My “Other” Exercises


My “Other” Exercises

Which are no more fun than Apple Fitness+


Adobe Firefly image by author of Old Man Doing Pushups with Dumbbells
Adobe Firefly image by author of Old Man Doing Pushups with Dumbbells

I have lied and said that I enjoy exercise.

I don’t. I enjoy eating, I enjoy feeling good, I enjoy not having a bulging belly. Exercise is only the means to those ends.

Oh, sure, I like going for a walk if the weather is nice and the scenery is pleasant. I can’t say that I like going out in frigid temperatures, although I have read that exposing yourself to cold is “good for you”.

I’d rather be eating something delicious while sitting in front of the fireplace with that beautiful woman who was foolish enough to marry me a long time ago.

And yes, doing pushups might feel good for the first few dozen, but after that, hell no, it hurts. And no matter what I do, I end up sweaty and have to get in the shower, which is fine and dandy by itself, but after I have to squeegee the walls and make sure not to drip water on the floors or I’ll be hearing from You Know Who about that.

You know what hurts the most? Pullups. Agonizing! This is thanks to my idiot sixteen year old stuff doing handstand pushups on parallel bars. Sure, impress the gang, which he could have done from the floor, but no-o-o, he had to be up on the bars and, after the second pushup, fell over sideways, ripping the hell out of his left biceps and scapula. Yeah, that was smart!

Exercise as punishment

No, not punishment for me, punishment for my stomach.

The whiny brat is such a complainer. “Ooh, you didn’t give me enough breakfast, how about an Apple Cinnamon Bar?”

I did give it enough breakfast. I gave it enough breakfast to keep it comfy in my 30–30 jeans.

So, I say, “Sure, but that’s an extra 140 calories, which costs another mile and a half walk or so.”

“Yes, gimme!”

Nice try.

“Yeah, right, no credit at the extra calories store. Pay up front or go without.”

I’m a stickler about that, which comes from learning the hard way. Give the goodies first and next thing you know it’s whining that it needs a nap to digest breakfast and the snack. Cash on the barrelhead, pal, and then you get your treat. No open tabs here.

Old Grumbly might also point out that breakfast is still being digested and a brisk walk could give him cramps. Oh, poor thing: you can walk as slow as you want, but that snack costs a mile and a half up front no matter what.

Close your rings

If you don’t know what that means, meet Nagster, my Apple Watch.

Screenshot of my Apple watch by author
Screenshot of my Apple watch by author

I want you to note several things about that photo. One is the time, which I’ll explain in a moment. The other things to note are those concentric colored rings and the mysterious numbers beside them.

Those numbers show how far I have progressed today with some exercise metrics. The colored rings visually represent how close I am to reaching my goals for each number.

My goals are deliberately set low in case I get deathly sick. Most days I at least double the red (Active Calories Burned) and the yellow (Daily Workout Time) and hit 15 or more on the blue.

The blue shows that I have moved around for at least one minute each hour five times so far. In four minutes, Nagster will warn me that I need to get up and move, or risk losing a blue number. I will comply, and be rewarded with a blue 6 and a small change in the blue ring.

I have reasons to make sure those other circles get closed. Apple hands out pretty rewards for performance. Here’s one:

Screenshot of 286 Perfect Weeks award by author
Screenshot of 286 Perfect Weeks award by author

Those stupid awards and the colored rings keep weak-minded people like me exercising even when I feel miserable.

In closing, some might call me an exercise fanatic, but you have learned here that I am a perfectly reasonable and quite normal person who has valid reasons for exercising.

Now, if you will excuse me, I need to go do some running in place.


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