So I joined a gym last night. Lifestyle Family Fitness. My husband had been encouraging me to do it for a few weeks now, and so we finally went last night to sign me up. I've actually been a member of this particular gym before, but I had to let my membership go earlier this year because I was in between jobs, finances were tight, and I wasn't even using it (yup, I was sitting at home instead, having nightly binge-eating fests 'cause I was super-stressed from the money issues, and my husband was on deployment and therefore wasn't there to watch me self-medicate the stress and pain away with food). Anyway, I really do love this gym - it's brand-new with all new equipment, it's got TVs hooked up to all the cardio equipment, the staff lets me do my own thing, there's no waiting for machines, it's perfectly safe and well-lit (the main issue, since the only time I can workout is after dark), I know from experience that breaking my membership is absolutely hassle-free, and the best part - it's practically across the street! No excuses. So I worked out last night after signing up, AND I went again this morning before work. It felt so good to be back.
But back to last night's workout. I had an interesting bittersweet experience there, something that only truly formerly FAT people can relate to. And it's not the first time something like this has happened. First off, when you swipe your membership card to check in and enter the building, your picture on file appears on the clerk's computer screen. Well, when I checked in last night for the first time since dropping my membership earlier in the year, the clerk made a weird face, said there was some sort of mistake with my picture, but let me in anyway, saying she'd look into it and resolve it later. Well, on my way back out the door after my workout last night, the same clerk stopped me at the door and asked that next time I come, that I have someone take my picture again for their files. She said that the one they have for me looks nothing like me, and that she doesn't "want to see that person" anymore when she checks me in (she meant it as a compliment). Finally, the light bulb went off in my head, and I asked her to turn the computer screen to see what they had on file. I knew it was coming, and yet I was still shocked, 'cause it was even worse than I had thought. No wonder she had been so confused. There I was on her computer screen, a good 50 lbs heavier, with my hair back in a tight ponytail, and such poor picture quality that even I couldn't recognize my own fat face. The only way I could tell it was me was from the t-shirt I was wearing - a ratty old high school t-shirt. I literally looked like the Michelin Man in a turquoise 1995 perfect attendance shirt. I didn't know whether to be proud of my present self, or to feel sorry for my former self. I said as much, and she congratulated me how far I had come. Safe to say I couldn't wait to have that new picture taken this morning when I went back again!
Sorry for the topic-change whip-lash, but it's the Tuesday check-in for Jimmy Moore's 30-In-30 Challenge (2 lbs lost this week!), although I guess after reading about the changes to the Challenge, I think I'm going to be making my own changes to my participation in it. I've already met the challenge of losing 30 lbs in 30 weeks, so I think I'll simply continue on toward my ultimate goal weight of 150 (I'm so close), continuing to count the weeks since I've started (1 Nov 2006), and of course I'll keep checking in every Tuesday on Jimmy's Challenge blog for accountability.