The Physical Challenge
Remember that awesomely stupid show on Nickelodeon called Double Dare? Of course you do, it was the best. Cheesy graphics, dumb questions, slime, people making fools of themselves: it basically represents everything that the early 90s were all about.
Of course, the highlight of this masterpiece was the “Physical Challenge!” I’m sketchy on the details, but I think when it came time for it, you had to do some dumb shit like carry an egg in a cup on a helmet while you jumped through tires and then went down a slide. And if you made it all the way and you weren’t sucking egg yolk, you won like $50. I dunno, I’ve drank a lot since then.
Some things never change, however, and today when one of my friends suggested a group of us do a physical challenge of our own that is equally as ridiculous, I couldn’t resist.
I’m going to run a damn race.
Dear Sweet Mother of all Things Holy, I despise running. Always have. Even in tip-top shape in high school, you put me on a track and my short stumpy legs just couldn’t get the job done. I could handle 12 straight hours of cheerleading a day for a week of camp or hit the gym before twice-weekly gymnastics classes, but run a lap? I’d rather eat green slime. I hated it, I sucked at it and it bored me to tears. (See also: Math, Piano)
Then I got fat and lazy, etc., and running hasn’t even been on my horizon to hate. When you are more than 100 pounds over weight, the jiggle factor of running is enough to give me nightmares. SERIOUSLY. For those of you skinny people
that I hate out there, you’ve probably never considered this before. But when you are part of the Chub Squad, moving fast is not just hard. It HURTS. You’ve got thighs swinging and chafing, you’ve got loose skin bouncing, and don’t even get me started on the Girls. If you are of the my-bra-size-falls-closer-to-Z-than-A group, the old joke about running giving you “two black eyes” seems pretty close to reality.
So there’s that visual for you. You’re welcome.
I know running is a great workout. I know it’s free (well, once you get past the shoes, iron-cable-supported sports bra and anti-chafing undergarments, that is), can be done at any time and is supposedly all mentally healthy and blah blah whatever. Still no appeal. I’m a group fitness kinda girl. I like loud music and people talking and someone pushing me to go harder. I mean, honestly, if motivation and self-control were my strong suits, would I be in this mess? Um, no.
So why on EARTH would I agree to a race? Probably because I’m nuts and so are my friends. Those of us that are signing up aren’t runners, so we all need mental help, obviously. We are going to do the Couch to 5K program (more like Couch to 5 Cookies up until now, am I right, ladies? I suck.) to get us in shape. And by in shape, I mean, not dead on race day. We have a race picked out, and even my hating ass has to admit it looks like a blast. We are going to do the Color Me Rad 5K, which raises money for East Tennessee Children’s Hospital. It’s one of those races where every few minutes you are running, you get colored corn starch dumped on you, so at the end, you look like Rainbow Brite on bath salts. Which is right up our alley.
This running challenge came at the perfect time, too, which is another reason I agreed to it. Now that I’m finally seeing some progress on the weight loss front, I’d like to pick up the pace a little. I’ve already said this is my year of challenges, and I’ve been in the mood to step up my exercise game. I’ve consistently done my Zumba and BodyJam (cardio dance) classes a few times a week for the past few months, but I don’t want to get complacent. I know I gotta switch things up.
Using a work idea as my motivation, I decided to hit up my friends on Facebook and see if anyone was interested in doing a Pinterest Fitness Challenge with me. I made up this concept, so don’t go trying to steal my shit and make millions. The idea is this: There are a million “7-Days to Better Abs!” and “30 Days til Your Arms Don’t Wave in the Wind” Pins up that claim to get your bod in rocking shape if you just follow their simple instructions for the time allotted. I’m sure most of it is bullshit, but who knows? It can’t hurt to try.
So I’m going to take an informal poll to see what area we are going to work on, and then we will join up and take the challenge. I hope we can all document our journey with both before-and-after photos, measurements and hopefully, our successes. I’m curious to see how a group of people at all different levels of fitness will do at something like this, and hope it gives my body the jump start it needs to keep on losing.
And if it doesn’t work, I’m coming for you, Marc Summers.