Workout Journal, Day 8 (In which I take a shower at the gym.)

November 9, 2011 | By | COMMENTS

Convenience-wise, it makes sense to take a shower at the gym. You walk into the gym clean and you leave the gym clean. You don’t have to drive home sweaty or even drive home at all if you shower at the gym. You can continue your day.

And yet, showering at the gym is something I’ve never done until today. I’m not sure why. I mean, ok, the hypochondriac in me is a little grossed at the prospect of standing barefoot in a stall where someone else just stood barefoot. (I could bring flip flops each time I go to the gym, but don’t want to.) Then there’s the issue of being naked in public. Of course that’s a very natural fear–it’s fodder for the all-time classic nightmare of showing up at high school naked. I suppose it’s a combination of hypochondria and fear of public nudity that’s kept from taking a shower at my new gym.

And yet two things got me over my issues today: (1) I had to pick up a pork shoulder from Lindy & Grundy after the gym to transport home for tomorrow night’s dinner and didn’t want to go there covered in sweat; and (2) my workout today was so extreme, so crazily difficult that by the time I flew off the elliptical in a frenzy I could think of nothing else other than hopping into a cooling, cleansing shower.

In fact, I was in such an amped-up state—today was the hardest I’d exercised so far during this whole process (10 minutes on the treadmill, two weight-lifting circuits involving dumbbells, sit-ups, push-ups, pull-downs, push-outs and so on repeated 3 times each, and then 20 minutes of interval training on the elliptical)–I didn’t have time for my own neuroses.

Sure enough, I just grabbed a towel, walked right into the locker room, stripped on down—well first I went to my locker to drop off my cellphone and my wallet, and I didn’t really strip at my locker, I stripped right outside the shower stall–and into the shower I went. NEWSFLASH: nobody cared. It’s not that big a deal. And it felt great to leave the gym totally clean.

As for my exercising, I’ll confess I sort of wimped out on the elliptical today. I was pretty exhausted from all the stuff upstairs (my attempt at doing push-ups was wildly pathetic) but I made myself get through 20 minutes, despite the fact I floundered at keeping my speed.

It didn’t feel good today, though. Maybe, again, because I knocked myself out first. Instead of feeling exhilarated as I listened to my music (Britney Spears’s “Til The World Ends” made a notable appearance today) and swung my legs back and forth, I felt achy and tired and unmotivated. That happens, I suppose. But my hardest day is done and tomorrow it’s 20 minutes on the treadmill and then homemade porchetta for dinner!

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