Dealing With Some Weighty Issues

workout warrior




Hey, Guys: I’ve discovered that we are only as secure as we are secure at a given moment in time. But maybe, that’s just me.


I finally got in a workout yesterday afternoon. On the exercise routine sheet I keep at the club, I discovered that it had been a full month since my last visit. One full month of an erratic work schedule, family conflicts, tough allergies, a slightly injured right knee and a few other excuses.


Yes, I finally made it back to the club yesterday and didn’t even need directions to the club, or to any destinations inside. I went to the filing cabinet to pick up my routine chart, not trusting my memory and common sense to set the machines at the right levels. I started with the whatchmacallit—not a treadmill or a stepper, exactly, but a Cybex that I recently (relative to my infrequent visits) started preferring to the bike. I programmed it at the same settings as where I had left off, and it wasn’t too bad. Nothing too heroic, mind you, but I worked up just enough sweat and my late-awkward-slide-into-home-plate-from-two-softball-doubleheaders-ago tenderized knees didn’t bark at me too much. They cruised through my routine, even if my wind was mediocre. So far, so okay.


Then, it got progressively worse. Not so much my knees as my ego. At machine after machine after mechanical machine, I found myself needing to turn the weight down—sometimes way down. In truth, I felt good about doing the ol’ routine again, but that reassurance soon was overwhelmed by my insecurities. And you thought it was easy being me? It started playing on my mind that I had to constantly take advantage of much easier settings than whoever preceded me in order to grunt my way through the workout.


A reassuring thought then came my way. Perhaps, there was a bodybuilder, or two, who were the last ones to use the machines. I looked around, but there was no visual evidence to validate this theory or assuage my insecurities. I did see a lot of young ladies and seventy-something men in the half-filled gym. Damn!


So, what to do? Quit? Nah. Turn my settings up a notch or two? Are you serious? Stay true to my routine? Well yes, but with a little twist.


Now, let me tell you that I’m a pretty honest guy. I wipe down the machines after usage. Most of the time. You can count on me to always tell the truth, if not brutally so. Yes, I’ve occasionally snitched a cookie or bagel on long trips to the supermarket, but I haven’t done so in a long, long time. At least two weeks.


What did I do? After one too many times of casting furtive glances before turning the weight down on the machine, I decided to take action. I tried making it look like I was turning the weight up, although that didn’t even convince me. Next, I would purposely lower the weight too much just so I would have the pleasure of actually turning the weight up. That helped my spirits a little bit. Then, after finishing with the machine, I would either destroy the evidence or fudge it. Just in case, the next guy or gal would associate me with the incriminating settings, I would either re-set it to a higher weight or pull the pin out altogether.


In a way, the latter strategy was very considerate. Perhaps, the next user would need a setting even lower than mine. Why put him through all of the indignities that I just faced. I’m sure that all guys can relate to this. You can…right?


Or maybe, that’s just me.


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