Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Costume Du Jour...

This definetely qualifies as the costume of the day:

Picture: A 40-something woman with about 20 extra pounds on her, hair mid-back length at the longest but broken and damaged so most of it falls somewhere just below her shoulders. It was once dyed some kind of ashen blonde, but it's faded to something mousier. Black eyeliner. Dark lipstick.

The Workout Clothes:

A black cotton sleeveless top. The top edge is decorated with Indian inspired tear-drop shapes circling the neck. Each shape has beads and sequins in a pretty pattern. The top has the popular "baby doll" shape with the "waist" just below the bustline and a full bottom piece. The bottom falls down to mid-hip length with another row of those tear-drop shapes accenting the hem. Actually fairly pretty.

If only I could have stopped there.

Tucked below the hem of this top is a black denim micro-mini skirt that would not cover her private bits. It's got some faded embroidery on one of the pockets and her keys and cell phone tucked into the pockets.

Under this "transitional clothing item" are black leggings tight enough to show every dimple of cellulite on her butt cheeks.

And white tennis shoes.

Thursday, February 22, 2007


If you do a lower body workout with weights, it's not a good idea to spend 30 minutes on the stairmaster the next day. It's an even worse idea to do 40 minutes on an elliptical machine the day after that.

I can't move my legs today. Pain.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

No-pants day

The Gym Whisperer
When I walked into the locker room, there was someone using the toilet. Otherwise the locker room was empty. Then the girl walked out of the stall, bare from the waist down. I politely looked away, but had to sneak a glance to make sure I was not un-hallucinating. Turns out, she was wearing flesh-colored underwear, but still no pants. And she was whispering to herself. I thought maybe she was talking on a Bluetooth or something, but she was very quiet, and not making complete sentences. Then she did make a call, to schedule a mani/pedi. She spoke clearly and loudly. When she was done, she continued whispering to herself, still sans pants.

Tiny Shorts No-Butt
I've never understood why people roll the waistbands of their sweatpants. I guess it's to make shorts shorter and "show off" the wearer's butt more. The girl that was directly in front of me doing cardio did this. But her shorts were already too short. And she really had no butt to show off - not a curve in sight. However, due to the rolling-of-the-waistband, I got to see way more of this non-butt then I would have cared to. I was very unhappy with Tiny Shorts No-Butt in front of me, blocking my view of the outside world with her flat board-butt and shorts rolled into her crack.

ps - after the gym I had a big banana split. That was awesome.

Death of the Machine

New fangled gadgets confuse and scare me. I didn't particularly want an iPod, but Husband got an iPod shuffle for free at a conference he attended (I know - insane), and so I loaded some songs onto it and listened to it at the gym once in a while. That once in a while became very frequently, though, when I discovered the joy of weight lifting to music.

Thus today when I plugged my iPod into the USB port and was all set to add Bon Jovi and a few Madonna songs that I cannot believe that I am missing ("Like a Prayer" - how can that not be on there?), I was distressed to see that iTunes deleted my file and refused to recognize the music that was already loaded. Husband said I will need to delete everything and start all over.

Fucking technology.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Well, that was fun.

Tonight was a good night for people-watching. The substitute teacher was back in the exact same striped button-down shirt and dockers, so maybe that is his workout outfit. There was also a guy just wandering around at random fully dressed talking on a bluetooth. There were the giggle twins, who kept peeking around corners, rushing to places, and giggling like this was all the funnest thing ever! They were also lifting weights in a sort of synchronized-swimming routine, swinging the weights at their sides in unison. There was a flutterer -- a guy who gets on the machines, sets the weight too high, then rapidly flaps the handles back and forth without ever letting them all the way down. And then in the locker room was a very elderly woman seated watching "Deal or No Deal" and lifting a Pilates ball from the floor to shoulder height. A Pilates ball, in case you aren't familiar, is basically a sturdy balloon, not a heavy medicine ball or something. I would just like to say two things: First, if I get that old and am still working out, good for me! Second, if "working out" is lifting a balloon repeatedly while watching game shows, go ahead and kill me.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Get Out of the Way

The gym I work out in is very small. There is not much room for people who might want to sit around and randomly watch people work out, which is good, because no one should be engaging in such activity. Unfortunately, no one sent that message to the wench and her son who followed around her husband/his dad while he worked out with a trainer.

At first, it struck me as odd that a woman in her 40s was standing around in jeans, leather boots, and a sweater in her coat. Then I noticed the precocious 8 year old boy fully decked out in yuppie wear next to her. When the mom let him "play" on the equipment, I began getting really annoyed. Especially since the equipment was clearly too big for him and either he was going to get hurt or break the equipment or both. I didn't care if he got hurt (except that they'd probably sue the gym even though he should not have been on it in the first place), but I would've been mad pissed if he broke it.

Eventually, a gym employee told him to get off, and that is when they began following around their loved one in earnest. I admit I found it funny when the kid started yelling, "Dad! Your face is bright red! You're going to hurt yourself." But they kept putting their coats on equipment and sitting on other pieces. Finally, the dad finished and they went away. But damn, they were annoying.

President's Day Pack-In

Oh My God!!

I'd forgotten this was a federal holiday. I headed in for my normal Monday morning workout with Totally Adorable Trainer(tm) expecting the normal amount of activity.

Every aerobic machine was taken and folks were waiting in line.

People were waiting WAITING to use the various weight machines.

(on a brighter note, atleast the clothing was more varied today...)

It was crowded and noisy and hot and I hated it!!

Totally Adorable Trainer(tm)'s grandfather (in the hospital) took a turn for a worse this morning so he was at the hospital. Sorry for him, glad for me. I put in a half-hearted, half-hour workout and blew Dodge...

Sunday, February 18, 2007

I didn't get the memo.

Headed to the gym this afternoon. It's the first time I've been there on a Sunday afternoon.

Memo to self:

While the wardrobe at my gym is normally a bit varied (black or gray pants, black, gray or red shirts), there is a distinctive wardrobe for Sunday afternoons.

White loose-fitting t-shirt and black pants/shorts. Of the 50-75 people there, there were 3 of us without this wardrobe.

So I guess everyone will be making of me tonight:

"there was this woman at the gym, acting all like she belonged there ya know? But she was wearing a gray tshirt and gray shorts. On Sunday afternoon, man!! "

Namaste, freak.

I worked out yesterday and was disappointed that there weren't more people to make fun of. It was 75 degrees in Sacramento, so everyone else was enjoying the sunshine. There was on guy in those super-short running shorts and a stretched-out and dripping-with-sweat tank top, but nothing crazy.

But this morning was yoga. And yoga is always good for people-watching. There was a new lady in there, and it struck me immediately that it was a little odd to come to yoga in full make-up and gigantic Jersey hair. But she was also chewing gum like a cow all through class. Gum and yoga don't seem like natural complements to me, but chacun a son gout,* I guess.

*One of the few French phrases I remember from high school -- even though it's pronounced "shacoon ah sawn goo," we always said it "chakun a sun gowt." It means something like "to each his own." Our other favorite was "Twat! Two et toujours un casskoo!" Which means something like "you, you are a daredevil!"

Friday, February 9, 2007

In Evolutionary Terms.. The Ears, They Must Grow...

Ok. I saw this "tech utilization technique" for the first time last week. It was odd, but I forgot to blog here at the time. (sigh...). Then yesterday I saw it two more times. Is this just a localized phenomenon?

Fellow gym members are simultaneously wearing:

-a blue-tooth phone ear set


-ear clips for their MP3 player!!

So one ear has the blue tooth clip which then wears it's own music ear clip...

It was really accentuated on the woman wearing a full head wrap and 3" gold circular dangle earrings too.

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Cool in the Pool

It has finally happened! The past few days I have been the cool, hip person that everyone wants to talk to. It doesn't matter that I may have spit-up on my shoulder and that there are most likely pieces of an arrowroot cookie in my hair. So how is it then that all the teenage lifeguards and other swimmers are flocking to me? H20 Audio. For my birthday my parents gave me a plastic case which along with a pair of waterproof headphones and an arm band allows me to swim with my iPod. Yes, I can swim a 200 IM to the beat of a Yazz song.

I have to admit I've had a few technical difficulties. The first time I used it I couldn't get any sound to come out of the right headphone. I came to the most logical conclusion: I was losing my hearing in my right ear. However, after switching around the headphones, I realized that unless I had miraculously regained the hearing in my right ear only to loose the hearing in my left ear, the problem was mechanical, not physical. Despite all appearances, the headphones weren't properly connected to the iPod. On the advice of H20 I also tried the wax earplugs with the headphones. As a former competitive swimmer I have always hated the wax earplugs because they always manage to stick to my hair and get pulled slightly out of my ears no matter how well my hair is tucked into my cap. Not surprisingly, the result was a disaster which left me with my ears filled with water, little enjoyment of my iPod while swimming, and about 20 hairs less than when I started swimming.

The biggest problem I've had though is with the free armband that came with the case. While it attached to my arm just fine, when I went to do my first flipturn, it shimmied down my arm and almost off my hand. I now see why the master swimmers who reviewed this product recommended getting the swim belt. I immediately ordered one when I got home. In the meantime, I look like I'm waiting for the mothership to beam me up. I have my swim cap with a large bump underneath it from the combination of my headphones and my ponytail, my pink goggles and most importantly the bungee cord wiring from my headphone that goes from under my cap all the way down to my wrist. Clearly I look weird. Yet, because I have this new technology, people are willing to put aside their fear to come and ask what the heck is on my wrist. Also not surprisingly, one the lifeguards commented that he originally thought I had an underwater camera strapped to my wrist and was taking underwater pictures. Somehow, he seemed to think that was perfectly normal.

I did not take this picture with an under-water (or any other type) of camera. And, no, it isn't me either.

Sunday, February 4, 2007

Train wrecks, substitute teachers, and afros

I'm not making fun of my anorexic girl when I post about her -- I just am fascinated by her. It's like a train wreck. What kind of glasses is she wearing that she can't see how terrible she looks? Fat-colored glasses? She spends hours at the gym and then jogs home, and while she's at the gym she does things that are aerobic, whether they're meant to be or not. For example, in the weight room she just picks up the weights and flails her arms around quickly. Crunches? She uses super-rolling-momentum. She even extra-aerobifies the regular aerobic activities; on the elliptical trainer, she waves her arms over her head. It's sad, but nonetheless fascinating.

Next up is the substitute teacher. I have no idea that this is his actual job. He could be an engineer. But there is a guy at my gym who works out (in a very mellow sort of way) dressed in trousers, a button-down shirt, and loafers. And coke-bottle glasses. I just wonder if he can afford my gym, why can't he afford shorts?

But really, the freak-shows of my gym are often the employees. There's one who has 1987 hair -- the platinum blond spiral perm -- and pancake makup in the shade "Lestat." Between the makeup and the hair she practically glows in the dark. I think if you shone a black light on her, she actually would glow.

And then there's the afro guy. I realize that the afro hairstyle has become more popular in recent years, extending to Pacific Islanders, Hispanics, and others with naturally curly thick hair, like the occasional white boy. But generally I find that when Asians want a dome-shaped hairdo, they have to resort to gelled spikes. (And this, they do.) But there's an employee of the gym who has probably the only actual Asian 'fro I've ever seen. He is otherwise entirely dorky, with thick glasses and receding hairline, but a big, big, thin, slightly wavy 'fro. It's odd.

The Makeover

When I was swimming at the Y, I noticed that a couple of the swimmers had nice pull-buoys. Unlike the Y ones, they weren't covered in mildew. I briefly contemplated buying one myself, but then decided against it because that would be just one more thing I would have to bring with me not to mention if I forgot to take it out of my swim bag it would eventually look like the ones at the Y. However, as I was getting out of the pool, I noticed a big pile of brand-new pull-buoys on the deck. Next to them was a pile of brand-new kickboards. I went up to the lifeguard and jokingly asked him if the pool had gotten a makeover. I swear I'm not making up his response. He said excitedly, "Yes, the pool did get a makeover! We got new light bulbs!" I burst out laughing as I pictured myself telling everyone that my kitchen had just gotten a makeover since I recently changed the light bulbs. The lifeguard looked at me like I was crazy, apparently the new light bulbs sucked out his sense of humor, and then told me that they had also gotten new pull-buoys, kickboards, and a brand-new lifeguard chair for the other side of the pool.

Friday, February 2, 2007

Lamest. Person. Ever.

It's Friday night. The gym is pretty dead, because who goes there except for die hard fitness freaks, and people that have to take big tests the next day and could relieve a little stress maybe?
So I walk into the locker room. It's empty except for one chick. She's at the sink. Painting her nails. Spilling nail polish on the counter.

She's in there for 90% of my workout. I can tell because it's Friday night and the gym is pretty dead and I can see everyone. Eventually she comes out and sits on the bike next to me. Notice I did not use the operative verbs "ride" or "use." She sat on the bike. However, she must haved moved a little tiny bit, because since she was on the bike next to me I could see her screen, and she burned a whopping 15 calories before she gave up.

Then she went and stood on the treadmill. Stood. Then she took a little walk - nothing too exerting. She left after about a minute.

My guess is that she told someone she was going to the gym. She went - it wasn't technically a lie. Then when she got home, she told them she had been on the bike and the treadmill. Also not technically lies. Good for her.

Thursday, February 1, 2007


A few days ago I was swimming at the Y when out of the corner of my eye I saw something in the deep end that was brown and dark green and shaped like a ball. Seeing as this is a public swimming pool, I jumped to the obvious conclusion: it was a turd. However, as much as I may gripe about the Y, the pool has never been that bad so I felt it was safe to take a closer inspection. It appeared to be a brown ball with green things sticking out of it. What the...wait a that seaweed? I looked around and saw the same thing in the lane next to me. I stopped and asked the lifeguard. Sure enough, it was fake seaweed at the bottom of the pool. It was there for the kids to be able to dive down and retrieve. The lifeguard was very amused that no one else had commented on it particularly since it did look like, well you know. Anyhow, I brought up the seaweed for her and we ended up having a nice talk later on where she told me what a great swimmer I was. Feeling good that someone had just complimented me, I walked into the locker room and was greeted with a crotch shot. Thankfully the woman was clothed, but she was doing V-lifts in front of my locker. Back to normal at the Y!

Making Love out of Nothing at all

I haven't posted here much lately for two reasons. First, I haven't been to the gym as much as I ought to have been. Second, I've been spending my time there with my earbuds in, book in hand, and basically shutting out the world. But today there was a girl there... well, let me tell you. She was wearing baggy sweats and doing freeweights, but reading a book between each set. I think she was reading more than she was lifting, actually. Then she was on the bikes at the same time as I was, and she had her iPod in the cupholder. I glanced over at it a couple times, because I love eavesdropping on what people are listening to, and she must have had it on random, because the first time I looked, it was Rage Against the Machine, but later it was Air Supply! I don't think you're allowed to work up a sweat to Air Supply. Who even has Air supply on their iPod? Anyway, I was finishing my workout and she was over on a Pilates ball doing crunches in the area around the corner from the bikes, and I heard her TOOT! That's right -- gas passing on the Pilates ball.

Oh wait, that was all me.