Exercising poor judgment while working out.

Atomic bombing of Nagasaki on August 9, 1945.Image via Wikipedia

Want to Exercise? Pick Your Poison.

Sweat by Jog, Gym, or Treadmill?

(previously posted in 2007; revised and repackaged)


There is something glamorous about jogging in a Moxie Skirt and Fizz Tank Top until you run for sixty-seconds, then stumble into your neighbor’s yard gasping for breath, falling onto their newly-paved driveway, leaving a CSI body outline there after EMS certified masons extract you from the tar. An unsightly stain of sweat and tar now indelibly marks your tank top and pride with a Rorschach like blotch that signifies “failure.”

For me, jogging is too damn hard and undependable, as it is intrinsically affected by whether the weather is perfect or not. I’m a perfectionist. Perfection is a myth. Jogging is a mythstake.


Gyms are self-contained rubber rooms impervious to outside weather conditions and stimulating conversation. I love human contact as much as the next person but would rather not pay for the sadistic spewing of empty words, while under the influence of endorphins, when my heart is about to explode.

In addition to the expense of joining a gym (or la de dah health club), I refuse to get in shape next to people with toned hard bodies, who, I’m convinced, work out in a secret gym in a bunker somewhere in Wyoming, to get in shape before joining a gym . . . to get in shape.

While those hard-bodied people can wear stylish form-fitting workout clothes, I have to wear flabby gal clothes with fancy flap traps to hide a sagging stomach and drooping butt. I worry every time I lift my arms that the fat folds hidden inside the trap will unravel and deck the gal next to me doing 195 mph on her stationary bike.

And why, may I ask, isn’t there a gym cop handing out speeding tickets to overachievers?

No. Gyms are too stressful. Besides, I’d rather not have to smell other people’s sweat.


I already have enough stress from the treadmill that glares at me from the family room, a technological marvel that is accessible, as well as evil, since it eliminates the need for any human contact at all. It glares at me because lately I’ve been avoiding it. After only exercising for a month or two, I started skipping days, then weeks, and finally skipping past the treadmill completely and heading straight for the couch where I routinely exercise my thumb on the remote.

I’m officially on an exercise hiatus while I reevaluate my pudgy doctor’s advice to “shape up or die!


Frankly, both my doctor and working out scares me. Stretching and straining muscles is masochistic. In fact, I believe that exercising is more like exorcising and that its only purpose is to keep the mind in shape by working out limitless creative ways in order to avoid the harmful effects of exercising.

How do you tread on the mill – on foot or on wheel?

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