February 13, 2013

Musings

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The most recent snowstorm that socked Flagstaff left me wearing snowboots. They’re heavy, clunky boots that, while keeping my feet dry and at least a little warm, tend to gobble my socks.

Because of their penchant for leaving me with one sock off and the other half on, I can’t wait to shed these pain-in-the-a$$ boots (and put my socks back on) … so I’ve taken to stashing a pair of sneakers under my desk at work. With a minutes’ work — presto change-o — I can walk through the office without my socks bunching around my toes.

The simple act of changing into a bright pink pair of tennis shoes calls to mind elementary and middle school gym classes. Unfortunately, the memories aren’t as rosy as the shoes.

I didn’t mind gym class so much in elementary school. It was fun to play  duck, duck, goose, prison dodgeball and that game with the parachute.

Then middle school happened. PE went from fun to full-on torture. For some reason, the powers-that-be put gym class first thing in the morning — meaning, essentially, we had to get ready for school twice. Considering it was all I could do to do my hair once, that was a fate worse than dropping my purse and having feminine hygiene products spill out.

Our PE class was structured into weeks-long units. I succinctly remember units on basketball (which I was surprisingly bad at for a born Hoosier), volleyball, softball and tennis. I also remember that horrid Presidential Fitness test, where you had to run a mile as fast as you could and hang by your arms (which I couldn’t do for more than a split second).

But the worst, by far, was … square dancing. With “icky” boys. (Our gym classes were only co-ed for square dancing. The rest of the year, they did their thing and we did ours.) The mere thought makes me shudder, even all these years later. If I can unearth the short story I wrote about the experience, I’ll come back and share some of my favorite lines.

I can’t help wondering: If middle school and high school PE had been more enjoyable … if they’d emphasized personal fitness instead of team sports … if they’d had units on yoga and zumba, would I still be fighting the same battle with my weight?

Probably. While I’ve finally found exercise I enjoy, it’s still a struggle to watch what I eat and move regularly. It’s a lot easier to grab a value meal and park it in front of my computer.

Anyone else hate square dancing as much as I did? What was your gym class nemesis?

 

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