Bad Day Workout – (My Fitness Journey – Vertex Fitness Diary 5)
I had a terrible day yesterday. I was ready for a “Bad Day Workout”.
It started with a doctor’s appointment. I had to get routine blood work done, which nearly always makes me feel dizzy and faint. I have done innumerable stupid things to end up bloodied up and bruised, but nothing freaks me out like needles do. I would rather be chased through the woods at night by Freddy than get blood work done. Therefore, I rely on the experience being a quick one to get myself through it. So, of course, they could not find a vein. As they put a Band-Aid on both of my bleeding arms, I asked them why they couldn’t just mop up some of that. They laughed as though they thought that I was kidding. So no dice.
The delay made me late for, what else, but my training session. My husband was with me to ensure I didn’t pass out and die on the drive home from the doctor’s, so I suggested he come to my work out to see what it was like. On the drive there we get stuck in a busy intersection, unable to move out of the way before the light turns red. An utterly delightful woman in a neon pink tracksuit interpreted the “walk” signal as an “it is my God-given right to charge into this intersection right now regardless of what the cars are actually doing” signal, and seemed somehow shocked that the cars didn’t simply just dissapparate out of her way. When my husband had to swerve around her as she tried to power walk in front of our moving vehicle, the woman became enraged, waving her hands around wildly. As we were still stuck at the red light, we got to hear her screaming at us through our open windows, and saw her step into the busy street again to snap a picture of our license plate. She then started screaming on a call to 911 about our “reckless driving”. Lovely.
In our family, my husband is the calm, reasonable one. I’m the unholy angel of vengeance. I can carry a grudge like a fine Coach purse. By the time we got to the facility, I was mad enough to eat nails and spit rust. At that point, I was angry that we hadn’t run her over.
I attacked the elliptical machine for my warm-up. I don’t think I’ve ever worked that hard in five minutes, ever. I’m pretty sure I saw smoke coming off the machine. When I stepped off, I somehow wasn’t as angry as I was when I gotten on. The beginning of my Bad Day Workout.
When it was time to start my work out, I attacked that too. I was paying close attention to my form, not just waiting for Dwayne to correct me. I was making sure that each rep was done with a full range of motion, and holding each rep at the end to make sure that I could feel it burning in the area I was supposed to.
When I was done, I felt drained in a way I hadn’t since my first few sessions at Vertex Fitness. I was, once again, the newborn baby deer as I wobbled my way back down the stairs, no longer stewing in anger and frustration.
It is amazing what a work out can do for a crappy day. We have learned as a society to compartmentalize our minds and our bodies. When we experience nearly every waking moment of our day through a screen, our bodies become an afterthought to shove Hot Pockets into as we tap and scroll with our free hand. When we’re stuck in our heads, like when we have a bad day, we don’t always realize that we can escape it by using our bodies.
I think that’s what makes scheduled exercise so, so important. I don’t think that Americans are overweight because we are lazy, I think it’s because we’ve been encouraged to think that we don’t have the luxury of that kind of time for ourselves. Do you know what keeps me exercising? I’m not even going to pretend that it’s because I have such a highly developed sense of self love and desire to be well. It’s because when I don’t feel like it, I can’t bring myself to be rude and to call and cancel on Dwayne. And when I’ve had a bad day, a workout can be better than therapy. I just may coin the term, “Bad Day Workout”