Tag Archives: gym

To go for it or not to go for it, that’s the question

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I promise I will not begin each post this year with a reference to my resolutions for the year, but bear with me as I drag you through another.

See, as so many people, I have decided to start exercising more. Actually, my GP has decided I could to with a bit more endorphines but still: this girl goes fitnessing. And I don’t mean ‘I’ve bought a membership card and some shiny work out clothes which will now serve as nest material for moths and the invisible mice I’m secretly convinced I share the apartment with’ (because there is no way -I repeat, NO way- that I ate that whole pack of Tucs by myself yesterday. no way, I say!). Oh no, I will not come near shiny clothes unless dressing up is involved and anyways, I’ve had the gym membership card since October . No, now I actually gó to the gym. Tuesdays and Thursdays. I’ve been at it for a week and a half by now, so you could say I’m a regular (unlike my attempt at doing capoeira which ended… prematurely. let’s say I don’t think anybody remembers me there.).

Now, I absolutely loathe exercising. Not because it’s exhausting, or gets you sweaty, but because I find it completely and utterly boring.

Take the treadmill. I go to a University gym, which is cheap, but also basic (read: no tv or any of that fancy technology some fitness centers spend your membership money on). As a result, the ten treadmills they have are neatly aligned, right in front of the mirror wall. That’s right: as you run, you have the luck, nay, the privilege, to watch yourself get progressively more red in the face. I can assure you, it hardly makes for a captivating sight. Granted, you get to watch everyone else work out as well but still – that red blob hopping up and down in front of you will be terribly distracting. Just sayin’. And don’t even think about thinking of that blog post you wanted to write because all it takes is one second of distraction and you end up on America’s Funniest Home Videos. Which is a bad enough thought in and of itself, but becomes truly terrifying when you realize those are broadcast in Europe as well. Ten years later. When all your kids want to do on a lazy Sunday afternoon is watch old America’s Funniest Home Videos.

My point exactly.

Of course, I could take an mp3-player with me to relieve the boredom at least a little bit, but this has its own limitations – first of all, I would need to remember to charge the damn thing, and second of all my tinnitus doesn’t allow the volume levels required to be able to hear my music over that from the gym.

So, what does one do to keep their resolution and work úp the energy to work oút?

One finds a partner, obviously.

In this case, technically, he found me. ‘He’, indeed. A cute ‘he’, I might add. A cute Spanish ‘he’. A cute, Spanish ‘he’ with a cute Spanish accent who frequents the gym on a daily basis (Lin: think A&F sweatpants. yeah…) and who likes me. And who has only increased his attempts at flirting with me since learning about T and my break up.

Now of course, I’m a decent girl. I’m well educated, and I don’t do stupid things – not on purpose, at least. And I wouldn’t do anything to jeopardize my not-so-slim chances of getting back together with T, let alone jump into (on to?) other people so soon after a break up. I wouldn’t, for example, consider the possibility of exploring just how much Spanish guy likes me. I wouldn’t take the risk, since said guy is an integral part of my social life here and I do not wish to screw that up. I wouldn’t feel the need, either, since I have spent the last three years in a loving relationship which was satisfying on all levels and gave me everything I needed. Except… you know… it starts with a c. Or a d. Or a p. I bet there’s probably a synonym for it with each and every letter of the alphabet, but I’m sure you know what I mean.

Oh conscience, how I loathe thee.

But it doés get me to the gym twice a week, so there!

Sweden in a nutshell

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I thought, if I can successfully write a recap of two weeks of blogging, I can surely successfully list the things I love/hate most about Sweden, two weeks into this little project of mine?

  • I love … free coffee. Free coffee, I’m telling you! Well, at the lab at least, but anyway… Nothing helps to recover from (or prepare for) a failed experiment as does a cup of coffee. At our lab, there is a HUGE, and – more importantly – cosy coffee room with two coffee machines and all the sugar, milk, cups, spoons, … you could ever need. Heaven surely must come close to this…
    However, I hate … the lack of Freddy. Freddy was the guy in my previous lab who filled pipet tip boxes, did the dishes (you cannot believe how much dirty glassware one scientist can produce in a day), did the ordering, made media, autoclaved everything – in short, did all those lousy, dreadful things a scientist has to waste his/her time on. There is no Freddy in Sweden :(.
  • This is maybe not the best example... but at least I could afford it.

    I love … the shops! I am not talking clothes shops (obviously) – if you thought IKEA had neat ideas, think again. I am absolutely loving to stroll around interior decoration shops and discover all the genius little things on display. Buying them would ruin my budget, but one can dream, at least…
    I hate … their opening hours. Granted, the supermarket is open till 10pm every day, but on Saturday you will not find any shop open after 4 or even 3pm. I mean, how can you enjoy a relaxing day of shopping when you only have 5 hours? Honestly?
  • I love … cycling. And everybody cycles here! There are loads of parking places for bikes, separate tracks along the road, … There is only little traffic but it is well organized – you know how as a pedestrian you have these buttons to speed the green light when crossing the street and it seems that it takes longer when pressing the button than if you’d have just waited? Not here! You press and … presto … cross along! b.r.i.l.l.i.a.n.t
    But I hate my bike. Or maybe that’s too strongly put. I don’t actually HATE it. But it squeeks. And it has a back pedal break. And my bell is broken. I can do something about the squeeking and the bell, but that damn break… .
  • I love … the gym. At €165 per year (for university employees, it’s around 200) including full access to the gym and all spinning/aerobic/workout/… classes, you have no excuse not to go (which probably is the point). I’ve been there for the first time today and it was a blast (though I’m stone dead now – after only 2 classes… how disappointing). The teachers are good, the building and equipment are recent and modern, and while the majority of people are students, you see a good deal “older” people (grey hears included!) so I’m not really feeling out of place.

    I hate … that they don’t have dancing classes. Don’t get me wrong, I love a serious session of Aerobics, but I am completely hooked on “true” dance classes, where you take a song and work out a choreography over a couple of weeks, so that you really have time to make the dance your own. Most group session are “gympa”-based (defined as “All around workout in a group with focus on strength, cardio, and flexibility”) so the dance element is often missing, but even the Funk or Afro sessions are drop-in (understandably) so … not gonna happen. I keep on searching, though!

I love the purple trains … I miss UHT milk … I like the rabbits in the university grounds … I hate it that I don’t speak (or at least understand) Swedish … I love the many trees/green spaces in the city …

So all in all, the things I like about Sweden are at a slight advantage. Let’s see if they can keep this up ;).