It took me all of two minutes on the elliptical trainer just now to figure out I was not going to have an easy time of it. The truth is that that these days I never do. Time was when a run around the taman or the streets of Siglap was distinctly enjoyable. A time to relish the shaking off of the constraints of an ordinary day to become something distinctly, if only mildly, extraordinary - a body in easy motion. I did some of my best thinking on those jaunts.
I don't think of my current 40 minute sessions as anything close to jaunts. They are sheer hard work. Somehow I'm given the grace to forget this when I'm not actually peddling away and I walk down to the gym vaguely expecting to enjoy myself - but that just doesn't happen, not these days. It could be, I suppose, that working against the highest resistance the machine has to offer is not the best strategy. I did this initially to slow myself down to prevent over-doing it, and to get the most out of every trip to the gym, but I'm now seriously thinking of a different approach - at least occasionally.
Of course, underlying all this is a simple truth. I'm too old now to enjoy the kind of rapid improvements in fitness levels that training used to render so easily, and I miss those days.