Because it makes me feel like a lardass.
Two blocks from home I begin a chant.
Turn your chubba into muscle.... turn your chubba into muscle.....
Then I break into a little bit of a run. After all, only a few short years ago, Shelli and I used to lap around town only stopping once or twice for a breather.
Now I urinate myself and fall gasping into the snow after a block. My feet start to hurt.
I stop to tuck my thighs into my sport socks and to regroup. I glance at the houses along this frozen stretch- wary of cameras pressed up against the frosty panes and worry about what may make it into next month's Town Bulletin. These things take time, I tell myself. Give yourself a few weeks to look graceful in running shoes. Besides, your little jaunt was on the road parallel to the railway tracks- unlikely that the townspeople have turned off American Idol to laugh at you instead. Try to remain focussed. Turn your chubba into muscle...
Determined to turn thunder thighs into admirable pillars of steel, I brace myself against the wind and start out again, undeterred by motion sickness from my thighs rhythmically slapping together. I start thinking about people I know who are genetically blessed with thighs that don't fall in pleats. I begin to hate them. I daydream about how to see my mother's legs without a long housedress covering them so I'll know whether to give up four blocks from home, or keep going. She's been walking a few miles every day after supper for about thirty years now. If she still looks like hog fat bludgenoned by a disoriented woodpecker, I'll cut my losses and go home for ice cream. Big sigh. I'll never see my mother's thighs.
By now I'm employing my ice pick to navigate the peaks crusting up the bike path in the soccer park. I'm limping, as my impulse I'm going-to-get-in-shape-right-stinkin'-now running shoes are making my heels blister. The arches are rebelling. The legs are chaffing. My brain is shaken and discouraged.
If I'd stayed at home and only intended on exercising, I wouldn't be so painfully aware of how completely flaccid my internals have become. I could imagine myself training for a half marathon, running like a wild stallion, the wind in my hair.