How to get me into a gym (without using a gun, or lining the machines with chocolate bars)

… Make it a competition. Even if it’s against myself.

Nothing like being given a challenge and we tried out the brand shiny new gym this evening.

Our local council have decided that our local swimming pool was finally past it’s best and needed to be replaced. This week was the grand opening of the new public swimming baths and gym. We were rather excited having ‘downgraded’ from our years of David Lloyd membership after they upped the prices once again to a point where I just couldn’t justify the monthly rate for me actively avoiding the super happy peppy personal trainers (we paid out a lot for me to sit and eat cake in the members room). So considering we’ve gone from what is marketed as a members sports club to the local fitness membership we weren’t expecting a huge amount.

But bloody hell! Total kudos to our local council for providing a really nice facility in a very pretty building. Well, I think it is even if it’s a bit of a contentious issue locally.

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Anyway. A pretty building is unlikely to hold my interest for long considering my total aversion to any exercise that doesn’t involve eight wheels bolted onto overly colourful shoes or a cake on the end of a stick. However, each of the machines lets you put in your personal exercise chip and pin type card that sets the machine up for you and tells you what to do.

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Meet my perfect personal trainer:

  • It won’t let me cheat
  • it sets the machine up for me
  • It doesn’t call me ‘buddy’
  • actually, it doesn’t talk to me at all!
  • it lets me try to outdo my basic workout
  • it records everything
  • it gives me GRAPHS!

I came home this evening and ate a yogurt. An activia yogurt. 0% fat no less.

All this is a step towards shedding some wobble for roller derby!

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When the seed falls hundreds of miles away from the tree

I thought I’d share a photo with you today of the tiny trainers we bought for Tinypants today.

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They are exceptionally garish. But she loves them.

Why are we buying trainers? Well, it seems that she’s been selected to take part in an indoor athletics competition to represent her school. And Tinypants is over the moon. She is beside herself about competing.

Now, from what I remember, athletics is running around in tiny gym knickers feeling sick from too much exercise and being shouted at by the PE teacher to “put some effort into it”. Sometimes, this running would be combined with jumping into a sandpit that contained god knows what and getting sand in those tiny knickers. Other times it would be combined with trying to break your shins on white gates that the sporty kids could leap over like graceful horses, leaving the rest of us to create colorful bruises on various bits of us. What I remember most was that sport was always combined with misery.

Summer was athletics and tiny gym knickers. Winter was hockey or netball where we were given extra warmth by covering the tiny knickers with a tiny kilt type skirt that was as thick as your average Kleenex. Netball meant standing around in the freezing cold hoping that the ball didn’t hit you in the face, where hockey was running away from the ball because being near it gave the sporty girls free reign to attack your ankles with wooden sticks.

This may explain my adult aversion to the gym. That isn’t to say I don’t exercise – we are weekly attendees at the family roller disco (90 minutes of skating is hard work!) and I am currently drying off from my Sunday night dip with Kitty at our deep water aerobics class (imagine combining aerobics with synchronized swimming in 12ft deep water, and our lack of any coordination. It is the single most hilarious thing we’ve ever done.). But since dislocating my pelvis anything which impacts in the slightest causes me the most bizarre pain and turns my toes numb! Sadly, this means that my chances of re-joining LSH at kickboxing or his new ninjutsu classes a out of the question, which is a shame as I quite liked having a 2 hour window each week when we could legitimately punch or kick each other in the head! *

I do like exercise, but on my own terms. Tinypants is a different story – traditional sports come naturally to her, and having spent the majority of her seven short years upside down in some form or another she has a cracking set of abs to show for it. I’m delighted that she loves sport, I don’t pretend to understand it, but I will support her as far as she wants to take it. Beanpole and I however were cut from the same cloth – we shall skate, swim and eat donuts.

I decided long ago, that it’s far better to be happy and have a bottom that dances to a different rhythm than my top half than to spend my life in the gym and eat nothing just to be miserable and obsess over my weight. I have boobs. These boobs require engineering miracles to ensure that they don’t smack me in the face if I try running (I did last year, and the undergarment required was nothing short of scaffolding). I may not pass the pencil test anymore, but I definitely pass the rolling pin test. As long as I don’t cross my personal upper threshold, I’m happy. I squidge a bit. I go out in places where I’d rather go in. But us frogs, we don’t waste our energy worrying about whether our value as a person goes down just because we ate some cake. We enjoy each mouthful of that cake being glad that we got to enjoy some cake.

A moment on the lips, a lifetime of enjoying cake for what it is, rather than what it makes us.

*NOTE- I ought to point out at this point that we DO NOT hit each other outside of these classes! Even in the classes, we were technically hitting punch pads.