The gym is closed?!?
What?!? I’m off from work and the gym is closed?!?
How often have you asked yourself *that* question on a holiday when you’re itching to get out of the house and you’re overcome by the sudden onset of your exercise “mojo”?
Funny how that always seems to happen at 8:00 AM on Thanksgiving morning or better yet, at sometime around 2:00 PM on Christmas day. And oh the shock and surprise when you remember that the gym is closed! You’d think that there had been a murder with all the carrying-on that happens. The “oh man, it’s closed? But I *really* want to work out *now*!”
It reminds me of speaking with Rabbi Richard Chapin formerly of New York’s Temple Emanuel about the meaning of faith. He talked about the religious experience as more than what one often feels are mandated appearances on High Holy days. Rather, it is the sum total of all of those Friday night services and the attendant repetition of ritual that can give one the chance to glean meaning. And so with boxing or running or yoga or aikido or any of the host of activities one does at a gym or dojo or on a running track. It is not the ritual “appearance” on a holiday that give meaning to work and sweat, it’s the every day. The daily something. The things we repeat over and over as a mantra to the places we want to go and the person we want to become.
As an advocate for boxing, I’ll always talk about the ring as a place to take care of those sorts of longings, but really it doesn’t matter. The point is to find those things have meaning to you and to give it a whirl in a way that makes sense and is achievable. And no, you don’t have to go 15 rounds your first day or promise to run 12 miles or do 200 sit-ups or 10 sets each on every apparatus in the gym. Nor do you have to suddenly remember that you haven’t been to the gym in a while (shall we say weeks or months?) and figure the best day to start is at 7:30 AM on New Year’s Day.
So enjoy your Thanksgiving Day — and if you really feed the need to move around, I’d suggest dancing the Superbad Slide (and because it’s James Brown it’ll link you back to You Tube).