Sunday, March 06, 2011

By request: What kind of exercise can you stand?

I have never liked sweating. Growing up in Houston, sweating was a gross and omnipresent burden on existence. The humidity hangs over you like a damp towel at all times, making all the sweating completely ineffectual, as if further insult was required. I was eighteen before I realized that people could wear the same clothing item twice without laundering. To minimize perspiration, you ambled from air-conditioned car to air-conditioned building and back again as quickly as you could without breaking a sweat. Not sweating, for a girl from the south, can be raised to a fine art.

Thus my hatred of exercise. People sweat on purpose? Not to win a game, even, or do something arguably artistic, but just ... for its own sake? Disgusting. But at a certain point, one's lifestyle and metabolism conspire to make the strategies perfected as a teen on the Gulf Coast maladaptive. One must exercise, lest you blimp out.

With that preface and qualification, I have managed to stomach the following exercise methods and activities:

- Walking to and from places which one is required to go (work, grocery store, etc.)
- Weightlifting, very occasionally.
- Elliptical machines, even less frequently, and only when completely distracted by a very specific type of audiobook, namely an airplane read/plot crack page-turner.
- Day-to-day activities from which a certain amount of exertion is integral.

I am sure that spinning yarn with my foot-powered wheel burns some tiny percentage of the calories expended in the more famous "spinning" exercises, but that hardly counts.
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