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Sunday, November 20, 2011

Exercise and the Type A Personality

Ok...I'm not a strict "Type A" according to the Stress.About Type A personality test. {wry grin}
The test results: "You have some Type A features, but are not the 'typical Type A'. You can probably really benefit from the resources below."

So it appears I'm more of a Type A Lite.
But I do have a fondness for multi-tasking. (Possibly to compensate for a mild procrastination habit...)
Foibles. I gotz dem. 
(No, I don't multi-task whilst driving. No knitting, no reading, no texting...while driving. (Don't get me started on the ninnies that text and drive at the same time. {grrrrr})  )

I've mentioned before that I learned at Sock Summit 2009 that my habit of walking and knitting at the same time may not be something everyone does.
I believe that habit stemmed from my original penchant in high school to read as I walked from class to class. Knitting while walking seemed like a natural progression and I can definitely look around more when I knit and walk. Granted I'm not knitting anything complicated...but there are a lot of "vanilla" knitting projects that travel well.

ANYWAY...So, when I exercise I tend to multi-task. I get bored just walking on a treadmill.
(In Arizona, you can't always go for a walk outside without risk of overheating your brain.)

So - I walk on a Treadmill and I listen to podcasts when I walk. 
Or I read. 
Or I watch stuff on Netflix on the clunky old monitor (when I can see around the Cat Tails...). 
And - sometimes I knit. 
Sometimes I knit and listen to podcasts or watch Netflix. 
Multi-tasking heaven. (And Lord knows I need the exercise...)

I was first inspired to try knitting on the treadmill by a deadline on a lap afghan that was too big to carry around. 
Consequently, I found it was also cumbersome to balance when walking on the treadmill.

My first treadmill knitting support system was...a pair of my Dad's red suspenders spider-web wrapped round the arms/railing on the treadmill. I kid you not!
It worked reasonably well too. Sorry, I don't have any pictures but, as you've already imagined, it was pretty silly looking.

The suspenders were not "young" and the elastic gave out in less than a year - but long after I'd finished that afghan. I tried to find a basket (like some folks put across their bathtubs) to hold my treadmill-books and maybe give me some knitting support, but I couldn't find one that was wide enough for the treadmill.

CooPurr "assisted" in creating my current knitting treadmill support system.

I have sweaters. Sweaters have to be washed and dried flat. So - I have sweater drying racks. (You can see what's coming, huh?)
I used to put the sweaters on the racks to dry over the bathtub.
E'yup...CooPurr tried to walk on one of them. Sweater drying racks aren't made to hold 17+ pounds of seal-gray gato suspended over the bathtub. The rack snapped, CooPurr scrambled out of the bathtub in a panic (for some reason he is no longer interested in strolling around the edge of the bathtub), and I had this square of mesh without a rack.

Add some little tiny bungee cords to the sweater rack mesh square, and you've got a hammock to hold your knitting on the treadmill.
(It's ok...laugh if you need to. I understand.)

I use the rust-colored bag to the left of the treadmill to store (hide) the yarn (from Gryphon).
I finished the above Pink/White lap throw a while ago. I plan to drop it off at World Care after I finish another under-construction lap throw (currently 3/4 the way finished).

And when considering the weight-lifting I'd have to perform to prepare to read the Mark Twain Biography whilst walking on the treadmill, I came up with this option:
Nikoli likes to jump up to visit me when I'm walking/reading.
I try to keep an eye out for him to avoid a teeter-totter cat/book incident. 

You folks that sew might recognize the above reading-platform as a cardboard cutting board that is usually spread out on the dining room table for cutting out sewing projects.
I inherited this 2nd one from my Mom and I found this use for it (when I'm not using it for blocking knitting stuff).

I've also been using the "hammock" system to knit on my Einstein Coat during treadmill walks.

Didja notice the orange ear in my project bag in the picture above?
Nikoli "helps" me on the treadmill a lot. He was seriously intrigued by the heavy-duty ziplock in which the Einstein supplies are stored and - he climbed inside.

See - walking on a treadmill doesn't have to be boring!
(Especially if there are cats around to "help"!)


  1. Happened across your site looking for treadmill starter routines. I have been told to exercise for cholesterol, get bored on the treadmill, but love your ideas! Will be reading in future, do not trust my steadiness for knitting, as yet, may get brave. my Cat is not brave enough yet to come too close, but is not galloping off anymore. Will check out all your future posts, thank you

    1. Greetings, Locat! My Thanks for the comment and I hope my treadmill antics are of some use in keeping your treadmill time more interesting!
      Good luck in your cholesterol reduction. (I am probably in the same need-to-reduce-chol. boat. I'm just short the recent test to confirm my suspicions.)