let’s get physical – part 1

We’re having a lazy evening meal of pasta and sauce with chips for tea tonight, which is a carb overload and doesn’t look especially inviting when splashed across a comic book – so no recipe card tonight. No, I thought I’d type out some thoughts on my exercising history ahead of another article I’ve got planned explaining Body Magic, Slimming World’s sister programme where you are encouraged to exercise alongside the healthy eating.

My own story with exercising is somewhat predictable. I was a skinny little thing until my balls dropped, I grew a peach-skin ‘tache and my voice dropped, upon which I grew a cracking set of tits and filled out my trousers. PE was a nightmare because I had an absolutely horrible PE teacher who took great delight in making all the fatties be on the ‘skins’ team, i.e jiggle and wobble our way around a basketball court without our shirts on. My prevailing memory of PE was me deciding I didn’t want to do cross-country and shouting at him, across the changing room, that I had terrible diarrhoea and couldn’t possibly join in. His reply, with his midget hand firmly on his bony old thigh, was to yell back ‘WELL IT’LL MAKE YOU RUN FASTER’. I had to put the tears in my eyes down to the four hundred cubic metres of Lynx Africa that hung in the changing room.

Actually, in retrospect, I’ll give him that one. He was still a prick, though. Plus he used to wear the same rancid running leggings day in day out – blue Foothold ones that were strained around the gusset. You shouldn’t be able to tell if your PE teacher was Jewish or not just by accidentally glancing at his crotch. Tell you what, though – he was a cracking geography teacher. Odd that!

In high school, PE was no better, but by that point the teaching staff had essentially given up on the fat kids and we were allowed to sit on the mats and gossip. I mean honestly, the clues to my inevitable lifestyle choices were there. They did eventually tell us off when we brought scones, clotted cream and jam to our PE class – and that’s not even a fib. So, unlike most of the other lads who were happy kicking a bit of leather around in the mud or running aimlessly towards Newcastle Airport and back under the guise of cross-country, an enjoyment of sport was never fostered in me.

<flashforward wishy-whoo noise>

Paul and I decided to join a gym back in January, and told ourselves that we would look around the various gyms the region had to offer. We looked at one, and signed up for a year on the basis that a) it had a pool and b) it had a scented steam room. Honestly. David Lloyd in Jesmond. We were very keen to begin with, but stopped going, predominately because the weights area was absolutely full of preening, roid-rage arseholes who spent more time grunting in the mirror than using the machines. It was intimidating and always smelled of onions. I remember quite clearly one man who screamed ‘FUCK’ every time he lifted a weight and then looked around each time to see who was looking at him. Arseache. He was also one of those men who strut around the changing room bollock-naked so you can see all of his muscles. And they weren’t worth seeing. He had a cock like a mouse’s ear for a start. Also, for the money you pay, the machines are quite old – which is fine, but if I’m a gadget man and I like things to distract me from the crushing heart pains and the death-rattle breathing. I don’t think it’s particularly unrealistic to expect a top-end gym to have a bike machine whose foot-straps don’t snap and break every time you use them. I mean, for crying out loud, I don’t have hobbit feet. The pool was pleasant enough, even if we drew gasps and pained looks from the Henriettas and Lucilla lot as we hoisted ourselves out of the pool. We haven’t been for a while.

The scented steam room was a joy though. I might have came out with a face like a baggy scrotum but I smelt like a Florida orangery – and that’s what it’s all about.

I’ll write more on this at another time, I’ve enjoyed looking back over my fat shoulder! But for now, that’s enough mental exertion talking about physical activities.