пятница, 28 декабря 2012 г.

Shaping Up

By Dayle Allen Shockley

I have gained and lost the same ten pounds so many times over and over again my cellulite must have déjà vu.
~Jane Wagner

Staring at myself in the cruel light shining on the dressing room mirror, I said aloud, "I look pathetic." I meant every word of it. Without question, a good ten pounds had to come off — the same ten pounds that had appeared on every New Year's resolution list in recent memory.
I usually managed to take off the weight. I had plenty of practice and knew precisely how to adjust my diet in the kitchen, but the weight seemed to always creep back on when I wasn't looking. Something seemed to be missing and I knew what it was — exercise.

So, this year was going to be different. I resolved to pull out all the stops. I wanted to be toned and firmed and fit as a fiddle. I felt great when I discovered a woman's health club not far from home.

My first visit included embarrassing stuff, like recording vital statistics, my weight, and my body fat. I would begin classes designed to tone and firm my flab the following week.

Monday found me purchasing workout attire. I even found a gym bag with coordinating colors. My husband watched with a look that said, "Go ahead, but you'll fizzle out within a month." I deserved that look. Three years earlier, after my doctor recommended a good exercise program for my back, I had hired a professional trainer to come to my home and devise a customized workout for me. I was ecstatic about the possibilities and did everything she advised — for about six weeks.

"Never mind that," I told myself, "this time would be different."

At one o'clock, Wednesday afternoon, I marched into the gym; my spiffy bag flung across my shoulders in a way I hoped made me appear a veteran at working out.

Joining my fellow-flabbies on the exercise floor, I was pleasantly surprised to discover all shapes and sizes.

As the music started, an instructor named Kinsey, not weighing more than ninety pounds, stood before us and began barking orders.

"Okay! Are we ready?"

I was. At least, I thought so.

"Stand up nice and tall!" she yelled. "That's it! Let's warm up our shoulders and arms! Here we go! Roll 'em in! Take 'em out! Roll 'em in! And take 'em out! Great!"

Just about the time I mastered rolling 'em in and taking 'em out, the music's tempo shifted, and Kinsey yelled, "Okay! Let's warm up the upper back and those abdominal muscles!"

Oh, boy. I was short of breath already. If this was a mere warm-up, I smelled trouble.

"Keep those abdominals tight, ladies! Take it down! And pull it out! Beautiful! Take it down! And pull it out! Great! You feel it stretching?"

Not to worry. The leotard would never be the same.

"Stretch it out!" Kinsey screamed. "Use your legs now!"

Mine were trembling violently.

Kinsey was merciless. "Lunge!" she hollered, in perfect syncopation with the music. "Lunge! Two, three, four. Lunge! Two, three, four. Beautiful!"

I noticed Kinsey hadn't broken a sweat. To make matters worse, she was staring right at me.

"If you start to feel weak," she yelled, not missing a step, "take a little break." She smiled in my direction. "Side to side, now!" she screamed. "Come on, ladies! Push it back! Move those legs! Push it back! Keep that tummy tight!"

A couple of hours later, I dragged myself into the house and collapsed in a pile on the den floor. I now understood why exercise helped you lose weight: You were too tired to eat.

I still lay in a flaccid heap when my husband arrived home. "What happened to you?" he asked.

"Exercise," I moaned. "Call 911."

"I will make supper," he offered. I could only groan.

Later, as I trudged to the table, my face a picture of distress, my husband grinned.

"Are you making fun of me?" I asked, annoyed.

"No," he chuckled.

"So why are you laughing?"

"I am laughing at how silly you are."

I looked puzzled.

"There is nothing wrong with your body," he said. "and you aren't even close to fat." He patted my shoulder reassuringly.

As we said grace, I kept my head bowed a moment longer. I wanted to say special thanks for a man who not only knew how to cook, but how to stay out of hot water, as well.
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