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Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Welcome to the Chamber of Horrors

Yesterday was a Silver Sneakers Day at the gym. Once again I dragged myself to that chamber of horrors and gave my unfit carcass over to the goddess of torture, for an activity which they euphemize as exercise. Heather, the goddess/instructor, whom you can't see if she stands sideways, so she faces front as much as possible, was her usual, perky self! She was smiling and chatting, all friendly, while she handed out her various pain inflicting devices....not so stretchy elastic bands with handles on the ends, fiendish rubber orbs she innocently refers to as balls, and pastel colored dumbbells. (You would think the name would give us a clue as to what's about to transpire!) We line up our chairs in front of her...feigning enthusiasm.....anything less would be regarded with disdain.

Heather turns on the music, which I now know is relied on to camouflage the sounds of popping joints, groans, moans, and desperate gasps for air. The cult members dutifullly start marching in their seats to the strains of some disco number from the seventies with the goddess of torture calling out commands: "Slow step, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, ,2, 1; double time 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2,1; slow step again; double time again. Now bring your arms into it" as she moves her arms, bent at the elbow back and forth in time with the music. "Okay, now step out and back with your left leg 8 times, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1; right leg, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1.
Keep your arms moving."

The fact that I have no co-ordination becomes embarrassingly evident when she issues the command to stand, march in place, and now reach up, then down , then out to the side, then out to the front. Okay, I can march, or I can do the arm stuff! They just don't work well together! This is the 3rd torture session for me, and I manage to keep up the pace, just not both sets of limbs simultaneously. Mercifully she tells us to stop and have a sip of water and to look at the chart on the easel and determine where we are. The chart lists about ten levels starting with something like Breathing Normally, to Sweating Profusely, to Seeing Spots, all the way to Cardiac Arrest, the last of which she tells us we really should avoid.

We employ all the pain paraphernalia to achieve various movements and contortions until I'm wondering if I walked into S & M training by mistake! With beads of perspiration dripping into my eyes behind my fogged up glasses, I remind myself to check the sign on the door on my way out...if I make it out!
Now the music switches to another disco number "I Will Survive!" just about the time I'm sure I won't.

Finally the pace slows...the cool down period; our torture goddess calls it. We gradually ease the pace and the difficulty of the "dance" and our breathing begins to regain some semblance of normalcy. Then we are instructed to sit and that evil orb called a ball becomes an instrument of pleasure, inserted between our spines and the chair backs, and we undulate against it's comforting pressure. Following what we've just experienced, it's almost like having a masseuse manipulate those muscles, and euphoria takes over. Your mind knows it's a trick to make you think the next session will be worth it, but your body refuses to listen and succumbs to the pleasure.

Yep, I'll probably be there for the next torture session. I'm such a glutton for punishment!


63 comments:

Kati said...

Wow! You have a way with words... I love the way you worded this post.. it kept me reading. Love your blog!

TheSingleGirl said...

I'm definitely not laughing at your pain...

but...

this was absolutely hilarious.

There are too many things in this post to name that got a snort laugh out of me.

Thank you for stopping by my blog. Your blog is amazing.

:D

Linda @ My Trendy Tykes said...

hee hee you have me giggling for sure! What's this exercise stuff everyone keeps talking about anyway??

Multiple personalities.. said...

Ok, I know it was a torture session for you, but I was laughing the whole time I was reading this! You go girl, for pushing through the pain. Keep up the good work. Thanks for visiting my blog today! :-)

Farmgirl Paints said...

Good for you. It's hard but worth it:) You are so funny!

SoBella Creations said...

Atleast your trying!!! Keep up the hard work. It will be worth it.

visiting via SITS!

Thanks for stopping by my blog.

Jennifer said...

Good for you for going back again. You are a lot more motivated than I am and they say if you stick with it that it gets better (snicker).

Thanks for stopping by.

Smitten by Britain said...

Hiya, thanks for taking the time to stop by my blog. Have a great day!

Katherine Aucoin said...

I admire your stick to it attitude! I am enjoying browsing through your blog.

Thank you for stopping by mine and commenting.

La Belle Mere UK said...

Ooooh, I fancy a bit of that ball action myself! Where do I sign up??....

KC Mom said...

You had me laughing at this! I can just visualize it!
You have a cool name too! Thanks for stopping by my blog today!

Joanna Jenkins said...

You totally captured how I feel every time I walk into a gym!!!! Brilliant writing!

I'm just back from vacation so I'm off to catch up on your other posts.
xo

Jennifer said...

I adore your writing style! Thank you for visiting my blog. I am glad you did, or I may not have discovered yours!

Susan Crabtree said...

thanks for stopping by my blog! you have an amazing style!

Jen said...

Good for you.....keep it up...really funny the way you write!

Miss Behavin said...

Hey, great job! Thanks so much for stopping by today and commenting on my Wordless Wednesday post.

Eclipsed said...

Stopping by from SITS. Why is it that those instructors are so perky? It makes them that much easier to hate.

designer said...

now, when was the last time I go to the gym?...
thanks for reminding me, yet I might still be reluctant to go there hee hee

thanks for the visit n comments on my blog :)

itsybitsyknitsy said...

Thanks for the comment on my blog today. I'm glad you did comment because it directed me to this blog, and this post was great. Totally made me giggle!! Thank you!

Aihara Ramintessah Sanchez said...

what a funny post you have here. I feel the same way.Yay!!!Just wanna say hi from Sits! Thanks for visiting me too!

y u l z said...

I really need this kind of torture right now hahaha oh dear . . I miss the SLIM me

anyway.. thanks for visiting me

mzbehavin said...

okay, it was the gym...... I'm laughing my rather out of shape, threatening to take over the house, butt, here...... Maybe I don't need the gym...... I can soak up enough fitness osmosis through your posts..... and by the way???? People who disappear when they turn sideways??? I hate them...... I'd be taking a gun, and using the hairs on her perky chinny chin, chin, as target practice......... ( I don't know what made me lapse into "The 3 little pigs".... )

apdonato said...

Hi, My name is Ana , and I'm a Silver Sneakers instructor too, not a skinny one though, when I turn sideways I definitely don't disappear! I know it seems like a torture at the beginning, but after teaching for over a year, my seniors benefited so much from the exercises, and they always mention it was worthy the persistence and the inevitable pain. Don't worry about coordination, just try to have fun...when possible...

Housewife Savant said...

You make this sound like fun/so funny I'd like to be there just for the laughs and blog fodder.
It even makes me feel like working out, but I know if I just sit very still the feeling will go away. Then I'll be able to remain immobile behind a book, snacking happily on something horrible.
I enjoy the way you think/write.

Cole said...

I am now going to refer to the gym as the torture chamber! My hubby is in the Army so he does PT every morning which I refer to as "Physical Torture" so this new nickname fits right in! But, seriously, good job getting out there!!

Unknown Mami said...

Very funny. Keep torturing yourself.

the ungourmet said...

At least you're going to class! I need to! My muscles are mush!

Thanks for stopping over my way!

Sparkly Tiara said...

Just stopped by from SITS (thanks for visiting my blog, by the way) and am so glad I did! You just summed up the reason I am terrified of going to the gym, and did it brilliantly!

Thanks for the morning laughs!
STxxx

PS I really need to start going to said gym anyway, yes, I know.

♥georgie♥ said...

LOL...okay this was great and the best part-i felt like i went to the gym... double time!

Emalee said...

Oh road trip!! That would be fun! hope you have a wonderful weekend. Thanks for stopping my one of my blogs.

Vivienne said...

Ohhhhh my gosh, you are too funny :D :D Others would say "I've been to the gym today." and you can make a fabulous story out of it, amazing! Thanks for making me laugh :D
A little late but I hope you had a nice SITS Saturday Sharefest :)

Jessica said...

Oh, you make it sound so.....fun? I'm glad you survived and were able to share the story with us. I, too, lack anything resembling coordination and avoid classes like this at all cost.

Thanks for stopping by my blog! I hope you have a wonderful, beautiful day.

And Happy SITS Sunday!

Diva Scrapper said...

I loved this post...I feel your pain..I was doing BootCamp and thought I was going to vomit on the instructor.

Have a Happy SITS Sunday!

Amy said...

Love the post... great story. Hope you had a good weekend.

Gabrielle said...

You are awesome!! Keep it up!

Karen said...

The gym is evil. Exercise classes are devices of Satan. Thanks for making it something to laugh about!

Melissa @ Cellulite Investigation said...

This must be why my mom works out in the pool!

gaelikaa said...

You are way too funny Ms. Gallant. You should be kept in restraint for your own safely and that of others - I nearly had a fit laughing at you!

have a great SITS day.

cat said...

Oh this was a great laugh! I also have that love/hate relationship with the gym.

JDaniel4's Mom said...

I really need to get back to the torture chamber.

Elizabeth Patch said...

you crack me up! going to the gym is very low on my list of fun things to do...but I'm usually happy about it after its over.

Angelia Sims said...

Oh my! That sums up exercise class very well. Ouch! :-)

Judy said...

I had to stop going to aerobics. I think I'm the only one allowed to shout in class.

Katherine said...

Ahaha you've made me feel like I'm making the right choice to stay FAR away from those evil places!!! hehe

Kim said...

Too fun! At least you have a sense of humor about the whole thing.

Mommie Daze said...

Hilarious! I hate going to the gym. My couch is much more comfortable.

A New Mom said...

Not meaning to laugh....but that was funny. Funny because I know that pain....probably why I haven'tbeen back in a long while. LOL. Stopping by from SITS

Two Normal Moms said...

Oh the familiar pain. I have a nasty spot in my mind for those people that just "love" their exercise with all their peppy enthusiasm. Who has time for pep, when you are just trying to take your next breath? :)
***Ally
Happy SITS day!

missy said...

wow....you have made me smile.....great wording!!!! :) have a great day!!!!

cindy said...

Your remind me that I need to get myself to the "chamber of horrors" soon, it's almost Spring ;)

Texan Mama @ Who Put Me In Charge said...

Hey SITStah! Happy SITS day!

Your episode at the gym is what nightmares are made of! ha ha I should SO get back to the gym but I can't face all those perky thin people. Know what I mean?

Maxie Gregg said...

Happy SITS day! Your blog looks like great fun; I can't wait!

Laurie said...

For a time I worked part-time at a Curves, and many of our clients were over 50 and more. Afraid of our tortur equipement, too, I may add. Most of the time, we had a great time, once the first shock wore off and they realized I had NOT been a Nazi prison guard in a former life. Good post.

April said...

hahaha so true! I lack coordination too. My friend and I almost got kicked out of a yoga class because we were laughing too much.

gringationcancun said...

Great writing. I was trying to stifle my laughs at my work desk!

Wendy said...

At 53 and having just exercised in the privacy of my family room, I can relate too well--Thanks for making pain funny--or at least I'm sure it's funny to the goddesses:)
Blessings,
Wendy

Jenny Brown said...

Absolutely hilarious.....I haven't been to aerobics in like - forever....so this would probably be a day in my world, as well! You're a funny lady and I'm having a blast reading thru your posts........

Andrea said...

Why is it those instructors are always so happy to inflict torture!

Have a great day!

Tsquared417 said...

Keep doing it Eva!! It will keep you young. :)

Cynthia at A Shimmy In My Spirit said...

Been there done that. Love your writing.

Quasi Serendipita said...

Sounds like a great glass!

Joy said...

LOL

This was a perfect choice for a featured post on your SITS day!

Gosia said...

Oh,the post made me laugh out loud. I, too was a subject to such tortures on occasion (think kick boxing)and it was nothing to laugh about, but reading your account was simply hilarious. Thanks for sharing and congratulations on your SITS feature.