top of page
  • jdettmann

The Gymlazium


It took me fifteen minutes to find a suitable illustration for this post. This is a dessicated frog on a spatula. It’s a metaphor or something. Best I could do.

Right now, there is nothing stopping me from going to the gym, except for, oh, you know, everything. It’s 4.30 pm on a Friday. Following is a list of my standard excuses and why they do not hold right now.

1. The gym is closed.

The gym is not closed. It is open. It probably isn’t even very busy, since it’s a Friday afternoon before a long weekend. There will be about ten old guys there easing into post-op treadmill walks after knee or hip replacements.

2. I have no child care.

My children are, at present, naked in the backyard, painting under the supervision of their amazing babysitter. She’s sixteen, so she has heaps of energy. She doesn’t own this house so she doesn’t give too much of a shit how much paint they get on the outside french doors, where we stickytape the paper for them to paint on because we are too mean to buy an easel. She hasn’t spent all week with them so she can, with grace, manage the fighting and screaming that occur when Garnet launches incursions into May Blossom’s palette, or adds his own sneaky slash of pink to her carefully designed tableau of a scene from Frozen.

3. Even if I have childcare, one or both children are too sick for me to leave.

They’re in rude health. Rude, I tell you.

4. I’m sick.

I’m not sick.

5. I’m too tired.

I’m not really too tired. I mean, I’m always tired, but I’m not getting up five times a night anymore or anything. We moved Garnet out of our bed a couple of weeks ago, and now h goes to sleep in his own bed in the room he and May Blossom share. The transition went very smoothly, and once he even spent all night there, but mostly he wakes up sometime in the middle of the night and H or I go and bring him in with us. Last night though, we both deny bringing him in, but there he was this morning, his chubby leg wrapped around my neck like a little chastity necklace. So I’m getting decent sleep and I’m not actually too tired to go to the gym.

6. There are no classes I like on now.

That’s true. The classes I like are the dance classes. I got a bit into them last school holidays when our babysitter could come in the middle of the day, which is when they are held. They are held then because it suits the old ladies, who make up 99% of the participants of zumba, tap, ballet and belly dancing classes at my gym. (Does it paint a clearer picture of this establishment if I also tell you it’s a Leagues Club and you have to hold your breath and run through huge smoky room of poker machines to get to the stairs to the gym?)

The first class I tried was zumba, and once I got over the fact that the lady teaching it was sixty if she was a day, eleventy times more co-ordinated and fit than me, and taught the sexy bits with a disturbing eyes-half-closed,  bottom-lip-biting facial expression going on, I really liked it. Back in my barely mispent youth, I did a lot of salsa dancing, and this is as close to that as I can get without having to stay up past 8 pm.

That was a whole term ago and I haven’t been since. And there’s no zumba on now. Or any classes really. But there’s no reason I can’t go hop on a treadmill and amble along while I watch telly.

I just really don’t want to go.

So much so, in fact, that I rang the gym yesterday and asked how I could cancel my membership. They said I had to come in and do it in person. THE SNEAKY BASTARDS. The reason I want to quit, I told the receptionist, is because I can’t bring myself to come to your gym. Tough luck, was the gist of her reply.

There’s a chance that my lack of motivation is connected to my general state of melancholy at the moment. It’s been a long year, with lots of sickness for all of us, a huge amount of travel for H, not to mention the whole world-going-to-hell-in-a-handbasket thing. I realised yesterday that perhaps my attitude and perception of life is skewing a little doomwise when I stood on a wharf with one of my dearest friends, looking at Sydney Harbour sparkling in the sunshine. It was so clear you could see the rocks on the bottom. She put her arm around me and remarked on how extraordinarily lucky we were to be there. I launched into a diatribe about the horrors of microplastics. She told me to go get my medication adjusted.

She may be on to something.

1 view0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page