A humorous look at the little things in life

Alien invasion? Slurpees in hell? Even MORE unfathomable…I joined a gym! October 26, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — ashleyolsonrosen @ 9:44 am

Recommended wine for today’s entry: I’m thinking that with my new dedication (ha!) to fitness, I’ll start drinking wine spritzers apres workout. A really light wine, maybe a Fontana Candida Frascati, mixed with a little club soda and a juicy wedge of lime will be just the thing to re-hydrate AND offer a little pain control at the same time.


Well, now I’ve gone and done something stupid. AGAIN. I joined a workout place.


I was trying to enumerate the times I’ve joined fitness clubs, exercise classes and other chambers of torture and I couldn’t really peg the number of experiences but suffice it to say, there have been many and the cost-per-minute of use has to be well over $200. That’s even more than Direct TV’s $175 per minute.

Let’s see … the first time was a “figure salon” that I joined in Nashville my senior year of college. Seriously, “figure salon”? How Jane Russell does that sound? Well, this place was definitely for the full-figured gals of the era. It was about fifteen 40-55 year olds and me, the 21-year-old who wanted to shed a little figure before spring break.

I’ll never forget — they had us sit in a circle, the older women’s cankles demurely crossed, and we went around and told what we’d eaten in the past two days. After listening to tales of consumption that included things like entire German chocolate cakes and sides of beef and bags of Funyuns, it was my turn.

I started out great. Past two days? I think I’d had like a sleeve of saltines, two cans of VegAll and a box of Kraft Macaroni & Cheese. They all looked at each other like, “Oh, my, how did she get those thighs on that diet?” … but I wasn’t done. After I added the 22 beers it all made sense. And the frat boys who order the kegs weren’t big on Lite beer.

Anyway, that  interchange was 50 percent of my figure salon experience.

Next, I started going to aerobics classes at my apartment complex in Dallas. A bunch of big-haired 20-somethings in Flashdance attire. I made it three times before the whole I-can’t-clap-to-music-because-I-can’t-hear-the-beat and I-can-memorize-excruciatingly-long-chemical-equations-but-I-can’t-learn-a-two-minute-dance-routine and I-don’t-like-to-get-out-of-breath and I-can’t-stand-to-have-my-shoulder-exposed syndromes all knocked me out of the Jennifer Beals game.

Third attempt: As newlyweds, my husband and I joined the YMCA in Dallas. We played quite a bit of racquetball, which was good because I like hitting things and slamming into walls and competing with boys. But then my husband ruined everything and made me try Nautilus. Stupid. The hot, buff instructor with the great teeth gave me a lesson in using the machines. There was one that required me to put my arms up behind my head and bring the machine forward, with my arms meeting in front of my nose. Simple concept. But the machine wouldn’t budge.

It’s turned off, I told him. You need to plug my machine in.

It’s not electric. You supply the power.

Ha! I said, Go figure. Me. Well, I’m not stupid … I know you put a bunch of weights on there to mess with me (but I was thinkingflirt with me”).

M’am? There aren’t any weights on it yet. Do you mean you really can’t move the machine?

Last class at the YMCA. And he wasn’t hot enough to be a smart ass to the paying customers.

So basically I’m coming off a what … 26-year exercise hiatus? I mean, I had a couple things I was rehabbing. Couple C-Sections in the early 90s. Lost a toenail in 1994. Broke a finger in 2008. You know how it is.

Oh, but I did play softball in a corporate league about 8 years ago. The first game, they put me in left field and I had never played outfield before. I also had just gotten Lasik surgery. So my depth perception was just a little off. I charged into a long fly ball off the bat of either A Rod or Derek Jeter who worked at the time for a small industrial elevator company in Kentucky. Literally charged into it. When my chest gets really tan now, you can see the imprint of the ball’s stitch marks.

At bat, I smacked the heck out of one … to deep centerfield. It’s good that it went almost to the fence, because they still almost threw me out at first. I’m a little slow. Then, the guy who batted behind me didn’t even give me time to catch my breath and he hit the freakin’ first pitch. So I hurtled my way, arms flailing, to second base where I collapsed like the wicked witch when she melts from the water. The guy literally picked me up and half carried me to third and home.

I couldn’t walk down the steps at work for two whole weeks after that game.

So now I’m back on the workout wagon. My youngest daughter and I joined together. She doesn’t do anything half-assed. I don’t do anything NOT half-assed. So when I met with the owner, discussing my exercise requirements, this was the list:

  • No body fat calculations
  • No weight checks
  • No one calls me by name, or uses the word “feeble,” “saggy” or “pitiful” while I’m in the gym
  • No comments when I leave and head straight for the Chinese restaurant next door
  • No loud music in the gym and ESPECIALLY nothing with a beat
  • Nobody should smell like sweat

and most importantly…


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