Weight a Minute

1 Mar

This morning I realized that after a long, bitter winter, I am done with the treadmill. I actually dragged my feet into the gym and sighed wearily as I punched the buttons on the machine to get the damned thing going.

They’re great machines, treadmills, but that doesn’t mean I have to like them. I’m definitely an open road kind of girl. I like the freedom, and the sunshine (assuming there is any), and the feel of a light wind on my face. Road running makes me feel invigorated and carefree.

Treadmill running makes me feel like a lab rat doing an experiment. I can picture the men in white coats standing on the other side of a one-way mirror, observing my every move and deciding what mind-altering drugs to inject into my brain next.

I have a history of using the treadmill only in extreme circumstances. Last winter I didn’t use the treadmill at all because it was so mild, and there was very little snow. Even though it was dark, I could go running at five in the morning and not worry about ice.

I did have to worry about a chiropractic injury that had me crying like a baby for three months, but that’s another story.

This winter I’ve been making extensive use of the treadmill because the weather has been so messed up. We have spent some time in a deep, deep freeze, with temperatures going down to -30 degrees Celsius (or -22 degrees Fahrenheit). When it’s that cold out, I cannot even breathe, and despite layer upon layer of clothing, my entire body goes numb within about five minutes.

Along with the cold, there has been snow and ice. When the cold has abated, the snow and ice have remained. It has been treacherous out there, and so I have only been willing to run outside at times when I can actually see where I’m going. Without the ability to see where I’m planting my foot, I run the risk of landing on my ass while anyone who happens to be nearby points and laughs. Since I only have time to run before work when it’s still dark, this has meant a long sentence of treadmill running.

This morning, I just couldn’t take it anymore. I got onto the treadmill and decided on a hill training workout. Just fifteen minutes in, though, I’d had enough and I had to stop. It wasn’t that I was tired (I wasn’t). It wasn’t that my legs were sore (they weren’t). I was just out-and-out fed up with running on the treadmill.

Despite cutting my run short – something that did not sit well with my consciousness – I managed to make a decent workout out of the whole thing. I headed over to the weights section and pumped iron for a while.

I was surprised at how much I enjoyed it. It has been months since I did a decent weights workout, and this morning convinced me that I should reinstate it in my regular routine. I liked feeling the burn in my muscles, that sensation that allows you to visualize the cells in your muscles knitting together and getting stronger.

Regular weight training will make me a better runner.

It won’t hurt when I want to look pretty on my wedding day, either!

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2 Responses to “Weight a Minute”

  1. S Club Mama - Randi March 1, 2011 at 4:04 PM #

    I am feeling the same way about the treadmill. I did run outside a few days last week (because of the awesome weather!) but before that I think it’s been since October since I ran outside. So sad. I believe that God made our bodies need Vitamin D so that we NEED to go outside. I’m not much of an outdoorsy person but I’m feeling the winter blues. Come on spring!

    If you want another workout to do besides running, Jillian Michaels 6 Week 6 Pack is awesome! 35 minute workouts. You don’t NEED weights (but you can find a bottle of water or canned vegetables to use, too, if you don’t have weights) but a yoga mat is helpful so you don’t slip (lots of planks). I know this has strengthened my core (you can’t see abs but I can feel them!) AND my arms and shoulders look great. Anyway, just a thought. 🙂

  2. runningforautism March 1, 2011 at 4:23 PM #

    Thanks for the tip – I’ll going to look that up for sure! I want nicer arms and shoulders for when I’m wearing my wedding dress!

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