Sunday, June 3, 2012

Adventures in Fitness

Adventures in Fitness

How I think I look doing Zumba
Before this little panic-based health kick I’ve gotten onto, I never realized that my neighborhood gym is so full of braggarts, preeners, and show-offs. For example, the tiny blonde next to me last week in the weight room with her long flat waist and sinewy arms--how dare she sit next me with that angular little tummy and her fancy-pants side-crunch barbell workout? She was obviously just doing it to lord it over me as I struggled with my 8th sit-up on the balance ball. Not to mention the jerk who leaves the weight on the thigh machine set at 220 pounds. No one can do 220 pounds on the thigh machine! And to the 75-year-old cranking out speed pull-ups on the free bar which I can’t even hold myself up on? Fuck you, grandma. You’re just rubbing it in and you know it. The same goes for showboats who manage stay on the stair climber for over 10 minutes, women who can do more than three push-ups, and anyone taking a Yoga class.  

How I actually look doing Zumba
But fortunately, I’ve found some tricky ways to sneak in exercise without total reliance on that den of exhibitionists: Flipping off the ice cream freezer in the cafeteria, chewing four pieces of Dentyne at once, and jiggling my leg a lot at my desk.  Food-wise, sadly, I’ve dropped bread and pasta from the rotation. I’ve been sticking mostly with vegetables, meat, and a smattering of grain or brown rice, (it’s a real party in my mouth these days), although I refuse to fully let go of my beloved Tilamook cheddar cheese and red wine. (That is my fruit and dairy serving, people, so stop judging.) After the first week of a rather dramatic calorie reduction, and, oddly, a parallel increase in the number of times I bit Mr. Typist’s head off and/or sobbed uncontrollably, I think I’ve settled on a comfortable level of low-grade starvation. 

On the plus side, my gym did just add a Sunday Zumba class, which is very exciting because I can actually attend one regularly now. I went today. It was a small class, and to my grim satisfaction, we were all just awful at it. I was drenched in sweat, gasping, and exhausted—and that was just during the warm-up.  But it’s biologically impossible ride a bummer about a life of deprivation during Zumba. For someone prone to melancholy and a low but constant hum of anxiety, it’s a great brain-vacation. I just pretend that I’m in a huge, warm dance festival in some hot-blooded, sun-kissed country, and that I look saucy and seductive instead of gawky, befuddled, and out of breath. 

Then I went home and watched fifteen minutes of the instructional video for my new portable Pilates bar. That was way too tiring. I’ll try actually taking it out of the box next week. One step at a time!

--Kristen McHenry


Sandy F. (Jr.) said...

Kristen I am tired just reading this! I am lucky if the most exercise I get is dragging my large carcass up and down the stairs with a laundry basket in hand. Good for you for doing all this but I think you look GREAT just the way you are!! I NEVER give up that Tillamook.


Sandy F. (Jr.) said...

Ooops that was "And" never give up Tillamook....I need to learn to proofread better : D

Kristen McHenry said...

Aww, thanks, Sandy! I miss you, you gorgeous laundry-toting blonde! When are coming to my neck of the woods? We need to do a chick day!

Steven Cain said...

Hang in there... advice coming from one of those aformentioned gym rats.