Thursday, July 24, 2014

Love at First Sight


13 Year Old Me: "Do you believe in love at first sight?"
My 40-Something Mom: "I believe in lust at first sight..."
Let's face it: "love at first sight" is pretty absurd.  You see someone new and BAM! you've found your life partner.  You know what kind of person falls in love based on looks?  The shallow kind.  What someone looks like is the least important thing about a person.

Well, that's what I used to think.  Then I hired a personal trainer.

Have you ever tried working out?  No, you haven't.  Sure, you've been sweaty.  You've had to stop exercising because you felt you couldn't go on.  You've had cramps the next day.  That's not working out.  That's exercising once.  Imagine working yourself until you thought you would die: slipping on sweaty hands, feeling muscles tear, thinking you'll have a heart attack, gasping for breath.

Then your trainer says "Five more."  Trainers are funny.  They have their own language.

Trainer to English Dictionary
What the Trainer Says
What the Trainer Means
Five more
I've/you've lost count OR that didn't kill you, so let's keep going.
Good work today
I'm impressed you survived what I put you through.
Have fun last week/weekend?
You've gained weight.
You can do it
I'll get the defibrillator.
Use your core
Use that thing under all the fat.
Bend your knees
That snap you heard was your spine breaking.
Looking good!
You look like a sweaty, red, asthmatic pig.
Quads
That flabby part of your body.
Glutes
That flabby part of your body.
Triceps
That flabby part of your body.
Nice to see you again
Can't believe you're not in the hospital.

Imagine you've got to work yourself past what feels right, past pain and exhaustion to endangering your own health for several days a week.  That's what I've been trying to do.  I had severe back cramps from sitting in front of a computer all day and was gaining weight.  A girlfriend in college used to tease me about having a "concave chest."  So, I decided to pull myself out of it through fitness and diet.

Now I'm hungry and sore all the time.  I work myself as hard as I think I can a couple times a week (plus running other days and seeing my trainer).  I'm still 27% fat.  I still have a curved space over my sternum.
I used to look at movie stars and snort with derision.  Think they were born with a physical advantage.  They were dumb jocks.  They were half-starved jerks, cranky from eating salad and grilled chicken breast their whole lives.  As you can guess, I don't know any stars.
 
Except Arcturus; we go way back.
Now that I have a glimpse of how hard reaching model/actor level-fitness is, I realize what insane, mind-blowing discipline it takes.  I simply can't do what they do; I can't push myself to my limits and keep going.  After years of working out as hard as I can with free weights and eating a sensible diet that leaves me hungry several times a day, a quarter of my body is fat and can't do a single pull up without some aid.

So, you know what?  Go ahead and love people for their looks.  If they're fit, really fit, that means they have a degree of self-control that borders on inhuman.  They're disciplined, driven, powerful.  Heck, there's nothing wrong with loving someone for that.  It's a good sign.


We chubby people are good to fall in love with, too.  We're warm at night.

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