When Soso left, I headed right back to my laptop.
I had just made a highly debatable claim, that jogging makes the skin glow better. Of course when I said it, I had no scientific proof; I just know that the girls I see jogging tend to have healthier-looking skin than the others.
I googled “jogging skin benefits”. It looked absurd even to me, but Google doesn’t particularly understand human language. Plus many search results would be skipped if you typed “are there really any benefits jogging has on the skin?” I scanned through the results and picked the most scientific-sounding article I could find. Turns out I was right.
I started looking for safe places to jog. With all the insecurity in Abuja, one had to avoid the crowded places. I started searching for Abuja fitness clubs. Preferably an open space where we would see any other person coming (and make a run for it if need be). I started looking for fitness clubs in Asokoro, Maitama, Garki and Wuse II. Since Soso didn’t have a car, it had to be a place where she could easily get a bus to. And so Jabi Park became perfect. I found several gym clubs, but I settled for one called clubsofit .
Clubsofit is a gym club that focuses on running. About 10 guys and girls who just run 3 times a week. They didn’t have a website but from what I gleaned off a fitness blog called The Measuring Cup, they had this running challenge for the month of May called May-Hem. Every team member had to keep track of the distance covered with an android/iphone app.
I got in touch with Chuks, their leader and arranged a meet. There were no rules- just come dressed for the occasion and with an attitude to match.
“Are you sure I really need to be doing this?” Soso asked, panting. She stopped to catch her breath, sweat pouring down her face like water. She had exhausted her bottle of water long before we even made it halfway from Jabi Lake to Berger Junction. Cars drove smoothly by- the sounds you only hear in Abuja-. The unhurried purr of Mercedes Engines. Soso never failed to lecture me on the difference between v6 and v8 engines. She could tell by the roar of the car whether the exhaust pipe needed tightening, or whether the engine was by AMG.
“true. It actually helps your skin to clean itself out. It’s like using facial cleanser…only this time from the inside. Plus, I’ve always wondered what you look like in spandex”
She lunged at me, almost catching me offguard. But when you say something naughty around Soso, you can be sure she’s bringing the pain. Surely it would’ve been a wonderful headline- “HORROR- DASHING HANDSOME MAN CRUSHED BY TRAILER AT 6AM- his friend jokingly pushed him, says eyewitnesses”.
“you idiot” she spat “you realize it took all of my willpower to get myself into these?” she asked, pointing down at the spandex joggers. Because of the sweat now trickling down her legs, the fabric clung to her body. For the first time, it became obvious that Soso was a shapely girl.
Just then Chuks shouted from ahead
“Last man washes all our socks for today”
Before I even had time to process, Soso had taken off. I chased after her, making up for the slow start with my long legs. I zoomed past her and for a second, I actually thought that I had won. Then something went horribly wrong around my waist- I felt a pair of hands drag my jogging shorts down. Instinctively I stopped, pulled them up over my exposed boxers and tried to continue. Soso ran past me for the second time today.
I looked up and saw Soso standing with Chuks and the other guys. She was laughing at me.
After I pulled the batch of socks from the dryer, I handed them to Vincent (Chuks was nowhere to be found) and said we’d be leaving to catch up on some appointments. He said they’d be around till about 11am when they broke for the day. I looked about absently for Soso while I muttered something about how thankful we were and how we’d make sure to put in at least 40 kilometers every week.
“The trick is to start moderately and increase your target. If you attempt to go 30km like Anu over there, you’ll just end up tearing your muscles”.
Chuks had returned with Soso. I wondered where they had disappeared to within such a short time.
I glanced over to see who this “Anu” was. The only girl in the midst of 6 guys…light skinned…Toned legs. I mentally bookmarked that face just in case, y’know 😉
This account is fictitious. Any reference to any persons or organisations living or dead is purely coincidental.
Clubsofit is an actual gym club in Abuja. You can catch them on twitter and instagram @clubsofit
Thanks to Anu Hundeyin for guidance on Weight-loss programmes. You can catch her stuff on http://themeasuringcup.blogspot.com
Special Thanks to Chima Mmeje for obliging ohpeter.com with rights to her workout photos. You can catch her stuff on http://poorrichlagosgirl.blogspot.com