I met Chris through In Print Professional Writers’ Organization. But I believe we were sisters in another lifetime. She says, does, and writes things that I have, would, or might. From girl stuff to Supernatural to grandbabies, she gets me.
Chris is the co-author of the Whitfield Witch series with her sister (in this lifetime) Jenny Starkman. They have completed two books and are working on the third. In addition to her blog posts, Chris writes for the Plainfield Patch, is a regular contributor to the Not Your Mother’s anthologies, is a dedicated member of The Prompt Club, and of course, she’s FABULOUS.
5K to Couch
by Christine Collins Cacciatore
If you haven’t noticed, summer’s officially here. Bathing suits, skimpy shorts and tiny tops are being pulled out of seasonal bins and tried on. They usually go into two piles: 1) the holy-crap-it-still-fits-and-I-look-damn-fine pile and the 2) I-don’t-remember-it-being-this-small-but-doesn’t-matter-because-I-never-liked-it-anyway pile.
I have given away a lot of my clothes over the years, and maybe you have too. (pause here for the very lowest of fives). Too many of those clothes have fallen into the latter pile. To that end, this year I swore that I’d not have that 2nd pile.
I haul my 48 year old feeble, protesting, aching body to the gym on my lunch hour, where I punish it severely with either the exercise bike or the treadmill for a hideous fifty minutes. I make the torture slightly more palatable by using an IPod with old school tunes – think Ice Ice Baby, Fergalicious, Taking Care of Business, and Let’s Dance. Because I’m cool like that. Sometimes I even remember that I shouldn’t sing out loud with the songs at the gym.
Friends at work are into exercising as well, all different ways – one belongs to my gym, one bikes, one walks outside, and one is doing the Couch to 5K program.
Why do people try so hard?
There are a variety of reasons, probably as many reasons as there are people. To look better. To feel better. To avoid being harpooned when swimming in the ocean, or just to look good in a bathing suit for the beach. To look good out of the bathing suit, back at the beach house. For health purposes, whether it’s losing weight or just moving our bodies to keep the ol’ joints oiled properly.
Why do I try so hard? Most of those reasons listed above. Ok, ALL of those reasons listed above.
I decided to ask my blog for her opinion. You’d be surprised how often she comments, especially when I don’t want her to.
Me: Why do we try so hard?
Blog: This is why. Maybe you just don’t try hard enough. She holds up a picture of a tanned, toned woman wearing a bikini. That isn’t me in the picture, and it never will be. Three pregnancies have wreaked havoc on my lower belly, leaving me with “Nightmare on Elm Street” stretch marks and the muscle tone of unpunched bread dough.
Me: Hey! The fact that I haul my tired old sore self to the gym, isn’t that workout enough? Don’t I absorb some fitness by just having really, really, really good intentions?
Blog: No. No, you don’t. Just put on your tennies, if you can bend over that far, and get your butt to the gym every chance you get. Better not wear white pants, either, or your butt will look so wide people will line up to watch the movie.
Me: *Gasp* Fine. I’ll keep going. But I’m not doing the elliptical. My hands are crampy from all the data entry and typing at work.
Blog: Your hands don’t hurt from keyboarding. They hurt from holding sandwiches. From tearing candy wrappers open. From holding sticks to roast marshmallows.*
Me: Got me there. But when I go on my lunch hour, my hair will look terrible when I get back to work. I’ll just wait to exercise til I get home.
Blog: I hate to tell you, but your hair looks terrible now. Did you comb it with a rock? Gym hair might actually be an improvement. And you say you’ll exercise when you get home, but you won’t. You’ll make coffee, then have dinner, and by that time you’ll be too tired.
She’s right. I will be too tired. Maybe we need to take the pressure off a little bit. I propose an anti-fitness routine. Put it into play at your own risk. After all, this is for entertainment purposes only.
I present: The 5K to Couch.
What is 5k to Couch, you ask? It’s where you step off the treadmill of life for a while and put your feet up. For instance, did you know you can use a couch to sit down and read the paper with a hot cup of tea? Did you know you can use a sofa to sit on and watch a movie? My husband and I did just that last night! Game of Thrones, baby!
If you can’t go 5k to couch cold turkey (and who could) maybe you could lessen your guilt by doing some tummy strengthening exercises while seated or even a Kegel or two. Trust me, no one could know. Or maybe they would, depending on how intense those Kegels are.
But until my anti-fitness program catches on the rest of the public, you will find me most lunch hours at the gym, rocking out to my tunes…and pumping the proverbial iron. If you stop by, say hi. I’ll be the one with the bad hair, avoiding all eye contact, wishing for my couch and working to make sure my summer clothes don’t have to go into that second pile.
***true story – once used a fork to toast a marshmallow over the gas stove. Worked like a charm. Took off the marshmallow, popped it into my mouth, and then LICKED THE FORK which was still glowing. Here’s a fun fact: Neosporin has a funny aftertaste.