The first day I awoke excited to don my new workout apparel. I was, for the first time in two years, up and dressed before the kids. I wore black yoga pants, and a black workout tank, which I covered with a black hoodie. (i figured if it didn't go well, I could hold up the Mcdonalds across the parking lot for a crispy chicken value meal..supersized, of course)
As I walked into the gym, I felt a bit self conscious and out of place. I scanned the room and felt as if I were the only novice in the building. Everyone looked as if they new exactly what they were doing, and where they were supposed to be.
I made my way to the back of the gym and tried to remember where the entrance to the woman's locker room was. It only took me two tries to find it. I was already dressed, however had to put my coat away and put my sneakers on. Something about this made me reminisce about Mr. Rogers. That was until an oddly shaped NAKED woman came around the corner. I was a bit taken aback as it has been some time since I last saw a naked woman in real life. I was glad she was in worse shape than I was, because I would have obsessed about it if she hadn't been. (although later, I would learn that I would obsess about her unmanicured lawn)
I walked back into the gym area. I scoped out the cardio equipment and carefully picked out he one I thought would work best for my first time. I stepped up onto it...and after a few awkward seconds, realized there was no "on" button. Luckily, there was a nice old man on the machine next to me. He was slightly overweight and bald, and very unintimidating. I had no problem asking him for direction. Not missing a step of his own, he directed me as to how to use the machine. He told me I had to input my age and weight. (Thank God he was a bald old man...otherwise I would've had to lie on both fronts, thereby fucking up my entire first day workout)
At approximately 3 minutes in, my legs began to hurt and I wanted to stop. I couldn't believe that I was THAT out of shape. I mean, how did my "mom and baby/pig at home pilates" not have given me at least enough stamina to make it three minutes on an eliptical machine?
I tried to lower the resistance, only to find out it was already set at the lowest. Drats.
I pressed on. At minute 5 it occurred to me that the reason I was having so much difficulty was that I neglected to bring music. Once I realized this, it made the session even more boring and horrific. At 10 minutes, my friend had left his machine. I was also beginning to sweat enough that I remove my hoodie. Doing this while NOT stopping proved to be difficult and awkward. As I nearly fell off the machine, I whipped off one arm, then the other, getting it caught on the moving handle bars. I was thankful I didn't drop it in the mechanical parts.
Now that my sweatshirt was off, I could think of nothing else except the fat that I knew was protruding from the racer back tank. I wondered who was behind me....and if they were thinking I was new...or just terribly out of shape. (as I think back, they were probably neither...and it was just my gym virgin paranoia).
I finished my 20 minutes and proudly walked out of the gym. I went immediately to Walmart to purchase an ipod, whereas I came home and loaded up on the most fun 1980's tunes I could think of!
Day two, I decided to take a pilates class, since the schedule said it was only a half hour...which is about my maximum attention span given this type of arena. I chose a cute black and pink ensemble for this class. My problem today was that I had no underwear that was appropriate as each pair caused fat spillage and panty lines under my yoga pants. And, as I would later regret, I chose to go commando.
I walked into the class, this time with a little less hesitance. There was a good mix of ages in there, and I felt confident given my last few weeks of home pilates. The instructor asked that we get a weighted ball, and an elastic band. Hmm...I thought. She then apologized for the error on the schedule and told us the class was, in fact, an hour long. God damnit...I couldn't even leave at that point.
Class started and I was fairing well. My abs are strong under the layer of fat. All was well, until my mind started getting the better of me. As I lay on my back, legs open and in the air, I began to get classic camel toe paranoia. Why hadn't I just worn underwear. What is the lesser of two evils? Panty lines or camel toe. For I did not know the answer, but at that moment, panty lines. I focused on almost nothing else as I pulled at the crotch of my pants for the remainder of the class. I am almost certain that the class thought I had crabs.
That night, I headed to the GAP and bought 5 pairs of thong underwear. Contrary to my earlier protest regarding thongs, I figured I could bare it for 1 or 2 hours a day.
Two days later, I decided I might want to expand my horizons and attempt a Zumba class. I have rhythm and I like to dance. I was pleasantly surprised to see my old cardio kickboxing instructor was the Zumba teacher. Even more pleasantly surprising was the old lady that took the spot next to me. I was sure to look ok next to her (right). As we got started, I realized this was going to be more difficult than originally anticipated. I could mostly get my feet to do the right thing, but as soon as I attempted to add my arms, it all went to shit. Ten minutes of dancing and I literally thought I was going to go into cardiac arrest. Then, I noticed "her" . She was in the corner of the room. With a wild bandanna, stark white cat eye glasses, and Pippy Longstocking braids, she could nearly keep a beat. I found her most amusing, and staring at her tripped me up even more. All of a sudden, it occurred to me that my boobs were hurting more than anything else. As I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror it hit me that the built in tank top bra was doing little more good than a tightly pulled, single plied, piece of toilet paper would have. I frequently tried to hoist and separate as nonchalantly as I could until the much anticipated end of the class. I will NOT be "Zumba'ing" in the near future. (I did however, go to Walmart and purchased a few Dansko fully cupped sports bras that, if I do say so myself, make my pre-silicone boobs look fantastic.)
Up until this point, I had been to the gym EVERY day, however, with the exception of the painful use of bands, I had not done any upper body work. I had been focusing on the lower, rounder half. I was waiting for professional guidance. This I would get for Hew, my assigned personal trainer (yes...I got TWO whole free personal training sessions)
Hew had an adorable accent..he is from Wales. He sat me in his office and began to assess the situation. "What are your goals"? That's easy "I want the body I had in 1999. Next." He chuckled. "No really, that's what I want. I want to be able to bench my body weight (not my current body weight), and I want to have 10% body fat. Thank you." Clearly he recognized I have early onset dementia.
He then told me to step on the scale. I told him I would rather not. He insisted. I stepped on backwards as I felt this legit scale would not coincide with my $10 one I got at Walgreens. He began to slide the thing...I stopped him. I took of my sweatshirt. He proceeded. "WAIT!". I flung my glasses on the chair...and took off my wedding ring. I definitely would've taken off my pants if I felt he wouldn't have kicked me out of his office. Much to my pleasant surprise...he informed me that my weight was exactly what I told him it was at home. ( I somewhat think he lied since I never turned to look myself. At any rate, it kept me sane) Next, he said he was going to take my % body fat. I DEFINITELY was not cool with that....but I conceded. Imagine my dismay to learn that I was almost in the obese category. This test was most definitely skewed.
He brought me to a new elliptical. I began to "pedal" only to realize that for some reason, I 100% could not get my feet to work in a "running" fashion. No matter how hard he tried to make me do it, my feet just couldn't. I don't know why...it was totally embarrassing. I matter of factly told him to pick something else, it wasn't happening.
We went to the free weight area...what I have been longing for. Although what mostly bothered me was that I was not "buff". I was walking in there with flabby arms, untoned back, shoulders, etc. I had been thinking about this and had previously decided that I would NEVER be without a long sleeve, covered up shirt/sweatshirt while in the weight area. My master plan here included dressing like this until I was well on my way to Ms. Fit America...than, without warning BAM...I would unzip my sweatshirt and emerge like David Banner during a temper tantrum. (The Incredible Hulk, circa 1978)
Hew had me do, chest and back and shoulders, finishing with squats. For this, he had me hold a 45 lb bar across my chest while I complete two sets of 12. It was challenging, but I did it. This completed my first week.
Later that day, as I reveled in the fact that I had done it...familiarized myself with the facility, almost learned how to use the equipment, and not missed one day, I sat to enjoy a diet coke and magazine. I stood to get a snack, a felt a stinging pain in the ass. After all the hard work I endured, my very last endeavor, the "squat" left me later running to the store before the anticipated snow storm for..not milk, but Preparation H. (clearly, God misunderstood my prayers for a little bulge...I SAID BICEPS....BI...CEPS....).
My new thongs will just have to wait. The camel toe cometh. BAM.
PS: Someone said I looked skinny today......10 lbs and a week of neurosis has paid off.....