If it was a movie, the music would be building from something light and ALMOST harmonic… but a tiny thread of atonal would be weaving through the melody. And you’d know: Something bad is coming. Something wicked…


Our heroine bites her knuckle and braces herself for the nightmare. Oh, no! Not cardio!

I’m healthy. I have the numbers to prove it. Weight and cholesterol dropping. Blood pressure enviable. Fasting blood sugar not so sweet (get it?). Waist? SMALLER.

Really, Maud – shouldn’t that be ENOUGH??

No. Barbara is never satisfied. (Well, she’s never satisfied with me… but I’ve got a long way to go!)

Alert readers (both of you) might recall that when I first threw myself on Barbara’s mercy some 17 months ago and begged her to train me, my original statement was “I’m ashamed of my cardio conditioning.”

That’s been true for just about all of my life. I remember insisting on playing fullback during endless, broiling nightmare days when “gym class” took place on the field hockey field. Why? Because at least half the time, I could SIT DOWN while all the action took place on the other half of the field. The rest of the time, I stood around looking thick and dumb while getting in the way of other, more fleet players.

No, cardio has never been my “thing,” man. It’s just not ME.

But I’m forced to admit: It ought to be.

If I’m serious about securing my health, then IT IS TIME. Barbara agrees. She’s built up in me the muscles I need to try for cardio health, and I’ve had such surprising success working with her that I’m going to dare to hope I can make cardio progress, too. My friend Steve says it builds up quickly, but I’ve never known that to be true… still, where the wise ones lead, I shall follow.

I asked Barbara – I’m the idiot student who reminds the teacher to assign homework – what she wanted me to add to my HEP (home exercise program) that would boost my cardio endurance.

“Any stairs in your house?”

“Two flights.”

“Good. Go up the stairs and then come back down. Do that three times.”

“Am I running up the stairs?”

She looked at me skeptically.

“No, not running.” I interpreted, and then admitted, “Good. I don’t think I could. How many times?”

“Three times.”

“Every day?”

“Once a week.”

“Once?? I’m doing my HEP every day I’m not here. I only have to do the stairs once?”

“Once, but three times.” She watched me; Barbara is getting very good at reading my tells. “And no fair doing it over an entire day. You have to go up and immediately down, then up and immediately down, then up and immediately down.”

While I think that will leave me sweaty and panting, I really DO think I can achieve this pathetic, remedial goal. I’m going to try.

Cardio. My Moby Dick. Call me Ishmael.

Screen Shot 2017-10-31 at 7.11.08 PM



10 thoughts on “Ominous

  1. Obviously you have forgotten who was with you in the back field: ME. I had forgotten all about field hockey until your post. Good luck with your stairs. Barbara sounds like a smart woman. I decided that I have to do 10 min of exercise every day. Just 10 min for 30 days. The other day I got out of bed to do stretching just so I could keep my streak going. 58 days in a row and the 59th I got sick. But I have been assured that throwing up is a very good reason not to move. I wish my watch knew that!
    Anyway, now you know that 1 more person reads and enjoys this.
    PS yes I have different temps too. 😀


    1. Oh, I had NOT forgotten who was sitting down with me – my sister in the backfield! I’m impressed with 58 days in a row! Besides the vomiting, what happened?? Did you build a habit??


  2. I don’t have a Barbara but I wish I did, LOL. My doc sez this 67 yo bod needs 30 mins of aerobic (cardio?) every other day. Me, who does a fast walk at about 2.5 mph. Yoiks. The treadmill & Audible & I have become as one. Carry on and on and on …………


    1. Maggie, I just hate it! Grace put me on a treadmill today, and I only endured it out of grim determination. I can’t wait until I hate this less. You and me, sister!


  3. I vote for the Lord of the Rings trilogy read by someone with a seductive english accent. If only to take my mind off the pain. I, at 63, am working on getting in 10000 steps a day, with 30 min of moderate exercise. Did you know you can increase your steps by carrying your laundry, one piece at a time, from the dryer to your dresser? It works!


      1. During the time I wore a FitBit (but too soon gave it up; too depressing), I found that I could dangle my arm over the side of the plush armchair in my office and swish my wrist back and forth as I read; that worked for adding steps, too!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s