This past week I started a new job in a completely different town. On the top of my priority lists were packing lunches and finding a new gym. I thought it’d be important to have the gym to help manage the stress of taking on a new position. So, on my first day I asked a few of my new work chums if they had heard anything about gyms in the area. They all suggested one that cost only 10 bucks a month–which is like a fourth of what I have been paying. I went there directly after work.

When I arrived at the 10 buck gym it was loud. It was huge. It had children. And, loads of people working out in a sweaty, stagnant room. But, in my daze I agreed to sign up as it was a “no commitment” contract. The ex-con who helped me to sign up told me that I could get a personal trainer one-on-one assessment for free just for signing up…this was after he told me that he has 3 DWIs. At my last (and only other) gym I was told that I could get a special deal on 3-personal training sessions. I declined and never really gave a trainer another thought as they would probably interrupt my Toddlers and Tiaras marathon viewing on my treadmill. But this, this was FREE! And thank God because somehow he tricked me into signing up for the 20 buck a month contract that included tanning and classes. I have NEVER been tanning and have no interest in skin cancer or looking crispy. And, the only time I took a fitness class was a pilates class led by a fat old man with a cassette boom box…I quit halfway through the first session.

The next day I showed up for my assessment after a hard day on the new job. The trainer was sitting at a card table and she was tiny and overly eye-shadowed and generally made me want to barf. She came trotting over (yes, trotting). I was immediately questioning my choices.

“Are you here for your assessment?!” she chirped.

“Yeah but, I don’t know if I want to do this,” I said to her.

“Why not?!”

“I don’t know what you want to do but I’m really just content to go on treadmills and ellipticals…so….”

She points to the giant gorilla man-zone.

“We were going to do weight training!”

“Yeah, no, I’m good. I had a hard day at work. Can I re-schedule or just not do it?”

“What are your fitness goals?”

“Umm, I want to lose 60 pounds…”

“That’s great!”

“Yeah, I’m not in a rush or anything about it. Maybe I’ll lose it like in the next two years.”

“60 pounds, wow. You’re going to NEED a trainer for THAT!”

I blink back a tear.

“If you sign up now you can get 10 sessions for 25 bucks each!!!”

“I’m going to go now,” I said, nearing tears.

I made my way to the women’s locker room to be confronted with tons of half-naked women like a National Lampoon movie producer’s dream come true. My old gym had a private bathroom to change in. I loped over to the stalls area and tried to start changing. “You’re going to need a trainer for that!” cycled through my mind between deafening blasts of the hand dryer. I could see her blinking caked eyeshadow face in my mind. That bitch. I can lose the weight without her! I don’t need her fucking opinion.

Tomorrow I am going to start working out, hard. At a better gym. Without a trainer. And, that bitch had better expect a Christmas photo card of me (two years from now) 60 pounds down with a double-middle finger to the camera…except my fingers will be so thin she probably won’t be able to see them so I’ll have to modify the text to read, “Merry Christmas, and fuck you!” And, I won’t be wearing ANY eyeshadow!