Last year at some point I decided it was time to start getting into shape. So I started with a jog in my neighborhood. And since my neighborhood is not an upscale neighborhood and my neighbors are not upscale neighbors, I got chased by a pit bull that wasn't on a leash. I jogged about 200 feet from my house, and then had to sprint all the way back. So that was the last time I went jogging in my neighborhood. And I didn't want to join a gym for three reasons: 1) I don't want to pay for it, 2) I'm not as strong as the guys there who are in shape, and 3) I'm terrified of getting in one of the machines wrong.
So I didn't really do any kind of exercise since the pit bull encounter. But then my wife got a free treadmill from her dad. So I've been trying to get up early a few times (okay, once) a week to run (okay, jog) for about half an hour (okay, 18 minutes). And what I've found is that it is absolutely necessary for me to look at my feet when I'm on a treadmill. Otherwise I find myself losing my footing.
This morning I decided the best way to pass the time was to watch an episode of Community (Thursdays on NBC). I just got the DVDs of season 1, so I watched an episode while I jogged. The problem with that is I wasn't watching my feet. And when you combine a 6-foot-3, out-of-shape man who's not paying attention at 6 in the morning with a cheap, hand-me-down treadmill with the tendency to slip on its track, it's a bad combination. I lost my footing completely while laughing at the hilarious character of Abed, and I nearly died.
Lucky for me, I was able to react pretty quickly. My left foot, which had randomly deviated a good 12 inches off the track found solid ground and I turned my would-be fall into what I'm sure was a hilarious-looking spin move. But I avoided tearing the skin off my legs by falling on the carpet instead of the conveyor belt of death. And no one was around to see me make a fool of myself.
So I've decided to take my chances with the free range pit bulls. My pride couldn't handle explaining a treadmill injury to people. But a dog attack makes for a really good story.