Monday, October 17, 2011

confessions of a lazy woman

Sports and I were never best buddies. I always preferred less... shall we say... sweaty activities. If there was a way to get an aerobic exercise from reading a book, painting, or writing a story, believe me, I would have found it by now. But once my prime came and went, there were no other alternatives. So, despite my vehement opposition to the idea, I too succumbed to the necessity of working out.

At first, I collected numerous gym memberships: the co-ed kind, the 30-minutes kind, the women's workout and spa kind, the private trainer kind. Once the initial resolve dwindled, so did the frequency of my visits. At some point, I decided to waste invest my money on something more tangible. That's when I bought my first treadmill...

I'm afraid this generic and fuzzy picture is all I have to show you since, a while back, we forgot our treadmill in the backyard where we moved it one inspired summer, and it hopelessly rusted in the rain the ensuing winter. It's probably in some junkyard heaven somewhere now, if it has not been recycled yet to something useful. It wasn't missed much though, because, apart from the random and ever so infrequent  run jog walk slow walk, it was mostly used for kiddie acrobatics by one highly kinetic little miss Em.

Then a few years ago, several members of my family acquired and started feverishly using stationary bikes. Their tummies were tighter, their skin looked healthier, in short, they positively glowed!
So I, of course, immediately went out and bought myself one of these...

It's not what you think. I did use it. I DID! 

Well, a few times anyway. 

Nowadays , it mostly does this:

They say that the definition of insanity is repeating the same behavior, again and again, fully expecting a different outcome. And since I am not insane (at least not entirely), I decided to change my behavior in the hopes of yielding a better result. Intent on overcoming my stagnating state of physical activity and bettering my health by properly exercising my body,  here's what I am doing differently:

DRUMROLL... please!

  • I got a BIGGER machine. It's heavier, too, so I cannot drag it outside and let it rot in the rain.
  • I put it in my garage, not my bedroom, where I don't have any pillows or clothes.
  • I did NOT buy it. I borrowed it from someone. 
  • It was lent to me without its electrical cord, so I cannot actually monitor my heartbeat or caloric loss, nor program it to do harder sets.
  • It's an elliptical machine, one I have never tried before and don't really know how to use.

Change the behavior and you shall change the result. Whaddayathink?


At 10/17/11, 10:18 AM , Blogger Janiece said...

I think I have a love/hate relationship with my own elliptical.

I use it 4-5 days a week, and have for many years, but don't mistake me for someone who has discipline. Or likes to exercise. Or cares about how flat my stomach is. Here are the reasons I exercise:

1. All my guilty pleasure shows ("Glee," anyone?) are on the TiVo in the basement. I am not allowed to watch them unless I'm actually ON the elliptical. I like my trashy shows, and I'm not going to miss them because I'm a lazy butt.

2. I read a study that said women who exercise in their middle age - and continue to exercise as they age - have a much lower incidence of senile dementia than the control group. Since no health condition scares me more than losing my faculties, I exercise from fear.

3. Once I started doing it regularly, I noticed I felt like poo when I skipped more than about 3 days in a row. This really pisses me off, by the way, but I don't like to feel like poo.

Being an adult blows.

At 10/17/11, 10:35 AM , Anonymous Heather said...

Hey, your garage is a lot nicer than my living room! Is THAT a pool table?

At 10/17/11, 11:21 AM , Blogger Unknown said...

Janiece, WB :)

What you are practicing is called the Premack principle. It is one of my favorite motivational tools.

I started writing this as a facetious take on my less-than-stellar exercising track record which I have no illusions about bettering by the acquisition of a bigger, fancier machine. But now that I think about it, if I actually ground it in behavioral principles (and so far I have effectively changed my antecedents, Establishing Operations if you want the jargon), I may have a shot at a not-too-gross bikini body in a month.
Humm, I'm getting ideas... to be continued!

Awww Heather, my garage is a LOT nicer than MY living room too... partly because we don't use it much (for parking or for its repurposed game-rec room function). Good eye there with the pool table, that is correct!

At 10/17/11, 4:07 PM , Anonymous Your Hunky Husband said...

This is the funniest one yet.

At 10/17/11, 6:25 PM , Blogger Janiece said...

I think I knew that, actually, as a result of some brain book I read. Making deals with my future self, etc. But it's going to take more than my elliptical to get me a bikini body. I'm carrying about 70 extra pounds that I'd need to drop before I'd be seen on a two piece.

At 10/19/11, 3:03 AM , Anonymous Zoelee said...

Fab post! I was going to write something about this myself soon. I am thinking about hiring a treadmill - month on month off. Thinking....

At 10/19/11, 12:40 PM , Blogger Unknown said...

My hunky husband: <3

Janiece: sounds like you and I could start a little support group for pound-droppage.

Zoelee: month on month off I love it. I would totally read that post!


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