Monday, December 7, 2009

Fat Lady on a Treadmill - Day Ten

Mondays are such interesting days at the pit. Everybody shows up. It was especially crowded this morning as the weather was as close to winter as L.A. gets, rain and 45 degrees, driving more people indoors for their daily torture routine.

I would have preferred to pull the covers over my head and sleep the day away, but alas, I have a long ‘to do’ list. Daughter #1 and I survey the pit. She heads for the one treadmill that is open and I head for the lounge chair bikes, virtually the only equipment underutilized today. My observations are limited by location, however people watching is something I’m good at, so I manage. There is the usual assortment of folks on the treadmills in front of me, including a C who tips the scales at no less than 350. He’s walking at a reasonable pace and not all that interesting until he pauses the machine and sinks to his knees on the tread. I’m close enough to see he is breathing and is able to wipe his brow so I’m not too concerned. After a few minutes he’s up and walking again. I’m impressed he hasn’t given up. I silently cheer him on.

Trance Lady is on the rack. Her hypnotist mustn’t have been available today because she has trouble maintaining the trance and eventually gives up the rack and morphs into a giant praying mantis, lunging around the pit in dramatic, pointy toed strides. I bet she could do a really spectacular curtsy. She stalks her way through the free weights and around to the stair thing-a-ma-jiggies.

M.M. is in the pit. I’ve decided he has A.D.D. He flits from one thing to the next, never spending more than a few minutes on any one task. Sprints on the treadmill, chin ups, push ups, stretches, … I’ve lost track of him. Damn.

I take up my usual spot on the stair climbing thingy, determined to do better today. I’m inspired by the firefighters on the racks in front of me. How do I know they are firefighters? Besides the t-shirts (not the generic tourist variety) there is the way they look. How many C’s have that look? Fit. Lean. Not an ounce of fat on them. Serious hair cut. Determined face. They work out as if their life and yours depends on it, and it does. What’s not to like about that?

I’m worried about the guy next to me – not a fire fighter. If he keeps sweating at that rate he’s going to short out that thing. Despite having a hand towel, sweat is pooling on the stairs and dripping down the side of the machine. I hope the wiring is properly insulated or we may have a serious problem here. Are these things plugged into GFI’s? Luckily there are fire fighters nearby.

Daughter #1 has had enough, and so have I. Trance Lady is still climbing stairs so it’s safe to go to the locker room. In a few minutes we’re out into the cold rain, heading home. I’ve climbed to the Top of the Rock (70 floors to the top of Rockefeller Center). That’s for all the 30 Rock fans. I’ve biked 5 miles at level 9. It’s a good day.

Goal this week – Climb to the lower observation deck on the Empire State Building – 86 floors- in one day.

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