The GuardianThe Guardian

Do I feel the burn after going to the gym? No, I feel like going to bed. But it’s getting better

By Emma Brockes

11 May 2023 · 3 min read

Editor's Note

Guardian author, Emma Brockes, is convinced this year will be different. She's determined to break her unimpressive exercise habits and get fit. The key, she says, is to make small life changes.

It’s spring in New York, and the trees are vibrantly green – which can mean only one thing: time for my annual week-long obsession with exercise.

My history in this area is completely consistent, in that it is reliably unimpressive and rooted in delusion. Over the past 10 years, I have leaned heavily on the phrase “structural exercise” to prop up my belief that I’m in good shape. I run around all day (for which read: back and forth between school drop-off and pickup, with a solid eight hours in a chair in between) and occasionally lift weights in a desultory fashion. Beyond that, I’m prone and staring at my phone.

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