Anyway, having company doing things that might or might not be unpleasant is not a bad plan and is why I tend to skip any form of exercise unless I have a friend helping to motivate me. And I do have a number of people willing to kick my rear, or at least send me on an extended guilt trip, if I don't accompany them to the gym or on a run. Today's exercise fun was cycle class at the gym. Sadly it was the instructor I don't love so very much. There are many things wrong with this class (from my perspective--although she seems to have an unexplicably large and enthusiastic following) and I tend to go into it with a lousy attitude. It doesn't help that K., my friend and cohort in crime for this class, my "outside encouragement," is as sarcastic and snarky about the class as I am. But it works best in our busy mom schedules (::snort:: Just got back from a leisurely lunch again. ::cough::) so we continue to go to it.
Today was lost the moment that the instructor, a maddening, perky, blonde twiglet arrived. I don't know that I've ever seen her off the bike before as we generally screech in at the last minute. I leaned over and said to K., "I am definitely going to hell but I am inordinately pleased to see she's bow-legged." And that, I am sorry to say, set the tone for the class. Once we both stopped howling with laughter, we got ourselves set up on our bikes and had to listen to the inane nattering of this particular instructor for the entire 50 minutes of class. K. and I exchanged incredulous glances when she asked if anyone knew why we wear green on St. Patrick's Day (and she wasn't wearing green so we heard a soliloquy on pinching which only served to make *me* want to pinch her--and I was wearing green, so was safe myself). But we absolutely convulsed in laughter, which is not terribly conducive to maintaining a hard workout, when she told us all not to be upset by the weather since if it wasn't raining and grey, it would be dry. Uh. Yeah. 'Cause then it would be sunny. It is really a good thing that K. and I tend to like our little back corner of the room. We were originally crowded out by the fit and toned regulars but we're quite happy there. We've dubbed it the "bad attitude corner." Since we're hidden behind rows of other people, our snarky facial expressions are harder to read in the mirrors at the front of the room. ;-)
We do try and put in a hard workout, despite our curmudgeonliness though sometimes it is hard. Today we not only got to hear about Perky's heart rate, which has less than no bearing on anyone else in the room, but she repeated the hideous exercise she did last Tuesday where she told us how long it would take to burn off the 25 calories in one Hershey's Kiss. Aside from the fact that each time she does this I have the Homer Simpsonish response of "MMMMMMMMM Hershey's kisses," and drool a little onto my sweaty shirt, it is an obnoxious bit of theater. Yes, we all know it takes longer than you'd think. But we don't actually want to know. Really. Because then we'd have to actually stop at just one Hershey's Kiss, and I don't mean one bag or one giant super-sized version either. One measly kiss. K.'s general response to this ridiculousness is to query why we're there then at all if it takes that long to burn off one. She points out that it sort of highlights the hopelessness of working out as a diet aid, which is probably not Perky's intention. Unlike last week, today she also named a litany of candy filled holidays we've just passed through or will shortly, starting with Halloween and proceding through Christmas, Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day, Easter, Mother's Day and Father's Day before we get a break from the evils of sugar. Kinda makes you think you missed out as a kid since you never got candy on St. Patty's Day, Mother's Day or Father's Day, doesn't it? And heck, while cookies are undoubtedly sugar-laden, that's the only form of candy involved at the K. house for Christmas. So now I know I've been gypped my entire life on the candy front *and* I can't even begin to work off one teeny, tiny Hershey's Kiss in any reasonable amount of time or without sweat-drenching my clothing. See why I need K. to keep me accountable and going to work out? I'd easily give in to the futility and snuggle up on the couch with the whole bag of kisses and just go to town, pessimist that I am.
As if the Hershey's kiss information wasn't enough to kill the desire to cycle hard, we are also forced to listen to absolutely cr@p music for the whole ride. Other instructors mix it up. The music can range from 80's music to current stuff and back again or have a theme, which makes for a fun class. Tuesday's class, however, is mired in the egregious sin against music that is Christian rap. I'm sure somebody out there likes this stuff. I most emphatically do not. Actually, I'm not a huge rap fan in general but the Christian rap is particularly bad. The first time we heard it, K. sais she was horrified by it since all she could make out was what she assumed to be loud blasphemies. Now that we are assaulted by the lyrics on a weekly basis, we can actually tell what they are saying some of the time and while not blasphemous in one sense, I will suggest that it is blasphemy to call it music and to think that it is inspiring anyone to cycle harder. It just makes me want to leave the room to escape the cacaphony. But today the music was only one of the noises making me want to flee (or strangle someone). While we did the same workout we do every Tuesday (she's not very creative at varying our workouts), she had us at a stage where we were supposed to be working to our capacity and because she's very big on the mental aspect of training, she chirps over the labored breathing all around, "What's in your head right now? What's in your head?" Now keep in mind that I'm struggling to give it everything I've got when she starts asking this at 30 second intervals. My answer each and every time was "Shut up. Shut UP. SHUT UP!" After class K. told me that what she had in her head was "F--- OFF!" Much more succinct. I'll have to use that one next time. And despite my complaints, there will be a next time because we are in a routine and because I have company in my bad attitude corner and as "they" say, that should make me more successful at it. Which begs the question: Am I going to be more successful at taking the piss out of the instructor or at cycling class? The answer is, of course, yes. Or maybe it's 42*.
*Yes mom, I know you don't get the reference but you wouldn't like the book anyway so don't worry about it.