Tuesday, May 13, 2008

What I Sound Like When I Talk To Myself

I've been going to the gym lately. I know, it's shocking, but it's true. What's even more shocking is that I kind of enjoy it. Only kind of. Mostly it's hell, but I feel better when I'm done, so I'm trying to convince myself that I do kind of enjoy it, in an effort to keep myself going.

Anyway. I load up my ancient iPod shuffle with Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me, Car Talk, Fresh Air and This American Life and I can wile away an hour on the treadmill without too much angst. Ira Glass, for some reason, makes for a really good workout. Probably because I want to hear what's coming up next. I'll keep walking that extra five minutes or extra half a mile to finish a segment. I'm a TAL addict.

But I do have a constant battle with myself. It goes something like this:

"OK. iPod on, treadmill set, water bottle full; I'm ready, I'm good, let's go."

Five minutes later:
"I really should have brought a towel. My face is getting sweaty."

Two minutes later:
"Fucking hell, why didn't I bring a towel?"

Seven minutes later:
"Jesus, who's farting? I think I'm going to puke."

Six minutes later:
"This is killing me. I want to stop."
"You can't stop, you asshole, you've only done 1.25 miles. Suck it up and keep going."

Ten minutes later:
"I'm dying. This SUCKS. I don't want to do this any more."
"Listen, you cow, you can do this. Look at that lady over there. She'd older/heavier/more arthritic than you and she's slogging away."

Five minutes later:
"I wanna stop now."
"Nope. Five more minutes. C'mon, you can do five more minutes. Look at the old biddy on the bike. She's, like, 90 and she's having at it. Are you going to be shown up by a 90 year old woman? Wuss."

Ten minutes later:
"Calves. Burning. Face. Sweating. Please make it stop."
"Nope. And because you're pissing and moaning so much, I'm upping the incline to 5%."

Five minutes later:
"Just do five more minutes. You can handle five minutes."

Five minutes later:
"OK, my five minutes are up. I'm gonna stop now."
"Really? With only five minutes to go until you hit an hour and you're gonna stop now? What the fuck, girl?"
"Oh, fuck you, you bitch. FINE! I'll do five more minutes. Fucking pain in my ass, that's what you are, a fucking PAIN in my ass."

Five minutes later:
"Oh thank fuck."
"Fuck off. I did 60 minutes. 3.75 miles. That's not chump change, you know."
"Nope, it's not bad at all. How about some Nautilus now?"
"How about I come in there and kick your ass? Huh? Nautilus. What are you, nuts?"
"No. But hey, it's up to you. You're the one who wants to lose the weight. How do you think it's gonna come off, huh? Magic? Who's the one who's nuts now?"
"See. You got nothing. Nothing. Get your ass on those machines now. And no wussing out at 8 reps, I want the full 12."
"Damn straight."


Anonymous said...

Ack. Get outta my head!!! (Although you can keep your car talk guys.)

floreksa said...


That's the conversation I had with myself every night on the treadmill, until I gave it to my sister!

motherbumper said...

It sounds as noisy and abusive as the voices in my head. Ain't insanity grand?

Joke said...

You could charge $2.99/minute people to hear that conversation.


Josie said...

Sorry but I refuse to go to the gym and I have a somewhat similar convo with myself every night when I walk the 3km home from work.

You could make a tape of it and sell it as a motivational. Seriously.

Anonymous said...

Hey can you force yourself to use praise for each tiny accomplishment and change the language to..

Hey 1.25 miles - great start

I'm taking care of ME

It's nice to be here even if it's a challenge

The 90 year old is an inspiration

Next challenge, 5 more minutes, then more praise

Wow I did the 5 minutes even though I initially thought I couldn't...going to try 5 more

60 minutes, 3.75 miles - I am fucking amazing!!!

I'll go wash my face and then try a few reps on the nautilus - this is the icing on the cake.

Happy Julia Celebration Day (and many more).

Anonymous said...

That's awesome.

(And it is me every single workout.)

sandy shoes said...

You're awesome.

Anonymous said...

Arf! I thought i was the only one who had those ding-dong scraps with myself. But fair play to ya woman! It does pay off, but i had to turn the music in my ears up high enough so that i couldn't hear myself any more. I got toons that had the right bpm, so that i could stride along in time ot the music, which does make it a bit easier. Kind of. :D

elizasmom said...

Heee. I have had this same dialogue myself, many a time.

And also (in time to my running/walking feet): Ihatethetreadmillihatethetreadmillihatethetreadmill.

Unknown said...

Good for you Julia! Just remember you have to start small, baby steps! Starting with an hour is impressive so don't beat yourself up, it will get easier each week as you go. I love the conversation you have in your head, after 12 years of running and going to the gym I still have those conversations with myself. There is a guy out there who has a 'motivational' tape which I heard is available to download online and he basically beats you up (military style) into working out. He is pretty harsh but effective. If I get his name, I will fwd it to you.

Anonymous said...

I wish I could even say that sounds similar to myself, but the truth is, I haven't seen the inside of a gym in YEARS. I wish that weren't the truth.

Good for you, going to the gym. You're gonna be one sexy mama soon.

Velma said...

This is pretty damn inspiring, actually. Good for you!

Josi said...

Ditto on the get outta my head! It is good to know that I'm not as crazy as I thought I was and even if I am then I'm in good company!