Smoke on the water

When I first started working out in the gym it was frankly terrifying. Outside of one week in my senior year of high school I had literally never lifted weights. Not free weights, not machine weights. Nothing,

Learning how to use the machines was a bit intimidating at first. But I have a goal and part of that means working out 3.5 times a week.

I was working so hard on figuring things out I took a notebook to the gym and after each machine i would record what the name of the lift was, how much weight, how many reps, and if it was too easy, too hard, or just right.

After lacking any motivation whatsoever Saturday and failing in every goal I had set except catching up on watching Hard Knocks I decided to make my regularly scheduled workout Sunday afternoon a punishing workout. After all, not even getting out of the apartment Saturday was...well...pathetic.

So I did. I did a stout warmup, pumping out between 165 and 200 watts for 15 minutes on the stationary bike to loosen up.

Then I started in on the machines.

And on the first machine, I set a new personal record for max weight. This new record, by the way, is 50% heavier than the weight I lifted on this machine the first time I lifted. And managed to lift that same amount through all three sets. Never before have I lifted the same weight all three sets...I have always had to decrease it.

Then I did the second machine...and the same story. personal record for max weight, managed to complete three sets at that weight.

In fact, on 6 separate machines I set records for max weight, and I completed all three sets. I also added two machines I had never used before and used every machine I have ever used even once. So personal records for number of machines.

Then I shot baskets for a half hour.

Then back to the stationary bike for a punishing half hour.

Net; record amount of time in the gym. I felt good about that. I still feel good.

I feel good because I set a goal and am working towards it, ignoring set backs and powering past hurdles that in the past I might have thought not worth powering past.

That is personal growth. I am pretty happy about that. I have pushed myself in ways to places I never thought I would or could.

This is turning out to be, in many ways, the best year of my life. We won a championship in basketball, my friend and I are bicycle riding huge numbers of miles for us, I have dropped 19 pounds and developed muscle definition in my arms for the first time ever, I get to play tennis a bit most weeks, I am golfing, hitting the gym, and just in general being as active as I have been since I was about 19 years old.

I am feeling more fit and energetic than I have in years, working a new job I love, and things are moving forward.

In fact, if my wife was here with me instead of doing what we gotta do for 6 more months, it would be perfect.

But it leads to an interesting question.

I think it is obvious I love sports. I like to play basketball, softball, tennis, golf, volleyball, and to bike. I like to watch basketball, football, hockey and baseball.

Which leads me to wonder; millions of people play sports. Some of us play very well, some play very poorly. I wonder what most people enjoy more; watching a good game between two talented, motivated teams...or playing themselves, even on a bad team?

Thanks to the wonders of DVR, I of course do both...but what is more fun?

Arguably, it depends on who you are with when you do it.

1 comment:

Riot Kitty said...

We need to play tennis soon! I am glad things are going so well - you certainly deserve it, amigo.