For many of us, January means News Years Resolutions. Like them or hate them, resolutions are usually an effort to improve ourselves for the future. Whether or not we all succeed is yet to be determined. My favorite line that I have heard in regards to not following through on them is, "Nobody likes a sober skinny bitch anyway." Fair enough.
Today I have for you an excerpt from my book, Treadmill Tales: The Hilarious, Ridiculous, Sometimes Mind Boggling Things People Do While Working Out.
You can order it on Amazon or right here on JHChampine.com.
New Years Resolutioners
It happens every year. New Year’s Day and all that comes with it. That wonderful time of year when we all strive to be better people, make better choices, and not do anything else stupid. A month later is usually when all of those things crash and burn in a blaze of glory.
This is also the time of year when the gym gets weird.
If you are reading this book just after the New Year, let me start by greeting all of you newcomers, both to the gym and to the chaos that lives there. Welcome! Come on in, the water's fine! Shark infested, but fine!
Please know that all of us gym regulars are rooting for you to stick around. We really are. Myself especially. If you aren't around to do anything ridiculous, I can't write about you. I love to write about you.
Also, you never know, some of us are actually kind of fun. Over the years I’ve met some fantastic people while working out. We'd love to invite you to come sit at the "cool kids" with us table at lunch.
We need some cool kids.
For most gym newbies, there is a process to getting acclimated to being at the gym.
1) Absolute terror. (What am I doing here?)
2) Nervous terror. (Is everyone watching me? Why are they watching me?)
3) Middle school insecurity. (What if I look stupid?)
4) College student independence. (I will just be me, stupid and all!)
5) Coming out of your shell. (Maybe we should call that 4b.)
6) Actually enjoying yourself. (Ta-Da!)
Okay, so it's not a “5 Easy Steps!” program, but it works.
Some people take longer than others to go through that process, and that's okay. For some it takes years. Others decide to blow through it like the race they are "one day going to train for."
I watched a man once go through all of those steps in the course of thirty minutes on the track. He started out a little ahead of me, constantly looking back over his shoulder. Absolute terror had kicked in, and I'm fairly certain he was worried I was going to eat him. Don’t worry, I may have growled at him a little, but I didn’t bite.
He tried a few different ways of swinging and pumping his arms, nervously looking over at me after each change. I began to wonder if he was hoping I'd either laugh or applaud. Eventually he relaxed, and even smiled. It looked like progress!
By the time I was getting ready to leave, he was even chatting up other walkers and joggers and settling in there on the track. I did notice, however, that almost everyone he was chatting with were attractive young women. We have a flirt on our hands! Excellent.
I hope to write a second edition to this book one day, and I may have someone new to write about real soon.
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