Planet Fatness

Well, I should be looking like this by Christmastime, thanks to Philadelphia’s drunken, douchebag mayor. Jim “I’ll Have Another Drink” Kenney will be shutting down the city tomorrow through January 2nd, and among the soon-to-be-dead are gyms and fitness centers.

I’ve been really good at getting to the gym three to four times a week, and alternating days with ten-mile bike rides. I’m currently sitting at 188 pounds, and I’d like to get below 185 -where I was before the March shutdown.

None of this makes any sense. Essentially, the mayor is claiming gyms need to shut down because the members may pass on the Chinese Wuhan Virus, even after the local Planet Fitness spokesman said not one of the gyms has had an outbreak since reopening in September. Not one. Worse still, why would you punish the people who are working their asses off to stay healthy. That’s likely the reason we’ve had no outbreaks… because we’re working out every other day.

Instead, this dick would have us locked in our homes, gaining weight, and making us more susceptible to catch the virus. It’s the most ridiculous paradox I have ever seen.

Our jackass mayor’s capricious reasoning was based upon Philadelphia’s 1,900 Chinese Wuhan Virus deaths, and 55,000 positive tests. So, in Philadelphia, the fatality rate of the virus is 3.4 percent. OH MY GOD SHUT IT DOWN!

Today is my last day at the gym until next year, and after talking to some of the employees at my gym, they are less than pleased. They will be unemployed through the New Year, and some of them have no idea how they’ll make ends meet, let alone pay for a nice Christmas for their families.

It took me two months to get back into shape, only to be banned from my gym thanks to a petulant drunken dictator. Pretty soon, it’ll be too cold to ride the bike, and with no gym, I’m going to have to find other ways to stay slightly less fat.

True Detective Gym Stories

You may know I have spent that last year or so getting myself back in shape. I’m still hovering about 188 pounds, but I have been biking ten miles every other day, and going to Planet Fitness on opposite days.

Being a spry 76-year old, I occasionally have aches and pains after a workout. My left shoulder is a complete mess, and while I think I should get it checked out, I’m worried they’ll tell me I need surgery. Otherwise, it’s usually aches and pains.

Until yesterday.

It was a great day. I was powering through all the machines, feeling good, and staring at the occasional babe in yoga pants. I would be out of the gym and on my way home in less than an hour. I sat at the rowing machine and added an extra ten pounds, since I have been easily doing reps with the previous weight.

I was on my third set of reps, and as I pulled the row back, something popped. I think I pulled a muscle in my lower back and when I went to stand up, the pain was excruciating. I skipped crunches and the back extensions, and was able to do a few leg exercises without too much discomfort.

Sadly, since I want to lose a few more pounds, I walked to the gym. It’s only a half mile, but when walking feels like a knife sticking you in the back, the trip took a little longer.

I made it home, sat on a chair for most of the day with the heating pad strapped to my back. I’m going to try to make it to work – I’m writing this Tuesday afternoon – but if I can’t put on clothes or my shoes, that’s not happening.

Thee worst part is I’ll be sidelined from the gym and the bike for a few days, which really pisses me off. God it sucks getting old.

Pump It Up

Pennsylvania Uber-Fuhrer Tom Wolf has decreed the commonwealth’s gyms could reopen yesterday. Naturally, Herr Wolf had conditions, including a limit on people in attendance, and masks for everyone.

Do you have any idea how difficult it is to work out while wearing a mask? You’re already a sweaty mess, and the mask makes it difficult to breathe.

But I digress.

The kind and generous Uber-Fuhrer has allowed us peasants to get healthy again, but I was concerned with the regulations. The mask wasn’t such a big deal, but I was worried the cap on gym rats would leave me out in the cold hot. I walked to the gym – it’s about a half mile from home – and the parking lot looked sparse. Good sign. There was a flyer on the door explaining the maximum occupancy, as well. I took a deep breath, read the flyer, and boom… 145 people was the limit.

In eleven months of going to Planet Fitness, I have never seen 145 people in there at once.

In fact, when I arrived at 9am, there were seven people working out, and three employees. That’s it. Either people were worried about the Chinese Wuhan Virus, or they didn’t want to show up on the first day. Their loss was my gain.

While I have been jogging all year – I’m currently sitting at 328 miles – I am completely out of shape. I used the weight I was using in March for every machine I hit, and immediately had to “adjust” the plates. I couldn’t lift anything close to the weight I was working out with four months ago. I know that’s common, but it’s depressing; the regression that comes with this b.s. pandemic.

That said, I had an overall good day. I worked out for a little over an hour, hit all the machines I wanted, and while I am really, really sore today, but I’m SOOO glad to be back there.

I’m Not Fat, I’m Big Boned

When we returned from the Outer Banks on August 11th, I made a point to step on the scale the next morning. The scale read a depressing 189 pounds. I gained eight pounds in two weeks, thanks mostly to the delicious food I was shoveling into my gullet. Obviously, I needed to get back to work. So, after two weeks of heading to Planet Fitness and jogging – I did five miles in 56:15, a new personal best Tuesday – I registered at 183 pounds yesterday.

The jog was great because it was the first time I got the “runner’s high” – something I hadn’t seen since high school. I jogged most of the course and only stopped a few times, only for a few seconds. If I wasn’t mistaken, I’d think I was getting in shape.

I mention this because I am scheduled for another prostate checkup in October. If I need another awful biopsy, or if I eventually get a cancer diagnosis, I want to be in the nest shape possible to deal with it.

Until then, I’ll soak in all the compliments I’ve been getting for being slightly less fat.

I Lift Things Up And Put Them Down

An artist’s conception of the author.

Two weeks ago I posted about the battles with cellulitis and my weight loss from walking/jogging. I dropped twenty-five pounds since January – most of it coming in the past few months – but it hasn’t been enough for me. Kyle needed to get in shape for lacrosse, so he joined Planet Fitness, which is right around the corner. Erik joined him, because teens can sign up for free in the summer. After a few days’ thought, I decided a gym membership was for me.


It’s been two weeks, and I haven’t missed a day. (Yes, I know chances are I’ll stop going, but honestly, I love it there.) I use one day for weight training, and one day for cardio. Today I hit the elliptical for a half hour, did about fifteen minutes on the treadmill, and walked to and from the gym.

Weight training is – obviously – more difficult. I went overboard the first day, so everything hurt for the next couple days. Other than that, I think I’m doing well. The lifting is getting easier, the cardio is a (sweaty) breeze, and I’d like to think I’m getting a little more solid.

I don’t want to get huge, rippling muscles; I just don’t want man boobs or a saggy, disgusting stomach. I’m currently sitting at 187 pounds, which is nice, but I’d really like to be closer to 180. That said, I look better than I have in a while and I certainly feel better.

Hopefully I’ll keep up this pace. When we go on vacation in two weeks, I’ll stay in shape by jogging on the beach/boardwalk.

UPDATE: My scale is the most cherished possession in my house. It read 185 this morning!!!