Working Out & Gendered Exercise
I started working out at home recently. I have gym class twice a week and realized all those situps were paying off: my stomach looks slightly more defined. If I could achieve that much with a not-so-strict gym teacher, then who knows how far I can get if I actually apply myself? I know that my biceps could be in a much better state than they are right now, and it would be awesome if I could burn just a little fat off my hips.
I’m not aiming to be a bodybuilder. I’ll probably be a scrawny shorty thing for the rest of my life and I’m ok with that. But it does feel good to be in control of what I look like, especially since I won’t be able to get on testosterone for a year or more. I can’t force my face to grow a beard, but I can make my muscles look the way they would if I had more T coursing through my veins. And a little exercise can’t be bad. (Well, it could be bad if I totally lost it and started working out all day. But somehow, I doubt that’ll happen.)
I googled a few exercises focused on hip muscles, but mostly I stick to situps and pressups. Our gym teacher told us that girls should kneel to do pressups, which requires less effort. I never know what to do when she gives different instructions for girls and boys (thankfully I’m in a mixed-gender class). I usually try to do the “boy” exercises but stop if I feel I could hurt myself.
I know that “male” bodies tend to have more muscle mass, but I don’t know if that justifies differential workouts. After all, not every “male” or “female” body is the same. Maybe there should be two sets of exercises to choose from, requiring different levels of effort/fitness, so we could choose. Or the teacher could recommend one set or the other to each individual based on body type, instead of lumping us into gendered (or, more accurately, sexed) groups. I guess it’s simply easier to divide us by gender.
I just realized that body building literally means constructing your body. Which is exactly how I relate to my corporeal existence: I think of physical transition as constructing the body that fits me best. It feels great to start that process, finally, even if it’s only by developing a few muscles.