Yes You Can! (hurt yourself doing leg lifts)

I’m starting up again where I left off, uh, five months ago, trying to do regular workouts to strengthen my body. Trying to, I say. Yeah, even the process of getting started can be pretty ‘trying’.

First you have to come up with an exercise plan. One obvious option is to join a gym. I joined our local Apple Club a couple of years ago – all gung-ho at first, but I tired of it really fast, and suddenly it was sheer drudgery. I had signed up for a year membership that I couldn’t get out of short of leaving the country or killing myself. They automatically withdrew the money from our checking account every month and I automatically chanted at the Apple Club building as I drove by, “NA-NA-NA-NA-BOO-BOO, I’M-NOT-GO-ING-IN-THERE-YOU-BUM-HOLES, EVEN-IF-I-DID-PAY!” and they totally didn’t care of course. They had my money and I had the satisfaction of totally blowing them off and doing something fun, like shopping.

Alas, so here I am again, facing my flabbier-than-ever, wrinkling, weakling, wussie body. I must DO something! Firm myself up! Maybe join a gym and this time hire a personal trainer. Because I pretty much wander in a fog in workout rooms (I found out) amidst a sea of exercise equipment and mangled weight lifting machines created to find, bend and stretch every obscure atrophied muscle in the human body. Hey! I could hurt myself here.

So last week I checked out the local ‘Y’. For 400 bucks I could purchase a six-month membership and 8 sessions with a personal trainer. Oh, and a fitness assessment for another 25 bucks, because how else could my trainer know that I can only lift 5-lb free weights?

Are you kidding? I am not going to be humiliated with a fitness assessment. Your fitness level should be your own private business, as should your sex life, closet habits, life-sucking compulsions, or in this case, the complete lack of compulsion thereof. It takes courage enough to face up to your abject wussiness without having to subject your girating flab to the scrutiny of a fit and muscled personal trainer likely 20-40 years your junior.

So the gym is out. Except maybe if you are single, or interested in being single, and social, and appear athletic and/or at least semi-kickass in your workout attire. Then the gym could be a ‘maybe’.

Plus, when you check the gym out and tally up the cost and get that figure in your head just to reject it, then you suddenly realize you just saved yourself over 400 dollars. Go shopping!

And move on to … Living room option. Ours is armed with reams of fitness articles I have collected and crammed into notebooks over the past five years, along with stretchy bands, an exercise ball, and a few hand weights. Hey, I would have jumped with gusto on the exercise bandwagon three years ago – had tummy tuck jeans with stretch lycra not been invented.

But, miracle of miracles … I got started! I pulled together my own individualized fitness plan. You know, first you warm up for ten minutes, maybe do a little bouncing or tilting on the ball, some body-bending and then you run around the house till your breath feels a tad puffy. Then you do the strength training – one day upper body, next day lower body, third day core, then back to upper body, etc … Then you cool down – doing lots of stretches and hugging yourself with positive – “I’m so wonderfully getting fit” – “Aren’t I a dynamo!” – affirmations.

I did do GREAT on the first day: Upper body. Lifting those 5-lb weights over my head (even though the directions suggested, uh, 8-12 lb. The 8-pound ones nearly collapsed in on my head on the third lift). I hugged myself profusely after my 45-minute workout, awash in dynamo positivity.

Second day: Fantastic! Lower body workout to the max! I plucked exercises off several different sheets from my notebook and performed them with super-human enthusiasm. But what the heck. They were just leg lifts. No weights even. You can lift your leg in about dozen different directions and I did them all – full count. I felt great! On a roll, man!

Third day: What the … getting out of bed my legs collapsed under me. My leg muscles were KILLING me. Geez! I have to descend 14 steps downstairs to the kitchen to get to my morning coffee? … Here I go … “Ouch!”, “OOO!”, “EEECH!”, “ARGH!”, “AAAG!”, “WHOOO!”, “YIPES!”, … “WHEY DOGGIE, CAN’T DO STAIRS!”

For the past three days my chant has been, “DON’T TOUCH THE LEGS!” to every living thing or shadow that moves in my vicinity. I can tell you, a ‘lap dog’ in this situation is a living nightmare.

Three days later: My legs are finally functional enough to enable me to get back on the exercise ball. Guess I’m starting over. SLOWLY.

Every exercise plan in my notebook starts out with, “Consult your doctor before beginning any exercise program.” In my case, with all my issues surrounding ‘exercise’ do you suppose they are suggesting a psychiatrist?

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2 Responses to “Yes You Can! (hurt yourself doing leg lifts)”

  1. rosie Says:

    One thing about gyms is that a husband once made the comment that the price is reallly a fat tax. Ha love your blogs Jody and good luck. I too am trying to find a way to get into shape your friend Rosie

  2. joddy123 Says:

    Fat tax, eh? Well, I’ve paid mine!

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