Column: Pumping iron

So I finally started my New Year’s resolution last week. I realize it’s a month and a half after the fact, but my resolutions are always notoriously half-assed.

I tried to give up chocolate last year, but then Easter came and those evil Cadbury Egg commercials started airing. Needless to say, I cracked. The lame egg pun was unintentional.

So you’re probably wondering what pursuit I’ve taken up this year. Well, it’s nothing too exciting, so don’t get your hopes up. Seeing as I can’t give up chocolate, I decided to compensate by working out more. To be more accurate, I should say start working out in general.

Don’t get me wrong – I’m not a terribly unhealthy person. When I get my Digiorno frozen pizzas, I make sure to get the Supreme ones with the frozen veggies. I also go to the ARC sometimes. I’m not saying I actually make it out of the ARC Starbucks and into the gym, so don’t get any crazy ideas. You have to admit, though – it takes some effort to get into the car, drive there and walk inside.

I’m also taking a badminton P.E. class this quarter. However, I’m 5-foot-10 so this basically consists of me planting myself in one place and flicking my wrist every now and then. I’m blessed with the reach of a Stretch Armstrong doll.

Basically, I decided it was time to try something more vigorous. To spare myself the embarrassment and shame of working out in front of my people, I opted not to go to the ARC. I also wanted to spare everybody the sight of me dying on some torturous machine. It was in everyone’s best interest. Instead, I decided to go to the gym at my friend’s apartment complex. She said it was nice and rarely frequented, and that was more than enough for me.

The first hitch in my plan came when I was getting dressed to go. I was missing a crucial item for my endeavor. This, my friends, was a sports bra. I wish I could say this wasn’t problematic, but for me, it was. All of my sports bras were back in my hometown where I was formerly an active human being.

My solution was to wear two tight tank-tops underneath a T-shirt and just see what happened. I realized this was a terrible, terrible mistake after about five minutes of being on an elliptical. (Note to self: When working out, you sometimes get warm. You will probably also emit moisture from your skin. Gross.)

Anyway, I met my friend at her apartment and we headed on over to the gym. There was no one in there and I was elated. My friend then turned the television to the Olympics, so we could both watch how much better people are at things than me. Awesome.

I walked over to an elliptical – something I haven’t been on in five years – and I plugged in the height, age and weight info it wanted. I typed in my weight, but accidentally punched in 0 for my age. The machine must have thought I was the fattest newborn ever. Maybe that’s why the workout was so hard.

I’d say the first eight minutes were all right, but then the stupid device started to elevate on me. I spent the next seven minutes trying not to die. To makes things worse, some jolly, balding man then trounced into the room. He parked himself on a bike right next to me and began peddling.

All was well and good until he started talking to me. He thought he was sooo cool because he could move his legs really fast and talk at the same time. I tried to communicate back to him, but all he got were inaudible words and some wheezes. I think he took the hint.

The workout ended with me peddling backward for 15 minutes. My legs were jelly at this point, so it didn’t quite work out. One was trying to go backward and the other was peddling forward. I ended up just awkwardly standing there. I took this as my cue to stop.

I’d say overall my first workout was a success. I felt pretty awful and my three shirts were soaked, so I’d say something was definitely accomplished. I’m confident I will make it back to the gym eventually. I just hope it’s before next New Year’s.

AMANDA HARDWICK needs some motivation. You can drop off some Odwalla bars for her at The Aggie or send her some encouraging words at aghardwick@ucdavis.edu.

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