I guess my obvious lack of interest in my physical appearance lately was affecting those around me because I was gifted with a 3-month membership to a gym. I sat there looking at that gift certificate for a solid two months until I realized A) I’ve gained 5 pounds since this was gifted to me, B) I’ll be going on family vacation in a couple months with my co-workers and the odds are they’ll see me in a bathing suit, and C) I have a wardrobe of white jeans I haven’t been able to zip up in two summers. Rather than bundle them up for my swap party this Saturday, I decided to sign up for those free three months.

I’m not sure exactly how to approach this latest stab at gym membership. I’ve tried both the optimistic and skeptical approaches, and it always seems to end pretty much the exact same way. I pre-pay for a butt load of private training sessions and end up hating it so much that I end up telling them to just keep their money because I’m not coming back. This has happened not one, but three times. And then after about a year of automatic withdrawals from my checking account, I realize I’m never going back so I cancel the membership. And isn’t canceling a gym membership the easiest breeziest process in the world?

But here I am — another season older and jigglier. Let’s try again, shall we?

mruniverseSo I signed up on Tuesday and went to the gym for the first time on Wednesday. And after doing two miles on the treadmill and watching all these men hovering around the workout equipment, leaving a trail of testosterone behind them as they ambled from one muscle-busting station to the next, sizing each other up for the imaginary Mr. Universe competition going on inside their heads, I felt so intimidated that I had to leave. And on my way out, I just so happened to run into Jenna, who not only looks like she just stepped off the pages of a Lululemon catalog but unwittingly put a stop to what was about to by my emotional breakdown. She suggested I work with a trainer, and despite my less-than-pleasant history with all of them, I decided she was right. It was either that or waste a 3-month gym membership walking on a treadmill trying to read the closed captioning on the TV screens dangling from the ceiling. However, the Dr. Phil Show was fascinating on Wednesday…..

So to pair me with the right trainer, the gym emailed me the following questionnaire:

Q. What are the best days and times to use the club?

A.  The best times for me are probably 1 or 2pm, Mon-Fri.

Q.  Have you used a trainer before?

A.   I have used trainers before and I think all of us would describe it as frustrating and painful.

Q.  What are your fitness goals?

A.  I would like to drop about 15 pounds, lose the jiggle in my arms and thighs, and develop a noticeable difference between where my butt ends and my legs begin.

Q.  Are there any injuries or special conditions we can consider?

A.  My left wrist does a weird twangy thing when I lift weights a certain way. And I have zero body confidence. That’s an injury, right? Or at least a special condition.

Q.  Do you prefer a female or male trainer?

A.  I’ve used males and females. I tend to turn females into therapists and we never work out. Jenna Owens recommended Brock, but I don’t know if you really want to do that to him. I’d suggest someone who is really good with difficult, emotional, potentially weepy clients.

Here’s the thing, I should’ve been more brutally honest, because when I tell people I’m a difficult client, they tend to chuckle. And I’m like, Oh, you go ahead and chuckle all you want there, buddy, but I’m not joking. So we’ll see who the lucky person is who gets paired up with me. You never know…maybe this time will be different.