Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Fitness Mania

So I joined this gym called Cloud 9. Now, I'm a little confused about the nomenclature. I mean, is going to a gym and working your ass off (in my case, hopefully, literally) supposed to put you on Cloud 9? Or is climbing up to the gym supposed to be like ascending into heaven? Or, perhaps, they feel that the people they attract - flabby, bulging, etc. - resemble clouds (eww, this reminds me of the Michelin Man, something that really grosses me out!).

Anyway, I joined up, and my first visit was on Saturday morning. I was really charged about it... this would be my first time at a gym (as is evident when you see me). Now, I'd noticed a sign there earlier, saying that outside shoes were STRICTLY not allowed - so I didn't take my sneakers - obviously. Turns out it means that you're supposed to carry your sneakers with you, not wear them through the mucky streets to the gym.

Anyway, these minor catastrophes aside, I was assigned this trainer - a guy with a single ear-ring, called Vicky. Very helpful, and all that, but somewhat unclear on the concept, perhaps. For starters, every time he wanted me to lie down on the mat, or the bench, or wherever, he would say, "Now you sleep." By the end of the session, I was thinking, "if only...." Anyway, at some point, I got accustomed to the "Now you sleeps" sufficiently, to enable me to actually do what he was telling me to do. We went through free movements, weights, and all kinds of machines that make you pull up weights - first with your forearms, then with your upper arms, then with your calves, then with your thighs... I leave you to imagine the rest. I'm almost worried about what comes next. Will I end up lifting weights by my pinkies?

But working out on some of those machines has the potential to be totally humiliating. for instance, there's one on which you have to lie down on your stomach, at an incline - face down and butt reaching for the sky (or Cloud 9, as the case may be). Imagine getting stuck on one of those, unable to move or get off... you could start a riot on one of those things!

The first day's workout took me about an hour. And I left really proud of myself - proud of the fact that I'd managed to do everything I'd been assigned without collapsing with hamstring injuries and torn ligaments, a quivering mass of... ummm... cloud. It really hit me only the next morning, when I tried to get out of bed - a process that took me 3 straight days!

So, advice to all those of you who are planning on joining gyms in the near future... take a sabbatical, because you're sure as hell not going to be able to make it to work the next morning.

And then, screw the gym, just go take a holiday somewhere.

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