I don’t exercise because I love exercise. I exercise because I love food.
I like fitness in theory, but to me it’s more of a means to an end. I don’t want to spend the rest of my life flailing around in my living room to the most recent exercise video. And trust me when I say I FLAIL. If there were an intergalactic award for “Most Likely to Flail,” I’d be ALL OVER it. That’s why, for the sake of humanity, I tend to keep my exercising limited to my house.
You’re welcome, world.
Also? I’m easily distracted. By the time I get in a car to drive someplace to exercise, the feeling has passed and I’m just as likely to end up wandering into a conveniently located cupcake place. Or an inconveniently located cupcake place, depending on how good the cupcakes are.
“How was your workout?
“Hmmm? It was cookie dough with vanilla frosting.”
I’m also not a racer. I completely understand the motivation of signing up for a race in order to get in shape. I also have the deepest of respect for my friends who do this. It simply doesn’t work for me. I get resentful. ”Stupid race. Who do you think you are? I don’t owe you ANYTHING. Not one thing, you hear me?” I find myself shaking my fist and yelling. At A RACE. That’s just crazy.
Then I panic – why did I wait until the last minute to start training? A race isn’t like an exam you can cram for the night before. ”Okay, I only have to remember to move my legs quickly until about 10am. Let’s go, legs!” Nope. Doesn’t work. As a former runner, I’m almost constitutionally incapable of walking during a race. That means I’ll keep running until I collapse, and even then my legs will probably just keep on going, dragging my lifeless torso behind them like some horrifying mash-up of Forrest Gump meets The Walking Dead.
I guess I simply like doing things in my own time, and that really doesn’t work with exercise. I’ll start the P90X program and get distracted right around P6X. Then I’ll take a couple of days off and have to start all over again. I’ve done the first workout roughly 43 times, and there are two workouts I’ve never even seen because I haven’t made it that far.
I don’t particularly trust the people in those videos, anyway. They look suspiciously cheerful and happy while doing exercises called Crunchy Frog and Supreme Ab-Ripper Oblique Tricep Pain Extravaganza. There’s one exercise with the amusing name of Superman Banana. Sounds fun, right? WRONG. I tried them once and my abdomen jumped right off of my body and ran screaming into the night. Rule number one of exercise? NEVER trust a routine with a cute name. Ever.
The other week I actually tried to trick myself. I was only allowed to watch episodes of Doctor Who WHILE exercising. I’m brilliant! Go, me! I’ve always meant to watch Doctor Who – here was the PERFECT plan. Only I ran into trouble when I was trying to watch the episodes while also watching P90X workouts. I ended up pausing a lot, and my foot is still bruised from dropping a weight on it during a particularly suspenseful scene. When I tried watching while using the recumbent bike, I couldn’t hear very well. I plugged in earbuds, which got caught in the pedals. Also, an hour of pedaling allegedly burned something like 400 calories, which is roughly equivalent to – in Mickey-speak – not-nearly-enough-damned-calories-for-an-hour-of-pedaling.
Also, I don’t know how I feel about trying to trick myself into working out. Am I brilliant for coming up with a plan that works, or am I stupid for falling for it?
But I do love eating. And my metabolism – once so mighty! – is letting me down. The truth of the matter is I don’t fear gaining weight nearly as much as I fear having to shop for new clothes. So there you have it: fitness through an intense fear of shopping.
Perhaps I’m on to something: “Will exercise to avoid shopping.”
Or, of course, the far more direct: “Will exercise for food.”