Friday, August 04, 2006

Hello, my name is Thida and I love exercise

I feel basically happy right now. 48 hours ago I felt totally stressed and sad. My brain kept telling me "Please end this now. I want this to stop." I wasn't exactly suicidal. Just so overwhelmed that I didn't know what to do with myself. The overall stressors in my life haven't changed much. I've fixed two things. I have arranged for more childcare. I went to the gym for the first time in two years.

Ten minutes into exercising on the elliptical machine, I realised I was smiling, partly from the endorphin rush and partly from the absurdity of it all. My legs felt a bit tight and stiff but the up and down motion felt soothing. The knobs sliding in the grooves looked silly and mechanical. The little LED lights go up and down like one of my son's toy. The timer tells me just how long I exercise like a little child on timeout. And there's something supremely absurd to me about paying to exercise on a machine. I bow to the machine. I can push myself on the machine in a way I can't left to my own devices. It makes me smile how I need technology to exercise.

I also only like the really expensive elliptical machines at the gym. My body does in fact notice the difference. The less expensive machines don't glide as well. The ellipitical machines at the gym push my knees just a tad, but not enough that they hurt. Non gym elliptical hurt my knees after 5 minutes.

I also did a few weights. See, the weight machines have a little LCD display that lights up as you lift the weight up and down. So satisfying!

I realised I have my stress relief all wrong. One of my first hits should be the gym. I get free childcare, exercise and time to contemplate the absurdities of life.

I had this idea that I hated exercise. So I'm surprised to learn I was in fact wrong. I loved the elliptical the last time I was at the gym. I just forgot about it, because it didn't fit in the 'I hate exercise' belief I had about myself. But now I must stand up and say "Hello, my name is Thida and I love exercise." I promise I'm still a nerd too.

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