Here's the thing: I really hate lifting weights. It's boring, it's not cardio (really, though it can be a little) and it's not functional fitness. I'd rather be strong like I was back in the day, from clearing trails with axes and rock bars, or digging fireline, than from hoisting dumbbells. And I guess if I had more time, I could design a fitness program like that. But for now, the weights will have to do.
|Here's my gym. Somewhat old school, but I am glad to have it. I don't have room in my house for a gym.|
My weightlifting career began at a Golds Gym, where the women wore makeup and kept their hair down. I skulked around in a T shirt and shorts, going to the free weights where the other women never went (they stuck to the cardio machines). In order to do pull-ups with the rest of the fire crew, in order to haul the cubitainers of water, the chainsaw, I had to be strong. I worked a full day on the crew and then at 7 pm, I went out to lift weights. It wasn't anything special--everyone on the crew did this. We didn't get paid to do it, but we all knew that if we couldn't do the work, we would be off the crew.
After I left that crew, I still kept lifting, in small gyms in rural counties of the west. These were populated by the more serious, sans makeup. None of the gyms were fancy--they were one room affairs, with older equipment. When I spent a month in DC, I joined a gym and was amazed by the three floors of equipment and the bouncer who paced the rows, kicking people off the ellipticals when they had exceeded their half hour limit. Actual lines formed by each machine. No thanks, I thought, one room gyms were just fine with me.
I've now been a member of my gym for ten years. Ten years! That's long enough to pick out the regular characters--the woman who uses the elliptical with a purse strapped to her body, the lady who yells the number of repeats, the doctor who does such intense workouts that the rest of us feel lazy just watching.
Today it was just me for the entirety of my workout, and Randy, who was still working on his novel or whatever. I am always glad I did the workout, even if I dislike every minute of it. I close with some quality time on the elliptical, because I'm here. Then it's time to go back to work. I feel virtuous. Even though I don't like it, I've still powered through. Maybe I am motivated after all.