Gym’ll Fix It

I’ve joined the local gym. I say the local gym, but actually it’s the only gym around here. Now I’m a gym person, with a special gym bag, special gym kit and special gym trainers. It costs a fortune doing all this. The monthly membership and the purchasing of the uber-expensive attire, so I look like I know what I’m doing, and don’t look like the kid at school who forgot his gym kit.

I’ve joined a gym because exercise is good, and can help banish the demons. Exercise is good because it can help keep you alive for a bit longer and keep all your bits in working order. Exercise is good because it gives me something to do with some free time I have, and I’m sure, if I exercise a lot, then I’ll be naturally tired in the evenings and will sleep well and soundly. Something I sometimes have a problem with.

But it costs a lot of money. And, really, I can exercise for free can’t I? If I think about it? Go for a long run and that’s good exercise. And it’s free! Free is my favourite flavour.

But no. Sadly I can’t. Because I can’t run. I can’t run without looking like I’ve escaped from somewhere.

This morning, on the way to the gym, I saw a man and a woman on their morning jog. Whenever I see a jogger my heart sinks a bit because I just can’t run like that. I’m simply not designed for it.

Male jogger was running along, knees high, back straight, arms tucked in. Female lady jogger was doing the same. They were running stride for stride, her hair in a ponytail flicking up and down like the tail of a galloping horse. I bet they’d run 62 miles already and they didn’t even look like they were even sweating.

And they just looked so bouncy!

Bouncy bouncy running bouncy down the road. Like they’re on springs or something.

If I tried that?

You know that inexplicable thumping noise you sometimes hear in the distance. A kind of repetitive thump thump thump that makes you stop and go ‘What is that? Industrial machinery? A small earthquake?’  Well that’s me. Jogging. When I run I sound like a herd of stampeding elephants crashing through the Arnedale Centre. Stomp stomp stomp. My feel hitting the ground like I hate the pavement.

My arms? Well, I can’t do that tucking my arms thing. I did that once when I decided to take up jogging again and, first time out, a few hundred yards in, I tripped, and as my arms were tucked up I kinda hit my face on the floor as I fell.

How do you do that tucking up the arms thing? How? I just can’t.

So when I run I sound like a stampede, and my arms kind of flail a bit. Down by my side at first, like I’m doing Irish dancing and then up and around as I gradually get into it. A bit like Mr Tickle doing the Great North Run.

Except it isn’t great. It’s ghastly and must look terrifying to those who see me approach. A few people I’ve seen, as I charge along the pavement, have crossed over the road, and not using the zebra crossing either. Which is a bit insulting.

I once saw a local group of joggers doing their evening routes as I went into town. It was dark and, I may have laughed a bit when one of them ran along and bashed straight into a wheelie bin they hadn’t noticed.

Evil of me to laugh, especially as I would probably do the same, and look incredibly stupid while doing so.

The joggers who jog and have to stop at traffic lights and keep on jogging while they wait for the lights to change? Their knees still going, their arms shaking out by their side? It’s always tempting to start whistling a bit of Riverdance at them but I’ve relented.

Okay, so I might have done it once. Or thrice.

But it’s all because I’m jealous. I just can’t do it. That @motherventing suggested I video myself running and insert the footage here, probably because she wants a reet good laff. That WILL NEVER happen I assure you. Because when I run I resemble an injured pigeon/octopus chimaera and sound like I’ve got a grudge against the pavement.

I was meeting my ex-wife once, when we were married, and I ran towards her only to reach her to find her bent double in hysterical laughter. Through the tears and the giggles she told me I looked like a teddy bear trying to run. Which was nice.

But jogging is free. It’s in the open. And, if I go out early enough in the morning no-one can see me. Perhaps I should stick to that and become someone bouncy?

I have a couple of weeks left with this membership. I can cancel within a month and not suffer any financial penalties if I decide that it’s all a bit too much to pay and not have to pay a cancellation fee.

So, if you hear a thudding in the background at 5am,waking you and your kin from your slumber, and  it sounds like your house is about to collapse, then you’ll know I’ve cancelled my gym membership.

Exercise. Are you a gym bunny, a bouncy jogger, a 30 day shredder, or a Zumba fiend? Or someone who gets all their exercise from being a parent, running around after children all day and doing the school run. Or is the sexytime your exercise? A bit of horizontal jogging? Please let me know what you do, and when you do it. Which sounds ruder than I meant but I’ll go with it.

Oh, and thanks for reading.

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17 responses to “Gym’ll Fix It

  1. I’ve never been one for exercise cuz I look like a deformed lemming when I run! I used to walk miles and miles, but stopped when I had shingles in my syatic nerves and couldn’t walk for a fortnight! I have heard that doing housework is good exercise and after all it is our responsibility to keep our bodies fit and healthy.

  2. I went to a gym when I was rehabbing following surgery. As soon as the rehab was complete my enthusiasm for sharing a confined space with lots of other sweaty people fell to zero and I never went back.

    Cycling over running for me. Jogging always seemed like a lot of effort to not get very far or see anything new. On a bike the same effort gets me somewhere I’ve never been, or to a lovely view I can enjoy. The act of cycling also puts joy into my soul, though I appreciate that’s not a universal effect.

    Bikes are more expensive than running shoes though, or a gym membership.

    • I love cycling, and always have, so I’ll add that to the mix. Otherwise I’m spending a fortune on sitting in a gym cycling when I have a perfectly decent bike sitting around doing fark all.
      Thanks for commenting and for reading.

  3. Last year I did some classes through a groupon deal in a fancy London gym. I forget the name of the class (forefoot running maybe?) but it was all about remodelling your running action to make it more efficient. Although I had run for years I had been doing it in the least effective way possible. If you can’t find that sort of thing locally I bet a personal trainer could help you with a few private sessions.

    • That sounds good, although the idea of a personal trainer, someone shouting at me, making me feel inadequate and getting me to do stuff I don’t want to do sounds like my idea of hell. Or marriage. 😉
      Thanks for reading and for the tip.

  4. I started running when I got divorced and lived it! Even though pretty much everyone I knew told me I couldn’t run.
    I ended up running about 25 miles a week and doing the Bristol Half marathon 9 months after I started and it was brill.
    No running now except after a toddler 🙂

    But agree with MotherVenting, you should share your running.

  5. I run like you, with the addition of over-sized breasts that i inevitably end up clutching to myself in a manner resembling that employed by Les Dawson when in drag.

  6. I was once told that I moved pretty fast for a big girl. See when my child has decided to do one of his runners I can move like a whippet. However, when I try to jog…..impossible!! I just don’t know how to move my arms and legs, its ridiculous. I do love the gym, but seeing as I am rather a big girl, I’ve built one in my conservatory. I now spend at least half an hour everyday on my exercise bike, with my kindle. oooo get me!

  7. Ah I used to run and loved it, but that was when I lived by the sea and could run with the ocean by my side. Now I’d have to trawl up and down Bristol’s MANY MANY hills and dodge traffic. And I’m lazy. I need motivation. I think what you’re doing is great. And please post a vid of you jogging.

  8. I dont do proper exercise. But I clean my whole house every morning then spend the day with two energetic babies,usually in the park, woods or derbyshire dales…..I hope this counts but I fear not as I still manage to be a bit squidgey around the middle 😦 x

    • It counts as exercise IMHO, and good exercise at that. I miss all the child related exercise so I have to get some action elsewhere.
      Thanks for reading and for commenting.

  9. I’m a PT and I fucking hate running, it’s as dull as shit. You know those people who say they can zone out when running, well I think they are mad all I can think about when running is when will this hell be over. Luckily there is much more to exercise than running (it’s not actually that good for weight loss for instance despite it being hailed as the holy grail). You just need to find something you do enjoy whether that is Zumba (well you never know), Body Pump (give it a try it’s my fave thing) or the rowing machine whilst watching Jeremy Kyle (most gyms seem to have this on repeat for some inexplicable reason).
    Also if a PT shouts at you (unless you want to be shouted at) then he/she isn’t good at their job.

  10. A skipping rope and some weights are what I use at home – 5 times a week. It took me a little while to get used to using the rope but perseverance has paid off and I’ve developed a rhythm.

    I don’t think I could go jogging. I’d find it a little too monotonous on my own. If you look around the internet you’ll find a few exercises you can do at home if you don’t want to use a gym. 🙂

    • Good call. Skipping! I’m actually quite light when I do that and don’t sound like a tree falling. I will buy myself one tomorrow and get to it!
      Thanks for the tip, for reading and for your comment.

  11. I love excercise when im doing it but seriously cant be arsed to do it! Does that make sense!? :-/ Oh shit whats that noise *Looks out of window for the heard of elephants!!! Sorry couldnt resist 😉 xx

  12. Some people just aren’t designed for running, which is why they cycle or swim instead. I am one of those people and I have every intention of cycling or swimming very soon.
    Good luck at the gym 🙂

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