Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Sport or Fitness (02/15/07)
TITLE: I Don't Exercise
By Angeline oppenheimer
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“I’d rather be surfing,” glared at me from the rear end of the car in front of me. Right…I’ve read many variations of this, “I’d rather be golfing,” or “I’d rather be playing baseball,” and other drivers who would rather be doing any sports than trailing traffic at rush hour. If I have to pick one, I’d choose “I’d rather be reading, “ or better yet, “I’d rather be shopping at Nordstroms.”
Sport means some form of exercise and exercise yields fitness. Whatever, I’d rather be cruising on a boat down the lazy river with a book in one hand and a pina colada in the other. But if you don’t think I exercise, I beg to defer. As a matter of fact, I exercise too much.
On a regular day, I walk one spiral flight of stairs (approximately 20 steps) at least 30 times a day---fetching laundry, books, toiletries, ties, bags or taking urgent bathroom trips and touch-ups to faded make-ups. As a math wizard, that translates to 2 miles a day. And that’s just climbing stairs. Within the kitchen, I chop food, mop the floor, wash three loads of dishes all by hand and serve 3 main meals. That should burn 30 calories of fat, and the aggravations of picky eaters and a spouse who thinks I should cook like Rachel Ray can easily shave off another 15 calories when I lose appetite over their grouses. My round of exercise extends to other areas of the house. I make my rounds of cleaning the living room, family room, dining room, the den, library and 4 bedrooms with adjoining bathrooms. All the scrubbing and mopping has toned my arms down to two Vic Firth drum sticks….lean and taunt and ready to throw some punches to anyone who thinks a homemaker just sits around and eats Krispy cream doughnuts all day.
I can’t throw in my towel like a regular sports person after the activity is done for mine extends to all areas in one continuous time frame…24/7. Outside the house, I make trips that would put a triathlete to shame. I haul 50 pounds of grocery from the store to the car, from the car to the kitchen, sometimes with one hand and a sleeping child in the other.. I do stroller stretch, car seat lifts until my biceps swell to round balls of muscle. Through daily practice, I can maneuver strollers up and down escalators, ramps and incline with an agility that only Jane Austin can. My hips can sway like a mechanized pendulum when there’s a baby on it and I can juggle this same bundle (who can easily weighs about 50 pounds) from one arm to another and sometimes, I do dances with it.
Actually, I don’t just do dances, often times, I’ve to chase an older version around the house and then my fingers do some real fine exercise tickling him until he roars with hysterical laughter. Then I laugh too, for I figure, that should easily burn a few more calories.
My fitness routine takes me outdoor too. I mow the lawn (when the better half is happily away on business trip), whip unkempt hedges into rectangles, get down on my knees and dig stubborn roots and stony grounds to bring flowers to life. With the hot sun beating down and gallons of perspiration pouring down my face, I should smile the triumphant smile of one finishing the workout on the treadmill. Well, I actually rather be sipping lemon tea under the umbrella by the pool.
So, even though I haven’t been inside a fitness club since the birth of my kids, I don’t think I miss a beat. I’ve since been on a workout that never ends. I even do night workouts when the fitful baby wakes up for a bottle or diaper change and I find myself sprinting up and down the stairs at lighting speed to bring some peace to the neighborhood.
I may sound whiny and wimpy but I should actually be thankful that my full-time job has an in-built fitness program. Only God can design a life-style like that. After all, a mom and a wife can ill afford to be sick.
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