Sunday, February 19, 2006


Yesterday, I went for a long run on the treadmill. I generally try and vary what I do at the gym, so that my body doesn’t get used to anything. Much of my time during the week is spent doing interval training or increasing the level of difficulty as I progress through my workout. I was able to run 2.25 miles at 5.4 mph without stopping, which isn’t a record for me, but not bad.

After I left the gym, I noticed that my throat was sore and I felt kind of light-headed. Last night, I went to bed early after taking some Tylenol and Theraflu. This morning, I woke up to lancinating pain in my throat with swallowing, and in my left ear. After further investigation, I decided that I only met two out of the four criteria for strep throat and that a trip to Urgent Care for antibiotics would be a big waste of everyone’s time as what I have is probably just a virus. My muscles ache, but I can't tell if it's from lying in bed all day or from yesterday's run.

It figures that I would get sick after making it to the gym every day this past week. I’m starting to actually enjoy running—now that I don’t gasp for air or have to stop after an embarrassingly short period of time. However, the problem with running is that taking a day or two off seems to have much more serious consequences on my conditioning. While I’m able to put on my headphones and power through a workout on the elliptical when I’m not feeling so great, running with a full stomach, headache, or muscle aches is so much more difficult. I think that the hardest part of getting in shape is developing a routine. Once I’ve acclimated to fitting workouts into my daily schedule, it is easy to continue. My problem is always that a couple of days off easily turns into a week, or even a month. Then, before you know it, I’m back to struggling to run a mile without stopping.

So, I’m taking today off and have confined myself to my bed. I guess my evil gym nemesis wins this time. Having an earlier schedule during my current rotation has caused me to run into some new characters at the gym. Just about every day last week, I encountered a rather pixilated woman in the locker room. The first time I saw her, her eyes immediately narrowed and her lips pursed as I made my way to an empty section of lockers. (I think that sometimes it is an unfortunate skill to be able to pick up on body language.) My process is generally to dress/undress with my back turned and get out of there as fast as I can. However, this woman has apparently claimed the locker room as her own, and can often be found squatting completely naked, and slathering lotion all over herself in front of the mirror. I don’t have any problems with nudity—it kind of goes along with my future profession. However, I also don’t want to be made to feel that I’m encroaching on your space when your scrawny, greasy butt is the one parading about in a public locker room.

I don’t understand why with many women there has to be this immediate hostility or judging of appearances. If both of us are there to improve our health, why isn’t there a mutual respect or level of admiration for each other? I don’t know, maybe she feels threatened because I’m younger, or is disgusted by my body compared to her 5% body fat. Or maybe she goes to the gym for social reasons, and figures that another pair of ovaries decreases her odds. I just hate all of the cattiness that so often occurs between women. And maybe I am finding myself reacting to her hostility a little bit by dismissing her as emotionally unbalanced, and a poster child for an eating disorder.

I know that I shouldn’t let little things like this bother me, but having grown up being a people pleaser, sometimes it’s hard to let things go. My high school volleyball coach once said that “No matter how nice you are to everyone else, 10% of people out there aren’t going to like you no matter what you do. So when you encounter a person like that, just shake their hand, say to yourself, ‘Oh, you must be one of the 10%,’ and move on.” That’s something I think that I can still continue to work on. Just doing the right thing, treating others kindly, and not worrying about what their opinion is of me.


Chris said...

Great take on the 10%. Beautiful approach. I also pick up a lot in body language but Alexis gets mad when I start using it to manipulate her mood:)

I can't run on a treadmill. I like running but when I do it on a treadmill, the moment I get off, I get crazy motion sickness.

Do you care if I add your blog to my list of favorites? I know lots of folks that would be interested in what you have to say.

Kate said...

No, that's cool... I might be encouraged to write more if I thought more people were reading :)