My lame answer is Starbucks, but it's true -- sweet, frothy coffees in a cup as I take walk with friends. I can take walks with friends in France, but it's considered strange to walk with a coffee cup and the closest we have to a Starbucks is a coffee truck that arrives on Wednesday and Saturday during the market.
|Au P'tit Plaisir with a line for coffee.|
I think about other friends who have asked me to bring them things from the States, what do they miss? Kris and Derrick want Levi's, only because they're cheaper here. Lou wants graham crackers. Teresa wants cream of tartar.
What do I miss in France that I can get here in the States?
This morning, as I was running in 32 degree weather (that's 0 Celsius) suddenly, my heart soared and a bubble burst from me: "Oh my, I really love running!" and that's when a recent conversation came back to me and I realized that the thing I miss in France is belonging to a gym, where I can lift weights or climb on an elliptical machine or stationary bike.
When I was at the YMCA on New Year's Day, as I got dressed after our water fitness class, a woman came in from the workout room. She was asking everyone how the fitness class was, and I mentioned that I had already run four miles that morning but that I would probably feel the class the next day. She couldn't believe I had run outside and then gone to fitness class.
"I love exercising," I said. And I do. Walking, bike riding, yoga class. I always feel better afterwards.
In our small town in France, there isn't a gym, per se. There's a twice a week exercise class, but that's pretty constricting. The next town over has a yoga class twice a week. There isn't a place to go on my own to work out.
Twenty-two years ago, a trainer taught me how to use the weight machines and said that lifting weights would increase my metabolism, so I started a workout by lifting weights, then moved on to an aerobic workout, feeling certain I was getting a bonus calorie burn.
Sixteen years ago, as I was training for a marathon, I tore my ACL. After surgery, the physical therapist drummed into me how important it was to lift weights so the muscles surrounding my knee were strong to prevent future injuries.
Since I moved to France, I haven't been lifting weights, and I rarely mix up my workout routine.
Luckily, I've been able to join the Y for the time I'm here, piggybacking on Spencer's membership.
Earl and I went to workout yesterday, and I saw a plan for a bodyweight workout that I can do when I return to France.
|A future workout plan -- but I hate burpees|
|The three quills of Quillan early in the morning.|
I guess I'll live with not having Starbucks or a gym, but having France instead.