FlourishAnyway is an Industrial/Organizational psychologist committed to uplifting and educating others to be reach their full potential.
Double Chin Syndrome: Key Symptom of an Exercise Allergy
Exercise Ain't for Everyone
I don't feel the least bit guilty about this confession, although perhaps I should. So I'm gonna give it to you straight up.
I've tried exercising. Really I have. But I freaking hate it. Yep, I fear I am allergic.
I don't like sweating and all that unnecessary movement. I'd much rather nap or watch tv. And the only time you'd catch me running is if someone were chasing me. Even then, there would be a fifty-fifty chance I'd just lay down and play dead.
Yeah, I know exercise is good for the body and soul, but so is chocolate. At least that's what I tell myself.
Truth is, exercise ain't for everyone. Maybe the gyms need to cater more to the masses—to those of us who are unfit and unmotivated.
You know who you are. When someone says, "You have food on your chin," you ask "Which one?" then you slide the napkin all the way down your neck. (High five here, buddy—one for each of those chins!)
Aww, Now! Don't Let a Double Chin Get You Down
Creative Fitness Classes for the Unfit and Unmotivated
Who really needs Zumba and step aerobics classes anyway? Instead, the gyms should offer classes that appeal to the softies, thick-waisted, and exercise-allergic among us.
Health clubs should design creative exercise classes for those of us with too much junk in the trunk and not enough giddyup to get it done. I have some ideas to help get us started if you're game.
Come on, softies and double-chinned darlings—let's unite!
Gangsta Yoga: Let's Brawl, Y'all
Gangsta Yoga: Rough Edges and Salty Language
Reluctantly, I took a class at the local YMCA recently, even though I know I have neither the patience nor the focus for this serious endeavor. I sat in the back of the room (obviously—where else?) and hoped to hide behind the freakishly Bendable People.
The instructor led the class through peaceful, meditative thoughts, and I dutifully held my hands together above my head in a prayer-like pose, hoping to somehow blend in. My mind, however, wandered far away. I imagined a much different kind of yoga—one with rough edges and salty language. I'm already practicing my hand signs and "popping my trunk" in eager anticipation.
My version of yoga wouldn't involve downward dogs, plank positions, or tree poses. Hell no, homies. If I had to sweat, I would go all gangsta and make the session worth all our while.
We'd sport dark shades and grillz, baggy britches and dollar sign necklaces. I'd demand that you call me "Gutta Gurl" while everyone else would be known as "Mutha," "Big Boy," or "Thug."
Word up. We'd make like we were packin' heat and practice mostly warrior poses, with some mugshot poses sprinkled in for good measure.
Dawg, we'd pop, lock, and drop it—and if we were lucky, we'd manage to get back up on our feet again. (We're unfit folks, remember?)
We'd mix it up with a good brawl, y'all, but that would mostly be just bravado and posturing. Before we turned our people back to the streets, our session would end with a reminder.
I'd holla out, "Yo—be cool! You don't want no trouble from this mutha. 'Cause what you do to others is gonna get done to you."
Wiggle, Wiggle, Wiggle: How Do You Fit All That In Them Jeans?
Frenemy Kickboxing: Kick 'Em, Punch 'Em, Then Hug It Out
If gangsta is not yo' style, then we can pimp you out in another exercise class that fits your personality better. For example, everyone has that one friend that well ... just isn't. She spreads rumors about you, breaks your confidences, and only pretends to be your friend. Let's get moving and put those toxic interpersonal dynamics to work for the both of you.
Harsh Words Are Just the Start: Grab a Frenemy and Work It Out
Grab your favorite fair-weathered friend—that frenemy who sings your praises out of one side of her snarled mouth then proceeds to talk trash about you out from the other. Woo-hoo! You're gonna kickbox each other's soft sides until you're fit.
You and your backbiting buddy will trade jabs that will make all those candy-coated smiles and backhanded compliments seem old-school and even fun. Fake friends know just where your sensitive spots are. They can land a low blow then pull you in close to hug it out. (Are we having fun yet?)
So go get your gloves on and practice that footwork. This is the type of exercise that will leave one of you begging for sweet, fat mercy.
Cat Lady Calisthenics: Do It You, Do It for the Cats
Calisthenics for Cat Ladies
What do you get when you combine fitness and a borderline obsession with feline friends? Calisthenics for Cat Ladies, of course! Can't you feel yourself purring already?
Between scooping litter boxes, feeding time, and playing with your feline divas, cat ladies lead such busy lives. (Hey, I feel your pain. I'm a cat lady, too!) No wonder there's such little time to attend to your own exercise needs. But it doesn't have to be that way.
Build Your Muscles: Lift Those Overgrown Orange Cats
Calisthenics for Cat Ladies will develop your muscles so you can hoist any of the following with no problem:
- overgrown orange cats and tubby tabbies
- large bags of Friskies dry food
- 40 pound tubs of cat litter or
- a humane cat trap with a feral kitty inside, eager for its spay/neuter.
This creative class has secondary benefits in that it will also get you out among other people—a species which we know ranks second at best on the Cat Lady social hierarchy. Take heart, however. Your cat lady classmates are a special breed of humans—those who love kitties as much as you do!
Meow, my friend! Me-ow!
Cat Dude: He's One In a Million
Because cat ladies (and the occasional cat dude) are such imaginative people, the instructor will be a special kind of storyteller who can appreciate the special feline-focus of our Cat Lady universe.
She'll lead the group with enthusiasm, like this:
Okay, Cat Ladies and Dudes, I see many of you have brought your kitty themed blankets, beach towels and workout clothes. Excellent. Some of you even have your faces painted with whiskers. Extra cute!
Now let's practice our warm up. Slowly march in place. We're "making biscuits" or "kneading dough" just like your Mr. Fluffers. Now s-t-r-e-t-c-h! Tail high up in the air. Paws way out in front of you. Remember, you've been asleep for h-o-u-r-s!
Stop what you're doing! Do you hear the can opener? Let's RUN for the food bowl!
Cats: Who Can Have Just One?
Using sit-ups and crunches, you'll practice contorting your body into uncomfortable positions. This will help you sleep better with multiple cats in your bed.
Also, there will be extended arm reaches for when you need to get Miss Kitty down from atop the refrigerator. Push-ups and extended arm reaches will prepare you for fetching Muffin from under the beds or behind the couch when it's time for her to go to the vet.
So what do you say, Cat Lady? Does it sound like a plan? If you can't do this for yourself, at least do it for your cats. They need you!
Are You Jiggly and Wiggly When You Walk?
Do You Have An Exercise Allergy? Know the Symptoms
If you experience the following symptoms, you may suffer from an exercise allergy:
- a puffy face, often with the illusion of a double chin
- a chubby reflection in the mirror and difficulty recognizing yourself in photos
- a distended belly or bloated backside
- becoming easily winded upon rising from the couch
- displaying lethargy and a marked preference for napping, watching tv, and surfing the internet
- fondness of jogging/yoga pants—with no intent of working out and
- a strong aversion to unnecessary movement and sweating.
If this is you, welcome to the club of the Exercise Allergic. I hope they get these "exercise classes for the rest of us" started soon.
Strange Stretching: Heroes In Action
Sometimes the unfit and unmotivated find their passion. When they do, the results may be awkward.
Whether you run, cycle, or do something else, warm up using strange stretches you invent yourself. Let your imagination run wild! You can stretch nearly anywhere—a park bench, your car, the office. Be sure to take photos. It's important to document your hard work.
Many softies find that their stretching is so strenuous that actual exercise is not necessary afterward. Now that's intense!
More Strenuous Than It Looks
Go Forth And Exercise
My double-chinned, soft-sided, and jiggly friends, I know that creative exercise classes aren't the complete answer when you're dealing with an Exercise Allergy. Sweat is disgusting. And naps are next to nirvana. I totally understand both those things.
But I hope you've found an "alternative" class that inspires you. Perhaps the gyms can help out those of us who are unfit and unmotivated by designing fitness classes for the rest of us. Until then, I'll be in the back of that yoga class with my mind wandering far, far away.
© 2014 FlourishAnyway