In my pursuits to be happier and healthier in the new year, one thing I’m working on is getting more exercise. In a conversation with my doctor, I was told that I should try to exercise at a high intensity for at least four (and preferably five) days per week. This shouldn’t be a big deal – I feel better when I exercise, and I see a great deal of value in being healthy and fit, but I spent a good bit of time trying to figure out how to make that happen and what my best options were.
My doctor’s suggestion turned out to be a bit of a challenge. I no longer have student access to the campus gym. Memberships aren’t that expensive, but the practicality didn’t make a lot of sense, especially since it would involve exercising before teaching which would inevitably lead to me being sweaty and a terrifying shade of red for every class. I also didn’t have a lot of options available from home. Biking outside is fairly treacherous in my neighbourhood this time of year, I’m not supposed to run when it’s slippery due to an old ankle injury, and I have yet to find a really effective and motivating exercise video.
So, I did some research. I wanted to do something that I knew I liked and that would keep me in shape for my usual spring-summer-autumn exercise. I didn’t want a huge electric addition to the apartment, and was hoping for something that could be packed away when I got back to my usual nice-weather routine. I also wanted something that would last for a long time. After doing some research, I wound up springing for one of these:
It might not look like much in the photo, but it’s a fluid bike trainer. I mount my bike on it and cycle away in the living room. Happily, this one seems to provide a good workout (no shill – I’m not affiliated with the company in any way, I just happen to like the trainer so far). It did feel rather odd to spend money on a somewhat expensive piece of fitness equipment. That said, it was less expensive than a year’s gym membership, it’s something that should last for many years, and making sure I keep healthy is worth the cost. It’s also a bit odd to be exercising indoors when I’ve always preferred being outdoors. But overall, it’s really convenient to ride whenever I want (while watching cooking shows, even!), and I’ve been on it almost every day since we bought it. Plus, this gives J. a chance to exercise, too, something that would have been more difficult and possibly a good deal more expensive with some of the other options.
It’s still new, and I imagine I’ll have more to say after a month or two of hopefully regular use, but for now, I’m really appreciating this new acquisition and feeling good about making the purchase. Now, if only I could find my hand weights to add in some post-ride strength training, I’d be all set for a semester of home-based health and fitness.