Let’s Pretend This Never Happened AKA The Gym Story

Her Intentions Were Good

Do you have a favorite food? I get asked that a lot and I don’t really know. I adore cooking and am a real foodie! But I am also a foodie on a perpetual diet! Ugh! Dieting sucks the joy out of life, but I need to stay healthy. To balance this foodie lifestyle out, my daughter bought me a bundle of personal training at the gym nearby.

I hike, meditate, hike, and walk for exercise, I am not a workout person, but I decided to give it a try. I showed up at five a.m. the first morning to a smiling 21-year-old personal trainer, spin instructor, and swimwear model who must have injected espresso straight into her veins prior to my arrival. As I was still rubbing the sleep out of my eyes, she was bouncing around talking nonstop about how much fun this experience was going to be. I already didn’t like her just on principle. I mean what kind of psychopath pops out of bed looking perfect to work out at five a.m. Ok, I am not all hugs, peace, and love, I have a dark side too.

I just knew my morning was way different than hers. It was tough for me to even get out of bed, but I told myself it would be well worth it, plus I didn’t want to waste my daughter’s money. Katie, the Greek goddess trainer, with perfect blonde hair, bright blue eyes, and a flawless, toothpaste commercial smile, was there waiting for me. She gave me a tour and showed me the machines. I enjoyed watching the skillful way in which she conducted her training session. Very professional and inspiring! She was growing on me. She was so encouraging as I did my sit-ups, although my gut was already sore from holding it in the whole time she was showing me around.

I had treated myself to a quite groovy pair of paisley patterned workout pants. Only thing is, I didn’t realize that I bent over, they went completely see-through, showing off my also brightly patterned undies. The worst part is, that I was doing squats right at the front of the workout area. Ugh, kill me now.

It was the second day when my lack of exercise really started to show. I woke up and had to drink three cups of coffee before I finally made it out the door! I arrived to Katie’s bright smile and excessive energy. This day she had me lie on my back and push a heavy iron bar into the air as she added weights to it! Then she had me do the leg press; my legs burned with the fire of hell. They were already wobbly when I got on the stationary bike afterward, but I made the full five miles.

While I was on the bike, I developed the worst wedgie… but I was right at the front. Several times I lifted up, trying to wiggle it out. It didn’t work, eventually, I ended up just giving up and removing it very in a very unladylike manner but not before my butt crack suffered a major chaffing incident.

Katie was there smiling and encouraging me the entire time. And I made it through other than my sore asscrack. I felt like I might actually be able to do this and be successful.

The next day I woke up and when I squatted to pee my entire body seized up in pain. I nearly fell, but luckily the toilet caught me. The only way I could brush my teeth was to clutch my toothbrush in my fist and move my head back and forth since my arms no longer worked. I don’t know how but I made it to the gym, I guess driving was fine as long as I didn’t try to steer or stop. I had pain in muscles I didn’t even know existed. Luckily, it was 5:15 a.m. and hardly anyone was out on the road. I may have parked on top of a mini cooper in the parking lot, but I was too exhausted to move again.

Katie was looking at her actiwatch when I arrived late. She was impatient the entire time I was working out, she insisted that my screams of pain were bothering the other gym members. Her perky voice made my body ache even more.

As she grew more irritated with me, her voice got more nasally and annoying. I complained of chest pain when I was on the Stairmaster, I didn’t really have chest pain, but I thought it might get me out of the rest of my workout. I mean why the hell would anyone invent a machine to simulate an activity rendered obsolete by elevators. Katie then put me on the treadmill and told me to keep pushing, she insisted that this was what I needed to do to get into shape and enjoy life more. She said a bunch of other shit too, but my hearing stopped working at some point… probably from the pain. I don’t even remember the rest of that day.

Before I knew it the alarm was going off for my next early morning workout. I trudged out of bed and to the gym after much difficulty and much more coffee. I hate being a quitter, but I was contemplating easing that quality. Katie was waiting for me with a scowl on her face. I couldn’t help being half an hour late – it took me that long to tie my shoes. She instructed me to work out with dumbbells. When she was not looking, I ran and hid in the restroom. She sent another skinny bitch to find me. Then, as punishment, she put me on the rowing machine. When she wasn’t looking, I grabbed my bag and left for home!

I had already pre-scheduled all the appointments, so before I knew it my alarm went off for my next training. All I could think as I dragged myself out of bed to get ready was, I hate that bitch Katie more than any human being has ever hated any other human being in the history of the world. Stupid, skinny, anemic, anorexic little cheerleader. If there was a part of my body I could move without unbearable pain, I would beat her with it.

I made it there but was 40 minutes late for my hour-long session. Katie wanted me to work on my triceps. The problem is that I don’t have any triceps! So, I told her if you don’t want dents on the floor, don’t hand me the damn barbells or anything that weighs more than a sandwich. She snarled some more and put me back onto the treadmill which quickly flung me off and I landed on the health and nutrition teacher. All I could think was why couldn’t it have been someone softer?

While Katie was getting some equipment for our next set, I found a comfortable spot in the corner a literally fell asleep on a pile of yoga mats for fifteen minutes while Katie was looking for me. It was a serious sleep, the kind that you wake up disoriented with slobber at the corner of your mouth.

After several minutes of trying to get up off the floor, I told her I was done for the day. Katie smiled and said, “OK I will see you in the morning.” I made no promises.

I’m Just a Person

On the last day of the whole fiasco, Katie called and left a message on my answering machine in her grating, shrilly voice wondering why I did not show up. Just hearing her voice made me want to smash my phone into the table; however, I lacked the strength to even use the TV remote and ended up catching eleven straight hours of the Weather Channel. I learned a lot about weather that day. It took me a week before I could function properly without pain.

I told my daughter (the little shit) that next year she should choose a gift for me that is fun—like a root canal or a hysterectomy. So anyway, this is why I do not work out or even have a gym membership and I am totally out of shape. Well, a circle is a shape, so I guess that’s not totally accurate, I do have a shape.

A few weeks later, when I could walk again, I was at the store and guess who I ran into! Katie the Personal Trainer that I had stood up. I mean I completely avoided her messages, calls, and emails trying to arrange more sessions. When I saw her in the distance, I tried to make a run for it without her seeing me. I failed, of course, and she caught up with me (she is a PT after all!). She had the nerve to ask where I’d been. I told her Intensive Care after she tried to kill me.

Back to the trail for me!

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Comments 2

  • pearwood : Apr 26th

    Oh, deary, deary me. Delightfully written.

  • Michael Flaherty : May 9th

    Zoe,you are hilarious.Love your twisted take on us humans.I’m sure your time in the e.r. has informed your outlook.Was crying with laughter when reading about your time with the personal trainer.Can’t wait to read more and then some.


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