A week at the gym

Dear Diary,

For my 40th birthday this year, my wife (the dear) purchased a week of personal training at the local health club for me. Although I am still in great shape since playing on my college football team 25 years ago, I decided it would be a good idea to go ahead and give it a try. Called the club and made my reservations with a personal trainer named Belinda, who identified herself as a 26-year-old aerobics instructor and model for athletic clothing and swimwear. My wife seemed pleased with my enthusiasm to get started! The club encouraged me to keep a diary to chart my progress.

Monday: Started my day at 6 a.m. Tough to get out of bed, but found it was well worth it when I arrived at the health club to find Belinda waiting for me. She is something of a Greek goddess, with blonde hair, dancing eyes and a dazzling white smile. Woo hoo! Belinda gave me a tour and showed me the machines. She took my pulse after five minutes on the treadmill. She was alarmed that my pulse was so fast, but I attributed it to standing next to her in her Lycra outfit. I enjoyed watching the skillful way in which she conducted her aerobics class after my workout today. Very inspiring. Belinda was encouraging as I did my sit-ups, although my gut was already aching from holding it in the whole time she was around. This is going to be a fantastic week!!

Tuesday: I drank a whole pot of coffee, but I finally made it out the door. Belinda made me lie on my back and push a heavy iron bar into the air, and then she put weights on it!

My legs were a little wobbly on the treadmill, but I made the full mile. Belinda’s rewarding smile made it all worthwhile. I feel great! It’s a whole new life for me.

Wednesday: The only way I can brush my teeth is by lying on the toothbrush on the counter and moving my mouth back and forth over it. I believe I have a hernia in both pectorals. Driving was okay as long as I didn’t try to steer or stop. Belinda was impatient with me, insisting that my screams bothered other club members. Her voice is a little too perky for early in the morning and when she scolds, she gets this nasally whine that is very annoying. My chest hurt when I got on the treadmill, so Belinda put me on the stair monster. Why the hell would anyone invent a machine to simulate an activity rendered obsolete by elevators? Belinda told me it would help me get in shape and enjoy life. She said some other stuff too.

Thursday: Belinda was waiting for me with her vampire-like teeth exposed as her thin, cruel lips were pulled back in a full snarl. I couldn’t help being a half an hour late; it took me that long to tie my shoes. Belinda took me to work out with dumbbells. When she wasn’t looking, I ran and hid in the men’s room. She sent Lars to find me, then, as punishment, put me on the rowing machine – which I sank.

Friday: I hate that bitch Belinda more than any human being has ever hated any other human being in the history of the world. Stupid, skinny, anemic little cheerleader. If there were a part of my body I could move without unbearable pain, I would beat her with it. Belinda wanted me to work on my triceps. I don’t have any triceps! And if you don’t want dents in the floor, don’t hand me the *&%#@? barbells or anything that weighs more than a sandwich. (Which I am sure you learned in the sadist school you attended and graduated magna cum laude from.) The treadmill flung me off and I landed on a health and nutrition teacher. Why couldn’t it have been someone softer, like the drama coach or the choir director?

Saturday: Belinda left a message on my answering machine in her grating, shrilly voice wondering why I did not show up today. Just hearing her made me want to smash the machine with my planner. However, I lacked the strength to even use the TV remote and ended up watching 11 straight hours of the Weather Channel.

Sunday: I’m having the church van pick me up for services today so I can go and thank God that this week is over. I will also pray that next year my wife (the bitch), will choose a gift for me that is fun – like a root canal or a vasectomy.

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