Sunday, May 24, 2020

A place to work out

It's been tough going for those who define themselves by going to the gym. The gym selfies on Facebook profiles and dating sites, taken from the locker rooms and in front of the squat racks, have started to feel dated. You wonder if some of these folks will end up like:

While my gym rat days feel behind me, I still got in a few days a week. Enough to feel good and stay in decent enough shape. I think the cabin fever of not having a place to go and do some lifting and hamster-style cardio has finally started to catch up with me. Yard and house projects have been doing a good job of helping me work up a sweat, but sometimes I just want to be able to turn the brain off, turn on some music and get my heart rate up. 

The cardio portion hasn't been too bad. I've been going on brisk walks to break up my work day and I've been doing some jogging around the neighborhood. I have good one, two and three mile loops not to mention there's always the paths around the local lakes. 

Lifting has been the challenge.  Until a couple days ago, I had a weight lifting bench with a bar and some dumbbells in storage. The set was modest and by no means an Olympic style setup that you find at most gyms. Still it has enough weights, the bench can incline and decline and there is even a pulldown attachment.

All that was missing was the motivation to dig the stuff out. That finally came in the form of a neighbor inquiring if I had any weights as her son, a college athlete, was itching for some weightlifting capabilities. They had looked for some equipment, but the lockdown has created a shortage of weights and other home gym paraphernalia. Maybe the workout junkies will be okay after all.

I'm happy to share the equipment (in-fact I think there should be more neighborhood co-oping of many things) and took the opportunity to clear out some space in the garage and set up the bench. My son, Drew, helped bring up the weights; a mix of various steel plates and even some old-school plastic coated cement ones. It's not much to look at and the bars have these mild pain in the butt spindle locks, but it works. I got in some good upper body sets and am a little sore. I'll have to figure out a simple lower body routine and use the weights to do some stretching. 

I envision improving the area. Right now everything is just on the hard garage floor. I'd like to add in some foam floor tiles to make the place more comfortable and gym-like.  I might also look to add in some more weight plates and maybe a squat rack.

Once my basement remodel is completed (I'm nearing the completion of drywall taping/mudding) I'd like to relocate the equipment to there. This will be especially helpful in the winter months, although I wonder what lifting in sub-freezing weather would be like?

At this point, the space is open to anyone who wants to get a little work in (while adhering to social distancing). Hopefully, it will keep the cabin fever at bay and perhaps save some money on the gym membership. 

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