When I first got into working out a couple of years ago I started by running, not to lose weight or build stamina, but because it helped me to clear my head. Okay, full disclosure? I started running because a guy I liked was a runner, but once I realized that it made me feel great and allowed for even more thinking time than the shower, I was hooked.
To me, running is a solo sport. If you can manage to chitchat then you are not working hard enough (or you're just jogging like you're in an 80's movie -- is it just me or were there lots of movies set in NYC that featured people jogging in Central Park?). After my first season as a new runner the cold forced me to join a gym (I actually just became the hardcore runner type who will actually layer up and still run outside when it's cold out -- I know, wonders never cease) and, while this may be contrary to logical thinking, I found that the group fitness classes were the best way to avoid socializing at the gym (I live on Long Island, meatheads love to chill by the free weights).
As I got more comfortable and confident in my workouts I started to socialize in classes and now when I see people from the gym around town (translation: at my hair salon) I am totally that annoying person who's all like, "spin on Mondays, right?"
From time to time people I am actually friends with will mention that they go to the same gym as me and from there the same barrage of questions ensues: when do you go? what classes do you take? what instructors do you like? Once or twice I've attempted to make actual plans to meet someone (ahem, Liz), but up until last night it hadn't worked out (no pun intended, but I did laugh).
I was all set up on my spin bike -- with a fellow salon goer to my left -- when in walked my friend, and former study abroad roommate, Stephanie. I haven't been excited to see someone at the gym since college when I used to go with the sole purpose of "running into" people. It was great! We chatted for a few minutes before and after class, but didn't bug eachother in between and now tonight we're going to body sculpt. Both self-proclaimed fashionistas, I find it hysterical that we both rock old tees and sweats* to workout (despite my scores at the LuluLemon sale I'm still not getting rid of my old bar t-shirts). With so much in common, I'm finally seeing the motivational factor of having a gym buddy (those wonders, they're relentless).
Now wish me luck that I don't hurt myself at the first sculpt class I've been to in over a year - fingers crossed!
*Steph and I now work out together regularly, so I have learned that she is actually a total LuluLemon adorable workout gear person. I still generally look like 12 year-old going to softball practice.