Open wide …

Off I go, in mere minutes now, to the Why to do what I call my slut exercises. No, I don’t mean “yoga,” although I challenge you to get on a mat with a rope and a couple soft blocks and not let your imagination get the better of you. I mean actual exercises.

As required by the contract I signed when I joined the Why in January, I met with my large, buff trainer again. Frankly I’d been kind of jazzed — he had told me I had to go run on a treadmill or similar three times a week and dammit, I had done so, and I was proud. But he didn’t even inquire after my progress. No, he had one simple question for me:

Upper body or lower body?

Uh. Excuse me? Can we leave my body alone please? It doesn’t like to be looked at, used, or, worst of all, “toned.”

With the grimace that always accompanies picking the lesser of two evils, I said, “Lower body.” And the trainer led me through a humiliating series of “exercises,” several of which necessitated spreading my legs. I tried to tell him ladies don’t do that — ladies should be able to hold a dime between their knees at all times, in fact — but he was too busy using words like “abductor” and “adductor” to hear me.

One word, however, he could not remember. “Facing the mirror, you take this medicine ball and you … what’s that ballet thing?” I looked at him like he was crazy: do I look like the sort of girl who was interested in dipping gracefully while holding a medicine ball? “Plie,” I said. “Right!” he said. “I gotta write that down.”

And so, face aflame, off I go to the Why three times a week to “plie” through these tortures, at the end of which I can only hope my thighs with be strong enough to support my fragile and wounded spirit.

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