Thursday, February 24, 2005

Draining the J

Each day (except Friday, usually) after work I go to the gym to work out. I don't really talk about it much here on this blog, because frankly, if there's one thing more boring than someone writing about the details of their job (which, sadly, I do), it's someone writing about the details of their workouts. I suppose I'm about to sink to that depth as well, but I promise that this is a one-shot deal.

Normally I go through a fairly standard routine which involves lifting and running, and it generally takes about an hour and a half to go through the whole thing each time. Tonight I decided to add a new wrinkle to the routine by attending a group exercise class.

Each Thursday, Brandi teaches a class called "Boot Camp." It's called this, I assume, because it's modeled to a certain extent after the intense workouts that are assigned to new military personnel, except it's only for one hour a week and there's no grizzled drill instructor in your face hurling epithets at you the whole time. At least, not in theory. At any rate, Brandi has been teaching this class pretty much since she started working at the gym, and she's been sort of halfheartedly trying to get me to come the whole time. Tonight, against my better judgment, I decided I would finally go.

Let me just start by saying that I'm going to be very sore tomorrow. I'm starting to be sore now, in fact. Normally, from what I understand, the class mainly deals in cardio workouts, with a variety of running exercises and aerobic routines. However, this past weekend Brandi attended a fitness conference and got all sorts of new ideas for things to add to her class, and of course, this is the week I decided to come. Did she tell me this class was going to be harder than usual when she asked me to come? Or, more importantly, when I indicated that I actually would come? No, she did not. The love of my life, ladies and gentlemen. She's so kind to me.

I actually feel like I did pretty well with the running portion of the class, at least the part that dealt with laps around the track and up and down the stairs. Of course, those segments were punctuated with sets of push-ups, sit-ups, and various other exercises designed mainly, I think, to punish my stomach and shoulder muscles. I managed to get through all of it with a minimum of pausing, though. Toward the end of the class we were doing some shuttle runs and sprints, and that drained me pretty quickly. I actually had to sit out a round of those just to get my breath back. I feel pretty weak about that, but I'm not letting it bother me too much. It's just a type of training that I haven't been doing, and I'll have to work that sort of thing into my routine to get stronger in that area.

That said, despite the punishment my body took this evening and the complaining that it is currently doing (and preparing to do even moreso tomorrow, I'm certain), I think I'm going to try to attend the class each week. It'll be good to have that one day of variance in my workout routine, and besides, that's really the sort of thing I was looking for when I started working out in the first place. My main impetus for it, without getting into too many embarrassing details, was getting winded while playing basketball. That sort of up-and-down running, going from all-out to rest, is what I really want to get better at. Going to the class each week will help with that. If it makes Brandi happy in the bargain, that's even better.

Of course, the best part of the deal came after the class. The class is held on the gym's basketball court. I had never really been in there before, despite the fact that I love basketball. After the class is open gym time, so I was able to shoot some hoops for a while. I hadn't done so in a long time, probably a couple of years at least, and it was a lot of fun. It took a few shots before I got my touch back, but I'm happy to report that I'm still money from three-point land. I can see myself spending a lot more time on the court up there, at least until the weather improves and I can play outside.

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