What is a time of joy for many women was my darkest hour.
Jobs are the worst. That's why I don't have one anymore.* At my latest uber-corporate, long-term gig, I found the Big Brother-esque elements so foreign and so outrageous that they almost entertained me.**
I was particularly enraptured with their corporate exercise and wellness policy. On the surface, it seemed harmless enough. You belong to a gym, you go the that gym, and once a year the company will pay you for going. I spent entire weeks simply using my gym's sauna and laughing all the way to Human Resources where I was sad to discover they could only give me a check and not the tiny mountain of one dollar bills I had planned to rain down on my co-workers as though I were the cheapest customer at a particularly poorly-staffed strip club.
After the first year, things got...weird.
The did away with our dollars for gym membership program and passed out pedometers to all employees. We were told to wear them and login into the fancy website that ran said devices. At the end of each week, our physical fitness and sleep habits would be automatically uploaded. More fit? Gettin' your eight hours? You get a T-shirt!....and a hundred dollars off your health insurance payments for that quarter.
It was like Big Brother had put on its Pollyanna mask! "See?! WE'RE REWARDING YOU FOR YOUR GOOD HABITS!" They crowed, letting the more sinister half of that message, the punishment for "bad habits," go unsaid. I decided pretty quickly to damn the man, and threw my pedometer in the washing machine and then the dryer, thus racking up several thousands of miles*** and roughly 89 T-shirts.
Was I abusing the system? Yes. But did I think a system that deemed it okay for my workplace and employer to have any say over what I do with my body commanded respect and adherence? Ab.So.Fucking.No. You can harp all you want about how they as employers have a right to lower the cost of the healthcare they provide, and you will still be wrong about whether or not something like this is ethical. It isn't, and it is a very, very, slippery slope.
With more and more employers "casually suggesting" that you try programs like the one my ol' employer tried, I've come up with 5 Fatty Friendly Exercises you can do at home to stick it to the man and win EVERY PRIZE.
1.) CAT CURLS
At home with your cat and TV but a guilty conscience about not going to the gym to get RIPPED AS FUCK LADY ARMS? I suggest picking the limpest, floppiest cat in your home, placing he or she in the crook of your arms and doing three sets of 15curls. If the cat attacks you, that is even better, because blood is just weakness leaving your body.
2.) READING TOE-TOUCHES
Sometimes I hate going to the gym and reading on the treadmill because I am egocentric and quietly am certain everyone is all "Reeeeeading? On the trrrrreadmill? She can't be exercising very hard." So occasionally I will stay at home and do several hours of toe-touches all while reading my latest book.**** Other times instead of actually touching my toes, I will just dangle and read. This is good to encourage farting, and we all know every time you fart you lose 30 pounds slash a kitten is born with your exact eyes.
3.) FRIDGE YOGA
My favorite thing about my work pedometer were all the vast inconsistencies it didn't allow for. Sure, I could have walked 13 miles one day, but they had no way of knowing whether or not I was serving myself suet intravenously for the duration, you know? To that end, FRIDGE YOGA. With each pose, you open and close the fridge door, removing and consuming items as you go. Salute the sun, salute the pepperonis which are only a little dried out.
In today's modern world, it is hard to find enough hours to make sure your body is a perfectly chiseled, tanned, sculpted, boobed machine or object. To that end, I suggest donning your workout gear and hitting the hay! A couple bicycle leg rotations to focus on your core AND that weird dream where you are Liam Neeson and also a goat?! IT GETS NO BETTER THAN THAT.
5.) BOOZE SQUATS
You've been doing so much exercise that you must be thirsty. But don't drink water, because you will just retain it. Instead have some scotch or maybe some vodka -- you can't decide? DO SOME SQUATS WHILE WEIGHING YOUR OPTIONS.
Does your office have weirdo health promotion policies? Do you ever exercise at home? Fun game -- just how many shots do you think it took for me to get that damn cat to just be chill? Also maybe try these exercises if you want and Twitter tag me with your photos. I AM NOT A DOCTOR, AND I CANNOT CONDONE THESE PRACTICES, but I CAN promise I will not fap to your images.
*I kid, I kid - I am in no way kidding.
** Seriously. On a good day, I only sang the theme from "Brazil" seven or eight times.
*****(sidebar: have you guys read Mary Roach's "Gulp" yet?! BOOK CLUB YEZ PLEASE?)