Tuesday, November 7, 2017

I Tried to Exercise Today

I tried to exercise today. 

 To tell the truth, I had kinda given up on exercise. I've had the same view as Donald Trump has had on the body and physical activity. Our president believes that there's only so much activity a body can give, and so if you exercise, you're using up that capacity. No kidding. That's what he thinks. My choice wasn't caged in such illogical sophistry. I'm just lazy. 

 Well, I had an interesting day today, topped off with a refusal to allow me to exercise. My goals for today's errands were to buy some new business shirts. I've recently been given some new responsibilities at work wherein I have to go out and sell my company to corporate clients. I'm not perturbed by this task; selling stuff is what I'd done for 20 years before becoming a teacher. Whilst in the midst of this dressware shopping, I looked up and saw a basketball. 

Basketball. My favorite sport. In my 20's and 30's, I used to go out and play in pick up games two or three times a week. At the time, if I could do nothing else but spend the entire day on the basketball court, I would be entirely happy with that. Basketball was my release. Nothing better than to get all your muscles moving for a few hours, and better than working out a gym. Basketball has a purpose. See, one thing I've never understood about "working out" is that there's no achievable goal. Maybe in the long term, but who's thinking about that when you're on some boring treadmill? With basketball, you do a lot of running; you have to. Point being, it's cardio-vascular with a purpose.

  It's better yet when you're good at shooting the basketball. As I've been doing that since age 11, and have been taught by some pretty good coaches over the years, I'm a pretty good shooter, and I was shocked when I went out onto the court today and shot the basketball for the first time in a couple years. 

I couldn't even make a lay up. After a couple minutes, I realized what the problem was. The key aspect of shooting a basketball consistently is muscle memory. That muscle memory was still in place even though it had been 4 years since I'd played the game. The memory was the same; the muscles had atrophied. I'm just not built like I was before. 

I watch Klay Thompson nowadays and how effortlessly and thoughtlessly he releases his shot, that was like me 10 years ago. Time is the ultimate opponent. I was finally starting to get a feel for how weak my muscles were in comparison to the last time I'd went shooting (again, my technique and stroke were that of that of 35 year-old Joko) when the facility where I was found someone whose English was good enough to tell me to leave. 

As I've written about before, I was very excited to see that a well-maintained basketball court was 1 block from my house. That was 6 months ago. It was only today that I strapped on my Nikes and went to play. 

The facility was actually a seminary. A Chinese Christian seminary in the midst of urban Yangon. And these double-minorities couldn't see fit to allow me to exercise for the first time in a long time. I got chased out after barely breaking a sweat. I think I need to contact the head seminarian. If I explain, tell them I'm an English teacher, that I'll share my English teaching with them, they may let me stick around and shoot some hoops.  

I remember the high-schooler who lived across the court in Dallas when I was just akid. We had the only hoop on the street. He told me, whilst coaching me how to the play the game, that you never leave the court without hitting your last shot. It's bad luck. 

The Myanmar guy was smiling while telling me I had to leave. I ignored him and concentrated on my free-throw. On my second try, and first and last make, I adjusted for the muscle memory and swished it. 

1 comment:

  1. Oh... that was so wonderful seeing how you refused to stop until you made it. Congratulations! Blessings, Lynn :)


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