The other day, I was going down several flights of stairs. Despite my extra bulk, I am still fairly light-footed (or light in the loafers, depending on your point of view) and I was flying down the stairs at a fairly decent clip. About halfway down the stairs, I noticed something: My manboobs were bouncing up and down. (And don’t worry…I just added the word manboobs to my computer’s dictionary)
Well, I have two word to say to that: Not. Okay.
I’ve given up my delusions of ever looking like an Abercombie and Fitch model. I don’t even need to look like Chris Evans post-transformation in the trailers for Captain America. (Seriously? How is that man even possible?) But I am just not okay with bouncy manboobs. Or plumber crack, which is another malady with which I have been struck recently. I tell you what: between my saggy manboobs and my plumber crack, I’m looking all kinds of sexy these days.
And I FLAT OUT refuse to buy bigger jeans. I’m just NOT going to do it. I will walk around naked from the waist down before I go up ANOTHER jean size. In fact, I’ve decided I’m not going to buy any more clothes at all until I can get my weight back down to around 180-185.
So yesterday, I finally buckled. I broke down and renewed my membership to the YMCA gym here in Bellevue. It’s actually a very nice facility, and unlike most of the commercial gyms, I can go to the gym without getting an inferiority complex. Because most of the people who go there are older and fatter than me! Huzzah! (In case you were wondering, yes, I really am that petty in real life)
The main reason why I chose to go to the YMCA, though, is because of their pool. Of all of the forms of exercise, I loathe swimming the least. I used to swim competitively in Jr. High and my freshman year of High School before I discovered theater, and
ruined my life forever chose that over athletics. In all honesty, though, it was probably for the best. Suppressed gay feeling + uncontrollable hormones + swim team = potential public humiliation and lifetime emotional scarring.
Anyway, most of the swimming pools around here are salt water pools instead of chlorine pools. And the gyms keep them around 88 degrees so as not to shock the systems of the dinosaurs who think that water aerobics is real exercise. (PS: It’s not.) Having swam (swum?) in chlorine pools my whole life, it doesn’t feel like swimming if the water’s not cool and I don’t come out of the water with an eau du stale chorine clinging to my skin and hair. The YMCA has a decent, clean chorine pool that they keep at a nice, cool temperature. So, while it is a little more expensive that a membership to 24 Hour Fitness, and there’s not as much eye candy to look at, the pool more than makes up for it.
As much as I like swimming, though, it’s got one major problem: swimming laps is boring as hell. The whole time, you’re chasing walls while hearing nothing but the roar of water rushing past your ears and the sound of your own thoughts. And I go out of my way in life not to be left alone with my thoughts. Those little buggers are destructive and hateful, and they should be kept locked up at all times so as not to wreak havoc on my delicate mental sensibilities. If you’re really unlucky, you get a song stuck in your head, and spend the entire session swimming to that song. Currently: Turning Tables by Adele. Perfect tempo for stroke rhythm. But hearing it in your head for an hour would be enough to drive Adele herself off the deep end. (Pun Intended)
Once I had decided that I was going to re-up my membership, I decided to see if perhaps I couldn’t come up with some alternative to an hour of mental Turning Tables. My sanity is already hanging by a thread. I didn’t want to start carrying around proverbial scissors. So, I went to Amazon and searched for “Waterproof MP3 Player”. How very fortuitous. A company called H2OFriendly buys off-the-shelf iPods, opens them up, and waterproofs them from the inside using a proprietary process. Then you just clip this little thing on the back of your goggles, use one of several different varieties of waterproof headphones, and you’re good to go.
So, after renewing my gym membership yesterday, I decided that today I would take the new iPod for a spin. Or a swim, as the case may be. I loaded it up with an Audiobook, and went to the gym.
Cue the freakin’ choir of angels, y’all.
This. THIS. This is the device I have been waiting for all my life. And I just didn’t know it. It was SO AWESOME to go swimming with an audiobook playing the whole time. I swam for 30 minutes straight, and hardly realized that any time had passed at all. I finished my 1000 meters, looked up, and was shocked to see how long I had been swimming. It was amazing. AND, the waterproof headphones make a water-tight seal in your ear canal and block out all the sounds, so it was very peaceful and quiet.
And yes, I know that 30 minutes for 1000 meters isn’t very fast, nor is it very much. But the last time I went swimming after having not been swimming in years, I overdid it and ended up barfing up my lunch in the locker room after about 600 meters. Not something I wanted to reenact this time around. I’m very, very out of shape. It’s going to take a while to work back up a shape other than manbooby blob.
I also found out that the gym now has a hip-hop dance class on Saturday afternoons, which I’m excited to take. I’m going to look like a mega-idiot, but that’s okay. It’ll be fun. More fun that the new age hippie that teaches the yoga class, anyway. “When I am in that place in me, and you are in place in you, then we are one. Namaste.” Yeah, well, namaste this, Earth mother. I just want to stretch out, not become one with you or any of the other 80 year old Korean women in this class.
Anyway, I’m super excited for getting back into some sort of exercise regiment. I’m even going to try to start going to the gym BEFORE work most days. I’m going to see if perhaps being physically fit and active again will help me to not be so cranky and crabby at work.
And who knows: maybe I’ll get my body back to some semblance of sexiness so I can attract something other than mosquitoes, self-esteem issues, and chubby chasers. I’ll be holding my breath. (Get it? It’s an underwater joke!)
And now apropos of absolutely nothing at all, I provide you this awesome clip.