I joined a new gym earlier this week and got suckered into a personalized fitness assessment.
“So, what are you going to make me do?” I asked the consultant after we made our introductions. “I better not puke.”
He led me to his office and we started with an interview.
“What are your fitness goals?”
“Goals? I guess I’d like to lose ten pounds and stop being afraid of the resistance training machines.”
Next he wanted to know what my current exercise regimen was.
“I don’t have one.”
“Are you sure? Bike riding? Swimming? Walking the dog?”
He made a few notes and then asked me to tell him what I eat in any given day from daybreak to sunset. I couldn’t believe my luck. There is nothing I love more than itemizing my food intake, but rarely do I come across anyone willing to listen with genuine interest. For example, when the P-Dawg comes home from work and I say, “Do you want to know what I ate today?” he always says, “No.”
I began to happily recount everything I’d put in my stomach since Monday. At first J.B. (that’s my fitness consultant) thought I might not be eating enough, but then I owned up to the occasional ice cream cone or glass of wine with dinner.
“How often do you have a glass of wine?”
“I don’t know, a couple times a week maybe? What is this, the Spanish Inquisition?”"
“That’s bad” J.B. said. “Real bad. Did you know that a glass of wine is no better than a slice of cheesecake?”
“Are you kidding me? No it isn’t.”
“Yep, it is.”
“No it isn’t.”
“It’s true. I read it in a mens’ health magazine.”
“But how do you figure? Wine has no fat, and less calories per serving than a Coke!”
J.B. was relentless. “It’s converted into fat once it’s in your system. It’s like a sugar surge your body doesn’t know what to do with.”
“There is no way it can be as bad as cheesecake.”
“Well, it is.”
“That’s the most ridonkulous thing I’ve ever heard in my life and I refuse to accept it.”
There was an uncomfortable silence as J.B. and I stared each other down across the table, and then I said, “I’m just sayin.”
Next we walked over to the physical assessment area, where I had to stand on a scale.
“Can I take my shoes off?” I asked J.B.
“No,” he said, “I’ll subtract a pound.”
“I’m pretty sure my shoes weigh two pounds.”
J.B. gave me a stern sidelong glance, and I got on the scale, which showed a different reading from the one I’d gotten at home that morning.
“I know you probably hear this all the time, but I think your scale is slightly off” I said to J.B.
After that, he measured my BMI, strength, flexibility, and endurance. I had to pull on some weights with all of my might and this is just between you and me, but they didn’t budge. I did pretty well on the treadmill, but I bombed the flexibility test, which was clearly rigged because I can do a cartwheel.
Afterwards, J.B. showed me a big fancy printout which said I was 39, and not 37 like I always thought. But if I signed up for more P.T. sessions, J.B. felt sure he could whittle me back down to 27 in three to five months. He also said I reminded him of his sixth grade teacher and he figures my kids will be taller than me in two to three years.
Depite all of that and the cheescake debacle, he was a pretty nice guy and I signed up for a month of sessions. I start Friday, wish me luck!Subscribe to the blog. (It's free!)