Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Going Nowhere

That is how I felt running on a treadmill for the first time since I started running over two years ago. How did I succumb to such a miserable fate? Well, I just could NOT run for 11 miles at endurance pace in single digit temps on the uneven, icy roads and sidewalks. I have either come to my senses or turned into a pussy (you be the judge.)

Since I hate the "health club" I do not have a membership, but my wife and kids do, so I went as a guest of my wife. Actually, I didn't. A and I had devised a plan where she would work out, then, when she was almost done, she would call me and I would leave the kids locked in their rooms and head to the club where she would welcome me as her guest and then leave shortly after to free the kids from their prisons. I walked in, did not see A, so I kept walking. No one stopped me or asked for a membership card. I looked for A and then sat and watched TV until she showed (it was a couple of minutes and I didn't want her to waste time looking for me - aren't I considerate?)

All the treadmills on the main floor were full but A pointed me to the ones upstairs that are reserved for "personal training." They were completely empty so I picked one in the front row at the very end. (Why is any of this important? It's not really except I thought it would keep me from being surrounded by weirdos.)

I brought my iPod loaded with fast pace house music to help pass the time, a bottle to drink and a Roctane because, hey, I am all about overkill. I started my run. All was going fine. Then I started to sweat. Not many of you, dear reader, have seen me in all my workout glory, but I am what is known as "a heavy sweater."

Not this kind of "heavy sweater."

This kind of "heavy sweater."

But without the glowering look, stubby alligator arms, ravishing good looks and movie "career."

The bouncing up and down of my stride combined with my slippery ear sweat kept making my ear buds fall out. After about a half hour of this nonsense I turned off the music and just gave up. Now I was doomed to hear everything that was going on around me. Of course, soon after I was joined to my right by Snorty-Lung-Biscuit-Coughing-Whistling-Whispering-Guy. Dude! I am like 18 inches from you and you are totally grossing me out! (He became #4,209 on the list of things I hate about "health clubs.")

One of the other reasons I hate the treadmill and the "health club" is that I am always afraid that I will end up being Sweaty-Leering-Guy. I can do a pretty good job of focusing on a distant point and not looking around, but people kept walking into my field of vision and although I was looking through them I am sure the guys thought I was staring at their crotches and the women thought I was leering at their butts. So I had to find a neutral place to look. And I can't watch TV while I run. It makes the time go even slower in my mind.

I stared at a sprinkler head in the ceiling for 45 minutes - altering my gaze only to check mileage and time. Running on a treadmill is DUMB!

To add to my anxiety I didn't realize until too late that I was right in front of the only water fountain in the area. So there I am - I have totally sweat through my shirt and shorts and I am flinging sweat all over the machine and people have to walk by me on a regular basis.

I finished my run, changed quick and the froze my ass off walking to the car. I guess it was better than waterboarding myself with a wet face mask around the lakes for about 90 minutes AND freezing my ass off.

At least I am not Smelly-Wheezy-Fat-and-Creepy Guy. (At least I don't think I am.)


NJ said...

Hilarious! I vote that you finally came to your senses just taking the fate handed to you living in this forsaken land of ice, snow and frigid cold. With the paths not even cleared and full of ice, you'd be nuts to risk the injury. As boring as the treadmill is, it'll help give you mental fortitude. Hillary Biscay does treadmill marathons for the mental aspect. Try that on for size!


I sometimes sleep with a heavy sweater.

MM said...

But did you put on mascara?

IAN said...

You are gonna totally hate me for it, but I ran on the Deathmill last night too. It was about 60 outside. But dark, and I had to lift before so I was already at the gym. I F-ING hate the those evil devices. For some reason the bike trainer doesn't bother me but deathmills drive me nucking futs! I only ran 40mins. 11mi is crazy. 13 is my top ever and I nearly killed someone for simply saying "hi" to me after I finished.

Beth said...

I agree with Ian - trainers not so bad, but treadmills - UGH!!! Awesome that you got that whole run in!! And I'm sure it was a much better quality run than if you ran outside.

Now I'd like to say that your pictures of "heavy sweaters" nearly made me snort my diet pepsi out of my nose!!!! :)

Molly said...

I don't even remember the last time I was on a treadmill, but this was a good reminder of why I'm happier outdoors no matter what! :)

Teresa said...

Now what would your story be if it truly were Matthew McCaughney next to you?


Charisa said...

Oh the deathmill. Ick!! I am a heavy sweater as well. Not the knitted kind. I don't get people who do not sweat. I have friends like this. We'll be climbing freaking Palomar in 100 degree heat and they don't sweat a drop!

kerrie said...

maybe if you had sweated a little more, chafed your nipples until they bled and made a few more disturbing sounds as you ran, people would have sought out another water fountain!!! fwiw, craig alexander runs on the treadmill on a regular basis in the frickin' SUMMER and it seems to work okay for him.

ADC said...

Next time take photos!!!

Question Authority. said...

18 miles once. At my pace, some of the people in the Y that started their workouts at the same time I did, finished, went home, ate supper, watched a movie, went to bed, got up, ate breakfast got, wentgyncea back to the Y and started the next day's workout.