Thursday, 2 October 2008


Today I massaged the Dentist. She is crazy, in a slightly New Age kind of way, and slightly school-marmish - but I have to admit I kind of fancy her like mad. Fisher thinks this rather funny. In fact, when I said I thought she was fanciable, she looked at me and said:

"I knew at some point you'd say that."

Hm. Clearly Fisher has a highly attuned sense of my taste in women.

At this point I should probably mention that this is a matter of aesthetics. I don't get all twittery and girlish in her presence or anything. It's all very detatched - honest.

Interesting thing about massage. Not being a particularly touchy-feely person, I did worry that the act of performing a massage itself would cause me discomfort - and yet nothing could be further from the truth. Massage is like working out a puzzle with your fingers, while wearing a blindfold. It's all about picturing the muscles beneath the skin, 'seeing' the adhesions, micro-tears, oedemas etc and imagining your hands repairing damage. I think of it as very medical - although, not being a medical person I can't really compare. But when a doctor looks at someone he or she sees a living machine, to be fixed or maintained. It's kind of like that - although with massage therapy being used so heavily in stress reduction, you don't want to get too impersonal.

What I really love about massage is the creativity it allows. The strokes themselves are all a matter of repitition - but people are so different, with different physical and emotional needs, that the best way of providing effect treatment plans is to think of new and different ways of applying those strokes. Plus, with stress relief, there are lots of therapeutic techniques to try out - some you read about, some you invent - and as long as you don't stray into areas that are beyond your abilities, and stay within sensible parameteres, you can have quite a free rein.

I digress. I really only sat down to make a record of my gym session today. After massaging Dentist (who really ought to have a better pseudonym) I went to East Sands Leisure Centre and did a 5k run in 29.24 on the treadmill. I probably ran for a couple of minutes more than that, though, as I decided to start out on a 'weight loss' programme. Unfortunately, I think the machine was broken, as, randomly, it suddenly started whirring and put up the elevation. I knew it was going to after a few minutes - but this happened when the screen showed us still, supposedly, on the flat. The inclination was only supposed to go up to about 3 or 4, too, and this just kept on going! Pretty soon I was gasping, squawking, and hanging on to the handlebars. I just about managed to hit the stop button, while Fisher tried not to laugh as she ran on the machine next to me.

Anyway, I decided it was safer to stick to the usual boring flat run. It was tedious in the extreme, and I am absolutely exhausted from it. I was doing a basic rate of 6 mph, then speeding up to 7 for a minute, then 6.5, then 7, then 6 when I got tired ... and it nearly killed me. Sad. I'm sure I've lost a lot of fitness. And replaced it with fatness. Booo.

After the treadmill I did a weights rotation: Bicep Curl (on 35kg), Chest Press (35, then down to 30), Shoulder Press (20, then 15), Lat Pull (30), Hip Abductor (?), Stomach Press (on 1o. Is that 100kg?), then round again, 3 times in total.

I'm a bit fed up with fitness instructors, actually. Nobody seems to know how much the weight divisions are. It's almost as though the actual weight isn't important when, secretly, everyone knows it is. So if anyone out there knows what the standard weight division is for each machine, let me know. At the moment I'm figuring each arm-based machine at 5kg divisions, and each leg one at 10kg. I don't have any clue what the stomach machine would be. Any info would be gratefully received - in lbs or kgs.

After the gym we walked the pooches, came home, and cooked supper. Now I'm planning on going to bed and watching Star Trek Voyager. Hmm ... it's just struck me that the Dentist is a very little bit like Kathryn Janeway. Maybe that explains it ...