Tuesday, March 27, 2007

It's gym life, but not as we know it.

Or, I should say, as I know it. Actually, I don't know it at all, and I'd prefer it to stay that way. I've been roped into accompanying my aged (but active) mother to the gym. She goes to Lanzarote in a month, and wants to tighten up. I too, could do with losing a few pounds, pointed out mum helpfully. She can fit in an hour this afternoon - other spare hours this week are for swimming club, line dancing or aerobics. Her not me, doh.

I looked at the brochure for the gym, and felt exhausted and not a little murderous already. There are Rules for the gym. Firstly, when in the fitness suite, do not chew. Pardon me? I can understand patrons not being encouraged to bring in gateaux, but do not chew? At all? I shall deliberately conceal a wodge of wrigleys betwixt tooth and cheek. My danders up already.
To annoy further, the price list is like one of those impossible mathematic questions about trains crossing at varying speeds en route to scotland and london.

Basic programme - £6.00
Basic Programme with Concession - £5.00
Basic Programme with Keycard - £5.00
Basic Programme with Concession AND keycard - £4.00

One on One Programme - £9.00
One on One Programme with Concession - £8.00
One on One Programme with Keycard - £8.00
One on One Programme with Concession AND Keycard - £7.00

Basic Programme with Shared Instructor - £10.00
Basic Programme with Shared Instructor and Concession - £9.00

And so on, and so on.

What do you have to have to get a concession I ask.
"A bus pass", smugged mother, patting her silver hair. "Or a disability"

I don't even have any trainers (rule two, trainers must be worn), or tracksuit bottoms (rule three, loose comfortable clothes. NONE of my clothes are bloody loose, I wouldnt be going at ALL if they were bloody loose). Apparently, it doesn't matter, as mum has a pair of tracksuit bottoms which are 'too big', and dad has the same size foot as me. I feel like pointing out that making ones daughter feel like a slightly less fashionable Andy Pipkin with breasts is probably not Good Mothering, but she has gone upstairs to collect together my gym attire. I can hear a bit of a scuffle at the top of the stairs, and my dad yelling "It's not a bloody fashion parade", and I am immediately transported to being 12 year old Pesk sneaking out to school in lipgloss with my skirt folded over at the waist three times.

Dad's trainers, as mum hands them over, shed bits of flokky pale grey fake suede. The hems of the tracksuit bottoms I hold against me flap just under my knees. Wearing this, I will be automatically entitled to a concession I suspect.

I leave, mum a helpless wreck of guffaws halfway up the stairs.

Later, as I drink coffee with a friend, I get a text from mum.

"Nice trainers in Lidls five quid."

However did my life come to this?

1 comment:

Tracey said...

So true, I have never been to a gym in my life. Am I prod of that fact? Maybe not. I swim weekly (weakly) and I walk from the front door to the car daily. Ah but every Saturday I have to chase my dad around Sainsburys fending off possible attacks from passersby by who don't take kindly to my dad ramming the trolley into the back of their ankles. Doing the aisles in double quick time is a workout in itself.
I remember once when my mum announced how plain I looked and told me to take a bit a pride in myself. "Get your hair done, put on some make-up! Just because you feel like you are down-trodden doesn't give you the excuse to look it!" Yeah, thanks for that Mum!
Let me know if you qualify for concesions... :)