Every morning, my wife and I lug ourselves out of bed at 6 am. We feed the dog, chug a cup of coffee and choke back a yogurt. We then dress in regular shorts and T-shirt and head out to the gym. We’ve been doing this for a little over a month now, ever since we noticed our burgeoning waistlines after we’d quit smoking. I’d prefer to go later in the day, but we decided this was a task we wanted to tackle together, and since my wife works in the morning and I work in the afternoon, the only choices we were left with were to head out early or later in the evening.
Regardless, we’ve been fairly religious about going. Not religious in the hymn singing, kneeling and praying sort of way, but consistent. We go every day during the week. We alternate between cardio (we both dread cardio day with a passion) and weight lifting. On the weekends we take a break but try to do something active outside, such as go for a long walk or roller blade or something.
We’ve also changed the way we eat. We don’t keep sweets in the house anymore. We try to eat smaller portions and while I used to be a dedicated carnivore, we rarely eat meat any more. We’ve almost gone vegetarian. We eat more nuts, legumes etc. Sometimes I have nightmares about salad, but that’s a story for another day.
By doing these things, my wife has lost about 15 lbs and I’ve lost 10 lbs. We’ve both gained some muscle mass. We both feel better about ourselves. We can do a bit more, lift a whack more and we don’t get as winded as we used to.
That being said, neither of us are glamorous people. When we go to the gym, we look tatty (not in a cool tattoo kind of way) and barely awake. Our hair is fairly messy. Our clothes are old because we don’t want to wreck our better clothes that are still wearable in public. We don’t wear make-up…err…my wife doesn’t wear makeup. I never do anyways. That would be silly.
However, I’ve noticed in the change-room that I’m in the minority. When I go in to change, I see men doing their hair, making sure not a hair is out of place. They’re preening in front of the mirror, flexing, checking themselves out and I just don’t understand it. Why do people worry about their hair when they’re about to spend an hour plus sweating their arses off? Isn’t their hair about to be messed up anyways? Do they think a woman is going to stop her workout to jump their bones?
When I approach the gym, I do so like a man who goes to a job he doesn’t particularly enjoy – reluctantly but realizing that it’s something that must be done.
That sounds harsh, I know. Honestly, there are days I enjoy going. But on average, the last thing I’m worried about is how I look while lifting and running my butt off. What I’m concerned about is getting my hour in and getting the hell out of there. I want to put in my work and I try not to be lazy about it, but screw looking fabulous while doing it.
When I asked my wife, she said the female change-room looks pretty much the same. The difference being they actually chat. Unless two guys come in together, I don’t think I’ve actually witnessed two males spark up a conversation on purpose. I’ve seen a few say ‘sorry’ when they get in the way and sometimes we nod our head in someones general direction to say ‘hi’, but it’s a pretty silent tomb-like place overall.
But like I said, maybe I’m the crazy one because there are even articles in prominent magazines about how to dress for the gym. Or maybe I’ve just handed in the towel and resigned myself to looking a mess when working out…and much of the rest of the time, also.
Or maybe I’m just a grumpy puss because I’d rather be sleeping…