The new gym

For the last several years, I’ve been going to a gym for a strength-training class three times a week. I picked the gym because the class time worked great for my schedule, and it was really close to WCK’s school. I was by far the youngest person in the class; most of the other people — including the teacher — were at least 30 years older than I am. I grew to love the class, and I didn’t really realize how easy and gentle the class was, or how calming it was to work out to the greatest hits of the ’60s, such as “Yummy Yummy Yummy I Got Love in My Tummy.” Plus I liked hearing the other ladies complain about how their kids have been raising the grandkids all wrong.
About a week ago, without any warning, the gym closed down. We all got an e-mail that the gym was closed, and that was that. They must have had financial trouble, although I’m not sure why, since they obviously hadn’t invested in any new music since 1968. I had to go sign up at the local Y, and I realized I’d been suddenly thrust out into the Real World of gyms. This is a world where classes are filled with people who are at least 10 to 15 years younger than I am, the instructors are tiny little people who yell at you, and the music goes “Thumpa thumpa thumpa.” It turns out that when I’m in a class of 20-year-olds I’m not nearly as kick-butt strong as I appeared to be when I was in a class of 60- to 80-year-olds. My tummy isn’t feeling the love anymore.
Today I went to something called “Body Pump”, which hurts just as much as it sounds like it would hurt. We all get big barbells and the instructor plays different songs, and we spend one song working on one muscle group. Of course, all of the songs were new-fangled “Thumpa thumpa thumpa” songs that appeal to the kids these days. Just when I thought the Lady Gaga chest press would never end, it was time for bicep curls and a new song. The new song was — YES!! — Bon Jovi’s Livin’ On a Prayer! Finally, music for the elderly!
Just as I was getting into the music, the instructor, who looked like a very muscular version of Kelly Ripa, began adding completely deadpan, Saturday-Night-Live-skit commentary to the lyrics in an attempt to help us through the workout.
BON JOVI: It doesn’t make a difference if we make it or not!!!INSTRUCTOR: Oh, we will make it. And it does make a difference.
BON JOVI: Baby, it’s oooookaaaaaaaaay!!INSTRUCTOR: Yes. It is okay. You are going to be okay.
I can only hope that next week’s class includes Dead or Alive.
BON JOVI: I’m a cowboy!INSTRUCTOR: Yes. You are a cowboy. You are all cowboys!
I’d still be laughing about this if my entire body didn’t hurt so much.