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Sunday, Aug. 28, 2016

I'll exercise self-restraint

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

I recently made a Labor Day resolution that I would start exercising and eat better, all in an effort to get in better shape. Now that September is nearly over I figured I had better get going on my resolution.

It's depressing having to make a resolution to get into better shape. It wasn't long ago that I was in great shape. I ran and worked out regularly in between playing softball and basketball as often as possible. Then all of a sudden I turned 35.

I didn't realize but that is the age when my body no longer wanted to take part in basketball or softball, but would rather collapse in a chair and watch it on television. The pounds started adding on and now I find myself a little overweight with no motivation.

But I decided that was going to stop on Labor Day. Granted, it is nearly a month later and I am just now planning my workout routine, but I am taking baby steps. After all, choosing a workout is the most difficult part.

I enjoy running but it has been awfully hot outside and I sure don't like to run in the heat. And then there is the cold, which I absolutely refuse to run in. And I don't like running in wind because then you have to run into it at times and it just makes the running harder. I decided there was just too many obstacles in my way to give running a shot.

That is when I decided an exercise video may be right up my alley. After all, I work crazy hours and I would rather work out at 1 a.m. than 1 p.m. So I set out to find an exercise video.

In my search, I came across a Beachbody workout that only took 20 minutes and thought I would check it out. After all, who doesn't want a beach body, especially when you only devote 20 minutes a day?

I plugged the DVD in and immediately noticed that I would have some problems with that particular workout. Namely the 10 scantily clad women jumping and gyrating all over the screen. They definitely had beach bodies and I certainly didn't think I could workout for the 20 minutes without being distracted.

Another thing I wanted to try was the P90X workout I had heard so much about. There are 12 different DVDs but I picked out one called Plyometrics to see if I was interested. It claimed it was an "explosive jumping cardio routine proven to dramatically improve athletic performance." Perfect, because if my body ever decides to let me play basketball or softball again, I would be ready.

I turned it on and immediately thought it might not be too bad. After all, one of the guys doing it on the video had a prosthetic leg. I actually have two legs so it must be easier for me, or so I thought. I should have realized then that none of the people in the video actually looked like they needed to be doing an exercise video since they were already in top shape.

When the trainer started talking I quickly took a dislike to him. The best way I can describe him is an egotistical, vile, intense lunatic, so from here on out I will refer to him as Dr. Evil.

Dear Dr. Evil said "Don't eat an hour before plyo," so I had to hurry up and shove down my popsicle. Then he said we should have a heart rate monitor. At that point I was thinking maybe this wasn't for me.

After about 10 minutes of moving side-to-side and lifting your legs up and down, Dr. Evil announced that "we're still warming up here." Oh, I was warm all right.

Then came the actual jumping part of the exercise. It reminded me of when I was a kid and used to eat a bunch of sugar and just started jumping and bouncing all over the walls. That is what Dr. Evil was teaching.

Then Dr. Evil kept making a point to land softly, "like a cat." Is P90X training to be a stinking ninja? I'm lucky to get off the ground, so landing for me is pretty much uncontrollable. As a matter of fact, at that point, I was thankful my legs didn't collapse as soon as they made contact with the ground.

Finally, about 30 minutes into the video, Dr. Evil said something that was music to my ears. "Hit the pause button if you need it," flowed from his mouth like Shakespeare from a classically trained actor. I didn't waste a second and immediately hit pause.

And you know what? I actually felt that by doing the P90X video I could improve my athletic performance. And I am sure I will when I pick the video up right where I left off next week. That is about how long it will take my body to recover. Thank goodness for the pause button.

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David Jenkins
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