The “Tweener” – The Time Between 2 Seasons

Man running in snow

Paul Stevens

“THE TWEENER”

What’s a ‘tweener’ you ask?  Well, it’s the time between two distinct seasons. The weather tells me it’s not really winter any more and it’s not quite spring yet.  It’s ‘in between’, hence it’s a ‘tweener’. Think of Homer Simpson who invented the new daily meal he called ‘Linner”; that meal you have (if you are Homer Simpson) between lunch and dinner.  It’s probably a good thing Linner didn’t catch on with the broader public since if it did, we would all look like we had just swallowed a ten pin bowling ball.

With hockey season coming to a close and cycling very spotty due to yo-yo type weather, a regular routine will soon become more difficult to follow.  To this point,  I have been having fun with our twice weekly hockey games (Monday and Thursday evenings) and going to physiotherapy sessions twice a week (Tuesdays and Fridays) as well.  There are only a few of these physio appointments scheduled going forward as I have been very fortunate to have avoided any discernible long-term issues resulting from my cycling accident late last summer. 

The physio office has a couple of lifecycle-style stationary bikes along with some weight training equipment so I can give myself a decent workout prior to letting the therapist turn me into a human pretzel.  Hockey will soon be done and physiotherapy will be a memory so my fingers are crossed that we escape the current ‘tweener’ period and I can get ready to hit the road on the bike with some regularity.

Related Article: When You Should Go See A Physical Therapist

As it is , I am getting at least four opportunities per week to get a healthy bit of exercise and have often moved this up to five by taking our pooch out for a 3 -5 km run through the local park.  Add in a day of doing the type of work you have to do when you have an older house and that leaves one day of welcome rest. Egad, that will likely be gone as the warmer weather will ramp up the need to do yard work.  Oh well, at least it will be that much easier to fire up the BBQ and relax under a warm sky at the end of the day.

In the interim, my wife and son recently joined a local gym where you pay a very modest monthly fee (about $20 each and no contract).  It’s one of those places where you have a pass card to let yourself in and out.  There are no instructors or classes so you are on your own.  The benefit is that there is no schedule so you use it when it suits you.  Moreover, I can use the pass card at times when my wife and son are not using them.  I have done this a few times and plan on doing it a bit more, at least until the weather becomes more favourable. 

If you have considered these types of facilities but are concerned that you might do some damage to yourself by doing the exercises incorrectly, you will probably find that the facility has an on-site manager who can show you how the equipment works.  You might also consider having a few sessions with a personal trainer or the like who can develop a program for you so that you are better able to achieve your goals along with doing the exercises properly.

I can see myself continuing going to the gym once or twice a week if I can get out on my bike a few times a week.  The gym is literally about a seven minute drive from our house so I can’t really use time or traffic as an excuse.  It has plenty of pieces of modern equipment so I can exercise parts of my body that I didn’t even know I had.  Boredom should not be a problem as you can vary your routine as much as you like.  For me, I have found that I can have an active workout for 50-60 minutes that includes time on a stationary bike with some weight equipment mixed in.  I enjoy listening to some high-tempo music through my headphones and I find that this really does help push me through the huffing and puffing.

Related Article: Cycle Through The Seasons

My fitness objectives are quite simple. 

I continue to hear the voice of my physiotherapist who is firm on the idea that ‘motion is lotion’ and I can’t disagree with that on any level.  Getting up and moving about even when you aren’t at the peak of your energy is just a great way to get the juices flowing.  I am sure we have all been there before when you are telling yourself that you really would be better off by lounging in front of the TV. It’s any easy sales job and there is no denying that we all enjoy that from time to time, maybe even with a bowl of your favourite snack by your side, and I’m not talking celery and carrot sticks here.  But even if it is a bit of guilt that provides your motivation, you don’t let the TV thing become an overwhelming habit and the highlight of your day. 

In addition to wanting to keep myself reasonably fit, I also have a couple of distance rides coming up this summer. I have previously mentioned that I will be participating in a fundraiser for Multiple Sclerosis in mid-July for a two day distance of about 180 km followed a couple of weeks later by a ‘Gran Fondo’ ride here in Sarnia that will cover 150 km in one day. I have never done 150 km in one day and so long as the pace is not breakneck, I see no difficulty in keeping a steady cadence with plenty of energy snacks along the way to get this done.  I’ll be joined by my fellow Manditos so we’ll have fun and encourage each other along the way.

For now, I’ll keep up with the gym routine and when things get dull, I’ll finish off the deck that I started building last fall along with freshening up a spare room in the house that needs some serious TLC.   

Your friend, Paul.

And remember – Carpe Diem (but in relaxed sort of way)!

.

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