don’t feel bad… feel good

The alarm went off this morning and I got up. I set the alarm for an hour later and went back to bed. Lying in bed I knew that I needed to get up and go to the gym for a cardio workout. While my mind was split into two voices, one saying that I should get up and go to the gym, the other saying that the bed was nice and warm, the cats were in the next room, and it would be nice to sleep late. While both voices argued, a third voice said “if you two dont’ stop arguing I’ll never get to sleep” and this ensued into a mass hysteria of argument. Perhaps I am a bit influenced by the arguments among nine characters in “The Brothers Karamazov” that I read from before bed. Whatever the case, my mind continued an argument and my body said “I’ll sneak out while they are arguing”. Before I knew it I was on the cross trainer in the gym and my mind was still arguing and they looked down and said “damn… we’re in the gym. Okay, lets get to it.”

A good cardio workout. I kept an eye on my pulse and noted that I pushed my pulse too far. I was dripping sweat, my breathing wasn’t gone though (good shape there) and my pace was high (223 steps per minute)… but my heart rate was high. I knew it was important that I come to this workout because one of the things I wanted to do was to get my conditioning better in shape. I’ve got better conditioning than many around me and not many “non-jocks” can hang with me on sprints and runs. For the average joe I am great, for the athletes I am far from it. It is one thing to out race cars from the bus station to the UO down 13th street on a bike, it is another to hit the top of the butte in good time, to perform at a level that you know deep down inside is your best level of performance, to make the play (and the play is a lot of things). I’m fast on my bike and friends will tell me “I saw you on your bike the other day and I would have said hi but you were going too fast and you were gone before I could do anything”. That is nice… but if I were to put on a jersey and compete in a bicycle race I would be left in the dust from the big boys around here (I’m not talking professionals, but guys that work in bike shops of which we have plenty of in Eugene, and who compete in regional bike races). Another thing I’d want to do is to make it to the coast on a bike, and between here and there is not only an hour and 45 minutes of car driving, but the coastal mountain range. I know that bicyclists do it because I’ve seen them on my drives to the coast and there are many signs and spaces made for bicyclists to use along the highway. If I were to try this now I’d not enjoy the trip because I’d be near exhaustion.

But I’m in better shape now than I was last month, and last month is better than the month before. I don’t have the muscle size that I want, but I’m in better shape. While I was standing outside the gym, admiring the foggy morning moving over the butte near the river, I thought about people. A person might be huge, very out of shape, and dripping sweat and not be able to run a block without nearly collapsing. While another person might have the body of a sprinter and can run a block easily. There are different reasons why people are the way they are, genetics, histories, whatever. What matters is how the person finishes up. Did the big guy push himself until he couldn’t go any further? Did the sprinter just do a leisurely run and then stop? It is a ready assumption made by may that the attractive people are smarter… but lets look at this further… for its not all its cracked up to be… it is a flawed assumption.

But I’ve got to go to work… I am running late. HA!

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