Tag Archives: exercise

I’m such a Pretender


Here on wordpress we have these little hover cards that connect a picture to our blogger avatar. So the other day I hovered over someone’s picture and read the bio that came with the avatar.  This person described himself very simply and ended with “and I pretend to go to the gym”.  That gave me a little chuckle.  I thought, “Well he’s a step ahead of me!  I don’t even PRETEND to go to the gym.”  But that got me thinking about the little things in life that we all pretend we do.

For example, have you ever pretended to know what you’re doing when you’re really just winging it?  “I meant to do that.”  Sometimes pretending that you know what you’re doing is the way to fly under the radar, like when you’re wandering through a part of the building where you’re not supposed to be.  “Just act natural.”  Sometimes it’s the way to go with the flow and learn as you go along.  “Pretend you know what you’re doing.”  And sometimes it’s a way to hide your inadequacies.  “Just smile and wave, boys, smile and wave.”

So here’s a short list of Things I Pretend to Do:

~ I pretend to exercise.  I lay down in bed at night and think, “My whole body aches, surely I did something strenuous and exercis-ish to induce this much pain.  I’m sure I was in constant motion for the last 18 hours.”

~ I pretend to follow the news when I really don’t care that much about what’s happening in America.  I don’t live there and it annoys me that Americans think that what happens in their country is so important to the rest of the world.  It isn’t.  (And I don’t care about celebrities either.  It seems like a lot of the news now days is about them.)  

~ I pretend to understand finances when numbers really just go in one ear and out the other… same reason that I can’t remember dates or telephone numbers.  That’s why they invented speed dial!  (I only remember Josh’s old cell phone number which now belongs to a friend.  If I ever have an emergency, I will probably call him instead!)

~ I pretend pray more than I do, sometimes I just make lists in my head or fall asleep mid prayer.  Mostly I just worry and call that prayer.  I’m not proud of that, but it’s true for a lot of us, I think.

~  Sometimes I pretend to understand what people are saying to me in Spanish when I’m really just a sentence or two behind.  For example, yesterday a teacher stopped me in the hallway and started speaking to me about something.  I nodded and murmured “uh-hu” a few times.  But because my brain was in full English mode at that moment, it took me about 3 sentences to capture the THEME of this conversation.  Once I realized WHAT she was talking about I was able to mentally back track and think, “now what did I just commit to do?”  I was going with the flow and pretending I understood each word when I was really racing to catch up with her.

That’s my life immersed in a second language.  I pretend I know what’s going on around here.  I pretend like I know where I’m going.  I pretend like I’m supposed to be here.  I pretend like nothing’s wrong.  And most of the time it all shakes out in the end.

I don’t diet because I don’t want to kill people.


I don’t like diets.  I used to be one of those people who could eat anything and never gain weight.  I remember in college being hungry all the time.  I must have had a good metabolism or something.  Then kids came along and ruined my waist line.  And I lost my thyroid to cancer so my metabolism is shot now.

Without a thyroid, weight loss is waaaaaay more difficult than before.  I tried Weight Watchers.  I hated it- my blood sugar was out of control.  We’re lucky that I didn’t kill anyone.  I tried crazy amounts of exercise- 90 minutes a day should do something, right?  Not without a thyroid!  It was so discouraging that after about 9 months (with only about 6 pounds lost) I gave up.  So maybe when I say I don’t like diets there is a tinge of bitterness in my sentiments towards all those people who have success with that.

But beyond the jealousy of not seeing the same results for a herculean effort, I have to say that one thing that really bugs me about other people on a diet or an exercise craze is that they are consumed with their own bodies and the food they do or do not eat.  THEY don’t see it as being consumed.  They feel like they are being “conscientious”.  They feel like they are being inspiring and motivating when they share their successes.  They don’t realize that I want “go postal” every time they talk about their diet or their weight loss or their life-style or their goals.  I want to point out to these people just HOW much they talk about THEMSELVES.  It’s really annoying.

Not only do they talk about themselves all the time.  They are consumed with food.  Food controls them.  They think about food, plan what they will eat, tell everyone what they are avoiding, can’t do certain things because there will be bad food there, require their friends to accommodate their food restrictions (ever invite a vegetarian over for dinner?).  They are controlled by food.  And that really annoys me too.

If you have success on a diet or exercise plan, I can be happy for you… if you spare me the details.  I can applaud the successes of others, if they don’t rub it in my face.  Just keep it to yourself and let me compliment you on your trim figure if I feel like it.  And whatever you do… don’t try to pull me up on your bandwagon.  You’ll throw your back out.

So after that rant against diets.  I will refrain from telling you what I am going to prepare for breakfast.  I won’t tell you how many minutes I did NOT log on the stair master.  I won’t post on Facebook how many miles I ran at the crack of dawn.  And I won’t announce how many calories I burned doing housework.  Frankly, no one cares.  My life is far more interesting than what I put in my mouth.