Monday, February 23, 2015

View From the Back of the Gym

            Like many people, I determined to work out more in 2015. We have a free gym membership, so instead of walking outside I have been going to the gym.
            Just walking into the gym inspires me. There are all types of people with the common goal of exercising themselves to good health. Every age range, color, gender, body size and fitness level is represented. The fitness level of people varies depending on the time of day.
  • 5:00-6:00am = the diehard athletes, dedicated in shape peeps
  • 9:00am = moms with young kids (the gym daycare is open) group classes: yoga,     zumba,   unsynchronized aquatic dancing
  • Noon = the lunch bunch, serious business folks on lunch break, dash and done in 45 minutes
  • After work = New Years resolution peeps, teenagers, serious body builder types, committed folks using all the machines
            I’m with the treadmill group. Whatever time I go, I prefer the treadmill. I have done some swimming, some weight machines, a few yoga classes and one zumba class. Still, I always go back to the treadmill group. They are my tribe.
            At this gym the treadmills are lined up against the back wall, facing in towards the middle of the gym. This makes for great people watching. You can see almost everyone in the gym. The testosterone weight lifting zone, the intense stair stepping sweat-ers, the socializing weight machines peeps, the senior men circuit machine corner, and the specialized speed school sprinters. It is an awesome view of gym life!
            There are some funny sights from the back row of the gym. Here is my short list from this month:
·      A young guy with his treadmill incline set at ‘Mt Everest’ and the speed set at ‘warp’, hanging on for dear life as his size 12 Nikes slapped the tread.
·      The guy on his cell phone talking to the police about a possible fight he may or may not have been involved in
·      The time I accidently switched to the Cooking Chanel and the two guys on either side of me were so mesmerized watching my screen I didn’t dare change the channel. The three of us watched asparagus polenta for half an hour.
·      The time all the back row treadmills were taken and I had to run (ok, walk and run) on a treadmill in front of the coveted last row. There was only one man in my row of 20 treadmills. I had my ear buds in listening to a Michael Hyatt podcast, when I started hearing loud singing.  Over the gym music, and Michael Hyatt, I could hear the guy singing out loud in my row. I looked over to see Clarence the angel, from It’s A Wonderful Life, dressed in street clothes singing “That’s amore!” acapella as he walked! I looked at him and then snuck a glance behind me to the back row tread millers. Snickers and smirks looked back at me as if to say, “Sucker – you are stuck with the singer today!”
·      The time a zero percent body fat person, with a shaved head, jumped up to reach above her head to hang from a bar. She swung her legs straight up in the air to meet her hands. I thought the bars were there to hang towels on. I had no idea it was a suspended reverse sit-up apparatus. The gal’s abs looked like they were sculpted with photo shop for a super hero costume. She did 10 sets of 10 torturous reps right in front of the treadmills. It was an incredible athletic feat. I had never seen anything like it. I turned to the guy beside me to see if he was impressed. Nope. Pretending to watch basketball highlights.
            I’m sure I look equally amusing wearing my faded red Avon running shirt from 1997, which doubles as my painting shirt, and my favorite visor that my daughter refuses to be seen with me in.
            I just love the view from the back row treadmills!

            It reminds me of how different we all are, and yet God loves each of us equally. At the gym people have to earn their washboard abs with days, months and years spent on the reverse ab bars. Thankfully, we don’t have to earn God’s love. No amount of good works or spiritual workouts improve our standing with Him. He accepts us just as we are, physically, emotionally and spiritually in shape or out of shape.
“For physical training is of some value (useful for a little), but godliness (spiritual training) is useful and of value in everything and in every way, for it holds promise for the present life and also for the life which is to come.” 1 Timothy 4:8 (Amp)

How is your view from where you are?