By Edward A. Forbes
I used to enjoy walking or jogging, but that was many decades ago; I now seek distraction while I am slogging away on a treadmill at the Wellness Center at UTMB in Angleton, which followed my Silver Sneakers workout recently.
I look up, and the TV is on. It’s “The Young And The Restless.” Please save me, I thought!
This soap opera is an hour long, and it’s in its 50th year. They are still restless, but most are no longer young. I hate soap operas. I can watch TV at home when on my treadmill. I can pick a program or one I’ve recorded with commercial skipping (a refreshing add-on). I walk at the Wellness Center, because if I do it immediately after the Silver Sneakers’ workout, I just do it.
If I wait until I get home, there is a 50% chance that I will get distracted, and it won’t happen.
Please save me!
I see people walking, some looking at their watches, which I assume are Fitbits, Apple Watches, or their equivalents. Some are listening to music on earbuds, and some are jogging with friends.
What I prefer, more than the TV, is to read. I know it sounds crazy, but I can put my Kindle in one of the cup holder slots and read happily as the time flies by. So far, I have remained upright during my reading-accompanied excursions; you wouldn’t want to try this outside, and I’m not sure about trying it at the Wellness Center.
I would like to become a healthy, physically conditioned individual. I have no chance of becoming addicted to exercise any more than I have a chance of becoming a victim of orthorexia nervosa (an unhealthy obsession with eating healthy foods, avoiding unhealthy foods, and suffering imagined illnesses if violating the healthy foods requirement).
Little Debbie and I have far too close of a relationship for that to happen. (Nutty Buddy is my buddy.)
So, I go back to the Wellness Center. I take a poll of other people on exercise machines, and if no one is watching, I ask one of our task masters for a channel change.
It turns out they all like Jeopardy, and it’s on the last 30 minutes of The Old and the Tired.
The channel is changed to Jeopardy. I would rather give wrong answers on Jeopardy than be stuck on the soap opera.
I have noticed that the social aspect of sessions seems to be as important as the professionally guided workouts. I think everyone leaves in a good mood with a smile on their faces.
I do realize that these people aren’t strapped down and forced to watch The Old and the Disturbed. I also realize if they are busy visiting with one another that the TV programming won’t bother them at all.
Meanwhile, I huff and puff and trudge along at a brisk - for me - 3.2 mph and treadmill elevated to 3.5. Like “The Little Train That Could”, I go puff puff, chug chug and occasionally, Ding Dong. I will make my 30 minutes on the treadmill or bust.
Come on, Jeopardy!
(Edward Forbes wants to hear from you. Email him at email@example.com or send comments by snail mail to The Bulletin, PO Box 2426, Angleton TX. 77516.)