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Sweating With the Middle-Aged


A fitness club is an absolutely great place for a first date — if you look like Christie Brinkley in spandex. But if you're more of a Richard Simmons, better stick with Starbucks. I think Luanne would agree with me.

She and Mario exchanged emails trying to set up a date. Since they belong to the same health club, they decided to meet there.

The day didn't start out great. It was icy and Luanne slipped in her driveway."Wet and aggravated, I got into my car. No turning back at that point."

She spotted Mario. It was a good news/bad news situation. He was "very handsome," but he "grimaced" when he recognized her.

"Oh well!"

Mario told her to start with her usual 45 minutes of cardio and find him when she was through.

"Hmmm, OK."

After 15 minutes on the stair-stepper, she began to wonder why she was alone if this was a date. She went to find him.

"I felt like saying, 'Hey, if you're not interested, could I just go home? I did fall on my ass."

When she found him, she suggested they go in the "dimly lit studio" and do a free weights. "I figured, good lighting, fairly empty, a good place for conversation. Boy was I wrong."

On the way to the studio, Mario told Luanne he was going to do ab work with her.

"Ya think? I'm not in that bad of shape for 53, but I do have a little belly. I guess my sucking it in and wearing a cute t-shirt wasn't fooling anybody.

As soon as we're in there, he told me to get down on the mat."

Mario had been a professional soccer player, and he put Luanne through a vigorous work out. "We were way beyond crunches. I begged for a sip of my water, but he told me to keep working. I was red in the face and started to get the whole biggest-loser-contestants-puking thing."

After that, they did bicep curls. "He told me I have strong arms, which is code for 'You have big fat arms.' All of a sudden it hit me — I'm going to throw up. I told him I was sick. He said, 'One more set.' I sat down with the weights still in my hands. He finally got it."

Mario told Luanne to put a finger under her nose, close her eyes and press really hard. "I wondered if this was when he was going to take off. But, no, it was supposed to help with the nausea. It didn't help. I just felt like I was doing an imitation of Hitler getting ready to puke. While this was going on, he was telling me about his life, and I was wondering if the little white gym towel would hold all my vomit.

Luanne made it to the locker room without hurling, grabbed her stuff and waited for Mario in the lounge. And waited. And waited. Finally she left.

Halfway home, Mario called. She told him she had to leave. He said he was hoping they could go out to eat.

"Boy men really don't have a clue do they?"

Mario asked Luanne if they could get together again. She said sure. As of today, that second date has not occurred.

What do you think are the worst and best places for a first date? Send your tale, along with your questions, problems and rants to And check out my new website



4 Comments | Post Comment
Why would she even wait for this jerk in the lounge? She should have told him to stuff it as soon as he told her to get down on the mat.

She should be counting her blessings that he hasn't called. He can't possibly be that good-looking.
Comment: #1
Posted by: Joannakathryn
Fri Mar 1, 2013 11:45 PM
Sounds like you made a date at a gym and then got surprised that there'd be a workout involved.

Other than underestimating your workout capacity, and cajoling you into overdoing it (P.S. you could have said no--I doubt he had a gun to your head), I'm not so sure he did anything wrong. Everything he did was interpreted in the negative by you (doing an ab workout = my belly's awful, saying your arms are strong = my arms are awful) (if so, then was doing abs with you an admission by him that his own belly was awful?)

And then he called you after you took off! The cad!

Sounds like two inept people dating each other--a perfect match.
Comment: #2
Posted by: Jpp
Sat Mar 2, 2013 7:22 AM
Joannakathryn, she should have told him to stuff it when he told her to do 45 minutes of cardio and then find him. I don't care how good-looking he is on the outside, he is a jerk and a bully. She can do much better.
Comment: #3
Posted by: PuaHone
Sat Mar 2, 2013 6:39 PM
The whole thing sounds dangerous. For starters LW shouldn't do any kind of vigorous workout for 48 hours after a fall on ice. That's how long it could take for a sprain/strain to show up, and a vigorous workout would only make matters worse. Then it was dangerous for him to take charge of her workout. He isn't her personal trainer, and a workout that works for him could injure her. That's about as bad as meeting a fellow at the dentist's office and then letting him pull your teeth.

Comment: #4
Posted by: Madelyn
Sat Mar 2, 2013 10:18 PM
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Cheryl Lavin
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