The start of my job coincided with the start of our new household exercise plan. As one might guess, this was not a good pairing. The plan was to exercise after work, as a couple. We’d help motivate each other to keep it up. After giving the pup a potty break, we’d head over to the fitness room at our apartment complex and use the cardio machines and/or weights for a bit. The bf enjoys the gym; I do not. I prefer to disguise my exercise as fun activity like cycling outdoors or playing a game or dancing. But it’s so hot outside (still!) in the desert that exercising indoors is a good idea. So we started heading to the fitness room each evening.
Issue #1: Other people. I hate the gym because I feel like others are watching and quietly judging me. Here, there is a young man who is in the fitness room on an elliptical machine when we arrive, and he is still there when we’re done, elliptical-ing away slowly. (I assume he’s fit and has it on major resistance, or else he’s just a weirdo who goes there to watch TV.) I am convinced that he is snickering at my inability to exercise for hours each day (no matter what time we go at night, he is there) and mocking my fat a** when I leave. In reality, he probably barely notices the older woman in the gym. But that’s not what my mind thinks.
Issue #2: The television. Young man takes control of the TV remote and turns on CNN. It’s loud enough that I can hear it over my iPod, and since all machines face the TV I have to crane my neck to the right to avoid seeing repeated showings of plane crashes or disasters. The bf likened the CNN newscast to porn, with its gratuitous images of horror and dramatic ranting of the anchors.
Issue #3: Time. By the time we get back to the apartment, it’s time to walk the dog to the dog park. That takes a while, so we end up eating dinner at 8:30 or 9pm, even if we start the meal cooking and leave it simmering while we’re out. No time to shower after the gym, so we either go to bed smelly or shower even later. When you wake up at 5 or 5:45 as we do, it makes for a night of little sleep.
But exercise is important, and I’m not ready to count it out. I’ve tried jogging to the dog park with the pup, which seems to work okay. I hate jogging, and sometimes my small dog has trouble keeping up, even though I’m pretty slow. And the bf hates jogging more, so unless I run with the dog by myself (not a good idea in the dark), jogging is out. I’m not going to wake up any earlier, to be realistic, so I’m going to have to experiment a bit until I find something that works. Or I’ll just have to learn to deal with my gym fears and cycle alongside my fit neighbors.