Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Exercise Peeves

There are so many things working against me: a gene pool based entirely in Michigan, a limitless, undying appetite for cheese, having Paula Deen's long lost twin sister for a mother, and most of all, the years of competitive athletics that let me eat whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted, until age 23.

Now that I sit at a desk all day, every day, I'm faced with two choices: commit to intense exercise on a near-daily basis + eat in a responsible manner and maintain my weight, or sleep in + eat in a responsible manner and steadily gain 5-10 pounds a year. Notice that there's no weight loss option in that equation - that would require an additional "be hungry all the time" factor. And you wouldn't like me when I'm hungry.

Anywho, for now I'm going with the intense exercise and attempted weight maintenance approach. This means that on any given day I'm either taking a group exercise class or going for a long run. I'm a bit of a misanthrope on a normal day, but put me in a 6 am pilates/weight class or say "hey" on mile 4 of my run, and you'll see a whole new level of shifty-eyed bitchiness.

All this exercising inevitably puts me in contact with other human beings (jerks) and there are just so many things that annoy me. SO MANY. Since I like lists, I'll make a list of things that bug the shit out of me.

1. Over-Enthusiastic Instructors: Don't get me wrong, I don't want Michael Cera telling me to move my ass. But the minute you say, "sometimes when you smile, the exercise feels so much better!" while I'm holding plank position for minute 3 or trying not to shit my pants during a set of burpies, I'm totally over you. And if I could feel my legs, I'd kick you in the teeth.
Related: Instructors that refer to us as "girls" or "ladies", or refer to bathing suit season. Fuck you.

2. Hair: Don't exercise with your long hair down. When you do this, I have a reaction much like your elderly grandmother telling you to GET THAT HAIR OUT OF YOUR FACE. Hair elastics, rubber bands, hair ties - whatever you call them - they were invented for a reason. Mainly so that I don't throttle a stranger and violently pull her/his hair into a ponytail.
Related: That chick in my pilates class who uses those rubber-bands with plastic balls. And they always match her outfit. According to the licence place holder on her MINI (of course it's a MINI), she's a lawyer, and therefore NOT 8 years old. So stop it.

3. Clothing: So much to cover here. There's the girl in the slightly-too-worn-out capris that are COMPLETELY see-through when squatting. Please make it stop. Then there are the people in the full technical outfits. In the last race I ran, there was a girl pacing with me, wearing the running hotpants you see in the Olympics. This might be appropriate if she or I were moving at an Olympic pace, but when you're moving at roughly the speed of a glacier, you do not need technical gear or reduced wind resistance. Ever.
Related: Sports bras as shirts. We get it, you're in great shape. But I'm sure you can find an Under Armour or Nike shirt made of some kind of high tech liquid skin to make sure we all know it, while protecting us from your prolific under-boob and back sweat. Thanks.

4. Hoverers: These exist in all exercise venues: classes, weight rooms, yoga, even park running. These are people that have no sense of personal space or tact. The hoverer is the person in the next class that wants your spot and will stand directly over you as you wipe your back sweat off the floor. In the gym, this is the lady that wants your treadmill 3 minutes after you start your 5 mile run (this effect is exponentially worse in hotel gyms with 2 treadmills for 300 rooms). And in the weight room, this always seems to be the Hulk Hogan look-alike who cannot get it through his head that, despite your vagina, you're going to do a full set of presses on the inverted leg press machine.
Related: The woman power walking with a stroller and 6 toddlers coming your way on the trail, with no intention of wrangling her horde to let you pass

5. Over-Achieving/Over-Enthusiastic Exercisers: This is the WORST in a yoga class. They are the people lamaze breathing in downword dog. They are moaning like porn stars when the instructor asks you to "release" all your negative energy. And they are in full headstands with their toes on their ears while you lay crying in child's pose. We should not be in the same class, so please go run a marathon or climb Everest, and stop signing up for the level 1 class.
Related: That dude on the treadmill next to you running at a speed of 10.0 MPH and NOT breathing like an asthmatic; the weight room grunter

6. Complete Inability to Complete a Simple Task Quickly: There exists a phenomenon in group exercise logistics by which grown adults are deemed incapable of completing simple tasks like spraying mats or machines down, putting weights back on a rack, or adjusting a setting in anything short of 5 minutes. It's group-think intensified. And I hate it.


  1. Yay to Biscuit for exercising, despite the world sending her all these reasons not to.

  2. nice! I agree with all of these, you forgot a couple though; the dancers, the ones who prance around like they are in ballet or jazz class. Also the underachievers, these are the ones that obviously do not want to be there and really just do everything lamely and they uninspire me when i am across them in class.

    I also hate "platypus" feet lady, its just me i know, but the reason she is in pain is that she never stretches! Platypus is on a quest to be the first one out of class. also she has huge wierd wide feet, hence platypus.

    rock on with your exercise, you keep me going if only to be laughed at by your sweatface.

    love weasel

  3. I just choke-laughed at my desk while reading this.

  4. I probably should have added that I do like exercising. Just not people.

  5. Mom, I'm not saying you look like Paula Deen, I'm saying that you taught me my of love butter. And, quite healthily, never instilled a fear of food or taking a second helping!

  6. ok that case, this is freakin hi-larious. xoxo