Gyms ought to advertise themselves on how wonderful you feel after you've been. I went at lunchtime today, and at the moment I love everybody. I appreciate as never before how wonderful it is to be wearing a cool linen skirt and sandals, not nasty hot tracky bottoms and trainers, and to be clean and dry. My shoulders ache (again) but I don't care.
It's not that I don't enjoy the exercise itself. On the days when I don't have a limit on the time I can take, I sometimes find I've been there for more than two hours. The running isn't exactly pleasurable, but even I can see that I wouldn't still be doing it if it was torture. I'm not that self-disciplined. I do enjoy the weight machines. This is a constant surprise to me. You'd think I'd get bored – you can't read while using them, after all – but not so far.
I think I'm improving, slightly, at the interval running program. It wasn't quite as hard today. The "hills" are quite subtle (by Edinburgh standards - it's a hilly place), although you do begin to notice that you're bobbing up and down a bit as your supporting foot moves downwards and back with the motion of the treadmill. I'm sort of hoping that this will get me used to this kind of movement. After the RFL is over, my next challenge will be learning to use the scary cross-training machines.
Ah, the RFL. You didn't think I wasn't going to mention that, did you? Well, if you're so minded, you can now sponsor me online:
and I'd be really, really grateful if you did. Any amount, however small! Much as I've been focusing on this as a personal challenge, it is a vitally good cause. Also, if people sponsor me, I will absolutely have to do it.
Edinburgh is confidently expected to be deluged by protesters all of next week, because of the G8 summit, the Live 8 concert and a bunch of other protests that are being scheduled then to take advantage of the buzz. So when I mentioned that I need to organise a lift to Kirkcaldy, Mum said "When is it you're going?"
"No you're not!"
Yes I am. As my sister says, you can't entirely stop your life for Bob Geldof. I have the greatest sympathy with the cause, and I may go out on the streets myself on Saturday (if I can get into town, which may be difficult!) but I'm not giving up on something I've been training for for four months!