Monday, September 23, 2013

Family Fitness: A Tale of Two Sisters.

"Amy! Look I'm doing it! I'm doing it!
Snap the damn picture! Snap the picture!"
My sister is an exercise lunatic. She's been that way her entire life, and if my memory as an 18 month-old child serves me correctly,  I am 100% accurate in this assessment.  When my mom brought my new baby sister home from the hospital, she promptly began bicep curling her bottle and she hasn't stopped curling, twisting or lifting since. 

She was always flipping outside in the yard, while I was inside eating Sour Cream and Onion Potato Chips and waiting for Growing Pains to start. Sure, I would occasionally join her in her outdoor antics, but I'd stop as soon as I felt remotely uncomfortable. Sweat, insects, dirt - yeah, all of those things made me uncomfortable. So, I'd turn a few cartwheels and head on in for a weekly dose of Kirk Cameron and his shenanigans as Michael Aaron Seaver. Yes I know his First, Middle and Last Name - I had his posters all over my room. Kirk Cameron was dreamy. 

In high school, my sister dove, cheered, ran and swam. I gave it all a whirl, but eventually decided that my time would be better spent cruising the whip and trying to illegally buy cigarettes. 

In college, get this- she worked out. What the hell was that about? Physically speaking, isn't the whole point of college to put on a few beer and pizza pounds? Well, not my sister - this girl regularly attended the IU's SRSC and of course, majored in Exercise Science. I majored in Journalism, and I certainly did not work out, but I could tell you when 25 cent beer night was going down at the Bluebird.

I visited IU's SRSC just once. Even its acronym was intimidating. SRSC?  What did that even mean? I think it roughly translates into: Fuck exercise, it sucks.  

Whatever, it meant, I didn't fit in. In order to attend, you had to be in really great shape, wear full make-up and flaunt super cute workout clothes. I wasn't in great shape - I was hungover and flaunting my too-tight poly-blend high school gym shorts. The SRSC made me about as uncomfortable as insects and dirt, so I'd head back to the dorm for some candy and 90210. Luke Perry was dreamy. 

My sister's honeymoon photos featured her and her husband mountain climbing, kayaking, and bike riding. On my honeymoon, Justin and I rented a pontoon boat and took it out about 50 feet before we decided that it required way too much effort and returned it. We are clearly the perfect couple as we were in total agreement that peddling that damn boat in the ocean was ridiculous when there was a minibar to play in. Her pictures were filled with adventure. My pictures were filled with food from the buffet.

I avoided all sorts of working out, until I had children and realized that if I didn't whip myself back into shape after the babies, I'd be all sorts of morbidly fat for life. So begrudgingly, I took up the elliptical and Jillian Michael to keep myself in just enough shape as to not totally disgust myself.

So, when Amy, my dear sister, invited me to her TRX class, I said I'd go along mainly because there was nothing good on TV.

I wasn't entirely sure what TRX was and her description of stretchy bands was a little misleading, or more likely, I wasn't paying attention. I should have Googled it. I walked into some S&M looking chamber with ropes hanging from the ceiling. I'm pretty sure I read about things like this in 50 Shade of Gray. What the hell was going to go on in here? Leave it to Amy to find the most horrible form of exercise on the planet and enjoy it. 

Shit. Now what? All these weirdo exercise people looked excited to get started. I was terrified - pretty sure I was about to be bound and gagged and not in a sexy Christian Grey type way but more in a move my body in a painful, Biggest Loser type way. 

Then it began. We pulled the bands with our biceps, our triceps, our quadriceps and all of the other important 'ceps. It wasn't so terribly bad, 'cep when it came time for the ab work.

My sister knew I was in trouble. She looked at me in a panic and said, "Abbie, just don't do it. Really - just don't do it."

What in the world? I'd made it this far. What was she scared of? That I'd fart?

This particular maneuver was, indeed, beyond my capabilities as it involved holding myself in plank position with my feet in the bands and then moving my feet inwards toward my head. Sound complicated? Well it was. I felt like a fat sausage on a rope.

What made me feel better was that my sister couldn't do it either but only because she couldn't stop laughing at me. This is why it is so much more comfortable to eat chips and watch sitcoms - you're the one laughing and potato chips are delicious.

After class, I returned home and bicep curled my own bottle - a wine bottle. Girls gotta work her 'ceps.  Would've been nice if Amy could have joined me for a glass, but that lunatic was out running or cartwheeling around her neighborhood. I would've joined her but Grey's Anatomy was on and Patrick Dempsey, well, he's McDreamy. 

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