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Friday, March 14, 2008

 

On The Road To Nowhere

Exercise is important. Doing some form of it helps relieve stress and depression. It helps raise the rate of your metabolism, thereby burning off more of those dreaded calories we all somehow inhale. It also, per WebMD and any doctor you come in contact with, helps prevent or lessen the effects of many diseases and syndromes.

As a person who has both a “nerve-ending syndrome” and rheumatoid arthritis, I HAVE to exercise. It’s definitely a “use it or lose it” type of thing.

If I had the luxury of doing my favorite form of movement-I’d take my crotchety 50-year old body, put on my very old (but still fitting-hah!) leotards and tights and hustle on back to jazz class. But since I don’t-I put on my leggings or sweats, lace up my walkers and either walk outside with Sunshine (my lovely lab mix) or hop onto either my treadmill or exercycle.

This brings me to the title of this article. I own a treadmill. My sister has generously loaned me her exercise bike as well.

Personally-I’d rather be outdoors with my faithful and beloved walking companion of over 10 years, music playing in my ears, stupid poop bag in my fanny pack and my emergency cell phone hooked on me. You’ll notice at no time did I didn’t say I looked good, just that I preferred it.

But when the weather gets in the way-which it does, even here in “sunny” Southern California-or my joints are not cooperating with the idea of going up and down the various slopes on my route, I have to rely on the dreaded machines.

Theoretically, I know either one of them give me a better, more consistent workout, but it just really isn’t as much fun. Both tell me exactly how fast I’m going, how many miles I’ve gone, my heart rate and calories I’ve supposedly burned. If you want to believe the digital readouts, somewhere along the lines, I owe myself a cookie.

When I’m on the treadmill, I turn on the television and watch the food network. If I’m on the exercycle, I grab a book or a magazine.

Yet, even though I’m doing two things at once-I haven’t been able to say I feel that “high” that I receive from walking outside with my pooch. I don’t feel as if I’ve accomplished near as much.

Being on the road to nowhere may make the grade physically, but for me, it loses the part where I get to come home feeling “better”. Yes, I know I’ve been active for 30 or more minutes and that I’ve been sweating. I “see” what good has been done for my body. It just doesn’t feel as “weight-lifting” as getting out in the open, on the streets with my headset of dance music wafting in my ears.

I love the sun, the air and looking at what’s around me. In a way, I’m not only doing something physical and emotional, but environmental as well. I feel good about picking up the trash in my wake and beautifying the area I frequent. It truly gives me a feeling of power and satisfaction.

Being on the road to nowhere may help the size of my jeans stay in the lower single digits, but it just doesn’t do as much for my soul.

Comments:
I'm a stairmaster fan myself. But I'm also with you . . . I just love getting outdoors, usually riding my bike. But we'll need better than 40 or 30 degree temperatures here to do that.

And since the stairmaster is at the local recreation center and my pass there expired, I just climb the stairs at home, from the basement to the second floor, usually 20 times. That's a workout!
 
I used to (pre-broken foot)do the stairs as much as possible as well Dave, but it's not my "best moment" shall we say! LOL I try, but I'm still not exactly "fleet of foot"-some days are better than others.
today we're expecting rain-so I guess I'd better make up my mind which machine I'm going to frequent!
 
I enjoyed reading your post. I just found out that there are plenty of techniques which can be used to relief stress. I tried some of them and they work pretty well for me. Give it a try at http://www.howtorelievestress.org
 
louie welcome and glad you enjoyed reading along. thanks for the tip
 
Definitely agree with you, Carine. It is much more enjoyable/good for your soul to be outside walking instead of inside on a machine - even if any exercise at all keeps you in smaller blue jeans :)

I've been wearing gloves and a parka the last few mornings I've been out walking on Alicia - it's COLD out there at 6;30 a.m. - brrrrr !
 
Hi Annie, have been waiting for your return! Did you have a wonderful time? It has been cold in the mornings. Don't know how Sunshine and I used to jog at 5:30. I can't even get up at 6:15 to easily anymore. The pooch and I did have a great walk on Alicia Saturday!
Welcome home.
 
I hate exercising! Must be that I hate to sweat --- it feels awful. My favorite form of exercise is on a treadmill in an air conditioned room with others doing the same thing. The comaraderie gets me going; the road to nowhere is lovely, especially if there is a TV on the road.
 
that's about the only way I can stand it kacey! either the tv or a good book/puzzle on the exercycle!
 
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