I bought my regular package of sugarless fruit and fibre cereal and lo and behold, there was an exercise CD within. I decided it was fate – it’s vacation here and my gym class won’t start for another two weeks. So, I put my gym clothes on, moved the coffee table, and put the CD in my computer. First two little cartoon heads came on – Monique and Dave – and they told me about my new gym program – complete with a healthy diet (consisting mainly of the sugarless cereal, I imagine. I sort of skipped that part.) Then they asked me some questions about my height, weight, age, etc. Being a pathological liar, I put down:
Name – Princess Noodle (now everyone knows what name I use in the gaming sites)
Age – 25 (of course!) (d’oh!)
Height – 175 cm. (a lie, a lie!)
Weight – 55 kilos (an even bigger lie – oh, I’m in for it now.)
I hit enter and waited for Monique and Dave to die laughing. They didn’t. The cartoon talking heads then asked me to peruse their profiles and Choose One of them as my Personal Trainer! (gasp – my own personal trainer from a cereal box!) I chose Dave, only because he was cuter than Monique (who needed something done with her hair) and in his profile the word ‘fun’ appeared more often than the word ‘serious’, which Monique used too much for my comfort. So, I chose Dave and Monique whined something about being disappointed but if I changed my mind, she was always there…which kind of creeped me out for a minute until I remembered they were just cartoons on a CD. OK.
I then got to fill out my schedule with this little calendar I keep on my desktop which will beep or do something annoying to remind me “It’s Time to Exercise with Dave!” (Oh, I wish.) Anyhow, I finish that and then chose the “Exercise Now!” button. Let’s Go!
Dave appears, all buff and holding a whistle and a towel – he looks like a life-guard. He tells me that my training session is divided into three parts, the warm-up, the work-out, and the stretching. I hit warm-up and off we go. Dave says, “Stand up straight. Lift knees as if marching in place.” I wait for him to do it along with me, but he only does it once and stops. Some trainer. I do that for about two minutes and switch to warm up number two. Something about deep knee bends. Then I click, click, click ahead to see what joys await me and see sit-ups, leg-lifts, etc. etc. I’m disappointed. Dave is no fun at all. Where are the aerobics and rock music?
So, I keep Dave on the computer while I load Bon Jovi on my cassette player and off I go. I decide to try to remember my work out from the gym. I start with the easy step-touch. OK – that’s fine. But what does my teacher do next? And what do I do with my arms? I can’t remember. I realize that during gym my brain switches off and I simply copy what the teacher does like a mindless robot. I move my arms up and down (I feel like I’m about to take off) and my daughter comes in, sits down with the dog in her lap and watches for a few minutes. I put some extra effort into my moves, hoping to impress my daughter with the importance of a good work-out.
“Mom,” she says after about five minutes. “You’re traumatizing the dog.”
Over on the computer screen, Dave watches impassively. I’m starting to like him better than my daughter. “Don’t you have any homework?” I puff, as I step-touch and wave my arms.
After half an hour I’m tired and do my sit-ups with Dave cheering me on, then my stretches, with Dave offering advice (don’t strain yourself. If it hurts, you’re doing it wrong.) Oh, well then, I better stop Everything! I finish my 40 minute work out and turn Dave off. He waves goodbye and says, ‘See you soon!’
Maybe, Dave. Maybe.