It’s incorrect to say that I’m not physically fit. That would imply the lack of fitness. I’m anti-fit. Meaning, the opposite of fitness (see rule 5 in Words to Live By).
I did, though, join a fitness club because I like to swim and shoot basketball for fun, even though I suck at both (that’s me, Jack “Spuds” T, on the right). When I joined, they threw in five sessions with a personal trainer (I drove a hard bargain- the key to negotiating is to not care whether you get it or not, a feeling I surely projected after my initial tour of the facility when I said to the rep “Well, I really don’t care if I sign up or not.”).
Normally, I would not bother with such sessions. Working out is for good-looking people or people who are concerned about their health. I’m neither. I’m all about fun. I find hanging out at the gym working out to be about as fun as watching paint dry. But the only thing that supercedes my aversion to all things fitness-related is my cheapskate nature, so I relented.
My trainer’s name was Ray. Poor Ray.
Ray: OK Jack. What are your goals for these sessions?
Jack: I dunno. They were free, and they expire soon. So here I am.
Ray: Well, do you want to get stronger? Do you want to lose weight? Do you want to increase performance at sports?
Jack: I don’t feel any need to be more muscular, skinny or athletic. I’m here because the sessions are free, and they expire soon.
Ray: OK that’s fine. We need a goal though. That’s how the program works. How about we shoot for a little weight loss. That’s generally a common goal.
Jack: Sure. Whatever.
Ray: OK. Good. First, I need you to fill out this questionnaire about your eating habits.
Ray puts in front of me an SAT-like test with four pages of questions in 6-point font asking asinine questions like, “When you eat, do you mostly prefer red meat?” (yes. DUH.). I scan it and see at the bottom a check box saying “I waive the food and nutrition portion of the fitness training program.” I immediately grab the pen, check off the box, and sign it.
Ray: *sigh*. Jack, you know, the food component is very important to the weight loss goal. It’s like 60% diet / 40% exercise in terms of getting results.
Jack: [Thinking: Then why are you here then, Mr. Muscles? I don't see any degrees in nutrition management on your wall.] I don’t want to do the food thing. I like to eat good stuff. Also I hate vegetables. And I’m allergic to fruit. They make my inner ear and my right pinky toe itch. So I only eat meat and starch. Telling me to eat a lot of broccoli and no red meat is not an achievable goal. I’m all about achievable goals. I learned that while watching a Tony Robbins video. And while we’re at it, how come Tony has inhumanly big gums?
Ray: *sigh* Dude, what am I gonna do with you. OK, then just write down what you eat every day, and the time you eat it.
Second Session (1 week after First Session):
[Ray scans the list of things I ate for the week]
Ray: What time do you wake up every day?
Ray: It looks here like you don’t eat breakfast, and your lunch is usually at 1pm.
Jack: Yes. I get carried away doing work in the morning.
Ray: OK. Well, be sure you eat a meal for breakfast. And eat smaller portions for each of your three meals. And eat a small snack, like a cup of yogurt or a health bar, in between each meal.
Jack: Like, the health bars you sell in that cabinet there?
[Thinking: The ones that look like dried feces squeezed out of someone's square anus hole? How convenient that they look the same going in as they do coming out. But when you find an unwrapped one lying around, how do you know whether to eat it or flush it? What do you call them, anyway? Mr. Shitbar? ShitKat? Shit Jerky? Shwitx? Three Shitkateers?]
Ray: Well, you can get other ones at the market, but yeah, we recommend our energy bars. So, I noticed you didn’t eat any vegetables all week.
Jack: Yes, I decided to forgo the vegetable portion of the food pyramid last week. And all prior weeks since my birth.
Third Session (1 week after Second Session):
Ray: Let’s go work on some weights. [Hooks me up to some machine with weights.] Now do twenty reps and then pause.
Jack: One…. *grunt*…. Two….. *grunt*….. Three….. *grunt* *grunt*….. Five…..
Ray: Hey! No cheating on the count!
Jack: Why *grunt* do you care! *grunt* I’m only *grunt* cheating on myself! *grunt* No harm no foul! OK I’m tired. *Rubs sore shoulder* Where’s my water.
Ray: Hey! You can’t stop now! Twenty reps, remember? You only did six!
Jack: Ten, by my count, Ray.
Poor Ray, having to put up with me and my blase attitude towards fitness. I should send him a case of Mr. Shitbars. Or hire an Enron exec to teach him to count.