Wednesday, June 06, 2007

A Culture of Fitness: Irony


Isn't it interesting that now that I have been relying solely on the command to make me exercise, I actually failed the weigh-in? I think so, yes.

We use the BMI chart for judging whether a sailor is overweight or not. The thing is, and it seems even the Navy knows this, the Body-Mass Index is bullshit. The medical establishment admits it, though grudgingly and quietly. It makes lots of assumptions about you in order to neatly peg you as obese, overweight, normal or underweight. Of course, the Navy is flexible; if you are over the limit for BMI, they'll tape you - which allows even more error depending on where and how tight they put the tape. If you scrunch your neck down and suck in your gut, you pass. So naturally, yesterday, the Chief doing the taping had the tape snug around my neck and wasn't even touching my waist with the tape.

I know I'm carrying a bit of extra weight at 190 and 5'8" (up from 183 last deployment), but it's not as though I don't have any physical ability or endurance. In fact, the thing that has been most detrimental to my physical fitness over the last couple of weeks has been mandatory command PT. Everybody get together and do lame calisthentics, 100 jumping jacks, 100 pushups, etc. The pushups are really killing me with the tendonitis. The running in formation has given me a muscle strain in my knee and hastened the return of my shin splints.

The thing that pisses me off the most is that I was doing just fine before all this garbage started and now I'm concerned that if I do manage to pass the weigh-in by Friday, I may fail the physical test because I'm hurting so damn bad.

To dull the pain, I've been popping 800mg tablets of Motrin a couple of times a day, a couple Excedrin once in a while, a multivitamin and ginseng. I've also been taking fiber tablets to help with the poundage. Now, with two days to go, I've added a run at lunch every day this week and Hydroxycut. Good grief, I hope it works, because I feel like crap. Vision... blurring...

The good news is that the Physical Readiness Test is next week. Assuming I make weight Friday, it'll all be over by Tuesday.

This sucks. I like to run and lift wieghts and listen to my MP3 player. I enjoy a good workout - I always feel terrific afterward. In fact, I'm going hashing today.

If I'm borderline obese, as the BMI says, then I have serious doubts about claims that obesity is of epidemc proportions in America, especially given how we measure it.

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