Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Welcome to the Gun Show

Dear Readers, the regularly scheduled post "Tarilyn natters about sewing and knitting" has been temporarily interrupted to bring you this special presentation : "Tarilyn natters about working out". The usual program will return when the author has something crafty to say.

If you have been reading for a while, you may know that I am not an outdoorsy, physically active sort of gal. This is not a recent development. As a child, I always preferred making things, playing pretend games (I had lots of Barbies), or reading. My mother and Nana were constantly nagging me to "go outside and play". Mom was a tomboy and thought I should be climbing trees! The truth is that I was never confident about my physical abilities. I felt fat and clumsy and fell down a lot. I hated gym class more than anything. In junior high, we were forced to run timed laps around the parking lot and the times were posted for the whole school to see. I was usually the next to last to finish. In my mind exercise = humiliation. Up until recently, the most exercise I've done, other than that involving knitting needles or a sewing machine, are the 2 Pilates classes I take each week. I'm proud of that because I've been doing it for 3 years now, which is far longer than other fitness routine I've ever done. This is mostly because I feel confident about my abilities, and because I've seen definite improvement in my posture and body shape. I didn't grow taller as a result, but I do feel strong and flexible. That is, until recently.

The company I work for has provided a free membership to a local gym (we have our pick of two in the area). Since it's free, I joined. Recently I attended 2 classes, back to back, where I had to do a lot of upper body work (mostly push-ups). I was able to do everything presented, and fairly well, but by the evening of the second class I couldn't even lift my arms. They hurt for days!!! It was a real wake-up call that I needed to work on my upper body strenght (OK, there's also those winter pounds I'm trying to shave off). So! Enter the personal trainer (a membership perk).

Last week I met with my trainer, a shy young fellow who blushed a lot. I talk and joke incessantly when I am nervous, so I nattered away the whole time, hoping that he wouldn't judge me by my physical (in)abilities. He started me out on an elliptical machine and I could only do it for 2.5 minutes because my legs were screaming (uh oh, humiliation creeping in). It only got worse. I was horrified at how puny and weak I was!! Bwah! Useless little arms! (I did great on the ab stuff though.)Well, tonight I met with him again, and I feel fantastic and strong. I could still only do 2.5 minutes on the elliptical (what is UP with that???) I may have short little legs, but I am a fast walker, right Lori? I felt much better about the workout this time. Tricep pushups? No problem. Easy peasy. Push-ups? No sweat. Squats on the Bosu Ball - spot on! I felt really pumped up. At the end of my session, I asked him to show me how to use the treadmill. At first it was just as hard as the elliptical until I realized that it was just going too slowly. I cranked up the speed to 4mph, increased the incline and watch out baby, I was smokin! It is a little boring, and weird to use a machine to do something I can do in my own neighborhood, but it felt more "real" exercise.

Bottom line: I feel good, I'm sleeping better, and I feel confident. I'd like to continue with the trainer, but now that my two free sessions are over, I'd have to pay a whopping sum nearly equal to my car payment (not going to happen, that's a lot of yarn and fabric!). I will continue to use the machines he showed me and we'll see. Maybe I'll do something amazing!

BTW: In case you were wondering, the title of this post is a reference to showing off one's well developed arms. As my friend Lori often demonstrates, you lift your arms as though to pump them up, kiss each bicep, and proclaim "Welcome to the gun show" like you are the announcer of a monster truck show. Try it and you'll feel like Ahhhhnold.

PS: I got my copy of It's A Wrap in the mail today. Ooooh! Lots of cool ideas!


Lori said...

Thank you so much for the laugh at work! Something I could really use today. How does it feel to carry around 2 SMALL guns?

Tarilyn said...

They are not small! They are sculpted lean machines! ;-p

Yarn Coffee said...

You are seriously one of the funniest people I am happy to know! This post was hysterical. I've quite the similar experience at the gym. And I was never the athletic kid. I danced and even that took lots of concentration and practice.


So not gifted physically!