Health & Wellness

Gym #AtoZChallenge

7 Apr , 2019  

If you know me at all, you might think my answer to, “What was your least favorite subject in school?” was math. It wasn’t. Not even close.

It was “gym class.”

It still is. But I know, now, that the alternative – “excuse-ridden couch potato” – isn’t good for me. It isn’t serving my overall health and fitness goals. I used to have a gym membership, and was more inclined to go if goaded by my teenaged son, so I added him onto my membership. Then he moved away and I let it lapse.

Sure, long, brisk walks at the park are my favorite form of exercise. But this is Houston; weekends are often too hot and sweaty, too cold and damp, or too stormy for long walks in the park. I love walking in a warm rain – the absolute best is sunshowers on a hot day – but when I say that it’s “rainy” in Houston, think Hurricanes Ike and Harvey. Think wind. Think lightning. Think “drenching deluge.” With more lightning.

I need a gym membership. So yesterday, I got off my couch potato butt and joined a “luxury athletic resort.” (I guess they figured out the ultimate tagline for people who still shudder at the thought of their middle-school gym teachers.) With my law school background, I balked at the waiver they make you sign just to tour the facilities, but I didn’t blame them for the CYA – someone might hurl a medicine ball at me, or a ceiling tile could fall, or I could slip and land in the pool.

I did not expect to take a header into the rock climbing area.

Did I mention I’m a klutz?

I twisted my ankle badly and scraped my face on the somewhat soft, rubbery chunks of flooring designed to keep climbers from breaking their asses if they fall. A safety measure gone wrong, if you don’t realize that the basketball court flooring gives way to flooring that…gives way. That I did not break my glasses was a good sign. The salesman reached over and plucked bits of black, rubbery gravel from my hair. I could not help but laugh as I tried desperately not to limp. “I’m okay!” I was not okay. I was dying inside, but grinning on the outside. I went ahead and paid the initiation fee and first month’s dues, all the while joking and extracting promises of a do-over if I couldn’t meet with the personal trainer next weekend due to sports injuries.

“Oh, you’re fine,” the salesman said, indulging in wishful thinking. I appreciated that, though – he didn’t treat me like a little old lady or suggest calling an ambulance to get it x-rayed at the hospital next door. I mean, why bother? I’d signed away not only all rights to sue for injury, but they could literally take photos of me being hauled away on a stretcher to laugh at on Facebook.

I smiled. “Probably.” As I said to my daughter a few days ago, I whine something awful over a cold – after all, there’s just no cure for the misery, so there’s nothing to do about it but whine. On the other hand, if I smile, brush it off, tell you it’s nothing – I might actually die.

Probably not. But, I could barely walk. A trip to my orthopedic specialist for x-rays in a few days was a very real possibility. I did the Costco run, convinced I’d be spending Sunday in an ankle brace, eating bonbons on the couch. Admittedly, it did not hurt like a broken ankle, nor nearly as bad as the time I tore my MCL skiing – I figured it was a grade 1 sprain, at worst. Then again, I walked around on a broken foot for over a month, once, till I decided the little tiny twinges I felt each time I lifted it weren’t quite “normal.” Either way, I’d likely be hobbling for a couple of weeks.

Rest, Ice, Elevate, Compress. After dinner, I crawled into bed like an old lady and propped my foot up on pillows while watching TV. My daughter is appalled at how little sleep I need, while I’m impressed by how regular her routine is, these days. I dozed off around 11, in a fair bit of pain, and woke up at 7 AM wondering where my foot was. Because it wasn’t in half the agony I’d anticipated. I looked down. Still attached. Barely a twinge of pain. Slightly swollen lump atop my foot, just below the ankle bone. Turning a lovely shade of blue.

All my excuses have vanished.

Time to try rock climbing.

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13 Responses

  1. #atozchallenge guidelines say something like a post of around 100 words, not two dissertation sized rants daily


  2. Jz says:

    Did the words, “Sign from God” flash through your mind?
    (just wondering…)

    Happy A-Z’ing

    • Might have, ever so briefly! I chose to power through and believe that the sign was “get your ass in shape” and not “you shouldn’t be out exercising,” though.

  3. Unishta says:

    Gym was my least favourite subject too . And even now I get exhausted just thinking up exercise routines in my head .
    I need to lose 20 lbs though if I need to avoid knee replacement therapy (not to mention other weight related diseases).
    Hope your ankle heals well enough for you to enjoy your gym membership.

    • Thank you! We are in this together! Fortunately, my ankle feels 85-90% better already – nothing but a bit sore, so it seems no serious damage was done (and for that, I’m thankful – torn tendons are NO fun!) And the gym membership will come in handy for its “rehab” – having broken the other ankle a few years ago, I know just the exercises and equipment needed by BOTH of them to regain strength and stability! πŸ™‚

  4. Debbie D. says:

    My first thought was “bad omen”, but thankfully, the damage wasn’t too severe. πŸ™‚ Hopefully, you’ve recovered well and can enjoy that membership. Gym (known as “Phys Ed” around here) was also my least favourite class and I was medically excused in high school, due to a lifelong wonky ankle (which finally broke completely in 1998).
    Debbie D. recently posted…THE STALKER | SHE CHRONICLES – EPISODE SIX #amwritingMy Profile

    • Part of why I wanted to join a gym, as opposed to doing exercises in my own living room, is that I don’t have the weight machines (particularly the leg press) that were so helpful after I broke the other ankle a few years ago. (See, that’s why I knew this wasn’t BROKEN, at least – I know what THAT feels like! LOL I also know what a SLIGHTLY broken foot feels like, and I’m pretty sure I’m fine – just like the sales guy said I was! Still excruciatingly painful, though, at the time – only clue that I might not need medical attention was the lack of tears. I give myself away when I’m hiding things – smiling like a fool while water drips down my face!)

  5. Shilpa Gupte says:

    So, you are planning on going rock climbing? After that fall? πŸ˜›
    I admire your courage and your tenacity, Holly! You go, girl! <3

    • Hahahaha… I wasn’t climbing, just walking from the basketball court to the rock climbing area. Was not expecting that the black floor would give way – that it wasn’t solid, but made of chunks of black rubbery “rocks”! It would be a great area to TEST ankle and knee stability.

      I dislike rock climbing. I love rapelling. I don’t love rapelling enough to bother with the climbing part, but if I could JUST descend, that would be fun.

  6. Damyanti says:

    Hope you’re totally healed now, Holly!

    And yep, go rock-climbing, rather you than me lol.
    Damyanti recently posted…#WritingCommunity , Want Short Story Tips from Award-winning Author Michelle Ross?My Profile

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