It starts with a glance in the mirror or a family picture that has been plastered all over Facebook. Yeah, that one of you stuffing half of a red velvet cupcake into your mouth. Even your long lost relatives who are sheep herders on another continent are sharing and commenting on that picture: "Awww...look how much she's GROWN over the years..." This is fine if they're talking about a five year old, NOT a middle aged mother.
My wake-up call hit like a clap of thunder thighs the day I uploaded some pictures taken from our local renaissance festival. Who was that chubster in the blue gown next to Mr. Robin Hood-Wanna-Be? Oh yeah, that's me...wait, WHAT? Okay, I'll admit I've been a little heavy-handed with the desserts lately. And the frappuccinos. Those pesky, two-for-one sales at Wine-Mart haven't been doing me any favors, either. But what am I supposed to do when there's an industrial size jar of Nutella in my pantry, just calling my name? You could spread that stuff on styrofoam and it would still taste good.
Upon closer inspection of my physical flaws in that traitor I call a mirror, I knew I had to get myself back into the svelte clothes growing cobwebs in the back of my closet. I joined an all-female gym, but quickly realized that my workout clothes from the Richard Simmons era were sadly outdated. I needed a new gym wardrobe, but me visiting a sporting goods store for clothes to sweat in is a perfect example of an oxymoron.
I made the mistake of inviting The Hubs along to help me choose my new gear. He was a little TOO enthusiastic at the prospect of his wife getting back into shape. I roamed the aisles until I found the women's workout clothes section and stopped dead in my tracks. Who were these manufacturers kidding? The "large" tops were the size of small sausage casings. I'd be lucky if I could stretch the shirt to fit one arm. Further down the aisle I came across a row of "grande" tank tops. In white. I envisioned a fat polar bear wearing a pink headband and hopping around the gym floor during Zumba class. I shuddered.
And then the unthinkable happened....every chubster's worst nightmare. My brilliant Hubs was across the store in the men's department. He held up an armload of colorful tee shirts and shouted, "Hey Hon, you need a larger size? I found a 2X in the men's department that might fit you!" I should have slapped a muzzle on the man during public outings years ago.
I quickly grabbed a few pairs of yoga pants and some tee shirts with motivational sayings on them such as, "Just Do It" and, "I like to lick cake batter off beaters" (No wait---that was for something else!).
Not willing to suffer alone, I convinced one of my daughters to join the gym with me because misery loves company (and paybacks are hell). We spent our first few, torturous days with a personal trainer to learn how to use the weight equipment. But mostly we learned how not to grunt too loudly like truffle sniffing oinkers or sweating too much like two sumo wrestlers in a sauna.
The day of our first Zumba class, I surveyed the group and was pleased to see a nice mix of ages and body types. Women's shapes are often compared to certain fruits---apples, pears, oranges...and the occasional grapefruit. I was in the midst of a fruit salad ready to learn some sexy Zumba moves. Music with a heavy, Latin beat reverberated against the walls and we began hopping around the wood floor like Mexican Jumping beans. I tried to concentrate on the dance steps but my mind kept wandering....a typical defense mechanism against the extreme pain I was in from my workout with the trainer. My thighs were so sore that I'd been forced to walk around with a full bladder all day just to avoid squatting over a toilet seat. Rather than listening to the Zumba instructor, my mind was swept along with the cluttered debris of A.D.D. ----random thoughts scurrying through my brain like rapid channel surfing through 450 television programs:
"Drop it drop it low girl....drop it like it's hot....oh yeah, I got this booty shakin' thing down....wait. Why isn't my butt moving like everyone else's? And what's that popping sound in my lower back? At least I'm rockin' these new, neon green Nikes....actually, they kinda look like twin sand barges in the ocean. Uh-oh.....should have worn some Spanx. My junk is jiggling in all the wrong places. I swear I can still see those damn cupcakes sitting on my hips, mocking me. Crap, it's hot in here. Hot flash hell. Hard to breath. Heart, don't play me like that. I'm not dropping dead in Zumba class! It would scar my daughter for life. Hey, where did she learn to shake her ass like that, anyway? Probably snuck out of her bedroom window to hit the dance clubs all those nights I thought she was snug in bed. Umm...am I in Pole dancing 101 right now? And who's bright idea was it to place mirrors around this brightly lit room? I'm so pale I look like I've been cohabiting with family of moles.
OH HOLY MOTHER OF GOD! Is that what I think it is----camel toe? I need new pants!! Hey, what's the food channel doing on the gym TV? They should be showing infomercials for weight loss supplements or....ohh, Paula Dean is making smothered pork chops with gravy....do I have any pork chops in the freezer? Wait---what fresh hell is this---more squats? Yoo-hoo teacher, I'm dying over here. I'm not gonna Busta Rhymes---- I'm gonna busta femur. Oh great...now I'm sweating so much my makeup is running down my face
. I look like I belong at a KISS concert. Whoa! Paula Dean is baking a chocolate marble cake! Are you kidding me? She needs to get over here and do this freakin' Zumba class! Huh? Cool down time already? You mean we're done? I made it! I didn't die on the Zumba floor!"
Its been a few months now and Meno Mama is getting closer to brushing the cobwebs off her skinny clothes. I'm droppin' it like it's hot in Zumba class without feeling a heart attack coming on. The only thing I need now is new tee shirts from the sausage casing aisle....or maybe just some cupcake batter.....