As you know, I've been a participant in BootcampSF for the past 6 weeks. Yep, a few days a week, I've been up and out the door, beginning an ass-kicking 1-hour outdoor workout by 8:30am--drill sargeant style. The experience has been eye opening for a number of reasons such as learning where you fall on the continuum of fitness in 3 different areas (arm strength, core strength and long distance running ability).
Regarding my personal fitness data, let's just say that if I were in running school, my placement test score would land me in the remedial class...probably with a private tutor paid for by the state. And I'd get to take the running SAT test untimed. But the important thing, I guess, is that I got better, ultimately shaving 2 minutes off my 1.5 mile run time.
That may not sound like a lot (and it probably isn't), but it meant that I ran by Tartin bakery a little faster each time, mortified knowing that the stylish neighborhood patrons were watching our motley crew huff on by in sweaty shorts. It took everything I had to not to stop for a much needed walking break while passing the outdoor tables where the hip parents congregate, casually sipping lattes from oversized porcelain bowls. "Do not trip," I'd repeat to myself for the entire block.
Anyway, what was funny about Bootcamp (other than how people's big happy dogs would sometimes chase us while we suffered through puke-inducing sprints across the park) was that I got a glimpse into the lives of my fellow San Franciscians--at least those who were also signed up for the 8:30am class in Dolores Park. When asked by our instructor on the last day why each of us had joined the class, following were some of the responses. Mind you, I was expecting to hear answers like "I'd like to lose some weight before my wedding" or "I'm training for a marathon."
Responses (delivered 100% deadpan):
Mid-thirties tall guy: "Well, Burning Man is coming up and I'd like to improve how I look with my shirt off."
Mid-forties butch woman: "I play hockey and need to be able to kick more ass on the ice."
Mid-thirties graphic designer: "I want to be able to dance all night without getting tired. As you might imagine, professional partiers need excellent cardio endurance."
God bless San Francisco.