Last night I made cookies. It was fun and satisfying and oh, man, I love cookie dough. I eat it without remorse based on the theory that a) everything about cookie dough is joy and joy is good, and b) I use organic free-range eggs so I’m rolling the dice that the odds are okay they don’t have salmonella.
And then today I got up and went to the gym. I did 100 crunches, and was planning to go do the leg machines to try to balance some of the muscles that I don’t build by walking. But then I thought, “No, to hell with that. Do it.” And I started with the C25K app again. I walked when instructed, ran when instructed, and sprinted the last minute of the run. And when I was done, I sat down at the arm bike and did five minutes forward and five minutes back, just like my physical therapist wants me to.
Here’s the thing. I was gonna do the weights because I’m trying to be smart and thoughtful and careful about building strength and balance and stability for my hyper-mobile joints (thus the Tai Chi, as well). But what I wanted to do was run. I was wearing my FiveFingers, and I wanted to run. Barefoot running, in short intervals: What better way to build stability and strength in underused muscles surrounding potentially compromised joints? Ditto the arm bike: I want my shoulders and arms to be strong and agile and able.
And it wasn’t hard.
None of it.
Well, okay, the crunches sucked because I had taken several weeks off, but I worked them until I hit muscle failure and then stopped, and they don’t (currently) hurt. But the rest of it did not suck. I can run one minute intervals at 5 mph, easy. I can do five minutes on the arm bike, easy.
That didn’t used to be true. I didn’t used to think that I could possibly run 5k, or that going back to the arm weights would be okay.
So even if I feel like I’m a slacker, like I’ve been not trying hard enough, like I should possibly regret the crab rangoon and sesame chicken from earlier this week… I’m wrong. I’m better than I was. I’m healthier, more fit, and thinner. I’m stronger. I have more endurance. And I’ve learned to find joy in things that I used to avoid like the plague.
That’s pretty damn cool. Now, have a cookie.