April 16, 2007

A reader writes: Dear Crabby

Dear Crabby,
What's in the world is wrong with me? I know exercise is really important, and everyone else seems to really love doing it. I see them all out there running and biking and skating and whatever, but to me it's all just torture. Am I a freak? I think my body just wasn't made for getting in shape. But I don't want to end up an obese, arthritic, diabetic, asthmatic, depressed insomniac like my doctor says I'm going to be. Help!
Desperate in Denver

Dear Desperate in Denver,
Okay, so you have two major problems: the first, you're not a real person and you don't really exist outside of this blog. (And Crabby's one to talk!) But lets put that issue aside for now and pretend you're an actual flesh and blood human with a real problem.

You're not a freak, you're just normal. Normal humans are often lazy and we have to slog our way out of our slothfulness, one workout at a time.

Exercise isn't supposed to be fun, especially not at first. That's a lucky bonus that may happen for you eventually, once you find the right kind of exercise for you and get used to the whole sweating and breathing hard and unfamiliar awful exertion aspects of it. In other words, your misery isn't "special." We all have all suffered from it but some people just don't know how to whine about it properly so they pretend it's always fun and glorious.

And it does get better. Crabby actually enjoys her aerobic exercise much of the time. However, she can never remember that, and even after years (okay, decades) of athletic endeavors she always dreads putting on her running shoes in the morning but she does it anyway (most of the time).

The good news: there are many, many ways to make exercising less miserable. Stay tuned! Crabby and her eventual readers will have plenty of advice for you. In fact, very soon Crabby is going to stop noodling around with this blog in secret and actually go out and tell people that it exists, so that we can have some conversations about all this. (She has not wanted to invite people to a blog devoid of posts--sort of a chicken and egg thing.)

One caveat on the "Just do it" advice: even a fake person needs to be careful, so as not to rush out too soon and do too much and have a fake heart attack. So, fictional person, talk to your make believe doctor in Denver and find out what it's safe to start off with.

And if any real readers stumble upon this blog and find they have actual real questions or real advice to share, just write to Dear Crabby! Put a note in the comments or email her at CrabbyMcSlacker***@gmail.com, only leave out the asterisks as they are only in there to repel the Dread Spam Email Harvesting Monsters.


  1. Crabby, you are really on to something here. I am sick and tired of perky articles about the wonders of the ultra marathon. Time for someone to be real. Looking forward to move of this!

  2. Thanks, anonymous.

    My first nonfictional visitor, I'm so pleased!

  3. Crabby, I look forward to following your fake advice in my real-world life (well, you have to trust me on both counts: a/ that I'll do it; b/ that I'm real).

    This a fresh-looking, good-reading blog. I'll be back... really!

  4. Thanks, poetinahat!

    You have a very cool blog too and thanks for stopping by.

  5. I used to run -- we called it jogging back then. Then my kneecaps got all crackly, like a raku glaze. So no more running. Now I try to walk up Nob Hill from the bottom at least five days a week, followed by another hour walking about this fair city -- but not with the gait of the speed waddlers shown in the American Heart Association's new walk-for-life commercials on TV, because I have my dignity. And I garden. You wouldn't believe what a workout it can be repotting a lemon tree from one container to another by yourself.

    Call me ... Appleton.

  6. Welcome Appleton!

    Crabby very much appreciates your comment because she herself has raku knees and would like to write a post complaining about them, perhaps tomorrow.

    She also has some suspicions as to your identity but could be WAY off base if you just happened to wander in from the blogosphere. In any event, she is extremely grateful for your visit. She is also impressed with your dedicated and sensible exercise regimen.


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