So I have now added some exercise to my day. My goal is to do at least 30 minutes a day. I have trouble walking or running without pain, and, I can’t get to the gym every day because it is a 40-minute drive. So, I am using a piece of home gym equipment called the life-rider.
I think several version of this thing has come out over the years. It first appeared in the late ’90s. I first heard of it after I read a book written in 1996 by Covert Baily called, Smart Exercise. I remember the late-night infomercials of the SportRider, and how Bailey emphasized that low impact working of large groups of muscles in the body at once was key. Of course, back then, I was running and didn’t feel I needed a low impact exerciser. Plus, I didn’t have the money to buy the thing.
Now is a different matter. I’m much older and everything hurts. I can’t even ride my bicycle at this point, though that’s mostly because I really don’t have a safe place to ride. However, I need to exercise more than ever.
I have started using Life Rider by HealthRider. It’s the same machine from the ’90s. I acquired it from a friend a few years ago who said his mom had one in the garage that no one was using. He gave it to me. I later found out that she was upset about him giving it away. I really should send her some money for it. She let me keep it even though she was upset, and I was grateful.
It really is a good exerciser. It gets the heart rate up. It works a lot of large muscles in the body at once, just as advertised. It works you hard. It is not easy to keep it up for 30 minutes. Maybe when I am strong enough to do it without stopping I will be more willing to take my bicycle out. For now, however, this will do.
So, I went to the gym today for the first time since 2015 I think. I didn’t do much; some chest exercise, shoulder, and back. Then I did 20 minutes on the elliptical machine.
It was weird watching all of the younger guys in the gym. Many of them were using too much weight as indicated by their horrible form. I remembered myself at their ages working out the same way. Eventually, I hurt my back, shoulders, and irritated what doctors call degenerative disc disease.
Today, I was careful about only using enough weight to stimulate my muscles. I only used the machines; no free weights. I did not want to come out of there with any un-natural pains. I only wanted to do what my doctor wanted me to do. Get a little exercise.
My new doctor is a little intense. She scares me a little even. Every time I see her, I get the impression that I am just a little closer to my own demise. She is very driven to make me healthier. I guess I should be grateful, but, like I said, she scares me a little bit.
So, I don’t know if going to the gym is a thing for me yet. I am almost always in some sort of pain. Making it an everyday thing, or a 3 day a week thing would be difficult for me. I want to. I just don’t know if I can. I may be able to do some walking, but even that can be difficult at times. Then again, some walking or other exercises may be what I need.
Yesterday, I picked up my new bicycle. I got a Specialized “Cross Trail.” As implied by the name of the bike, it is made to cross from street travel to some off-road cycling. My last bike was also made by Specialized but it was not made for any such function. It didn’t hold up to the punishment I was putting it through. I still have it. I needs an extensive overhaul, which would cost near as much as just replacing the bike. So, I did.
I have always like the shifters and deralers on these bikes from Specialized. However, my favorite thing about this bike are the hydrolic-disc brakes. This bike has more stopping power than I have ever experienced on a bicycle. Previous brake styles have worked well, but this is a whole new level of braking for me on a bicycle.
And who doesn’t like getting something new? I know I do. Some of you might be wondering, “can he even ride a bike with all the bodily pain he complains about?” The answer has always been yes. I have never been without a bike in my adult life. I have always enjoyed bicycling. Not on a level that other more serious bikers do, but, serious enough that I will always have a bicycle and will always ride.
Bicycling does cause some discomfort but not nearly the kind of pain that other exercises can cause. I will probably always love bicycles. It is the one exercise activity that I can still do. Plus, its a lot more fun than most exercises.
I have not even had the opportunity to ride it yet though. With the amount of rain we have had here in the last several weeks it has been impossible. I have barely been able to ride my motorcycle in the last 6 weeks or so because of weather. I hope things will clear up soon. I’m am really tired of the bad weather.
Anyway, I hope to get started riding soon.