This morning, I had a meeting with Nike. Initially, I misread the email, so thought the meeting was from 8.30-10pm. i had been told I could bring a guest, and, unable to find anyone decent who wanted to be awake at such a hideously early hour, I invited my Mother.
As it turns out, it was less of a ‘meeting’, and more of a ‘Train to Run’ class, with an ‘Nike Master Trainer’. This was annoying for several reasons, the first being that I had to stop laughing at my Mother for turning up in running kit.
The class was a Women’s only training group.
I personally can think of few more competitive, judgemental situations a person can put themselves in. Luckily, I had brought my Mother. We had a perfectly splendid time, falling over in the balance drills, yelling in the strength portion, laughing while we failed to understand the partner training bit.
By the end of the hour, we had achieved the perfect ‘instantaneous-move-from-lounging-to-doing-the-proper-exercise-because-the-coach-was-approaching’ manoeuvre, and were feeling tremendously proud of ourselves.
‘Quick,’ I whispered to my Mother. ‘There’s going to be a rush on the showers.’ In a burst of speed unseen in the actual running class, we dashed from the studio to the changing rooms.
I grabbed my towel, my Mother grabbed someone else’s washbag, and we hopped into the showers. ‘This is not my washbag,’ My Mother called out to me. ‘I know,’ I replied, slathering myself with the fancy free shampoo attached to the wall. ‘I thought you were upgrading.’ Apparently she was not, so she hopped back out of the shower and returned with her own toiletries. (I personally feel that everyone uses far too many toiletries. There is only one thing you need in a shower. Shampoo. It is the all-purpose washer. Think of it as the ketchup of washing. It goes on everything).
Due to my Mother’s unusual approach to other people’s possessions, I had plenty of time, bored, fully-dressed, in the female changing room. Here are my observations:
1. No-one is able to look elegant when trying to remove their knickers whilst holding a towel around their waist. It is the most ungainly and attention-drawing position of all poses, despite the forced nonchalance of the performer’s face.
2. There are women who, if I looked like them naked, I would never ever bother to clothe myself, but instead occasionally, Anna Karenina like, drape the odd fur across my exquisite body if I felt chilly, yet are bizarrely shy in public changing rooms. (Naturally, as they hid in the corners and tried to change without an ounce of skin being on show, I sought to put them at ease by staring at them and smiling broadly).
3. I am all for body-confidence. However, there simply is no need to lovingly blow-dry one’s hair stark naked. it is almost impossible for the women who are sharing your mirror to apply their eye-liner in a straight line.
4. Not enough women, despite my continued, bullying efforts, are wearing matching underwear. I am considering spot checks on the tube in the morning. I am pretty sure Boris will back me.
5. My Mother takes forever to get showered and dressed. I am not sure if this is because she is tall, or because she is old. Either way, I had very much outstayed my ‘casual observer’ position by the time we left the changing room. I hope you all enjoy these insights, because I’m not sure I’ll be in a position to make any more anytime soon.
Gil took us through drills from Nike Training Club’s new running specific classes. These specialised drills will be available for all runners free through the Nike Training Club app and Live classes around the UK –