I have always considered myself an outdoor person. I crave the gardening season and have enjoyed many trips to the mountains and desert for various outdoor activities ranging from camping to skiing to hiking to mountain biking. Yet, I am also attracted to the predictability and repetitiveness of indoor workout equipment. For several years, we've owned a fairly decent treadmill; it features variable incline and speed and courses, and measures heart rate as well as estimated distance and calories burned. So why, despite my attachment to aerobic machines, has our treadmill suffered such a lack of use?
In our previous home, we placed the treadmill in our family room facing the TV. I figured it might guilt the occasional couch potato into a stationary walk instead of zoning out in front of the tube. But when we moved nearly two years ago, the treadmill landed in the garage and there it's sat ever since.
Garages have the innate, boundless capacity to demonstrate the principle of entropy. And the treadmill's presence in our garage made its own special contribution to the growing chaos therein. Another handy feature of the machine, which I neglected to mention earlier, is that the tread portion of the device folds ups. In it's compacted state, the treadmill quickly became a storage unit for the leaf-blower bag, buckets, extension cords and the like. Leaves blew into the garage and lodged themselves under the frame. The top of the machine whitened with sawdust from from a home renovation project. My husband started talking about listing the treadmill on Craigslist. Things were looking pretty bleak for the future of the exercise gadget. But the prospect of losing the machine was just too much. List the treadmill on Craigslist? Now, them's fightin' words.
So when my husband led the charge for a frenzied, no-holds-barred garage cleaning over the holidays, thereby unearthing household archeological treasures, including the treadmill, I started to regain the urge to reconnect with the device. In New Year's Resolution ritualistic fashion, I cranked up the machine on January 1. Despite months of disuse, the treadmill still runs like a charm. And I am very much enjoying my garage exercise time. An arctic blast has cooled down the garage this week, ensuring a fast-paced workout.
In case you're wondering what could possibly be so motivating about repetitive aerobic equipment, here are the top 10 reasons I get excited about my garage treadmill experience:
10. I'm in close proximity to my lawn and garden tools and equipment. I can just feel the energy; I'll be weeding in no time.
9. My Golden Retriever, Buddy, likes to be in the garage with me. Quality time with the dog.
8. No hot flashes in the 50-degree garage.
7. No one else in the family wants to be on the treadmill. Go figure. I can exercise any time I want without standing in line.
6. I can't hear the phone ring, and I can't use a laptop on the treadmill. It's my very special Calgon moment, right there in the garage amidst the trash, recycling and compost bins, camping equipment and tools.
5. I'm a number person. There's nothing like staring at liquid crystal displays giving instant feedback on minutes, miles, calories and heart beats.
4. I can catch up on mindless magazine reading...and find it so engrossing that I forget I'm on the treadmill.
3. I can feel my leg muscles getting a good workout. I'm doing something for my health.
2. I feel hungry. Yet I'm more focused on eating well.
And the number one reason I get excited about my treadmill...
1. I can cook while I'm on the treadmill! Yes, it's true. I scheduled today's workout during bread baking. On the menu for tomorrow' workout: Soaking split peas.