One of the saddest and funniest things I ever “fitnessed” was my brother’s epic fail at Crossfit. After a successful career as an IT specialist, he moved to Denver to be near me, and set out to keep his New Year’s resolution to lose weight by joining the gym in our neighborhood.
“Fitnessed” is a term I made up to describe those who profess to be at the gym to work out, but in actuality spend most of their time standing next to the machines, talking up their Bros and watching others put in the work. They witness the fitness of others and live vicariously through the efforts they exert at the gym. They’ll tell you how much Larry and Joe can bench press, what they put into their power shakes, and where they buy their apparel, but never make strides of their own. I know all about “fitnessing”, because I practice it, too. It’s easy to do when you can save so much money using Groupon Coupons to get great deals in your local community.
Now, in our minds, we are actually working out. We do just enough to look busy, like adjusting the weights, stretching, warming up and posturing. But we will quickly step aside when a real gym Bro comes in and starts to handle his business.
My brother had me convinced he was practically a certified trainer at the Crossfit near us, but I noticed there never seemed to be any change to his size or shape. He was good about reading magazines and making smoothies, rattling off the latest protein supplements and carb ratios. But I really found out what he was up to when I walked into the Crossfit gym and saw him for myself.
What he told me he could do was box jump. What I saw him do was get up on the box the best way he could, hold the guys attention with his stories about past exploits and daring do, then look around for help. He told me he had been thinking about doing the high intensity reps, but what I found him doing was cheering on the others as they broke sweat. He’s a good guy, and I don’t mean to belittle him. He lost his wife last year, and I think going down there is just a way of staying busy.
He was a Navy Seal in the service, and I’ll always admire him for that. But that was decades ago. It’s true what they say – old soldiers never die. They just hang around at the gym. I’ve “fitnessed” it for myself.