With the exception of race training, I’ve been a gym rat for years. I’ve been a member of college gyms, military base gyms and local gyms. In the fall we canceled our gym membership in an effort to save money, and because neither of us were going – I had started training for my 2nd marathon and was mainly running, and Bryan, well, he just wasn’t going.

In an effort to keep my exercising more low impact, we recently began talking about joining again. I came home after work a few weeks ago to Bryan’s announcement that he had signed a contract for the 2 of us at the brand new gym up the street. I was pis.sed at first because I knew that it was going to be more expensive, and because part of the reason I go to the gym is to take group classes, and new gyms are usually lacking in that front.

After a completely pointless and useless argument about the above and about how I totally don’t get the point of 24 hour gyms (seriously, who goes to the gym at 2am?), I acquiesced, traded in my running shoes for my gym shoes, and re-started my adventures in gym rattery.

I had forgotten one of the advantages of running is that I can get up, put on my shoes, run, come home, shower and go. Taking into account travel time, I realized I had to start getting up at the not-even-close-to-the-crack-of-dawn-time of 530am.

530 am is not my friend. I don’t like to get up before it’s light outside. The way I see it, if the sun is still sleeping, *I* should still be sleeping. Not only that, but it appears that the employees of the gym agree, because it isn’t staffed until 8am. Little did I know that even as I was arguing about the uselessness of a 24 hour gym, I would be consistently using it during its un-staffed period. That’s a first. You’d be surprised at the number of crazies who line up to take spin at 530 am. (that is, if it was available). They do apparently have an early morning Boot Camp class….that you have to pay extra for. Now, why on earth would I want to do that?

The facility itself is nice enough. I have to admit I like all the nice new, mostly non sweaty equipment except for the lack of stair machines and 3 tiny 20 inch televisions that there is no way you could see unless you were standing right under them. Why bother? Even my freakishly early morning experiences have been quite pleasant, as there are very few people crazy enough to go to the gym at the-not-even-close-to-the-crack-of dawn.

Until yesterday.

I’m minding my own business, walking on an incline on the treadmill while reading my e-book on the Left Behind series. I’m calmly increasing my heart rate while reading about the end of the world when I hear: “UUUUUUGGGGHHHH!!”


Thinking that perhaps someone dropped a weight on their foot and might need medical assistance, I reluctantly stop reading about the end of the world and turn to figure out what happened.

I see nothing.


I continue.


Perplexed, and now somewhat annoyed, I turn again. There are like, 4 other people there so this issue shouldn’t be hard to find. All I see to my left is a guy lifting weights…..and suddenly it dawns on me.

The man is doing his bicep curl, and uttering “UUUUUUGGGGHHH!”

Why? Why is that necessary? Do you need to feel super macho? Are you lifting a weight that is too heavy? I’ve done some weights. I get that sometimes when you’re holding your breath and exhale suddenly you might voice a little, but really is THAT necessary? Is there something about it that I don’t get?

Luckily, I brought my Ipod.

Yesterday morning I went and was relieved to find a list asking for votes on exercise classes. I requested a night/weekend  power yoga class and step class. Upon telling Bryan of this, he announced that at his next visit he was going to request “the one with all the se.x positions…?”

“The Kama Sutra?” I asked.

“Yes, that’s it!”

I shook my head.

It’s definitely going to be an adventure.