Locked Out

We need these for class.
I want the Hello Kitty one.

This morning I went to kettlebells class, like usual.  I stepped up to the security door.  Beep!  The red light flashed.  I pulled on the door.  It moved but held fast.  That’s funny, I thought.  I swiped the fob again.  Beep!  Red light blinked again.  The door stayed shut. Now what?

Bill, a classmate regular, walked up beside me.

“Bill, I’ve been doing kettlebells for 4 years now, and I can’t seem to open the door,” I said.

He laughed.  Bending down from his considerable height, he performed the requisite wave. His little gray key worked just fine.  Man.

He stepped inside and waited on the other side of the door.  See, the rule states we don’t let anyone in, or risk a hefty fine. Everyone must use their own key. Great.  Now I felt like a complete moron.

I fanned the plastic piece of sweaty entry over the sensor and gained…nothing.

Dave kindly opened the door for me.

“Thanks,” I said, trying not to seem ungrateful.  I mean, the lousy system used to beep at me all the time, because I had to jerk the door open. Every single time I yanked on it, it stuck. It yelled at me on a regular basis. That was bad enough.

One of the other gym members saw my grand entrance.

“You know, my fob stopped working when my membership expired,” he offered.

Oh, that must be it!  As of June 4, I officially reached 4 years of gym membership.  Hard to believe. Long ago, a good friend of mine from church invited me to come to a class.  I pooh-poohed the idea for a long time.  I thought, How hard could it be?  I’m already running more than 20 miles a week and lifting weights at home. I’m training for a half marathon, for goodness’ sakes!

Boy, did I have a lot to learn.

I look forward to class now. I’ve taught it myself a few times.  Kettlebells built up the strength in my shoulder and helped me rehab after my running injury.  Kettlebells strengthened my lower back. It’s not just vanity muscles, but functional fitness.  I can do my daily tasks with less effort now.  I can lift 2-ton-sized boxes of cat litter all by myself now.  Stuff like that.

I learned how important form is.  Hard to concentrate on form while you’re running.  Kettlebells is a stationary exercise, for the most part.  You stand and move the bell around.  You keep your shoulders locked down and your abs tight.  Well, those who have 6-packs, I guess.  And, even after all this time, there are still some exercises I haven’t quite mastered.  My snatch lacks one element.  I found that out only today.  Back to the drawing board.

I’ve made good friends. We’re a motley congregation of folks.  We all have different goals and fitness levels, not to mention different ages. Some members have inspired me and some I have inspired in return.  We push each other toward excellence.  Barring that, we give each other a hard time.  Like the back row heckler who told our instructor that I was finishing the challenge too early today and needed to go up in weight on the squat presses.  So I did.  And almost revisited breakfast.  Thanks, buddy!

Lastly, I now know the words to every popular AC/DC, Poison or Ozzy song from the 80s.  I would rock on “Name That Tune”.

I’m grateful to my friend who invited me to class and helped get me hooked. I’m happy to have a gym a mile from my house. I can go anytime (ha!) and get my glow on.


 This post, based on true events, was powered by Taylor Swift songs.  Don’t judge.


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