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Posted on Aug 30, 2011 in Dear Diary, Working Out | 45 comments


Time is a fickle, fickle thing.

They always say how “time flies when you’re having fun”, right?

So clearly, the converse of that would be that time all but stops when you’re doing something decidedly UN-fun.

Like running on a treadmill.

OH. EM. GEE. Time has never moved so slowly in my LIFE.

As my oh-so-brilliant Facebook friends have already seen, during the lifetime that was my tready time yesterday, I came up with the following formula:

30 minutes of Modern Family (aka the most hilarious show ever, and I say that as a Scrubs fan.) = 30 seconds.
30 minutes of driving = 30 minutes.
30 minutes on the treadmill = 30,000,000,000 hours.

Those are exact figures, by the way.

I am just so aware of every second spent running. In general, when you think of a span of time like 2 minutes, it’s nothing. Passes in the blink of an eye, even if you’re not doing something particularly enjoyable. Not so if you’re spending those 2 minutes huffing and puffing like a fool while the other three lunchtime work-outers (all men, by the way) politely avert their eyes.

It wasn’t good. My legs felt like lead and I spent almost the entire time just looking at the elapsed time on the machine (I used to cover the dashboard with a towel so I wouldn’t look at that stuff the whole time, but all that did was build the anticipation until I checked anyway, and then was crushed when I saw I had only gone like .2 miles, haha.) At one point I asked myself, “Why do my legs feel so heavy?” before remembering that, oh yeah, I’m still 30 pounds overweight. Womp womp.

Old picture. Same outfit.

Oh well, at least I did it! Thanks to all of your encouragement about my 5 miler freakout yesterday, I actually went to the gym. And at this point, that’s really all that matters. I roughly followed your advice to run for a few minutes and then walk for a minute, although the ratios got a lot closer the longer I was on there (5:1, 4:2, 3:2… you get the idea.) And after all that work, it ended up being slightly over 2 torturous miles. Nothing to brag about, I know, but since it’s basically like I’m starting from scratch, I’ll take it.

That, along with the intense amount of stuff I bought at Trader Joe’s yesterday (seriously, like a bazillion things for $50. Yet another reason why I love TJ’s.) means that the plan is off to a good start.

And to ensure that this post ends with something good as well, I invite you to enjoy:

Seriously. Amazing.


  1. (A) I’ve never seen Modern Family. *hides*

    (B) Running on the treadmill is hell. HELL. Hate it. Hate it. Hate it. DIE TREADMILL, DIE. That stupid clock. Even if I cover it up, I can just *feel* that damn clock taunting me.

    • You will LOVE it. Modern Family, that is. 🙂

  2. I. hate. treadmills. The end. But here’s a great thing. There’s a whole outdoors thing called sidewalks. It’s a lot more interesting because you have scenery. I can’t say I’m a success story, but I can say when I do go for a walk (I don’t really run) I enjoy myself. There is that thing called weather, but you have a couple good months till it gets cold. A pedometer is an amazing tool, you can measure how far you’ve gone.

    • Haha! I suppose that is true. But for some reason, it’s so much easier for me to stop when I’m outside versus on a treadmill… I guess because at least on the treadmill if I suddenly try to stop I will fall off it and die, ahahaha.

  3. First: I also love Modern Family but HOW can you say it’s better than Scrubs? Seriously, best/funniest show on television. Followed VERY CLOSELY by Modern Family, but not that close.

    Second: I hate treadmills, too. I do prefer running outside but if you have to/prefer to run on a treadmill, I’ve found that reading on my Nook (after turning the font size up to Grandma) passes the time rather quickly. If that makes you dizzy, TV or just plain music works well, too.

    Third: That is by far the funniest MF clip. It’s almost disappointing that it was in the first season.

    Fourth: <3

    • I think Modern Family only SLIGHTLY edges Scrubs out right now (and I really mean SLIGHTLY) because 1) it’s still currently on TV, where as Scrubs is over (CRY!) and 2) Season 9 of Scrubs was an abomination that I couldn’t even finish (I honestly only made it through the first 2 episodes.) I know that Season 9 doesn’t really count as real “Scrubs”, but in the grand scheme of things, MF hasn’t made that sort of mistake yet (though obviously it’s only starting it’s 3rd season so…) so it can hold it over their head.

      Okay, diatribe over. Also, <3.

  4. love Modern Family! I prefer to run outside but I can handle the treadmill as long as I have my music. I have no shame – I fist pump, I dance, I smile and shake my head.

    It’s so sad but Limp Bizkit’s “Rollin” is my treadmill “jam”. I always put my hands up in the air. Pitbull, Kesha, and electro dance all make me happy on the treadmill.

    Great job on the workout!

    • Oh man, I totally go all sorority-dance-pop with my running jams: Ke$ha, Britney, Katy Perry, you name it, it’s in there. Also, a few choice selections from High School Musical 3 may be on the playlist… don’t judge me.

  5. Love this post, and mad props for the Modern Family clip. Definitely one of my faves!

    I’m in almost the exact same boat as you- I’ve lost 40 pounds in the past year, which is great, but I still have at least another 30 to go, and it’s sometimes a challenge to remember that this still holds be back in some ways from achieving my fitness goals. I’ve been slacking at the gym this past week, so I’m using this post as inspiration to get my behind back there!

    I also hate treadmills and find myself using a bunch of different distractions simultaneously to pass the time (i.e. watching tv while listening to music and looking at the same page on a magazine for 30 minutes). Good luck!

    • At least we both know that we’re not alone in feeling this way! 🙂 I like the idea of listening to audiobooks, I should really give that a try. I think I’m about due for my 106th readthrough of the Harry Potter series anyway! 😉

  6. Treadmill running stinks — unless you have a tv right in front of you. That is the only way I can stand being on there.

    • In the gym here, there’s just 1 TV on the wall in front (directly in front of the treadmills, but still) and it was tuned to ::shudder:: the news. I guess that’s what I get for sharing the room with a bunch of business men getting their lunchtime workouts in! 😛

      • Oh my god you need a new gym!! We have mini TVs connected to each treadmill — you bring your headphones, plug in and zone out!

  7. If I had to listen to my workout playlist forever, I’d die. It’s horrible music, but perfect for working out.

    I’m definitely an outside runner. Today marked my first day of running three miles in a row. I admit that I thought I was gonna die, but once I did it I felt really really great.

    Way to go on getting back to the grind!

    • Whoo-hoo! Go you!! I will admit, trying to remember that feeling of accomplishment with running multiple miles really is what I’m attempting to use as my motivation to keep going. After my first 5K I felt SO proud! It’s just that DURING the actual running is when I get to myself mentally!

  8. Man I can totally relate to the slow moving timer on the treadmill! I normally try to change up the pace every few minutes which keeps me semi sane, but it’s still really tough!

    • I will give props to that method at least helping somewhat. Again, breaking it up into smaller segments does mentally help at least a little bit, when I can tell myself “just keep going for 3 more minutes” instead of 30, haha. That being said, those 3 minutes still feel really long!

  9. Congrats for sticking out the whole 30 minutes! Especially if you are just getting started with running, that is totally awesome! I love going to the gym at lunch time…a great way to spend the time. I started going at lunch 3 years ago and now a lot of my co-workers go too. YAY!

    • It definitely was a nice change from having to stay late after work to do it. If I can ever actually get myself out of bed, I think I’d ideally like to go before work (you know, set yourself up for a healthy day and feel like you’ve already gotten it out of the way, etc, etc.) but I just love sleeping so much…

      • I love sleeping too! On the days I get up early I go walking with my neighbor/friend. And it is a totally great start to the day!

  10. Way to go!!
    See? You totally kicked my butt with your workout yesterday. Despite my getting up and doing 20 mins on the treadmill at 5 a.m.; I only managed to do another 10 mins after work last night. (I felt like I was going pass out, and spent the remainder of the evening (and overnight) moaning in tummy pain – but anyways!).

    The time on the treadmill drags for me as well. TV is the only way I can get through it.

    Btw – I have never seen Modern Family. (don’t judge!). ABC, with the exception of LOST, doesn’t usually float my boat. I’m much more of an NBC and cable gal. I think honestly that is probably part of the reason I’ve never given it a shot. Maybe I’ll have to Netflix it…?
    And yes, Scrubs love! However, I gave up on it around Season 7 – it just ceased to entertain me at that point. 🙁


    • Season 7 was decidedly weak, but Season 8 was the best of them all! You have to go back and watch it. And if you liked Scrubs, you really will like Modern Family. Give it a shot!

      And at least you did get up at 5 AM in the first place! That’s impressive, you know! Every time I have the intention of waking up early to workout before work I fail miserably…

  11. I love Modern Family. I can watch some of the episodes over and over and over. That Cam is just hilarious!

    I’m impressed with the running. I see people running for over an hour and I’m always just amazed. My attention span is seriously limited. 🙂

    • Right!? I read blogs every day where they just, like, run. For hours. And hours. And all I can think is “when is the last time I did ANY one thing for that span of time, other than watch TV?” Hahahaha

  12. i’m still proud that you went and did it- you just gotta start slowly and build back up your resistance and your endurance since you haven’t really worked out consistently in a long time. keep it up!!

    • Step by step… yet again. I think people are going to get really tired of my constant “re-starting”… 😛

  13. The treadmill is actually how I started running, then I realized I could do it outside. But I will do both. Watching TV makes it fun.

    I have to say that you totally inspired me yesterday. After reading your post I thought, “No more excuses, I’m going to make time to exercise.” It’s been hard with baby waking up 1-2 times a night, but that’s just an excuse right? I came home from work, put baby to bed, and “ran” (ok, did the Couch to 5K program of running 60 seconds, fast walking 90 seconds for 20 minutes). And you know what? The baby slept through the night.

    Thanks for the inspiration. 😉

    • You’re so welcome! Though I admit I find it a little astounding that I motivated anyone do anything remotely active, since all I do is complain about how much I hate exercising, hahaha. Good thing I followed through on my promise too, then! 😀

      • 😉 It’s suprising how we motivate people! My students ask me all the time for job advice, and I’m like, “I’ve worked as a teacher/university administrator my whole life” but it made me realize that sometimes how we see ourselves isn’t at all how everyone else sees us.

  14. If you have a fancy-ish gym in your area with TVs in the machines, I suggest doing your running when Modern Family is on–it has to balance it out a little bit right? My best work outs often come when I show up at the gym at just the right time when Seinfeld is on back to back–even if I only intended to be on for 30 min, I stay on for the whole hour to watch! That and trashy reality TV haha.

    • Oh, if only the timing worked out. But hmmm… maybe I can get it on my phone… seriously I could watch those episodes over and over again.

      • iPad! It’s hard to watch on little phone screens but iPad would work. I’ve also been at gyms where your ipod/iphone can hook up to the display and you can then watch from the large display. My ex was nice enough to transfer my entire SATC collection to my computer/iphone so I use it as back-up when music doesn’t cut it.

        Does your phone hook up to Hulu or Netflix? You could also create a youtube playlist and watch the Honey Badger for motivation!

        Sadly I’m too cheap to join any fancy gyms and my $12/month gym only has TVs on the wall tuned to news, ESPN, and HGTV.

  15. Yeah, tredmills bore me. lol. I’d much rather do 45 minutes of Zumba. But that’s me. When I’m forced to go on a tredmill, I definitely try to put on some kickass music or watch tv or something.

  16. Way to go Gretchen!! You got out there and did it, best feeling in the world right!?!?! You should be very proud!! 🙂

    • Haha, I wouldn’t say it’s the “best” feeling quite yet, but maybe after my 5 miler I’ll feel that way. But admittedly, just being able to not be ashamed that I didn’t exercise is a much better feeling than having to admit to my laziness! 😀

  17. Whenever I get down on myself about a less than stellar workout, I just remind myself that it was 30 minutes more than the person sitting on the couch did. (A lot of days, I’m the person on the couch…)

    Getting back running endurance is actually easier than some other workouts. I stopped for like 5 months last summer and ended up running better than before!

  18. I have many of those kinda days myself [aka yesterday too]! Some days I go in psyched to cram out a bunch of cardio, other days I don’t even want to think about moving my legs… And it’s not always becasue I’m physically tired, but mentally I’m wiped!

    P.S. I’m heading to TJ’s tonight and hope to stock up on some goodies too, love it 😀

  19. I love Modern Family. LOVE. And that video right there is my favorite scene! Lol. Girlll… I feel you. I don’t run but man when you are not feeling a work out that’s when it just drags the most. No fun!

  20. So basically you need to watch modern family while you run to make your run only feel like 15,000,000,000 hours.

  21. Blarg! I hate treadmill running too. Which totally explains why I’m off to do Day 2 of my modified Couch25k plan.

  22. So I “met” you through your guest post on Beth’s blog today and since I have not read any of your blog before I am going backwards through to the beginning. What was that about obsessing? I’m sure you did not mean me. Anyway…I have a point. I too hate the treadmill. In fact, I can’t get on them because when I get off I spend 30 minutes waiting for the room to stop moving. People have told me this will stop happening if I just keep trying, but to me that is like saying the bee stings stop hurting after you work as a bee keeper for a month. I have no good advice. I don’t run, I zumba and ride my bike. That seems like enough for one person.

    Also, Modern Family is AWESOME! In that one clip there were like 30 quotes that I want to keep saying over and over. “I can’t turn it off this is who I am!”

    Ok I have blog stalking…er um…catching up with to do.

  23. treadmill is not anywhere near fun. Although I find if it bores me, Ill get off and do something different (elliptical, bike) because I would rather be a little bored on those, than extremely bored on the treadmill haha


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