Tuesday, 17 March 2009

Crikey! Nikes?

There’s been a role reversal in this house of late. By that I don’t mean that Hubby has donned a pinny and started hollering rather camply, “You all treat me like a slave. I’ve had enough”, before dramatically flouncing off wherever the fancy takes him. Rather, since he hurt his knee last year, he has been unable run as was his wont, and therefore, hmm, how shall I put this kindly? He has become a bit of a lard arse.
Now that ignominious title was held by me for several years. I became an expert at piling on the pounds. It was easy, after all as Shirley Conran once said, ‘Why dust under a sofa when one can lie on it’. I took her at her word and oft, when on my couch I lay, in vacant or in pensive mood, chocolate would flash into my gaping mouth, and was the bliss of solitude. It was no effort whatsoever to acquire the extra pounds, they just happily gathered on my leg, bum and tum. Quietly, quickly and at first, fairly unobtrusively. Then last spring, I looked in the mirror and didn’t recognise the woman looking back at me. Where had I gone? Who was that old bird? So, as Oprah Winfrey once advised, I took control and, as has been documented, have lost over five stone.
It came to a point though a few weeks ago where I felt that I couldn’t possibly eat any less without some serious health implications. Also, as one who not only enjoys a fairly busy social life and likes to eat out but, far more significantly is a role model to three daughters, where starvation clearly will not suffice. I needed to keep in shape other than wholly via portion control, self-denial and low fat foods (how dull I sound. The irony is not lost on me) but by moving a little more.
Having not done any regular exercise since I had a pair of roller skates at the age of ten, I wasn’t sure where to start. Our emergency services are pushed to the limit as it is, so they didn’t need me to add to their work load by foolishly taking up jogging then suffering a cardiac arrest. I’ve never been one for team sports; after all how much humiliation can a girl take when always the last to be picked for the netball team. Worse, when the teacher, feeling sorry for me, picked me first and the collective groans of the other girls were not suppressed so, joining the local team was immediately discounted. Ditto, hockey or basketball.
“How about Five-A-side footie?”, suggested Hubby one evening, snorting into his beer, “Or women’s rugby? Shame for a pair of thighs like that to go to waste”.
Wounded but not mortally I ignored him, determined that somehow, I would show him. A few days later, still at a loss as to how I was ever going to get back into a pair of trainers, I was in Morrison’s supermarket when, rifling through the cut price DVDs, I came across a keep-fit one. The faded picture of a faded TV celebrity smiled grimly back at me and I thought, what the hell? So, hiding it under the Ryvita -covertly like it was something pornographic, which to be honest, would have shocked my friends less had they come up behind me and found ‘Debbie does Dallas’ in my trolley and not, as was lurking, ‘Work Out with Wincey’.
Equally surreptitiously, once home I unwrapped the cellophane and put the disc into the Playstation which according to my family, plays DVDs. I pressed play, I ejected, I pushed the disc back in again and repeated this process over and over but the exercise eluded me. Finally I had to admit defeat and ring Hubby at work.
Having been there since the early hours dealing with God knows what the RN throws at him, he was livid when I said I wanted to watch a film.
“In the afternoon?” he asked, scandalised and not a little snappy.
“Well it’s not against the law”, I replied defiantly. I didn’t want to tell him the truth just in case I didn’t quite take to it, allowing him the satisfaction of being oh, so bloody sanctimoniously, ‘I told you so’ about it. Instead I took the rap.
Following his spat instructions I finally worked out how to work out. After a week or so I became confident to upgrade. Guided again by another has-been, this time the newly trimmed shape of someone from Steps. This was a bit more like it. I actually got sweaty and breathless. After a fortnight of religiously jumping around to the 5 Step Fat Attack I felt that, have done my apprenticeship, I was ready for the outside world and a new section of department stores known as, ‘leisure clothes’ was opened to me.
Hubby could barely contain himself when I came downstairs one Sunday morning in a performance pair of Nikes, a pair of boot cut leisure ‘pants’ and a mesh vest, my breasts safely harnessed inside a sports bra.
“Here she comes, Zola Budd”, he said crying with laughter. Dad happened to be there too and even he chuckled, “Zola never wore Nikes. More like Kelly Holmes!”
“More Kelly Bronze!”, retorted Hubby. He and dad wiped away tears.
Resolute, I ignored them and kept on walking to my guru Sarah; consequently I can now be found on any given night of the week at the gym Body-Maxing, Fitballing or Yoga-Fusioning. My once comedic bottom, if not quite enviable, would no longer elicit unsolicited, mocking jibes. My once prop-forward thighs are toned and my tummy well on the way to staying put when under duress.
Karma? Schadenfreude? Or that oft used parental idiom ‘You’ll be laughing on the other side of your face’? Call it what you will. I rather favour, ‘I’m having the last laugh’.

2 comments:

Sally said...

Good for you AB!!

I should take heed and get some more execrcise.

The most I have mangaed is a swim with ED last night...

It's just me said...

I think the idea is a good'n but doesn't always fit with my philosophy. Viz: if one feels the need for exercise - lie down. It'll pass.