I Sing the Body Electric

My New Best Friend?

Tectrix_climbmax_300I’ve noticed it before.

No one is ever using it.

Pure Luck swears by them. There is no other type of exercise equipment that can get a person ready for hiking as well as this one, he says.

He loves the hiking. At higher weights, I did hike, but I struggled, not surprisingly. Hiking, don’t you know, is uphill, and hauling an overweight self uphill requires more than just determination. If you reach the top drained rather than simply well-exercised, you lose some of the joy of the triumph.

Our little hike last fall gave me a glimpse of how much more fun it can be, or rather that it can BE fun. This summer I want to hike bigger mountains and enjoy it. That’s my major fitness goal.

With that in mind, I decided to befriend the stair-climber. I had to ask for help because I could not figure out how to make it work by myself! The instructor on duty admitted it was a challenging workout and gave me some hints for making it work better. I coped with the concern that its placement in the gym meant my rear end was facing the rest of the world. We set the thing for ten minutes.

Let’s just say I broke a sweat in about 43 seconds. That thing is HARD!!!

Next time my goal is 15 minutes.

(Honey, if I become a Happy Hiker, can I have a new bike for my birthday, so we can be Happy Bikers, too?)

11 thoughts on “My New Best Friend?”

  1. Hi Songbird,
    Major kudos on all the work you have been doing!!!
    One word of caution about stairmasters/step aerobics…at least from my own experience….you have to be careful about the repetitive nature of the motion, as in my case, with knee caps only slightly tilted, they resulted in the need for arthroscopic surgery due to cartilage abrasion. The motion of stair master and step aerobics disproportionately strengthens the outer thighs, and tends to pull knee caps slightly askew (my very very non-technical explanation). I would say–if it were me, I would use it in moderation or in combination with other exercises, and be sure to supplement with exercises specifically for the inner thighs, to help balance things out and keep knee caps properly aligned. (Supposedly elliptical trainers reduce some of the stress on the knees, but I don’t know firsthand.)
    That’s my two cents…not that you asked for it, but hope you don’t mind me chiming in.
    But seriously, I have been very impressed by your efforts and inspired by your blog!

  2. Thanks, Neighbor Lady! I doubt I’ll ever be able to use it exclusively, since it is so killer, but I will be sure to look for a counter-balancing piece of equipment. They have several kinds of ellipticals at my gym (as well as the full range of bikes, treadmills, rowing machines and even something called a “tread climber”).

  3. I’m still at the stage of being impressed that you’re working out at the gym at all…this guy sounds unbelievable. Bravo!

  4. Neighbor lady speaks wisdom. I’ve been nursing a torn cartilage in my knee many years from over developed outer thighs. Yoga’s worked great on that for me.
    And you are doing so great, I have to say. Not only a new bike for you, but a pony as well!

  5. I will consider getting you a pink bicycle for your birthday if the one in the garage is not good for you.
    To the pinnacle and beyond! (well not so much that beyond part)

  6. You go girl – you are a Maniac!(I tell that to all those folks on the ellipticals who are working like mad folks).
    All the treadmills are situated so everyone gets a glimpse of our behinds. I always wonder about that. But then again… I try not to think about it!

  7. Way to go! those things are very very hard. We have one called a stair climber – looks like a mini escalator that you have to climb. I love it. Its a sick kind of love. But you get a great workout in not too much time. You’ll be ready to climb that mountain in no time. 10 min. is great! Let us know how it goes.
    You are an inspiration, Songbird!

  8. My gym has very few of these–instead they have these torture devices with real stairs that move and you have to climb them or risk falling off. Interestingly, they are right next to the edge of the floor, where it’s open to the entryway downstairs, so, if you were particularly talented and flail-y you could fall off and down a story.
    I’ve never seen anyone fall off.
    But I’ve felt like I might fall off, and everyone would be watching. Surprisingly, doesn’t motivate me to do it more…

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