Posted by: GeekHiker | March 13, 2008

No Rush Here

So the feeling of blah resignation continues. Not helped, no doubt, by the neighbors and the fact that I continue (!) to make my office at work the server room.

Monday I had a headache most of the day, and even though the medicine I’d downed (coming soon to a reservoir near you!) had pretty much taken care of it by the end of the day, the blah feeling led me to skip the gym.

Nope, didn’t go. Skipped it entirely. Went home instead.

This is exactly the opposite of what my friends, and certainly the trainers at the gym recommend. They love to work out when they feel this way.

In fact, when I told one of the trainers at the gym this today, she reacted pretty strongly.

“No, man!” she said (she has a propensity to call everyone “man” (and to not even breathe hard or sweat after running at 5.5 mph on the treadmill for 60 minutes straight (annoying, no?))) “that’s exactly when you need to come in! You start working those muscles, get the endorphins going, and you feel PUMPED!”

At this point, just to emphasize what she was saying, she punched me on the shoulder.

“Yeah,” I replied, “except I, uh, don’t.”

She looked at me like I was insane. Truly. Had I stepped off of a small spaceship, marched over to her, planted a flag, and demanded her Illudium Pu-36 Space Modulator, I think she would have been much more okay with it.

I know where she’s coming from. Working out leaves her “up” or “pumped” or whatever it’s-so-cool catchword of the moment applies.

Me? Not so much.

I talked about going to the gym quite a lot when I first started the blog, then it sort of faded to the background. This wasn’t because I stopped going, it just was that the gym more or less just became a part my weekly routine.

That’s the way it’s stayed for over a year now: hiking on weekends, hitting the gym (usually) three days a week.

Whether or not it’s making a difference is debatable. As with any gym, there’s always going to be somebody there who looks better than you, builds muscle faster than you, and is altogether more athletic than you’ll ever possibly be.

Plus, I still enjoy good, and sometimes slightly unhealthy, food. Not that I eat deep-fat-fried everything for dinner every night but, yeah, every so often I have a treat. Which makes it hard to obtain the all-important washboard abs.

One of the biggest things I’ve discovered at the gym is that, unlike about 90 percent the gym population, I don’t get the “rush”.

After an intense workout most of them end up tired, but “pumped”. They have energy, they have the endorphin rush, they feel mentally and physically refreshed, they’re ready to go about their day or whatever.

Me? I just feel tired. And often a little sore.

And it doesn’t matter how I work out. Whether I do a light work out or a heavy one or a so-hard-every-muscle-in-my-body-hurts workout doesn’t make a difference. I can stay on the treadmill until I’m ready to pass out, and all I feel afterwards is exhausted.

By the same token, hiking doesn’t make me feel good because of the physical exertion. This also explains why the length of the trail isn’t nearly so important to me than the time spent on it; what I get from hiking develops from being out there.

I go to the gym, of course, because it’s good for my health. Well, that and I dream that someday I’ll have a body that causes women to swoon. Not bloody likely, mind you, but, hey, one can dream.

I’m not going to lie, though: I really wish I got that “runners high” or “lifters high” or whatever other kind of high one is supposed to get whilst putting oneself in a great deal of pain in an overly-air-conditioned space surrounded by the smell of sweat.

It looks, from the outside, like a helluva nice feeling.



  1. when i feel blah, i wanna go home and veg out on the couch or even lay in bed. i definitely don’t want to go work out … those people are crazy insane

  2. Bloody elusive high; I don’t get it either.

    Give me a superb dessert of some kind and woohoo, high! Mmmmm.

  3. Tai Chi is the only exercise I feel energized when I’m done. However, I have to keep moving and down a couple of advil so my muscles don’t ache and stiffen up.

    Any other type of exercise … nope, stick a fork in me cause I’m done for the rest of the day!

    I agree with JaG – now that’s a high I can get into – desserts are my weakness … hence my health probs. *sigh*

  4. I’ve never been inside a gym. I have attempted to exercise at home but six months has been my limit – not self motivation. When I did exercise, I didn’t get much of a high from it either.

    Now I hike which is another form of exercise of course. I look forward to being “out there” but, usually when I reach the half way point and realize that I still have five or six miles to hike to get back to the car, I wonder what the heck I was thinking about. Heh. That feeling never has stopped me from planning my next hike as soon as I got home.

  5. Same here.

    I go, not because I enjoy it so much as it’s the healthy thing to do. And going to the gym when you’re sick? Whatev.

  6. Running and cycling OUTSIDE give me the high….the gym, not so much, I very much dislike the gym, but thankfully I like the people at my gym, it’s a small local one, so that makes it bearable. 🙂

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