by one day and ask if they had a pool but they did not which was the same as the old gym. So after giving all the videotapes, weights, and machines the only exercise I received was the daily riding to the store to purchase beer. And it showed.
Well, as the story goes, last year the gym refurbished and put in a pool. I had no more excuses, so I went in and got the tour and saw that it was most comfortable with lots of machinery and big screen TVs and Wi-Fi and power drinks and they made me a deal, but I still didn’t join. Why not? I have no idea.
The logical mind knows that for good health one must eat right and exercise, but I didn’t. So when the time comes heaven and earth will move me.
Well the time has come. It was time to shake it up and get out of the old routine and into a new routine. So I went into the gym and said, “Sign me up!” I got the tour from the very pretty and trim weightlifting coach and she had a spiel going. It was a good pitch but I had heard it before. I had been mailed this offers of $10 a month but her deal was the usual plan. It gave you access to all the stuff and classes and just because I came in today I could receive $10 off the regular plan and sign up fee for only $1 and oh I forgot all the rest. It was like buying a car you get tired of the banter. Sign here and sign there and here is your free t-shirt.
I felt confident I had enough t-shirts and shorts and socks…. But there were these old shoes I’ve been wearing for a year and a half, so it meant a trip to the clothing store or at least the only place for miles to buy shoes. They didn’t have what I was looking for, even though they have them online, but I bought a couple of pair and was ready for a trip to the gym.
Jessie, the trainer, called me and we scheduled a time when he was going to start me up. I arrived and waited and waited (not a good sign) but a young trim guy showed up and had me fill out another form while he finished some other stuff (again not a good sign). Who is your doctor? Who do we call in case of an emergency? What is your BMI?
“Jessie”, I say, “the reason I’m here is to get flexible, stronger and lose weight.” He instructs about special training and professional consulting and I say, “Jessie, just show me the machines.”
I know what this steel and belts and buttons do, but I need a refresher course. As in my introductory tour, I am taken to a distant room with a line of machines. Each has a number and there is some sort of lighting system going on but I don’t get it. We walk through each machine and I try them out. They seem familiar and then he runs out of time as his electronics starts going off. That is fine because that is all I wanted for today. I leave having not broken a sweat but am more comfortable in the environment.
The night’s sleep was better so the idea might be working. Today, knowing it was raining in the morning and raining in the evening I found a spot in between to get in a ride and ‘go to the gym’.
The night before I had decided to use my old plan to start with the treadmill, does the line of machines, ride on a bike and maybe take a dip in the pool. It would be a big venture for a guy who hasn’t been working out for years. Of course I didn’t do that.
I did wake up early and refreshed, found a spot between the clouds and rode over to the gym. I did try out the treadmill and did do all my machines and will see how that feels tomorrow. I did make a list of what I had done that day as a starting point. The best part is I did break a sweat.
After I nice ride home in the sunshine on maybe the last warm day before the snow, I unloaded the groceries of good veggie eats and found my old gym bag. It had been sitting up on a shelf and was covered with dust and spider webs just like the rest of the house. The problem was it had some weight to it. What the heck was in there? This was the same bag I used to strap to the bike to take my clothes downtown to work.
A quick wipe up and a tempted opening I discovered more bags. It seems I was storing bags inside of bags. If anyone needs a gym bag or a loose flexible carry-on let me know for they will probably go to trash.
So now I’m set. I know the machines. I know a good routine. I’ve got the new shoes. I’ve got the towels and bag. I’ve got the time.
And time will tell what will happen next. Stay tuned.