Restoring dignity at the gym.

It was only a matter of time before the square piece in me came out at the gym.

I think I’m training my personal trainer.

You see, I don’t believe that most men understand women’s clothing choices at the gym. Maybe it’s just me, but we avoid certain types of clothing depending on the activities in which we plan to participate. This careful avoidance of certain articles helps us to maintain our dignity in a place where we look worse and smell worse than we’d ever care to admit. So, for instance, consider a regular T-shirt. We all know that scrubby T’s are welcome wear at the gym. I would, however, avoid wearing one if I knew I’d be standing on my head that day. Because if I wore T-shirt and stood on my head, my shirt would come up to my chest and my belly would be exposed. That’s a no-no. Another example: loose sweat shorts. Fine. No big deal wearing those to the gym when you’re a woman. Unless, that is, you plan on sitting on the weight machines instead of running on the treadmill. We all know that once you’re sitting in those baggy shorts, anyone can see straight up to your britches.

Well, last Monday I wore snug, cropped exercise pants. They’re tight all the way to just below the knee, where they stop. My personal trainer, CJ, had me doing these seated leg presses. My back was straight, I was seated. The objective is to scrunch your knees to your chest and then to extend your legs, pushing the weight that’s under your heels away from you.

Like this:


Fine.  On Thursday, however, I was wearing loose exercise pants to my ankles. Considering the variety of machines that I used on Monday, I assumed this was safe. I was wrong. CJ situated me in pretty much the exact same machine that had the exact same purpose, except this one had me laying on my back with my legs extended straight up in the air.

Like this:


You know what this means.  Of course.  My pants wanted to slouch to my knees.

Men, can I just ‘splain something to you? (That’s explain, if you’ve never watched ‘I Love Lucy.’) It is about 89% fact that if you see a woman wearing pants, not shorts, but pants at the gym, her legs are not shaved.

So there I was attempting, after every other leg press, to get my pants back to my ankles. (The 80’s peg –leg fold didn’t work.) Finally I surrendered my dignity for the day and just tucked my pants into my socks. Under no circumstances did this look respectable, I assure you. I explained to CJ, “On Monday, I was wearing short, tight pants. They would’ve been great for this machine. But these roll to my knees. Pay attention. Next time I wear these pants, we’re doing the other machine.” And then, to enhance his morning with extra wisdom, I explained the whole shaved legs thing.

CJ, “But it’s just me.”

Me, “Yeah. Well, it’s just ME.”

So today he took note of which pants I was wearing and selected my equipment accordingly. I feel a little sorry for him having to manage me.


  1. December 18, 2011

    Love it! Just read it to Wesley & we are both laughing.

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