The Gym

Published January 22, 2015 by Harri

Today saw me stepping in the gym for my first workout in over 4 years, probably closer to 5 years. I was nervous, wondering what people were thinking about my body type and were they looking at me. It’s terrifying stepping into a gym when you haven’t stepped into one for a long time. Last time I got fit and healthy, I did it all outside the gym, I refused point blank to step into the gym because I was terrified that I would hurtle at it and then cock myself up. So, here I was, stood in the gym, a handful of people using the gym and all minding their own business. I got a few smiles from people but the rest were focussed on their workout.

My sister started on the treadmill as I waited for Toni (the instructor) to give me my instructions. I stood on the treadmill next to her and talked. Distracting, yes, but worth it. Bonding time.

Toni arrived, my first activity was the treadmill.

10 minutes at 4.7km/h at a 1.5% gradient (is that the right word?). – Now having spent nearly a year doing as little walking as possible, I worried how I would take the pace. (On Tuesdays, I will be walking too and from the gym, so this should be fun, also I need to get a backpack) I walked confidently, or so I thought until I took my hands off the sides and wobbled. (Note to self, don’t turn to look at the person beside you if you aren’t used to the treadmill, you will end up on your arse). I was able to hold a conversation (I mostly listened), but spent the time concentrating on my breathing as it was getting a little harder.

8 minutes on the crosstrainer, doing 1 minute at level 2, 1 minute at level 5, intermittently (interval training) – Those arm things, are they there to provide an upper body workout or to spin you out? I always find I don’t know what to do with my feet, where to lift and use my toes, etc. I did well on there, I didn’t fall off, this is a good thing.

8 minutes on the upright bike, 1 minute at level 2 and increasing a level each minute – I got to level 6 I think and I thought my legs were going to fall off. The jelly legs sensation was kicking in and I was getting worried. Convincing my legs to keep going, they weren’t allowed to stop. Also, those seats are much comfier than a bloody push bike.

6 minutes on the Arm bike. Level 6 for 3 minutes forward and 3 minutes backwards – I thought this would be piss easy. I was pushing it and winding my arms at a decent pace, then I started feeling the resistance in my shoulders. Reversing the direction, then, because I was pulling towards myself, it was mad. My arms seemed to stop responding.

Chest press, 2 sets of 15 reps @ 15kg – The first couple of presses, I thought I could smash this. I thought this bit was easier. Until I got into reps 5 and 6, then my arms started to feel a little lost. They hadn’t a clue what had hit them. Seriously,  by the time I got to 15, I thought my arms were going to fall off and this was just my first set! Second set, well, I may have made my poo face pushing those ones out!

Lateral Pull Down, 2 sets of 15 reps @ 20kg – I loved these. These didn’t feel hard at all, comfortable and just right. Going to leave it the same for a little while and then ask if I can up it.

Leg Press, 2 sets of 15 reps @ 50kg – I LOVE the leg press, it makes you feel like you are working, but it did remind me how far I have to go. It is hard using that equipment when you have a rather large gut hanging in front of you. I have to remember not to rush these too, I have a tendency to speed up. So taking my time and making sure I don’t lock my knees, is what’s on the list to remember.

Cool down on the bike that looks like a chair. (Reclining bike?) 6 mins – This felt too easy, even though my legs were jelly like but it was a pleasant cool down.

All in all, it was a good workout, I mean in the grand scheme of things I want to be able to be running again. I want to lift free weights and I want to be fit. I will never have a flat stomach, unless I have surgery. Which if I am honest, just isn’t an option financially. I will have a saggy stomach, I will have saggy tits and I will have saggy skin. Common sense tells me this, I am not delusional, I know I have pushed my body to the max, ridiculously to the max. There is no way, my body will ever look like a fitness model. This I get. I will have to stick to pull’em in pants and be proud of the fact that I can lift such and such a weight, or run such and such a distance in a certain time. I want to be proud of my achievements, happy with the outcome and not to be too depressed with the way my body looks. It’s time I started looking after the body I have.

So there we are, first gym session done! I don’t feel too bad (although, I am pretty sure I will start feeling it soon!), I am off to eat my tuna pasta and salad.


A xx


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