I remember the first time I got fat. And not fat like, “Oh my jeans are a little tight.” Or “I should tone up a bit.” I was the kind of fat where you’re looking at a photograph of all your friends lined up sitting on the couch wearing skirts and shorts and your girlfriend says, “EEWWWWWWW!! SICK! JUST SICK. Look at my thigh! It’s like a giant overstuffed sausage! Look at all that cellulite!!! GROSS!!” much in the fashion any of us would only criticize ourselves.
“Gimme that,” I said, grabbing the picture out of her hand. “That’s not your leg, you dipshit. The way our legs are all crossed, look closer- that’s my leg.” It was the summer after my Senior year of college and I not only had packed on the “Freshman 15,” but the Sophomore, Junior and Senior 15 as well. It was probably the only thing I had overachieved at in college.
That summer I went on a mission and I dropped 50 pounds just in time for my move out to San Diego the following spring, and it’s a good thing too because all the girls here are literally toothpicks with heads attached to them. Okay not “literally” because that would be downright outrageous, but everyone over-uses “literally” these days so I wanted to jump on the bandwagon. Anyway, so yeah. All the girls here are ridiculously good looking and in shape. And they’re all allergic to food too, “Oh, no thank you. I had a carrot for dinner.” “I love going to the gym.” “I don’t eat enough calories to keep an infant mockingbird alive.”
Meanwhile I’m like, “What?” (Nom nom nom) “I can’t hear you over my chewing.” And whatddya know, that’s how I got fat again. GAH! Why can’t I be one of those tiny anorexic girls??? Waaahhh!!!
Oh because I love wine and cheese and food and LIVING too much.
So the way I saw it, here were my choices:
- Give up wine and cheese – Not going to happen
- Get liposuction and plastic surgery- Too scared of going under the knife
- Move to a part of the country where it is socially acceptable to eat – I’m in a lease and this sounds like a huge hassle
- Go to the gym – I can’t go to the gym because…..Come on brain, think of a good reason. You know you have one in there somewhere. Think…think!! I got nothing. I have to go to the gym. Dammit. Goddammit!!! I have to go to the gym. I’m out of options!! #!#$%@$%!
I’ve had a gym membership for many years . I would walk in with my headphones, phone, bottle of water and hunker down on an elliptical or treadmill. Then, I would “work out” for a half hour while I watched TV and texted my friends. Real quality workout.
When I realized the scale wasn’t moving (or sometimes moving in the wrong direction because my love for good food and wine far exceeded the calories I was burning texting ), I knew it was time for some drastic measures. So I decided to try some of these group classes they have at the gym.
The first class I went to was a high- impact cardio class and all these toothpicks with heads were there and I was like, “Um yeah if these little peanuts can do this class, I’ve got this in the bag.” And then an hour later, when I was lying on the floor, panting and nearly dead and this tiny girl named Princess was doing 500 push- ups ON HER TOES, I knew I was in trouble.
So let’s talk about Princess. I’m sure she’s a very nice girl. Now, having said that- I hate Princess with the fire of a thousand suns. She is a petite Filipino girl who has long hair down to her ass and abs so defined they look like they were painted on. By the way, Princess it turns out is a popular Filipino name so it’s not like she’s just a diva, although if Princess were an acceptable white girl name, I would probably legally change my name to it. Princess runs circles around the rest of the class and she always has a different, very skimpy outfit on while she works out. Her skimpy outfit is always some very loud color with matching colored running shoes. Girl must have 300 pair of sneakers in her closet. The instructor knows her by name and since joining this new gym over a year ago, I have never, ever gone- no matter what hour- and not seen Princess there.
I looked over at my friend Kara, who takes the class with me. “I’m gonna look like Princess one day. Just wait, Kara.”
“Umm. Yeah, see the thing is….I really don’t think that’s possible.”
“Oh, why not? You don’t think I can do it? You don’t think I can get in totally kick ass shape??” I scowled.
“Sure. I just don’t think you will ever look like a 90 lb Asian stripper.”
I love Kara but sometimes she’s a little too “realistic.” Anyway, whatever- sometimes when we’re in the class, I just picture sneaking up on Princess way up in the front and ripping off my shirt Incredible Hulk style and I’ll have a hot pink sports bra on that is even louder than Princess’ and my abs will be so shredded that each of my hard 6 pack 12 pack muscles will form fists and jump out of my stomach and beat Princess’ abs into a bloody pulp. Sigh. Maybe some day, if I keep working out….or if I somehow turn into a cartoon….
You know what I hate most about Princess? It’s not her ridiculous wardrobe or her ridiculous body or her ridiculous and inhuman ability to do hundreds of push-ups in a row. What I hate about Princess above all, is the shit-eating grin she has on her face the ENTIRE time she’s working out. Like she’s actually enjoying it!!!!!! Come on, give it up, sister!! Nobody is having this much fun in class. Not me, not the girl who pushes me out of the way when we’re running laps because she thinks it’s a Spartan race or something and there’s going to be barbed wire popping out the mirrors that she’s going to have to duck under (Relax girlfriend, it’s just a gym class…), and certainly not Princess!!!
I understand that not everybody has to have an expression on their face like they are in a torture chamber being burned with cigarettes and having each limb broken one by one and their fingers sawed off like I do, but the jig is up, Princess!!
So I’m at class last night and the teacher splits the room in half for the agility portion and suddenly I find myself face to face with Princess! She’s doing every move perfectly and just smiling away like she’s having the time of her life. And there I am sweating profusely and panting and having my usual cardiac-arrest thing going on- and every freaking time I look over at Princess through sweat-blurred eyes, she’s looking happier and happier. And I gotta tell you. Something happened that I can’t explain. I couldn’t look at her and not smile back. It was impossible!
So the two of us are smiling away and little does Princess know how much my hatred for her is slowly becoming a love-hate. To her, I was just another toothpick-with-a-head wannabe- but for me , it was a realization that although I am NEVER going to like working out and my abs will never ever be able to beat Princess’ abs up…well, working out doesn’t have to be miserable. I’m not saying I’m going to smile every time. That’s just malarkey. But I guess I could stand to take a little lesson from Princess on how to make the workouts a little more enjoyable. So I’m going to give it a try. I’m not EVER dressing head to toe in neon yellow though!!!
However, please do feel free to refer to me as Princess as you see fit.
Princess’ Gym Equipment:
Tracy’s Gym Equipment:
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