Wednesday, October 03, 2007
There's a lot to be said for hanging out with people like yourself.
Years ago, I went to join a gym. The personal trainer who showed me the facility and introduced me to the equipment could hardly hide her disgust that "my type" of person was going to sully her bevy of beautiful people by sweating in their presence. It was demoralizing, to say the least.
It was even more demoralizing when I looked around and saw no one of my own type. Maybe time has warped my memory, but all I remember are tall, skinny, young blondes. You know the type--the ones with the defined muscles and the workout outfits that showed off every curve. The perfectly coifed ones with makeup intact. The ones who constantly scanned the room to see who was checking them out and who politely looked past me.
Needless to say, I didn't spend time at the gym. Face it--if I wanted to feel bad about myself, I could do that in the privacy of my own home. I'm short, overweight, have grey roots, and barely look as though I'm of the same species as some of those people. Like I said, I hate to sound like a bigot, but I'd much rather be with those of my own kind. Unfortunately, my own kind doesn't seem to spend a lot of time at the gym.
Fast forward to last week. I was going through the insert of coupons that they put into our local newspaper once a month or so (you know, the ones with the two-for-one dining at the Mexican restaurant and the 20% off the oil changes) when I saw a full-page ad for a gym that just opened last winter.
I was shocked at the pictures. Fat people using exercise equipment! A group of smiling women in an aerobics class--all of whom looked older and most of whom looked in no better shape than I.
Woo-hoo! I've found my homies! These are my kindred exercise people! I went in there yesterday to check it out and ended up signing a contract. The woman who showed me around (she was tall but certainly not blonde and she told me right off the bat that she had been diagnosed with MS) introduced me to a lot of the women there. "This is Cathy--she's lost 42 pounds." Cathy said that it was the first time in 24 years that she was under 200 pounds. I met a lady who had had a hip replacement. I met another woman who said that the gym had literally saved her life.
I'm going in this morning so that the nice people can show me how to use the equipment and make me feel at home.
There's a lot to be said for hanging out with your own people.
Friday, September 07, 2007
So I bought a pedometer on Wednesday because I figured that I am doing so much walking that I should keep track of it as a pick-me-up when I feel as though I'm not doing enough.
I did my 4-mile walk in the morning, went shopping, did my usual back and forth to the sink and stove, etc. and figured that I was ahead of the game with all these "10,000 steps a day" folks.
After all that, I managed a mere 8956 steps. It just goes to show how much I over-estimate how much I do (or how little I eat) unless I actually keep tabs on it.
Tools such as the calorie counter and a pedometer are really quite valuable.
Saturday, August 25, 2007
The other day I was talking to a friend who wanted to get together the next day. I said sure, but it would have to be after 9:30 because I was walking around the lake until then.
She got a perplexed look on her face and asked if there was a protest on Wednesday morning. I didn't know what she meant until it finally dawned on me--she couldn't picture me walking anywhere for exercise or fresh air or scenery; she just assumed that I was involved in a political march of some sort.
Am I really that intense? I did a little reality check and came up with the answer, "Is a bear catholic? Does the pope..." Well, you get the idea--yes, I am.
Or I WAS. Don't misunderstand me--I still call and email my legislators, go to town hall meetings, and read voraciously everything that comes my way regarding the state of our nation and world. I just don't have to bring EVERY conversation to the subject of Iraq or impeachment or Abu Graib.
I'll double check on Monday when I walk the lake with my walking buddy again, but I honestly don't think that I've mentioned any of those subjects on our walks. (Those of you who know me well might have trouble believing that, but I really think that it's true.)
This, I believe, is a good thing. Even before the Iraq occupation, I have been more or less monomaniacal on the subject. People I hung out with either shared my views on Iraq or they didn't hang out with me and were downgraded to the status of acquaintance or associate. Now I purposely hang out with someone who, for all I know, might be a right-wing Republican! I doubt it because she seems way too nice, but that's not the point. The point is that I don't even know her political views because I've never asked and never shared mine.
And that's okay.
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