On Becoming A Gym Rat

on Oct 23, 2011 by Michael Rupured

I never saw it coming. Nobody who knows me or who has ever known me would have predicted it, either. I have become a gym rat.

According to the Urban Dictionary, a gym rat is:

One who spends entirely too much time partaking in muscle building, strength training, cardiovascular, or aerobic activity. Specifically, one who does so at a health club or gym.

Believe it or not, I now hit the gym six days a week. Sometimes it’s just for a one-hour class. Today I spent almost three hours at the gym. And no, smartass, I’m not just watching the men lifting weights.

My personal trainer, Armand (pronounced with the accent on the first syllable so that it rhymes with almond) has put together three custom workouts for me. He’d like for me to do each one every week. Since I also have a weekly session with him, that means four trips to the gym each and every week for strength training.

Zumba is my favorite aerobic exercise. My gym offers Zumba classes three times a week. I’m there, front and center in a perfectly coordinated outfit, for each and every class. Besides Zumba, I also enjoy the step aerobic class and am trying to make it to one every week.

I’ve been trying other classes, too. Today I took my first Yoga class. My 73 year-old mother takes yoga. How hard could it be? All those dogs, swans, frogs, and cats damn near killed me. I’m simply not able to put my left big toe in my right ear while balancing on my right leg. Unlike the spin class I tried a few weeks ago, I kind of want to give Yoga another try. Increasing my flexibility would be good for me.

Besides Zumba, strength training, step aerobics and Yoga, I’m still working on the Couch to 5K program. I’m up to week five, day three and haven’t had to repeat a session yet. Yesterday my earphone came unplugged which caused me to miss the five minute walk between two eight-minute runs. I ran the entire twenty-one minutes, and for the first time, felt like I could run all day. Now that the weather is turning cold, I’ve been doing my C25K (three times a week) at the gym, too.

My trainer and most experts recommend taking a day off from exercising one day a week. My body more or less insists on it, too. Consequently, I have to fit three Zumba classes, four strength-training sessions, three runs, and any extra classes I take into six days.  That means doubling and even tripling up on some days to get it all in. I’ve reached the point where I sit down on Sunday mornings to figure out my gym schedule for the week.

The good news is that I’m racking up nearly 100 activity points every week with Weight Watchers. Tomorrow is my weigh in day and I fully expect to lose all three of the pounds I picked up last week in Kentucky. I’m also not nearly as sore as I was the first week or two, even when I do too much. My body is adjusting.

Considering all the exercise I get, I’m less concerned about my weight. I just want to be healthy. Armand took all my measurements during our first session. He’ll check them again after ninety days–right around Christmas. If I keep going to the gym six days a week (which I definitely plan to do), I expect big changes from head to toe.

The more I do, the more energy I have and the more I’m able to do. Exercising makes me feel good, physically and mentally. Sooner or later, I’ll see the body of a gym rat when I look in the mirrors here in…

My Glass House

2 Comments

  1. Amy says:

    Where on earth to you find the time? Do you get up at the ass-crack of dawn and not go to bed until midnight?
    I don’t know if I can be friends with such an over-achiever. You make me look bad. 🙂

    • Yes, I’m generally up by 6–even on weekends, but rarely stay up later than 10. Even so, finding the time is a struggle. I just had to decide I was worth it. I would add that it took me quite a while to work up to this level of activity. You should come to Zumba class with me sometime. It’s fun!

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