Saturday, March 26, 2016

A Public Apology: The Gym


First of all, I would like to announce that I did not die at Christmas. That was when I last posted and I know that my legions of fans are probably worried about me. (Both of them.) However, during the holidays, I did get to experience laying immobile, like a dead person for a couple of days because my lower back went out.

I don't think I'm very good at sleeping. If you are a regular reader of this blog, you have read that things seem to go terribly awry for me while I'm asleep. I have my suspicions that little, gnarled bed gnomes are making mischief, but maybe I just need to attend a seminar or a conference to get some tips to improve my sleep technique.

It was early in the morning. I was sound asleep and bothering no one, and I changed positions and that was that. I was in serious pain, I couldn't move and my wife got the pleasure of waking up to the sound of a lot of loud “F” bombs. As sexy as this sounds, she didn't enjoy it and neither did I.
After that “enlightening” experience with middle age, I deduced that the problem was probably work related. You see I work two jobs and each one has a continuous dominant posture the entire time. Apparently this can badly strain a person's back – causing them to become an invalid. So instead of “taking it easy” or “enjoying some time off” I decided that the solution to my problem was to work my lower back even harder by running on the equivalent of a human hamster wheel and lifting a bunch of weights for no apparent reason. 

So I joined a gym. By now most people are familiar with what gyms are and what to expect from them. If not, here it is in a nutshell. You pay people for the privilege to use their facility to pick up heavy weights in weird, unnatural positions, sweat all over the place and make grunting noises in a socially acceptable culture of physical fitness. I'm not new to this and I've been a member to various gyms during my life. I thought I knew how to handle myself in these situations and to spare my fellow humans any emotional discomfort. It turns out that I was wrong, yet again.

Luckily, the previous year I had lost some weight. It was the equivalent to about 3 adult cats, give or take a kitten. This saved me the embarrassment of needing a sports bra as I ran. This, in and of itself would probably not have needed an apology as it would have looked alluring to the right viewer. It's totally hot if you can see it in slow motion. No, it was something else.

As I do my “routine” I have been using the weight machines. These are the contraptions that help you not smash yourself in the face when you tire and your muscles give up. (If you enjoy heavy things hitting your face, I recommend you use the free weights.) Anyway, there is one called the “Pull down” machine. To use it you sit on a chair, reach up and yank the weighted bar down to the level of your shoulders. This particular machine at my gym is positioned where you face the wall with your back to the main work out area.

On one particular work out I was happily moving the bar up and down when I thought that I could feel a breeze. I stopped in the up position and considered. You know, I could feel something. Just above the belt-line of my shorts...

“Crap!” I thought. That's when I realized that the shirt I was wearing was too short for over head maneuvers and that I had stopped in the exact position to really let anyone looking to get an eyeful of my wonderful butt cleavage. I hastily pulled the bar down and considered my options. I had just started my “set” and it would be a shame to quit now. This exercise is great for your back, which is why I was there in the first place.

So I decided to soldier on and play “plumber's peek-a-boo” with anyone looking my way as my shirt went up with each rep; butt crack. And down; sanity regained. And up again; there's that butt crack again. And down; Thank God, it's gone. Repeat that crime against humanity until you're the picture of health. So, in conclusion, if you were there that day and had to experience that, I formally “apologize” to you and for any discomfort it may have caused you and your family.

And don't look next time you pervert! I'm not getting rid of that shirt! (And yes, I'm wearing it again.)


Epilogue: I understand that some people, for various reasons, may not have followed some of my fitness “lingo”. They might be too young or fat to have ever joined a gym so I decided to put some of the potentially misunderstood words I talk about in quotes, as with the aforementioned word “lingo” so that I can define them for you in this section.

“F” bombs = Exclamations of needing Fitness.
“Enlightening” = Excruciating reality check that death stalks you and is getting closer every day.
“Taking it easy” = Relaxing to the point of entering a coma-like state.
“Enjoying some time off” = Questioning your existence while abusing a chemical substance.
“Routine” = A set of actions you do over and over to achieve a fitness goal, like juggling chainsaws.
“Pull down” = Workout machine that sometimes achieves the same goal as the “Pull my finger” joke.
“Set” = This is the abbreviated form of a longer statement, “That's too heavy meat-face, set that down!”
“Plumber's peek-a-boo” = Adult party games with man crack.