Sweat: The enemy turned friend.
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Stretch. Assess the tightness in each muscle, as I pull it back just far enough that it is mildly uncomfortable, but not painful. Relax. Repeat with the corresponding muscle in the other leg. Shake it all out, and press the quick start button on the treadmill. I'm ready.
After a five minute brisk warm up walk, start running. Breathe in, breathe out, and just keep running. Oh, and don't forget to smile.
I was running on Monday night and took stock of my body. Elevated heart rate? Check. Body making continuous movements? Check. Sweat? Gonna need more than one check to cover THAT. That thought actually crossed my mind, and I broke into a huge grin. There happened to be a guy walking in front of my treadmill when this all went through my head, and I'm 100% positive that he thought I was grinning because of him. He did a double take, picked up speed, and walked off as fast as he could without running. I chuckled.
Now, sure, I know that my reaction may sound odd. I'm a big fan of cleanliness (read: I'm a mild germaphobe) but nothing makes me happier than looking at my arms when I'm running and finding them covered in a sheen of sweat. If I had any doubts about it to point, that is when I KNOW I'm working hard. I don't need 15 layers of clothing to make me sweat, I'm doing it with the intensity of my exercise.
Honestly, I used to be appalled by sweat. It was the uncomfortable side effect of a hot day, walking up a single flight of stairs, or contemplating for the fifth time in ten minutes if my back rolls were showing through my baggy sweater top. Yes, you DID just read that right.
I've made peace with it. Sweat is the byproduct of the exercise that has helped me to lose enough weight to fit into pants that I can buy from a regular store. It very rarely shows up unexpectedly now, and sometimes it doesn't show up when I think it will. After a flight or two of stairs, I still sometimes reach up to wipe the sweat from my forehead, and encounter nothing but smooth, dry skin.
Goodbye sweat the enemy.
Hello sweat my friend.