Cheap Shot | New Year’s Revolution: It’s not green to be fat | Cheap Shot | Salt Lake City Weekly
Support the Free Press.
Facts matter. Truth matters. Journalism matters.
Salt Lake City Weekly has been Utah's source of independent news and in-depth journalism since 1984.
Donate today to ensure the legacy continues.

News » Cheap Shot

Cheap Shot | New Year’s Revolution: It’s not green to be fat



The Resolution Warriors are about to hit the gyms. These are the people who have purchased the newest in active-wear for their inactive lives and wonder, “If I don’t supersize, am I on a diet?”

Resolutionary warriors come in different shapes and sizes. Some are fit as a fiddle, but most are fit like Fiddle Faddle. The one thing these people have in common isn’t their ability to fit into stretchy pants looking like Adonis or a donkey but the fact they have made a New Year’s resolution to start working out on Jan. 1.

They misguidedly or inanely join a gym hoping this will be the year they get into shape. Probably from Jan. 1 through Jan. 6, getting a workout on a StairMaster is as difficult as getting a table at Takashi on a Friday night. But, by the 10th, without any noticeable loss to his or her girth or any gain in muscle mass, the warrior admits defeat until the following year.

Most likely, the only thing these people’s exertions benefit are the bank accounts of the fitness centers that lock the warrior into a multiyear contract when they’re all doe-eyed, dough-bodied and full of ambition.

I know, because my gym contract expires this month. Not since I bought 15 pairs of acid-wash jeans thinking, “These will never go out of style,” have I wasted so much money so quickly. In hindsight, at the gym, I see that I paid $300 to read two Us magazines and to ride a stationary bicycle three times. If my bursts of exercise would have helped raise funds for events like “Race for the Cure,” I see that I didn’t put in enough time to cure restless-leg syndrome or even yellow toenails.

Here it is 2008, and I’m back at it. Instead of admitting defeat, this year, I’m going to the gym to go green.

The key is to capture the buzz phrase for 2007, “Go Green,” in my workout. I believe by using the inspiration of saving polar bears and penguins to save the ozone, one thing that will be deleted is my pudge. Since getting into shape was not its own reward last year, now that I’m on the Green Workout, I’ll say, “Who likes dead penguins?” And this will motivate me to exercise.

How does it work? Simple. It’s math. Granted, some of this math is Internet Math, including sources like Wikipedia and my brother’s “Who’s smarter than a lawyer?” blog. But math just the same.

First off, the average American generates nearly 1,500 pounds of waste each year. By eating out less often (not every day), cooking at home and eating healthily, I will generate less trash. That’s right, I’ll lose the waste and the waist. As I begin to lose weight, my car will start to get better gas mileage. It may not be entirely perceptible, but for every 100 pounds removed from a car’s weight, gas mileage could improve from 2 percent to 5 percent. It probably would be easier to take the golf clubs out of my trunk in the winter, but I can hold out hope that some people aren’t going green, and I’ll be able to golf in the globally warmed month of January. Got to be ready.

Think about this: Airlines charge $25 if our luggage is overweight. Are we next?

I’m going to trim the fat, but I also want to keep the green in my wallet. That’s why, this year, I’m signing up at Planet Fitness (324 S. State). It’s quite possible my Inconvenient Truth workout won’t last through February, but that’s OK. Planet Fitness has a one-time startup fee of $59 and then a no-commitment contract for only $10 per month. And if the exercising isn’t working out, then there’s free pizza on the first Monday night of each month and free bagels on the second Tuesday.

This year, instead of being a Resolution Warrior, I’m starting a New Year’s Revolution. It’s not green to be fat. In fact, it’s nearly magenta.