Monday, January 14, 2013

View from the Treadmill

I had a pretty good workout this morning. I do try not to compare my abilities to others', really I do, because it just discourages me. Maybe I’m finally accepting middle-age limitations though because today I was able to laugh at this observation.

While walking on the treadmill, I face a brick and pebble courtyard, which this morning was covered with ice. First, a twenty-something woman bounced across the courtyard. Her long brown hair flipped and curled behind her in the breeze. She smiled and gazed straight ahead. Perched in front of her like a parrot on her left forearm was an open laptop computer. Not once did she look down at the ice she sped across.

A few minutes later, a forty-something woman plodded flat-footed, carefully, head down, eyes glued to the risky pavement surface. She, too, carried a computer, closed, safely zipped inside a padded laptop case clutched tightly to her chest.

I wondered how a sixty-something (me) might cross the courtyard today. I’d probably also eagle-eye every step in spite of the spiked ice-cleats strapped to my shoes. And I’d have the laptop in a padded backpack and wish I weren’t too vain to buckle a pillow to my butt. Oh, did I mention knee pads and helmet? (haha)

Did I witness a contrast in age abilities, perhaps just levels of body confidence or physical fitness, or what? I don’t know, but shortly after I thanked God I hadn’t flown off the back of the treadmill at 4.5 mph and it was time for me to adjust the speed back to a more confident and age-appropriate 3.5, I dismounted. As I limped away, I glimpsed the treadmill readout of the very fit thirty-something woman next to me: 6 mph. Since she’d just mounted the machine a few minutes earlier, I wondered if that was just her warm-up speed.

Oh well, I am pretty pleased with my workout, and my whole body feels wide awake. This is the body I’m in, and I’m taking care of it. And I don’t want to be any of those other women. So there.


tandemingtroll said...

I totally enjoy reading your perspective. Arizona doesn't get much ice or snow, though two weeks ago, as a friend and I were running on a high school track in the dark, we saw the street lights reflecting ice. For her, it was a brave thing to run in such cold weather. For me, just running after a break was tough. As I get older, I also get more careful because injuries take longer to heal. Keep up the good work on the treadmill!

Jane Hoppe said...

Thanks, Kris. I know what you mean about longer healing. Good for you for getting back into running.