Not Exactly Thrilla in Manila . . .

There is a new antagonist in my life.  Most people call it an elliptical machine.  No offense to the inventor of the elliptical machine as it really is a lovely device, but the thing is a beast.  Every time I go to the gym, I say I am going to do at least 20 minutes on the elliptical instead of 30 or 40 minutes on the treadmill because the elliptical really does give better results.

I enter the gym armed with my walkman and a book to read plus a bottle of water and I stare my enemy in the face as I mount her and place my feet in the feet things.  I enter my weight (G-15 classified information) and the time of the workout.  I always feel optimistic that that day will be the day I do every single one of those twenty minutes.  I really do.  I even tell people, “I’m going to do 20 minutes on the elliptical today.”  And I get on it and I begin to move my arms and feet and nod my head to the beat of the music or sing along.  In my head.  And I watch TV ready to see those twenty minutes just whizz by and the calories too.  And by the third minute, I pause to drink a few sips of water.  Renewed by the liquid refreshment, I begin again and by the fifth minute, I could care less about the house that is being HGTVed, I want off!  Between the 5th and 7th minutes, I am no longer even caring about the song on my walkman.  I stare longingly at the treadmills in front of me with their nice display unit that fits any book I bring to the gym with me.  And then I sell out on my elliptical machine pipe dream as I walk to the treadmill after wiping down the machine of torture.

I do my time on the treadmill with ease.  Oh sure, I am bored with it but the book, music, and TV help with that.

The elliptical offers the better workout.  20 minutes on the elliptical raises my heart rate and I burn at least 200 calories.   Typically each minute on the elliptical is 10 calories.  So the 80 calorie muffin I ate this morning is gone from my thighs after 8 minutes.  Wonderful, right?  To burn off the muffin on the treadmill varies depending on how fast I walk or if I bother to kick it up to the 4.5 range to do a run for about 45 seconds. 

I am helpless.

I’ve tried everything to make the time on the elliptical go by faster. 

I picture The Biggest Loser’s Jillian in my face telling me I can do it like she did Isabeau the other night.

That doesn’t last.

I’ve thrown a towel over the display so I don’t see how slowly the seconds tick by. 
I end up moving the towel.

I curse myself out and remind myself that I want to look slimmer for the next book cover and an island vacation in the latter part of 2008. 

I tell myself that I need to lose weight and just be healthy.

In a tribute to the witty Judy Blume, I chant to myself, “We must we must we must decrease our guts.”

And yet I still allow the antagonistic diabolical elliptical machine win.

I’ve devised another possible strategy to last on the elliptical machine.  It’s a challenge to read a book on the elliptical because the pages move so I found a series of articles on my hometown’s newspaper’s website that I want to read.  I printed it off, stapled it, and am taking it with me to the gym tonight where I plan not to leave the elliptical until I finish the packet of articles and burn some serious calories.

Victory shall be mine.

Wish me luck.  I’m going in. 


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7 Responses to “Not Exactly Thrilla in Manila . . .”

  1. damasknymph Says:

    You’re so right about the elliptical machine!!!!!!!
    For the life of me, in all the years I’ve been exercising, after all the pounds I’ve lost, all the muscle I’ve gained, all the tricks I’ve learned… I CANNOT stay on that thing for more than 10 minutes. Absolutely can’t do it. I wonder why???
    Good luck, I guess we just have to keep trying!

  2. carlasarratt Says:

    It is the devil through and through but I am going to tame this beast!

  3. Jessica Says:

    At least you guys are talented enough to use the silly things. I’m not even coordinated enough to work the stupid machine. You remember those Nordic Tracks? Yeah, IMPOSSIBLE. Spent more time falling off of that thing than actually working out. : (

  4. Carla Sarratt Says:

    I remember them and never even tried that thing. I wonder about the Bowflex as well. I am happy to report that I did do 20 minutes on the elliptical on Friday and Saturday. GO ME!!! 🙂

  5. bsanders Says:

    OMG…I share the same sentiments….that machine is the DEVIL!!! But it works so well. I absolutely love the treadmill, because I’m so used to it. But since I’m on a quest to have “Angela Basset What’s Love Got To Do With It” arms, it helps to use the elliptical for that extra boost…

  6. carlasarratt Says:

    It does provide a great workout for the arms as many women are on the quest to have arms like Angela Bassett, lol. I think those arms became one of the most coveted body parts in the 90s, lol.

  7. And the winner is . . . « Keeping Up With Carla Says:

    […] to BSanders & Jessica!  Thank you ladies for your comments in the Not Exactly Thrilla in Manila post about my ongoing battle with the elliptical […]

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