Tuesday, January 15, 2008
No Free Parking Anytime
A few months after my divorce, I decided to obtain a membership to a dinky faculty/staff gym, the kind of place with three treadmills, one ancient exercise bike, and some dumbbells. Here I was going to make my Rocky-like comeback into the world of the lithe (marriage had me a little fat, if not all that happy counter to the stereotype), and I knew that running was the fastest way to lose weight. On my first day there, a rather masculine-looking woman came up to me and touched my ass. "You're running all wrong. It's foot to heel, not on your tiptoes unless you want this," she said, giving me a firm pat on the aforementioned body part, "to get bigger." I hate when strangers give me unsolicited advice (I considered that worse than the touching), but I took it. Sure enough, she was right. It was easier and looked a lot less crazy than prancing on the treadmill like a deranged pony.
I've always loathed exercise but have the metabolism of a slug and the dieting habits that would horrify a nutritionist (one of my Christmas presents was a book about eating right for your blood type to which one of my friends commented, I don't think you're eating right for any blood type) which forces me to work out lest I fall into a complete state of disrepair and ill health. The belly of this vicious beast still remains running since it's fast and effective, although I am neither when I do it. The first person I ever ran with regularly was my dad in the seventies -- I inherited his metabolism and so off it was for a jog every morning. I hated the act itself, but I would have eaten nails for the chance to spend time with him and alas, jogging it was. From there, I have run with different people over the years, never liking it any better, but I always remember when I do it not to dismiss people outright like I wanted to with my little friend at the gym. Someone I once ran with used to say, You need to run over the ground, not on it, which is something I try to think about when I'm trying too hard, which is a lot of the time.
Michelle's Spell of the Day
"Sometimes she wondered if there were an agent in her body, a secret in her blood making ready to work against her." Jayne Anne Phillips
Drinking memoir suggestion: Dreaming Carolyn See
Benedictions and Maledictions