Feel the Burn! When Bar Trash Meets Barbells

Posted: May 5, 2011 by divebardiva in Daily Ramblings

Okay people, as I was chatting with Vodka Toxic the other day — and once again found myself laughing until tears streamed down my face — I thought I would share the story of how we tried to get in shape…once.

Let me preface the story by saying that Ms. Toxic and I have been friends for 20 years now. I first met her when we worked at a hotel together in Atlanta. I had just gone through a horrible divorce and was quite ready to “sow my oats” so to speak, as I hadn’t even been old enough to drink when I got married.

So, for a solid year, we happily skipped from bar to bar dancing our asses off and drinking like fish. It was one of the absolute happiest times of my entire life. However, with that kind of lifestyle came its challenges.

Working the 3-11pm shift had several effects…first, we never had to cook anything. In fact, the only thing that was ever in our freezer was a bottle of vodka. Before work, we would religiously hit McDonalds for cheeseburgers, fries and Sprites. And at work we had a lovely cafeteria. (And by lovely, I clearly mean horribly disgusting. I shudder at the very mention of turkey tetrazzini.)

And secondly, we were shot-and-beer girls. So there were a lot of sticky sweet shots every night and no way to work it off except to dance for our lives. This was all well and good because three to four nights a week we were dancing our asses off. But unfortunately, we were drinking our asses off six to seven. We actually spent more hours drinking each week than working or sleeping. Something had to break.

Oddly enough, it was Vodka’s plan to walk down the aisle that would be the catalyst. Now I was not happy about this to begin with…not that I didn’t adore her boyfriend…I mean, I used to drive her to his place once every couple of weeks just so they could “hang out.” But with marriage came a move to another state, and that was one thing I was not going to get behind.

In order for Toxic to get me “psyched” about the impending nuptials, she thought we should join a gym and get in shape for the big day. Why she thought this was any sort of incentive is beyond me.

I mean, really people, at this point in my life I only ran if someone was chasing me. But she seemed excited so I went with it. As her maid of honor, I figured it was my duty. So off we went to a gym in Buckhead that offered free training sessions with your membership.

Now for those of you not in the Atlanta know, Buckhead is kind of a fancy area. Lots of money and malls with the words “Phipps” and “Lenox” in their names. Toxic and I would have been much better suited to the boxing gym near our house but the occasional gunfire at that locale made it our second choice.

We headed out for our first workout in what we thought was appropriate gym wear — me in a beer t-shirt and old Gold’s Gym cut-off sweats and Toxic in a t-shirt she got for free at a local bar and some lace fringed leggings that she used to wear out clubbing. It wasn’t typical workout gear … but it was all we had. We couldn’t afford gym clothes; we could barely pay the rent. And when we did have a few extra bucks, we needed it for liquor. Duh.

We were unaware of the rude awakening that we were about to receive.

We walked into the gym and were greeted by a cute little thing that couldn’t have weighed more than 100 pounds. It was really early for me, being 11am and all, and her insane perkiness and the fact that I could snap her in half like a twig were not going to bode well for this day.

It only got worse when we walked up the stairs into the gym and saw all the Buckhead beauties with their big hair, little waists, full makeup, perky boobs and clad in fuscia sport bras and shorts. They clearly had nothing else to do all day but shop and stand on a treadmill. We stuck out like a sore thumb, and I could feel my bitterness coming on like the flu.

Thankfully, this petite perky pest was only there to check us in. She called Lamar, our personal trainer, to come to the front and begin our transformation from hungover and flabby to fit and fabulous. The look on Lamar’s face when he saw the two of us was the same one I see on the guy’s face who takes my recycling each week…shock, awe, pity and just a little fear.

Lamar saw right away that we were going to be a bit of a challenge, and he wasted no time in setting us up with some circuit training. Now the only thing that Toxic had ever lifted was beer and chicken wings. I was a little better equipped to deal with arm strength issues from dragging cases and kegs around.

At one point, I really thought the weights were going to be Toxic’s demise. She actually screamed out for help several times, and Lamar had to run over to assist. At one point, Lamar grabbed a weightlifting bar and told Vodka to put it behind her neck and lift above her head. She couldn’t do it.

Lamar kept removing weights from the ends, and Vodka still couldn’t lift it. He finally took ALL the weights off and told her to just lift the bar. Vodka squeaked out four and told Lamar she was done. Lamar insisted she do one more.

Vodka struggled and strained until her face turned bright red. Finally, she jerked the bar up in an effort to lift it, and consequently smashed herself in the back of the head — nearly rendering her unconscious.

Lamar’s mouth dropped.

I didn’t fare that much better. Here’s one of our conversations regarding my severe dislike of sit-ups.

Lamar: You need to do 50 sit-ups

Me: 50? Are you kidding me?

Lamar: No, I’m not kidding. Get going.

Me: How ’bout 30?

Lamar: I said 50.

Me: 40 — my final offer.

Lamar: 50 — Do it!

Me (after only 20 sit-ups): Lamar please, have pity on me, I’m an alcoholic for god’s sake.

Lamar: No pity, and now I want 75.

We tried the alcoholic excuse several times during our hour-long torture session. It didn’t work. Let me tell you … it was the most excruciating day on the planet. But it was also one of the funniest.

As we were leaving, Toxic and I were wondering how the hell we were going to get out of this membership and NEVER return to this building. I was fairly certain the gym housed the portal to satan’s lair somewhere on the premises.

As we were walking down the stairs to the exit, Toxic’s little legs gave right out from the squats and leg presses. She tumbled — arms and legs akimbo — into the lobby. But I have to hand it to her: When she landed, she bounced right up and tried to pretend that it never happened.

I laughed so hard I actually peed a little.

To our credit, we kept going back at least a couple days a week. We would have made it there more often but our favorite Mexican restaurant (with queso dip TO DIE FOR) was on the way. And sometimes margaritas won out over chest presses. This must come as no surprise to our loyal readers.

So, there it is peeps. This is what happens when heavy-weight drinkers take on heavy weights. It ain’t pretty, no matter how you look at it.

  1. Doug Wenz says:

    Love your stuff!

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