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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

"Try-Athletes": Back in the Game

"You only work as hard as you make yourself work!" - Holly

We are glad to be back. No one can do this for us - we have to do it ourselves.

"Pick up the pace, that's what we do!" - Holly

Although our lungs are aching, we pick up the pace and we stand on our bikes and we pedal like we mean it. We are back in the game.

Brent smiled and waved when he saw us - I think he just about gave up on us. 'No way!' we thought, 'we are here to stay! Hi everybody!'

We are glad to see everyone's faces and we are glad to hear Holly's voice and we are glad to be walking around that track.

40 minutes on the bike, a couple of acid trips, burning thighs and blisters on the vag-callouses mean Good Times on the Good Bikes. This is the price you pay for taking a few days off.

We have found that leaning over on your bike handles a little bit means that your legs are assaulting your flab while you pedal. This is not so much a party. Kicking your own flab with your thighs does not make Spin class easier or more enjoyable. In fact, it makes class a little dangerous because there is always the chance that you may kick a little too vigorously at some point and therefore knock yourself off your bike. Not to mention the potential bruising that you may get from your own knees, and if you happen to look down toward your knees, you could get one of your knees in the teeth. All in all, this is shaping up to be pure savageness.

You are better off staying in an upward type of position and pedaling your arse off as much as you can. I had to gear down as low as 8 tonite because there were times when I just couldn't pedal and breathe at the same time. I may bring one of those portable oxygen tanks with me next time, so I don't have to do everything on my own. However, when it was time to stand and bike, I was able to do this once in awhile, as long as I put my bike on gear 15 or 16. Any lower than that and my legs get tired too quickly. This could be cheating, but I don't care. I'm standing up on my bike and I'm pedaling. So there.

After 40 minutes or so of pedaling hard and still staying in the same spot, we hopped off the bikes and managed to stay in upright positions. We went for a walk, while other people speedily ran past us, and did laps around the track. I sounded like my grandfather, cough cough wheeze wheeze, God rest his soul. Whatever, I was on the track and I was still walking, no ambulance was called, and no defibrillators were being geared up.

Then came the dreaded stairs. Holly caught us as we were going around the track and she told us to get in there and go down at least once but we respectfully declined her offer/orders. Everyone else was gladly hopping on down those stairs but we weren't ready. Lisa laughed and said she has war wounds, and I have my grandmother's knees. I'm not ready for stairs yet. As soon as my knees stop popping, I'll run up and down the stairs and maybe do some cartwheels, too. Until then - flat surfaces for me.

"Alright," she said, "my middle name is 'Safety'. You do what is best for you."

I like that she encourages us but gives us the option to back out of the things we know we are not ready to do. As we went for another walk around the track, Lisa and I pondered the idea that Holly probably thought we were young whippersnappers. We decided to tell her the truth... we are old war vets.

When we got to the Core/Yoga corner, we stopped in to have a chat with her as we waited for the others to finish with their Mach 4 running lap, and we casually mentioned that we were old. "I've been alive for 33 years," I said. She laughed at us and said we weren't old. So, no sympathy there.

I don't really think we are old all over - we are young. But our knees are old. And my lungs are getting a bit outdated and probably rancid, too.

That's what all this workout business is to try to fix... turn back the clock, or at least halt the progress of illness and disease. I just didn't know that I was falling apart until I started this regime. First, I was told I was fat and I was going to die so I better start working out. So I start working out and that became a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Yes, it did - look what happened: I got sick. The lungs started to deteriorate. Don't even say it's not true. Go to swimming - drown. Go to spin - die of exhaustion. Take time to recuperate - harder to go back, get blisters on the original callouses that were built up.


Eventually, everyone showed up and then we started an exercise that Lisa and I don't even have a name for. It's the 'Stare At Each Other With The WTF? Look' exercise.

Basically, you start doing The Plank. Now, this exercise is the arseholiest move on the planet. You have to basically do a push up on your elbows but hold it mid-air. This works your ab muscles and your facial muscles because you want to curse your head off but that wouldn't be polite so you have to hold it all in - all the curses and all your guts. And your arse, too.

That's not the only thing. The second part of this fantastic exercise was to then get up on your hands from The Plank position and then lower yourself back to The Plank position repeatedly, as often as you could, for a set time period. So, lay on your elbows in a push up position, then from your elbows get up to your hands, then back down to your elbows, repeat... without putting your legs down to the floor. Try it.


'Your arms start shakin' and your knees get weak' (Elvis Presley)

I tried it a few times and it is difficult. I looked over at Lisa and at one point, she had let go of everything and rolled over, giggling. That sent me into a fit of giggles, too. That move even made my fingers tired. I think I will call that move The P Squared Exercise - Psycho Plank.

We did a little more stretchy stuff after that, and called it a night.

When we left MacIsland, we couldn't find the SUV. Our Leader wasn't with us, so we didn't know where we parked. I had to use my panic alarm to find the vehicle. Eventually we made it, and after I returned my overdue library books, we were on our way home.

We got to the A&W turn when Lisa stated that it would be a good time to have burgers. I was game but then she changed her mind. Who am I to force someone to eat a Teen Burger? So we went home instead. I got home about 20 minutes earlier than usual, and ate a ton of food to make up for the Stare At Each Other With The WTF? Look' /P Squared exercise trauma.

Some of the girls asked about Jenny & passed on their well-wishes :) Holly said she hopes you get better soon!

Swimming tomorrow!

We are ready to jump in feet first, and get in over our heads, again!

* Nancy has had some great accomplishments so far, and looks fantastic for all her efforts. Nancy - we are so proud of you. You inspire us!

Sa-Thletes Update:

- Old man winter = 0, Death stairs = 0, Eva and baby = 3.

Congratulations, Eva!

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