For years, I had a treadmill in my office.
Though it was state-of-the-art in its day, it had become a dinosaur. No video screen, no pre-selected workouts, no add on program where I could pay a monthly fee for the privilege of having someone yell at me to “push harder” or “feel the burn.” No shelf for my laptop so I could make it a standing desk.
Its features: make it go faster or slower, raise or lower the incline.
Oh, and a cupholder.
But forget Peloton, this ancient NordicTrack was indestructible.
It began its life in my parent’s basement, where it blew out a motor after less than a year’s worth of daily use. Fortunately my parents had the warranty, but getting someone to repair it became such a nightmare that the company ultimately sent them a brand new treadmill instead.
And the next day—I kid you not—the repairman finally showed up to fix the original.
All the sudden my parents had two treadmills.
I got the one with the repaired motor.
A sane person would put a treadmill—one of the heaviest things you will ever bring into your home—into the basement.
But as long time readers of this blog know, my basement has more than once been visited by snakes, which means I spend as little time there as possible. The idea of finding a snake stretched across my treadmill one morning would be enough to put me off exercise for life.
The only logical place for the treadmill was in my office, which was two floors up. Someone needed to carry that (already fully assembled) treadmill up two flights of stairs. Two very narrow flights of stairs with tight turns.
To do this without damaging my walls was mission impossible.
It took three men, and a lot of grunting and sweating, but my dad, my uncle, and my best friend’s husband finally got it up the stairs and into position.
I bought them pizza and beer, but it was still the favor of all favors.
I watched every episode of The Tudors, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and Gilmore Girls on that treadmill. (As there was no screen, I stacked a portable DVD player on top of a homemade tower that consisted of a clothes hamper, an overturned laundry basket, and a stack of books.)
On the first day, I busted the clip that kept the treadmill in an upright position, but otherwise that treadmill worked without a single issue for 15 years.
But it was finally time to say goodbye when the motor finally sputtered, coughed, and gave up earlier this month.
And this time I paid a couple of professionals to carry it back down their stairs, but they had the luxury of carrying it out in pieces.
Well done, treadmill. Well done.
I’m sure your replacement, tricked out with blue-tooth, a television screen, and WiFi won’t last half as long.
Except here’s the thing: my office sure looks nice with all its open space.
The treadmill was a behemoth, and the office is small. It’s a second bedroom, perfect for me but too small for even a Queen size bed.
Working from home during the pandemic jammed in between my desk and the treadmill had never been ideal.
So now I finally have the opportunity to make it a cozier office, and I’m flooded with possibilities. Should I take this opportunity to instead buy a bigger, U-shaped desk?
Or a bookshelf, so I no longer have to cull my book collection so often?
Or a little loveseat, so Blinker has a nicer place to sleep while I work?
The possibilities are endless.
And I’m open to suggestions in the comments….
Having worked for a Manhattan moving company, I have visited storage facilities all over New Jersey stacked with ancient treadmills. Everyone buys them, then need rid. Do you ever see John Wick on a treadmill? No. Why? Because you do not need all these gadgets! De-clutter and enjoy the space!
Or alternatively, an air hockey table would look great there…or a mini gym for Blinker!
Asked Blink – she immediately and emphatically nixed the cat gym idea.
Although an air hockey table could serve the same purpose…….
I think Blinker would LOVE air hockey, the true sport of kings!
When the pandemic hit and we were working from home, we decided to move an exercise bike that was at one end of the living room. It was handy to exercise on there and watch shows (including Buffy!), but ultimately the area also made for a perfect work-from-home option. The bike was relocated, other forms of exercise were found, and long story short the bike wound up in someone else’s home. If you can use the bigger work space, perhaps a larger desk with an area set aside for Blinker? Fortified with blankets and made as cozy as required, she could get her rest while also being closer to the action.
Yes, we’ve all had to experiment since the pandemic, haven’t we? Whatever I decided, it will definitely have to get Blinkers seal of approval!
A nice desk, wall shelves for your books – gives you more space thaan a shelf unit, a cat~cozy bed and do your walking outdoors, so much better for you 🙂
Hmm. Good idea. And I do have a nice, hilly neighborhood to get my walks in!
I’ve never trusted machines for home gyms. I had a rowing machine once that I rowed into the ground. But eventually they always give out, and they’re expensive. Free weights, on the other hand, last forever. I’ve got a set I’ve been using for over twenty years and they’re still as good as when I got them.
Hm, as for empty space, it’s supposed to be something that “gives you joy” isn’t it? Thing about a bookshelf is that you just end up getting more books and then you need more shelves. Is you desk cluttered so that you need a bigger desk? The seat for the cat sounds best, as it might be something you both enjoy.
Home gym machines are tricky for sure – they’re gigantic, expensive, and if you’re not really committed become a hanger for your dirty clothes.
I’ve got no complaints about the treadmill–it lasted 15 years with pretty consistent use. But I’m looking forward to more outdoor exercise.
You bring up a really good point about more bookcases just encouraging more hoarding. I have about 100 unread books in my house at the moment, I don’t need a reason to collect more!
Blinker’s cozy corner is gaining traction in my mind……
This is a riot! A good smile for the day.
There’s an episode of “Friends” where Ross, ever the cheapskate, decides to move his new couch, himself. He has it all mapped out on paper, as he screams “pivot, pivot!” to the dismay of Rachel and Chandler.
So, just “pivot” and you’ll get there.
Haha. There was a lot of pivoting to get the treadmill up there, that’s for sure!