Jewish World Review May 31, 2002 / 20 Sivan, 5762

Lori Borgman

Lori Borgman
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Consumer Reports


No Pudgy Hour at the gym

http://www.NewsAndOpinion.com | Knowing that some schools now send letters home pointing out that certain kids are on the chubby side, I've been uneasy every time I go to the mailbox. I have a high school reunion coming up, and I'm afraid the school might have my current address - and weight.

So I've gained a few pounds since high school. Who hasn't? The real problem is that the weight listed on my driver's license is the same weight I reported to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles when I was 21. It's such a lie. A big lie. I'm so ashamed. It worries me that I lie about my weight. But what worries me even more is that one day I may be stopped by a police officer. He'll look at my license, look at me and then cite me for possession of false identification.

I'd heard people often commence a gradual weight gain after age 40. Gradual, nothing. It was a Tuesday. My family refers to that day as the Scream Heard 'Round the World. The whole fiasco was so terrifying that I joined a gym.

Joining a gym was a good decision. Hanging out at a gym can be very educational. I'd like to share some of things I've learned:

  • The gym is run by thin people. Thin people man the front desk. Thin people are the trainers and thin people even clean the floor.

  • The gym is also frequented by thin people. There are thin people in the weight room and thin people in the aerobics classes. This is so wrong. Pudgy people should be at the gym and thin people should be at the neighboring strip mall eating donuts and fried egg rolls as fast as they can before the food police arrive.

  • Don't bother asking the front desk why the gym doesn't have a Pudgy Hour. The thin people at the front desk are not open to new ideas.

  • The only place at the gym where you can find anybody with meat on their bones is on the racquetball courts. For the most part, these people are male and over 55. Thankfully, they are also the only group that does not wear sports bras.

  • If you get on the intercom and announce that a cart is in the parking lot selling bagels and croissants, not a single thin person will rush toward the door. Announce there's no-calorie fruit-flavored seltzer water outside and you will be crushed in the stampede.

  • The newer treadmills have something resembling a computerized dashboard on them. You enter your weight, age, the type of workout you want and in return, the dashboard tells you how many calories you burn. The dashboard also has two round cubby holes on each side for holding things. FYI: The cubby on the left is not for a bag of chips. The pocket on the right is not for a chocolate shake.

  • The bicycle machines also have computerized dashboards. Even if you enter your age as 99 (it won't take a three-digit number, I tried), the machine won't register you as burning any more calories than if you entered your real age.

First I lie about my weight and now I'm lying about my age. I'm losing touch with reality. Obviously, it's been too long since I've eaten.

After learning that schools were sending letters home pointing out that certain kids were on the chubby side, I've been uneasy every time I go to the mailbox. I have a high school reunion coming up, and I'm afraid the school might have my current address - and weight.

So I've gained a few pounds since high school. Who hasn't? The real problem is that the weight listed on my driver's license is the same weight I reported to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles when I was 21. It's such a lie. A big lie. I'm so ashamed. It worries me that I lie about my weight. But what worries me even more is that one day I may be stopped by a police officer. He'll look at my license, look at me and then cite me for possession of false identification.

I'd heard people often commence a gradual weight gain after age 40. Gradual, nothing. It was a Tuesday. My family refers to that day as the Scream Heard 'Round the World.

If all that's not bad enough, now I start hearing about the food police hunting down fat content and purging the American diet of anything remotely enjoyable. That got me so worried that I joined a gym.

Joining the gym was a good decision. Hanging out at a gym can be very educational. I'd like to share some of things I've learned:

  • The gym is run by thin people. Thin people man the front desk. Thin people are the trainers and thin people even clean the floor.

  • The gym is also frequented by thin people. There are thin people in the weight room and thin people in the aerobics classes. This is so wrong. Pudgy people should be at the gym and thin people should be at the neighboring strip mall eating donuts and fried egg rolls as fast as they can before the food police arrive.

  • Don't bother asking the front desk why the gym doesn't have a Pudgy Hour. The thin people at the front desk are not open to new ideas.

  • The only place at the gym where you can find anybody with meat on their bones is on the racquetball courts. For the most part, these people are male and over 55. Thankfully, they are also the only group that does not wear sports bras.

  • If you get on the intercom and announce that a deli cart is in the parking lot selling bagels and croissants, not a single thin person will rush toward the door. Announce there's no-calorie fruit-flavored seltzer water outside and you will be crushed in the stampede.

  • If you set the television in the workout room to watch Emeril Live, you will actually gain weight while running on the treadmill.

  • The newer treadmills have something resembling a computerized dashboard on them. You enter your weight, age, the type of workout you want and in return, the dashboard tells you how many calories you burn. The dashboard also has two round cubby holes on each side for holding things. FYI: The pocket on the left is not for a bag of chips and the pocket on the right is not for a chocolate shake.

  • The bicycle machines also have computerized dashboards. Even if you enter your age as 99 (it won't take a three-digit number, I tried), the machine won't register you as burning any more calories than if you entered your real age.

    First I lie about my weight and now I'm lying about my age. I'm losing touch with reality. Obviously, it's been too long since I've eaten.


    JWR contributor Lori Borgman is the author of I Was a Better Mother Before I Had Kids. To comment, please click here.

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    © 2001, Lori Borgman