Dreaming of the Gym

I tried going to the gym regularly from the years 2010 to 2021. In February 2022, I decided I won’t bother myself with such a dream anymore. It was high time I gave up this silly dream. It never made sense in my case.

It was a decade-long struggle of being inconsistent at the gym, not because of a lack of motivation or discipline, but the various migraine symptoms I experience.

Quite silly of me

Having a few symptoms all the time, and still, I had such a dream! How silly of me to dream of the gym when I found it difficult to sit on my own without back support (giving me terrible backaches) or walk straight (no pun intended) or do some simple chores (personal or household, not talking about the thing bachelor, as well as married men, do when they are alone).

Still, I tried doing different kinds of exercises at the gym. Tried cardio, body weight, weight lifting with dumbbells and barbells, HITT (High-intensity interval training), etc.

Trying to listen to my body...

Every other week or so, some or the other symptom would keep me from visiting the gym. It was frustrating. I would miss a few days at the gym each month. Sometimes, I would miss the gym for weeks, even months. It was a stupid struggle against the symptoms. I should have stopped a long time ago.

But I didn’t. Maybe because of my desire to get stronger and fitter and remain physically active since I sat all day long. Plus, it was something to look forward to in life when the crazy symptoms would limit my physical and mental prowess to such an extent that

I would stay away from many activities in life that my peers would naturally indulge in. No wonder my avoidance of all kinds of people became profound after I crossed the age of thirty.

Staying inside

There was a reason why I inclined towards a gymnasium for some physical activity. If you compare it with sports and even walking outside in the sun, there are a lot of triggers to be considered outside the gym.

Sunlight is a common trigger for people like me. I do my best to avoid it most of the time. Light sensitivity and dehydration are the most-definite triggers for a flare-up. Come heaven or hell, these triggers are best kept under the carpet to keep my sanity in check.

I can restrict my head movement inside the gym and exercise accordingly to minimize triggering the vertigo sensation. But it’s impossible to do so when I am playing any sports. Also, often it’s risky for me to walk on the streets as the dizziness makes me unable to walk properly and the disorientation makes me get into accidents.

Can you believe it? Even a simple thing such as walking is quite a big deal for me. I need to be careful at this silly, little act. Goodness me!

More control of external triggers

I can control my movements mindfully inside the gym and resort to low-intensity exercises requiring slow movements. But playing sports won’t let me limit my movements. I would be lost in trying to win the game and lose my sanity in the aftermath. Tradeoffs, huh!

I can limit the exercises and the overall time at the gym as and when required. I can’t do so if I am engaged in an activity with someone. I need to compromise and adjust with them all the while not expecting them to adjust with me.
No wonder gym attracted me so much. But now, I have made my peace with it.

Let’s try out a poem and see if it is more fun to read than this prose —

How Silly Of Me To Dream Of Gym

Yes, silly indeed!
What other word is there
To be used when I am being
Silly, silly, silly?

How silly of me to write
This essay and waste space
Not only on the page
But also in your mind.

Silly, isn’t it?
I am talking about the dreams
That we harbour all our lives.
Dream this, dream that.

Dream, dream, dream —
No end to the dreams.
When will this charade end?
When we die, I guess.

Till then, let’s be silly
And dream of things out of our reach.
What’s the harm in this?
After all, it’s a silly dream.

One day, it might as well
Remain not a mere dream
But become our reality
And encroach on our lives.

So, I guess it’s okay to dream
Without which there is no hope.
Dream to keep the hope alive
And hope for the dream to come true!

Photo by Humphrey Muleba on Unsplash

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