Gym Return

I’m lying here in bed.


About coffee.

It’s ready. I can smell it.

But it’s all the way in the next room.

I don’t think I can make it there.

I’ve been coaching Cross Country.

Which means I don’t get home until 6:30 or 7:30 every night.

But that’s fine. Because sometimes. If head coach shows up. I get to run with them.

But we canceled practice yesterday.

And what does one do with a free afternoon? When they’re fully vaccinated? And thus 100% super immune to all the icks, pandemic or otherwise?

One goes to the gym.

Because Wednesday is Leg Day.

And last week’s testing madness made my pants almost fit again.

And when you get a taste of what it feels like to still be able to breathe in clothes with buttons. You wanna hold onto to that feeling.

But it’s scary. Going back. To PlayFITStayFIT. After being gone as long as I have.

So I made Fall Risk to with me.

And it was a sign right from the start. That maybe this was a mistake. Because I couldn’t get checked in.

Because years ago. When J-Vicious started this check in system. He gave me one of the little tags to use.

And I immediately lost it.

Like, that same day.

So he put the replacement sticker on the back of my drivers license.

So I handed my license to J-V. To do the little scanny thing on it.

And then spent the next five minutes arguing with him.

“What is this?”

It’s my check in taggy thing.

“It doesn’t look right.”

It is. You put it on the back of my driver’s license. So I wouldn’t lose it. Again.

“It’s not working.”

Then something’s wrong with your machine.

“Well, you haven’t been here since the late 80’s, so it probably doesn’t remember you.”

Just make it work.

“This doesn’t look like one of our tags.”

I’m telling you. You put it on the back…wait. Ok. So…I moved. And maybe got a new driver’s license. And threw the old one. With the tag sticker thing away…

Can I have a new one?

So the rest of the workout went much like that.

I’ve forgotten a lot about gym life.

I’d forgotten that J-V is the absolute worst.

Because he has stations set up. So that we aren’t just breathing and sweating all over each other and all of the equipment. Because pandemic. And not everyone is 100% vaccination super immune to every form of ick ever invented.

So we just use the weights and bands at our stations.

Except the station he assigned me to.

Was the station he set up for himself at the prior class.

Set up for him.

The former rugby player.

Not the sluggish middle aged back of the pack ultra runner.

So the weights…


And the workout was one of those, you have to do so many reps in a minute. With increasing reps. And a new exercise. With each new five minute round. And so you had to pick your exercises strategically.

And strategy is absolutely not my strength.

So, when I end up doing 200 calf raises. Weighted.

Dear mother of all things good. Why.

Had to make Fall Risk show me how to do pendulum lunges. Because I forgot. Or blocked them from my memory.

By the third exercise. I was drowning. In my own sweat.

“Are you crying?”

Shut up.

“No, really. Are you crying your first workout back?”

Shut up.

That’s sweat.

So much sweat.

I can run 31 miles. All over some mountains. For hours. Because it takes me a lot of hours to do that. And not sweat as much as I did in those 50 minutes.

The last minute. He says we have to do the exercise for the full minute.

But..I was on 20 reps. Of lunge pulses. And I managed to math that to be ten on each leg. But a full minute of non-stop pulse lunges…basically broke my brain…

How do we count those?

“…Thirty seconds on each leg…?”




Know. I know.

Look. My brain is tired.

And after class. In my severely weakened state. He asks me to join a challenge he’s putting together.

No. Not ask.

He didn’t ask.

He told me. To join a challenge. That he’s putting together.

And obviously I heard the word challenge.

And not really anything else he said after that word.

So I’ll be doing 2000 squats. Weighted squats. In an hour. At some point. Soon.

I just don’t know…

I’m sure it will be fine.

In the meantime. I’ma be over here trying to remember all the cross country stretches. So that maybe I can make my legs work again.

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