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Dance Dance to Fitness

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I have to admit that I have no interest in exercise, none whatsoever. My husband jogs and when he goes out the door in his stretchy shorts, I feel sorry for him. Why put yourself through all that unnecessary agony? And oh, my goodness, I cannot think of anything more boring. Where does your mind go when you’re jogging? Mine would go, “Hey, I’m jogging. Why don’t I stop now?”

Even walking, what a snore-fest. I can never get where I want to go fast enough on my short legs. Roller skates would be preferable but I haven’t worn mine since I was ten. I have lost my key. But something happened on my birthday (I am fifty-three) that I hadn’t expected. My husband surprised me with Dance Dance Revolution which I have since discovered is one of the top three Wii games for housewives.

I don’t really think of myself as a housewife. Whatever. I am having a blast taking the Wii challenge mostly because it doesn’t seem like exercise. It’s fun. Because I am a musician, I connect emotionally with my body movements. The joys of dancing are as wide as the ocean. As endless as the imagination. And the beat, combined with those crazy little arrows, engages my brain in a rhythmic concentration that gets my chunky body off the sofa.

The other thing that is drawing me away from my usual position in front of the television with a bowl of cold cuts is that I have a strong desire to overcome my natural lack of coordination.

I failed P.E. or at least failed to take it for most of my high school years. Once, in grade ten, my mother (bless her saintly soul) asked our family physician, Dr. Murdoch, to give me a note to excuse me from Phys Ed for an entire semester. The good doctor said, “I don’t know what’s wrong with her … but I’ll write it, anyway.” Besides chronic bronchitis and relentless allergies, there actually wasn’t much stopping me from taking P.E., except that I was so panic stricken at the thought of being uncool and losing the basketball game in front of all those other normal, coordinated girls and getting yelled at for screwing up, that I would feel physically sick every time I got near the gymnasium. 

I will be eternally grateful for that doctor’s note. Life’s not easy for gawky, musical girls like me. 

So Dance Dance Revolution seems like a pretty good compromise. I can do it at home in my “housewifely” exercise outfit (pajamas) where nobody yells or judges or laughs at me (unless it’s my family) and eventually, just maybe I will overcome my physical dyslexia. 

And maybe I will get fit in the process. Wouldn’t that be something? I am now at Basic level C. Average, and moving up. Breakin’ records and takin’ names!


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