Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Flip Turns

Three Kid Circus posted the winner to the Wii Fitness Contest she just ran. When you have a moment you have to read her entry on Fit in Only Six Minutes a Day. I haven't laughed so hard at a blog story ever. It made me think of what my most embarrassing fitness moment would be.
A couple of years ago now I joined my local gym. It has everything: weights, fitness classes and the pool. I used to swim in college for exercise and I got to be okay at it. Not that I ever lost weight doing it, but it was something I could do. So to ease back into fitness (was I ever really fit??? I don't think so, I was just Young) I headed for the pool. It is good for your cardiovascular system and doesn't put too much strain on your body, your lazy ass couch potato body that hasn't seen the light of day on a walk in many a year now, nor known the strain of spandex pulled tight enough around your thighs to snap you into the next dress size. And being the thrifty gal that I am, I pulled out my old college swimsuit ~ I was still the same size so I didn't need to get a new one. It is a one-piece with plenty of coverage in nice enough colors, colors and cut that don't say LOOK AT ME! Perfect. Never mind the toll that chlorine takes on a swimsuit, specifically the elastic of the swimsuit, I was rarin' to go. I found my goggles, my pool shampoo, my flip-flops so I don't pick up anything icky off the gym floor... I mean, I am close to thin now! And off I go.

I am kinda of a cold wimp so it takes me a while to actually get in the pool and all the way wet - I mean, it is cold. But once submerged I am ready to try my stroke. Luckily I have chosen a time where there are not too many people using the pool. Some of those people will mow you down like road ragers in rush hour traffic: you're the idiot in the fast lane taking a casual Sunday drive, communicating their displeasure with you with hand signals and some choice words, distorted by their underwater filter - you still get the message though. I try the breast stroke and to breathe every third stroke on opposing sides. Three breaths in and I gotta take a break, I am way out of shape. But I soldier on to the end of the lane and make my way back and forth a few more times. Then I decide to pull out my bag of tricks. A couple of yards out I decide I am going to pull out one of my old and only skills, the flip turn. I am not sure that is even what it is called but you swim near to the pool wall, dive down like an otter and do a flip, timing it so that your feet can use the wall to push off for another lap.

I remember that the flip turn is best executed for me about two strokes out and I dive down, make my turn, my feet actually hit the wall perfectly so that I can thrust off and be a quarter of the way down the lane without taking a stroke. I left the top of my bathing suit at the wall. Except I don't know it yet. I keep going on down the lane, complete that lap and decide I need a rest at the pool wall. You know, the end where the camera focuses on you and you look at the stop watch to see which world record and personal best you have broken and imagine yourself in your crown of bay leaves and some bling around your neck. Or the end where you grip the wall like you might not be able to haul yo ass out of the water and you're sure you have digested a fair amount of chlorine because you didn't get your mouth completely out of the water during that last sucking air attempt.
This end of the pool is also the business end of the pool. There are chairs there for the slightly creepy old men that hang out and the moms watching their kids taking their swim lessons, the hooks for hanging up your towel, the walkway to the sauna, public pool shower, and the hot tub. It is also where there is a public restroom and the door to the men's locker room. It is busy and I am topless. My elastic has given completely away, eroded by the sands of time and the gallons of chlorine never completely washed out of the suit. And my boobies are out for one and all to gaze upon. The air is cold, the water is cold and I am somewhat numb from both colds and I don't feel the difference between water wet and air wet and lack of suit wet. Better yet, I become aware of this fact when someone I know looks at me and immediately averts his eyes from me like I am Medusa. I mean, why would he not say hi to me? Maybe because I have a booger. That sometimes happens when you are exercising and sometimes when you are swimming. And heaven forbid, I am doing both. So I reach up to casually wipe my face and nose and that is when I notice that something is wrong with my suit. I don't have a booger, he is not looking at me because .... Oh, because I am half naked in the pool? Yeah, that's probably why. I sink back down to get a better look at what kind of wardrobe malfunction I am having. The elastic has disintegrated at the strap and at the clip in the back and now there is nothing quite holding it up or together. I can feel the water in the pool evaporating at the blaze of red heat that my face has become. And what do I do now? Poke my head out of my hole like a prairie dog to see how many people have witnessed my nakedness? How am I going to make the mile long walk to my towel and slink off to the women's room, the farthest door away from where I am without passing everyone? I am certainly not going to venture back into the middle of the pool like nothing happened, maybe you really didn't see what you think you saw, and I can't even pretend to swim because I can't hold my suit together and swim at the same time. If there had been a fire alarm to pull at the side of the pool I would have done it.

I hung out there until my lips turned blue and my teeth chattered and hypothermia relinquished me of my embarrassment. I figured that everyone who had been a witness to my boobies had gone off to tell someone and have a good chuckle over it and wasn't in the pool area any more, so I could go back to just being another person slaving to the fitness gods. I scrambled out, holding my suit together as best and as casually as I could and made my way to the ladies locker room for a shower. I figured once I had my clothes on no one would recognize me anymore.

I still run into that guy every once in a while and I think to myself: he has seen my boobies.

And I wonder if he is thinking the same thing.


Jenny said...

OMG - bwahahahahahaha! This is hilarious!

Shannon said...

Tears - I have tears that was so freakin funny!