Near the end of each class, during the cool down stretches, I like to engage my participants in some casual conversation. I call this my current events segment. I use this time to expound on all the calamities happening in my life.

While most instructors use current events to impart fitness tips, I use this time to find any excuse to remind my participants that I wrote a book. Because they are in my class, they can pick it up for a song. After all, what’s the point of having a captive audience if you don’t use it?

Yesterday was no exception. “Guess what I spent all day doing today?” I asked.

“Well you weren’t out buying new tapes,” said Julia from the front row.

“And you certainly weren’t learning any new patterns,” said Pam. “When are you going to change your routine? You’ve been doing the same thing for two years now.”

“You should learn some new jokes, too,” said Connie. “I’ll bet you spent the whole day surfing the Internet trying to pick up women. Grow up and get a life!”

There’s nothing more satisfying than post-cardio chats with my participants. As I told them, “I spent the whole day caught in the mire of lies, deception, and wild guesses. Nevertheless, it’s finally done -and just in time. I finished my income tax.”

“Well bully for you,” said Claire. “What makes you so special? We all did our taxes weeks ago.”

“Well, if you really want to screw up your taxes, try writing a book,” I said. “It does wonders to your net income.”

“Maybe you can spend some of your return on tapes,” said Julia.

“…Or a new routine,” said Pam. “By the way . . . What was that noise you were making during crunches. It sounded like you brought a foghorn with you.”

“Yeah,” said Lynne. “Do you have something wrong with your gastrointestinal system? We could hear you but we couldn’t smell you.”

“I thought I smelled something,” said Sandy.

“That was suction,” I said. I went on to explain that I contracted a rash some weeks ago, and I suspected that it came from a mat I used for floor exercises. Since then, I stopped using the mats. I didn’t want to share my affliction with them. Our recent endowment of summer-like temperatures caused my body’s cooling mechanism to respond by an overproduction of slime. The slime forms a gas barrier between the small of my back and the floor.

Any theoretical physicist familiar with Boyle’s Law (PV=nRT) will tell you that an expansion of a volume of gas trapped by a vapor barrier will result in a drop in air pressure. A vacuum is created. The lower air pressure of the air trapped under the small of my back during a sit-up will attempt to equalize with the surrounding air pressure. The resulting sound resembles the mating call of a bull sea lion.

“Gag me with a spoon,” said Sandy.

“You can duplicate this sound by having sex in the bath tub.” I continued. “Would anyone like to join me in a little scientific noise making?”

“Yuck,” said the rest of the participants.


Mike Broderick is an Employment Specialist for the Neil Squire Society in Burnaby where he finds employment for people with physical disabilities. Part of this work means affiliation with the Vancouver Board of Trade where he is a member of the Ambassador Club, the Burnaby Board of Trade where he is a member of the Labour Task Force, the Tri Cities Chamber of Commerce where he is an active member of the 10X10 initiative, and the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce. He also does some work as a field Archaeologist. He is also a fitness instructor and frequent contributor of fitness humour articles to alive  

You can reach him at home at or at re looking for a change, start with a resume makeover at competitive rates

When he is not doing all the above, he lives in Port Coquitlam with his partner Cecelia


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