Self-Hatred at an Elevated Heart Rate

My grandmother used to say, “We mock what we are to be.”

And how right she was. She was pretty wise for a woman who married at 17. As a disgruntled youth, I would make fun of my family’s commitment to personal fitness. Now I make plans around spinning classes.

The beginnings of my relationship with the gym had little to do with health. As someone who lives in an unhip area of Brooklyn without a cable ready TV, the gym was a place to kill time and watch Bravo. Instead of going from home to work to home to watching a dvd on my laptop in bed in my pajamas, I had plans, and they involved a change of clothes and sweating next to strangers. Like seeing an entire television season in one sitting, the gym made time disappear while creating an odd sense of accomplishment.

But now the gym has become like that ugly person you hook up with because you’re bored and lonely. Some strange inertia kicks in, and suddenly you’re in a serious relationship and taking double spinning classes with your favorite instructor.

On Saturday I’m getting a couch delivered and I plan on taking a long run to train for the Brooklyn Half-Marathon. I need to be by my phone from 12 to 2, which means that I have to finish running before then. I’m totally, and totally lamely, annoyed. I fear I’m living in a workout black hole. My teenage self would hate my 20-something self, and she’d be right.