Trainer Dude gives me half a grin with a combination raised eyebrow head tilt. He understands but doesn’t care.
“We’ll see.” His tone is borderline annoying.
Shit. This is what I pay him for.
I nod obediently and agree to his ‘one mile on the treadmill’ assignment.
This is going to suck.
Stepping on this deathtrap of a replicated sidewalk feels foreign. She’s dark and cold, like the cloud above my head. I know I don’t speak her language. I can feel her mocking my belly fat as I place my hands on her skinny, curved hips. Her red eyes bat shamelessly, and she cuts to the chase:
Where are you from? (Start)
How are you? (Weight)
How much can you handle? (Miles)
This bitch is a pro.
Standing tall in a precision military-like row of her sister cardio machines, she stands alone in my eyes, daring me to take her on.
I’m from Out-of-shape-ville (I push Start)
You repeat this, I unplug you (I enter my weight)
Four laps (Reluctantly, I enter the assigned distance of one mile)
There is a subtle deep swishing sound coming from her belly. My feet step to her pace without a fight and Trainer Dude seems pleased.
Walking slowly, I try to explain (again) that I am not a runner. “Seriously…” He gives me a look. “I think I have asthma, breathing problems, I am not a…” Pretending not to hear me, Trainer Dude increases the pace and says everything by saying nothing.
Now I am jogging, mostly out of spite. Sure to collapse any minute, I will prove I am not a runner. My breathing is slow, pronounced and causes me to rest every couple of minutes, but I keep going.
“I’m not a runner.” I manage in-between breaths.
After about ten minutes I am still waiting to pass out, but continue my pace. I feel beads of sweat collecting on my skin. Trainer Dude places his hand on my shoulder. He motions toward the mirror across the room and waits until I see my own reflection. He looks at me and smiles. “You are now.”
We are all stronger than we think.
Here's the part where you tell me something that you thought you weren't strong enough to do - then you did it. It could be emotionally or physically. Your comment may just inspire someone.