I tossed and turned all night, unable to sleep. I dozed on and off fitfully, mumbled some angry words when the alarm went off at 5:45 a.m. and I drug my carcass across the frozen tundra to the box. What did I spy on the white board? Rowing. Three rounds of rowing interspersed with some other exercises I didn’t pay attention to in my shock.

I said to myself “Self? Didn’t we just do a crapload of rowing YESTERDAY?”

Since it was way too early in the morning and I was sleep deprived I actually answered myself.


“Maybe we didn’t read that right.”

“Nope, it says row 1000 meters, 500 meters, and 250 meters. And, uh, some other stuff.”

“Maybe we’re not awake and this is a nightmare. Has the alarm gone off yet?”

“Fraid so.” 

“Are these people sadists?”

“Fraid so. Now suck it up buttercup.” 

So I did. 

Row 1000 meters
21 push-press, 42#
42 abmat situps
Row 500 meters
more push-press
more abmat situps
Row 250 meters
more push-press
more situps

Time: 15:17

I don’t remember the number of sit-ups and push-press the sadists required us to do on the last two rounds. I do remember it was 42 on the first round because that is an odd number, and I don’t mean odd as in “not even” but odd as in “that’s weird.” 42? Why not 47? Why not 36? Is 42 the square root the fraction of pie or some such thing? It gave me something to think about while I was doing them anyway.

I didn’t really hit my stride until round three, probably because I didn’t warm up. At all. I just sat down on my rower and waited for someone to say go. I was cranky. I was tired. I was cold. They were expecting me apparently, because my name was already on the whiteboard and a bar was loaded for me. I also figured that a 1000 meter row was pretty much the same thing as a warm-up anyway.

I didn’t check the damper setting when I started rowing and it was set a couple notches higher than I like. I was already rowing, and I’m too short to reach up and change it without unstrapping my feet, and I was too tired and pissed to mess with that so I left it. I just sat and glared at the little lever, hoping I could bend it with my mind.

“I hate you, damper setting 5.” 

It’s only taken me a WHOLE FREAKING YEAR to figure out which damper setting I like.

Looking back, I suppose it could have been worse. There could have been thrusters and flutter kicks involved.

If that was the case I probably would have went to the corner and sucked my thumb for three hours.

That would have really messed up my time.


2 thoughts on “Sadists

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