Sep 10, 2009

If there is one thing I can't stand it's athletes. I fucking swear.
It's not that they have beautiful bodies, or possess effortless grace, or are naturally endowed with abilities to do things with those beautiful bodies that most of us have to work to even mimic. It's not that they spend alot of time being athletic. It's that they don't get it.
Natural athletes, I mean.

If I had a nickel for every time a lean, strong and coordinated person has encouraged me to try something with the words "it's easy!" I could buy you a deluxe ice cream sundae. Mmm. icecream. But I diverge. from topic, The point being, if THEY had a nickel for the amount of times they turned out to be right, well, aint nobody breakin even here. Deluxe cone. Sprinkles.

See what people who are in great shape, who naturally take to sports, dance, and in general, find training programs or drop in classes "easy" don't understand is that I am not coordinated.
Even when I am in shape, I am uncoordinated. Even when I am at my leanest I am uncoordinated.

So when I walk into a class and it's one step this way, and 3 steps that way, and two steps back and repeat! I start to sweat. Before we are even ten minutes into the routine I am sweating and freaking out and breathing harder and sweating more than after a 5 mile run and certainly anyone in the class. Because it's confusing. Because it's not natural for me. Because it's NOT EASY.

Now, understand, I will try things that are not easy. I have and I will again. I will try new things. But if you expect me to walk into any class without beginning EXPLICIT INSTRUCTIONS on how not to maim my neighbor while learning the rudimentary steps to "jazzercise" or "samba" or even, really do a sun salutation, you will be very disappointed. More over, if you expect enjoyment out of me as a stumble, trip and smack my neighbors. Well, I guess all I can do it try.
I mean, the only interactive drop in class I have enjoyed from the beginning was a martial art. And do you know what? They EXPECT YOU TO HIT OTHER PEOPLE IN THAT CLASS.
Not so much in a step class.

And I always end up feeling bad. I end up feeling guilty, because everyone is so excited and talking about what a great workout that was and how much FUN! it was compared to just working out alone and how easy it was this time and I am like "I am sorry, and I 'll pay for your doctor's bill, I promise."

And the thing is, it's not even about fitness. I mean, yes, at times I am out of shape. And yeah, I probably do not steamroll up the ramp to cardiovascular fitness as fast some people.
Which is to say, I am pretty much not a natural athlete. But that doesn't mean I can't be lean and healthy and in shape. I run three times a week, I hike atleast once a week. I do yoga.
I am not arguing against trying physically active things. I am arguing against the notion that a wish and a prayer and a can do attitude! will enable me or anyone else of my....orientation to jump into a taebo class or an ongoing salsa dance without uncomfortable and possibly dangerous consequences.

So have a little pity. or atleast have a little sensitivity.
If you want me to join you for jazzercise 101 atleast be kind about it. "we should try this class. I know it will be hard at first, but I think if you do the orientation you'll be fine". Not "it's easy! don't worry". Because all that ends up meaning is "look, something else easy you can barely handle"

But then again, I'll probably be the one laughing when you are on your ass at the end of a human domino line when I reveal how very little meaning "right" and "left" have to me, when tasked to instantly discern the difference.

2 comments:

cordelia said...

I feel a little bad about how hard I was laughing, but it really is out of understanding. Also because it's funny.

Mischief Maker said...

Yes! Like! Being fit is not the same as being an athlete. I am the same. Which you knew already.