About six months ago, my doctor and I had a conversation about exercise.
Doctor: So, other than the thing on your hip, how are you feeling?
Me: I’m a little rough around the edges, but I think I’m just getting old.
Doctor: You’re 41. That’s not old.
Me: Are you flirting with me?
Doctor: If you’re having joint pain or muscle aches, you might want to ease into a workout routine. Yoga is a great place to start.
Me: Yeah. I know. I once stopped seeing a gynecologist because he looked too much like Jeff and he had his photograph on his business card! Isn’t that funny?!
Doctor: Are you trying to change the subject? Come see me again for your physical in August, and we’ll talk about how yoga is going for you.
Me: This is our last goodbye. I will see you on the 12th. Of Never.
I looked up a yoga class schedule. I did! And the bad news is that school was ending in a few weeks (My excuses smell like fresh lemonade! Delicious!) and I didn’t have a backup plan for where the kids could go while I was downward dogging, so instead of making a few calls, I decided to ride out the summer in the style of a sloth.
Last night it occurred to me that my physical is less than four weeks away. As I sat at the computer researching local frozen yogurt dumps and looking at cute photos of my dog, it hit me: Maybe it’s time for me to do a Couch to 5K program! THAT will impress my doctor! I quickly Googled Couch to 5K and honest to God, my computer crashed. Seriously. This could be a sign. (Confession: I’ve always been slightly afraid that my heart would explode someday due to overexertion. This is why a comfortable couch and a good knitting bag are so important to me.)
This morning, while standing in the shower thinking, I ironed out my Couch to 5K reality. Here’s the thing: I hate to run, and I hate being outside in the heat. Similarly, I hate to sweat, and I hate feeling that parts of me are being jostled. With that said, it’s a nine week program. Nine weeks! That’s the life expectancy of a honey bee in the summertime! If I start “running” during the first week of September, I will be done before Thanksgiving! And forever after!
Me: Will I ever run outside if it’s hot or raining or there’s a chance that someone will see me?
Me: No. BUT, we belong to the J, so I can do this whole thing inside if I want to. And I can keep my eyes closed and PRETEND that no one sees me.
Me: But what’s the fun in that? Shouldn’t I be signing up for a REAL 5K to celebrate being ABLE to run? Shouldn’t there be slow motion finish lines and crying with people you’ve never met but can’t seem to stop hugging because of joy and pain and epinephrine?!
Me: Better yet, maybe I’ll celebrate by getting up at 5:45 in the morning, driving to the J, running five kilometers on the inside track before anyone else shows up, and then driving back home where Jeff will congratulate me with a plate of pancakes. After breakfast, maybe I’ll attempt to do a cartwheel and the girls will hang one of their Little Gym medals around my neck.
Me: Yes. And then I’ll take a nap and give myself the rest of the day off to knit, spin, or whine about how much it all hurts.
Question: Have you done the Couch to 5K thing? If I do it at all, I’m going to do it on my own. I don’t want anyone else to have to depend on me, because I get all flaky when it comes to sweating. (I went to a garage sale this weekend, and as soon as I felt sweat dripping down my back, I flipped out and went home. I suppose I need to work through this “Sweat? GO HOME NOW!” response if I’m going to experience success on the track.) All caps IF I do it, you’ll be the first to know. Because I’ll need someone to give me some music recommendations. And I’ll need someone to step up and say, “It’s okay to quit if you want to.” And then I’ll need someone ELSE to say, “Hey. Let’s go grab coffee and not work out. Because we’re pretty.” It takes a village.