I shocked myself at the weekend and became a member of a local gym. The reason for my lack of blog posts is actually due to this. I seem to have replaced my blog-time with sport-time. I will try and modify my schedule for this as I do not want to let my blog slip through my fingers.
For a few weeks I had been considering starting some exercise again. I'd begun to feel quite unhealthy, and certainly not fit by any means. It has been quite a while since I last did regular exercise, about two years in fact. On Friday, with Kimi's help, we found a gym called BySun that is walking distance from my home. We took a short tour of the centre and even met one of my students who jumped out from behind one of the machines and scared me to death. The centre was identical to a western gym, even the machines had been imported from America. Kimi used her powers of bargaining and managed to get the fee down to a very reasonable price: 1,250RMB for 6 months.
The following day I went on my own to do my first work-out. I was even given my own personal trainer who made a plan for me and showed me how to use the machines properly. I understood very little of the Chinese, but mostly body language was used to great effect. I had no idea how wrongly I had previously been using the machines when I last attended a gym at university. The plan means I have to work on my chest, stomach and back. After doing this I am free to use any of the aerobic machines like the treadmills or bicycles. I spent just over an hour of lifting and running, surprisingly it felt great. That was until the following day when I couldn't move at all.
The staff all seem very smiley and friendly, and when I go in the morning there is barely anybody there. Yesterday there was me, two beef-cake men, two receptionists, and the cleaners -- perfect. Now I just need to make a playlist of upbeat songs for my iPod to drown out the constant dance music and ballads that blast out of the speakers (even after three days I've noticed the same handful of songs are just played on rotation).