Monday, February 20, 2006

the fear of treadmills

no, this isn't a story about me falling off a treadmill in front of lots of people.

i don't like new situations. i especially don't like them by myself. and to attest to this, i have been avoiding taking a new class at just ladies. i don't want to have to go and try to figure out how to set up my step or get my barbell put together (yes, there's a class like that) with no one to back me up or a friend to teach me. i know that i can just go and ask someone to help me but i've watched the group power (barbell class) class run into the room after my dance class and everyone fends for a spot for their stuff and they scurry around trying to get their place. i haven't seen anyone staring and wandering around trying to figure it out like i'm sure i would be the first time. so anyways...i've been avoiding.

so tonight i'm sitting on the couch feeling guilty that i'm sitting on the couch and decide, i'll just go walk/run on the treadmill. i've been excited about each machine having it's own tv and i've been on numerous treadmills before in my life -- i can figure it out.

i get there and there's only one treadmill available. there's not really a place for my stuff -- i think i'm supposed to put it in a locker or something but i see a girl with a shirt draped over the handle of her treadmill so i figure that's ok. i step up on the treadmill and i'm staring at this MOTHER panel with buttons and stuff. the people next to me are staring straight ahead, not even a glance at me. all good. so i'm trying to figure out these instructions and it just was not straight forward. i'm pressing buttons and trying to enter things but it's not working. i think to myself, "there's always supposed to be someone over there in that room to help us so i'll just go get instructions from her." got off the treadmill, walk to the room, no one is there. so i think to myself, "i'm a teacher. i should be able to figure this out." so i go back and stand there and i eventually get it going but it's going really slow even though i've picked a specific program but i figure i'll just get my headphones plugged in and then i'll up the speed. i cannot figure out where to plug in the headphones. i look at the girl next to me. she's ignoring me. i say, "excuse me, where do i plug these in?" she says, "oh, you put them in the lakjflkdja (word i didn't understand) and then you press the alkdjfdj and oh! you don't have one? (still don't know what she's talking about) just pull that out (she's pointing at the screen) and put yours in." "umm...thanks." so i pull this cord out of the screen and plug my headphones in. it definitely says HEADPHONES under the plug in but i can't hear anything. i turn up the volume. nothing. so i'm looking at the girl's headphone plug...and then at the woman on the right...their headphones are not plugged in where mine are. so i pull them out. theirs seem to be plugged in below the treadmill panel thing so i'm feeling under the panel and i'm looking back and forth and all the while i'm walking unbelieveably slow. so i'm staring at this girl's panel and she's sneaking a sideways look at me so i say, "sorry, where am i supposed to plug this in?" she's like, "you don't have the lskjfsl that you're supposed to have like mine, see? it's missing on that treadmill." "oh, ok. thanks. sorry." so my treadmill is missing something. maybe that's why no one's on it. so i think, this is stupid, i'll go ask a JLF person to help me. there is still no one in that little room. i go back to the treadmill, take my sweatshirt and water bottle and leave.

yes, i left. i just wanted someone to help me and no one around me was and i didn't want to go downstairs to get someone only to come up and say, "headphones don't work on that one." sure i could have walked on the treadmill without headphones but i didn't want to. i didn't even know how to work the treadmill anyways.

so it didn't solve the problem for the future. at least now i can go in knowing that i don't know how to work anything and i'll ask someone to come upstairs with me right away next time. see, mental preparation. if i know i'll definitely have to ask, i'll be able to ask. just not tonight.

man, i can be so lame.


ang said...

I'm so sorry! I relate to your pain. Awkwardness is the worst. I probably would have left too. Make that machine think you have better things to do.
Not that I am comparing myself to your situation, but it just happens that I ran my first 12k today. It was really great and I want to do another. I had never really thought about doing it but a few weeks ago a friend asked if I would run with him, and I figured "what the heck?". It turns out that I'm good at running, and couldn't help but flashback to swanguard a little bit. You should think about the sunrun, you are a good runner too you know. Once that treadmill speeds up. love ya.

Alyssa said...

Oh man, do I know that feeling! At my super ghetto gym, I only know how to use like 3 of the weight machines, and there are no instructions, plus I definitely don't want to ask the creepy manager how to... so I spy on people and see what they do first... and the funny thing is there are a lot of old women who go to my gym, so I'm always wacthing these 60 year old ladies to get work out tips!

I went to my very first hip hop class last night and I am hurting! We'll have to check it out when you're here... quite the mix of people, including an old man in 70s style short gym shorts... nice.

Rachel J said...

I feel like I'm behind on blog comments, but being away certainly throws a kink in things - especially when I just have the blogs book marked and don't actually know the addresses...

Anyhow...all of these comments make me realize that we should really all be living in the same city so we could figure out the gym scene together. As I've gone back to the gym at the university this semester, I've realized how silly I feel working out...Like I'll see people who are wearing clothes that are too tight, or their bum sweat is coming through their pants (only once, I really wanted to tell her...), and I always wonder - are my work out clothes inappropriate? Is my bum that sweaty?

Anyhow, so I would have to say my most embarrassing gym moment to date took place a few weeks back, on the rowing machine. It was near the end of my work out, and I must have been getting fatigued and zoned out or something, next thing I know there was a really loud noise - I had let go of the thing you pull on.... Yikes! Note to self - hang on tighter next time...lots of laughs from the people around me.