Monday, March 29, 2010

Fat Lady on a Treadmill - Battle of the Dollar Menus

It’s the war of the dollar menus. I just noticed today – okay, so I’m a little slow- that the burger joint across the street has large window cling signs advertising their dollar menu and the pit has their version of the dollar menu up in their window, the grand opening, join for a dollar sign. From the looks of things, the burger joint is winning. There’s a steady flow of vehicles through their parking lot and drive through, while this Monday morning it’s me and one other slightly insane person at the pit. As Elvis sang Jailhouse Rock I heard the bars clank shut behind me and I began to wonder if I’d made the right choice with my dollar.

Of course, there’s nothing quite like spending a half hour or more on the half rack while contemplating a giant photo of a hamburger, to motivate you. The view from the cardio machines includes a busy street, a large discount store, and the aforementioned burger joint. Not much to look at, giant burger photo aside.

I love a good burger, which is part of the reason I now have to spend so much time at the pit, and that picture is tempting. Fantasizing about the burger isn’t going to help me any, but I can’t help myself. I can almost taste its flame broiled goodness as I shuffle my feet to the beat pounding through my headset. Yeah, I can have one. I’d only have to ride this devil’s machine for another hour or two to work it off. Of course I’d want the fries too, so make that three or four hours. That pretty much killed my desire for the burger in the pretty picture.

Twice, a few decades ago, I birthed a couple of beautiful daughters. My body hasn’t been the same since. Not that I’m complaining, I’m just saying things are different. Things spread out. Things shift. Things that were once nice and tight are no longer. (Get your mind out of the gutter; I’m talking about abdominal muscles here) Then along came the long awaited, much anticipated, liberating menopause, and along with it, more changes. Fat from those burgers and fries used to go one place and now it goes someplace different and is refusing to budge.

In an effort to evict this unwanted fat I’ve taken to using the weight resistance machines at the pit. I’m thinking if the fat won’t go away maybe I can at least tone the muscles underneath and do a better job of sucking it in. I know, that’s a lousy cop out, but it’s a motivating one.

I’ve also come to the conclusion that the only living thing that should have bat wings is a bat. I really don’t want to worry about slapping myself silly if I raise my arms above my head. I want to wear a sleeveless blouse and not worry about the wind catching my sails and dragging me off course. I want to hail a cab in NYC and not slap some tourist in the face. This is another of those motivating images.

I’ve become rather fond of the gut crunching machines. They’re much more fun than doing sit ups on the hard floor and it’s become sort of a game to switch the pin and twist the knob and see how far I can push those weights, and myself. I’m taking it slow- a few repetitions then a break, then a few more. I concentrate on the machines that promise to work the core muscles, abdominals and back, and the arms of course. I don’t want to look like a lumberjack, but that possibility is so far in the future I can’t even see it.

As I attempted to shove my 1956 Cadillac uphill one more time, the burger across the street looked better and better. I dug my heels in and shoved as hard as I could as the Cadillac threatened to flatten me on the downhill side. I sucked it up and gave the land yacht a heave ho and back up the hill it went. I had visions of a spectacular crash at the bottom of the hill. I decided then that burger wasn’t worth the buck, the pain, or the humiliation of having to call a tow truck to haul my classic chassis to the repair shop when the carburetor fails or the fuel line becomes too clogged to function. I eased the Cadillac down the hill and parked it safely at the curb. In the battle of the dollar menus I think I made the right choice. I shoved it into gear again and tootled on home to a nice chicken salad.

No comments:

Post a Comment