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The Lazy Marathoner: Wait, what do you mean, 'No weights'?

July 20, 2009 |  9:28 am

Kettlebell My least favorite part of working out is cardio. That might be funny for a runner to say, but it's true. I need zero motivation to go to the gym for a weight workout -- barbells, dumbbells, medicine balls, kettlebells, squats, Turkish get-ups, pushups, Arnold presses, you name it, I'm fascinated by anything new and different in the weight room. Now, I'm not telling you I'm great at it -- I'm just telling you that I love it.

Cardio, though, is another thing entirely. I always feel like cardio is work. And I also feel like unless I am killing myself and doing cardio as hard and as fast as I can, that I'm not doing it right. So, of course, I skip it as much as possible in favor of the weight workouts. Fitness guru Dr. Phil Maffetone says that schizophrenic approach to working out is what got me here. I'm someone who can easily do 50 pushups (five sets of 10!) and finished the L.A. Marathon, but isn't really all that fit.

So I'm back at square one, and Dr. Phil has me focusing solely on aerobic conditioning. And that means no weights, as weightlifting -- even the relatively light single-digit weights that I lift -- is an anaerobic exercise. And for right now, I'm supposed to avoid that. So it's all been about cardio: Walking and really slow running. Dr. Phil promises that if I keep it up, he'll have me back doing Zottman curls in no time. For now, I just wave to my gym-rat friends in the weight room as I go on my way to the treadmills and stair-steppers. I hope the kettlebells don't forget me. I miss them.

-- Rene Lynch 

Photo credit: New York Barbells