Pre ankle break, I was a very busy individual. I never went to the gym but I hustled at the salon 40 hours a week and I was often out running around the city on my days off. I rarely had “a lazy day”. I detested going to the gym unless it was to swim. I just lead an active life and that was great. I was fit enough to win the title “Miss Fitness” at the Miss Fuller Woman Pageant.
Post ankle break, I settled into a life of complete sedentary. I sat for my job for 40 hours a week and then sat to chill out after work. My hard won strength and endurance slowly slipped away. This made me very sad.
Enter me asking for gym recommendations on my facebook page.
My friend Jen, The Urban Yenta, suggested I come to the gym she works at for a tour. I was skeptical at first as its downtown and remember I am just getting settled in my new life of only partially employed. Did I really want to go all the way downtown? One walk through of the Every Woman Fitness facility had me saying yes!
The gym has a hydraulic weight circuit system (faster you go the more resistance the machine supplies), organized to work a different muscle group at each station. Every 30 seconds or so a voice calls out “please change stations” and your off to the next. I’ll admit that I double down and do each station twice. That’s what feels good for my body.
Speaking of feeling good, there’s the absolute cutest woman who comes in 3 times a week to teach Zumba. I can’t wait to join a class. The members of Every Woman Fitness span every demographic: young, old, every body type and level of fitness. There’s a real sense of community at this facility. Everyone greets each other and checks in with how they’re doing. I’ve already been welcomed into this sorority.
Beyond the hydraulic circuit system there’s a bevy of treadmills, ellipticals, bikes, all the usual gym stuff I tend to avoid. I get bored too easily for these machines. Mind you. Girl got herself a new phone so I’m going to download a movie or something and try to get into these machines.
The section of the facility that calls to me is where the weights are stored. All the free weights, kettlebells and medicine balls one could want. And then there’s The Atlantis. A modular cable weight system that covers all the muscle group. I honestly think I am in love with this apparatus. Back in my day, leg and bench presses are where I really felt in tune with my body. Not that I was lifting much, it just felt good for my body.
Once you’ve taken advantage of all the ways to work your bod, in either joyful or soulful ways you can head on over to what I call the “Jungle Gym”. Another modular station that provides nine different stretching stations. I have notoriously stiff leg muscles. When I got into the position to stretch my quads for the first time, I literally let out a guttural sounds of pleasure. I love that there’s this guided stretch option as it’s often something we don’t do for ourselves. It’s important to take those few quiet moments and commune with your body.
So clearly I am hooked on Every Woman Fitness. I’m now a member and I am working towards some fitness goals. I have three. The first is to attend the gym 3 days a week. I need to make that time to move my body in ways that feel good. I think this will be a nice addition to my life and will help me build that routine that I need to help treat my Bipolar Disorder. The second is to be able to hold a full plank for 60 seconds. I can already hold a modified plank for 45 seconds (or more, Jen stopped timing me). My Frankenfoot doesn’t quite bend like it used to so I am working on that as well within this goal. And finally the third challenge. Challenge 1 and 2 I have done before so they are more about regaining what I lost. Challenge 3 is new territory completely. I want to be able to do an unassisted chin up. My first attempt was pretty funny as I didn’t even get my legs off the ground.
So that’s my news in a nutshell. I’ll check in with you all next month and we’ll see where I’m at with these challenges.
Oof! Can you believe it? Me? A Gym Rat. Who’da thunk.