It had to be done.

You know how you start thinking about something and you think about it and you think about it until you realize that it’s only a matter of time till you do it?

In the olden days it was sex and drugs and changing jobs and moving to London and worse.

More recently, it was boot camp.

Every time I walked the dogs in any park, I had to dodge dozens of panting grunting sweating middle-aged people in lycra doing push-ups and lunges and worse.

And there’d always be some drill sergeant type shouting 96! 97! 98! 99! 

Oh lord, I thought.

But now it’s me.  There was no screaming “Move your lardass you pathetic snivelling worm!” but there may as well have been. The first time, I had to go to bed for the rest of the day. The second was torture. The third (despite press-ups on a ball and far too much sprinting) was just about tolerable.

Now I’m hooked.  And already I feel less like a pathetic snivelling worm.

In addition, this being North London, the whole enterprise is weirdly colourful in unexpected ways. Our drill sergeant type, for instance, is a small, insanely fit young woman with an incredibly well-developed imagination. She reports that she was once a member of Mossad, danced for the Barcelona ballet, raced on the Austrian national ski team, qualified for Olympic gymnastics and judo teams, went to Columbia medical school and has worked as a journalist, horse riding instructor, animal trainer, author, stockbroker and cordon bleu chef. Impressive.

Our spot on Highbury Fields is overlooked by Nick Hornby’s kitchen and rumour has it that complaints have been registered about boot camp happening within eyeline.

That was before I joined the group. I noticed the other day they’ve installed black-out curtains.


18 thoughts on “Boot Camp.

  1. bookwitch 6 years ago

    Now I feel even worse.

  2. Shelley Souza 6 years ago

    Oh, my God, you put me to shame! Now I have to get up off the sofa and shake off my own pounds of lard (also known as inhaling social tea biscuits and chocolate digestives).

  3. Cathi Rae 6 years ago

    Oh dear, it will be herbal tea and veganism next lol

    1. Meg Rosoff 6 years ago

      I’ve got to do something while I can’t ride. Sob.

    2. cathi rae 6 years ago

      oh huns, is this a permanent not riding thing?
      the spotty one is very quiet and good and would love to meet you xxxx

  4. Lauren McLaughlin 6 years ago

    I applaud you. I did the “Pushy Mums” version of this in Highbury Fields with my newborn. Now, I love seeing other people being put through their paces. Enjoy!

    1. Meg Rosoff 6 years ago

      I think in the scale of embarrassing exercise, you guys trumped us every time, Lauren.

  5. fiona 6 years ago

    So anyway, back to Mossad’s own Darcy Bussell… ?!

  6. Margo 6 years ago

    Onyer, Meg.

  7. sallyparkrubin 6 years ago

    We have a saying in our house, thanks to my favorite…the ever-chirpy and earnest, Sponge Bob…”Shake your bubble butt!”

  8. EJ Runyon 6 years ago

    I remember spin class, and a chirpy young thing who (at 5:30am in morning) motivated us once with:
    “O-KAY! Let’s pedal hard, and see who throws up first!”

    I put her in one of my stories — what else do you do with your painful life’s moments?

  9. Francesca Simon 6 years ago

    You do realise this confirms your cossack ancestry and expulsion from the Jewish Princess club?

  10. Candy Gourlay 6 years ago

    You really shouldn’t reveal the geographic location of photo-opportune embarrassments. That drill sergeant must be very old if she’s done all that.

  11. Terry 6 years ago

    whatever possessed you! Don’t Nov. you’ll get over it.A woman in the NY Times who is celebrating her 107th attributes her longevity to not exercising and eating as much butter as she wants.

    1. Meg Rosoff 6 years ago

      I’m with her on the butter.

  12. Jake Elliott 6 years ago

    Hey – there is nothing wrong with herbal teas!
    [Sips from mug.]

  13. Karen 6 years ago

    Great punch line on that one, Meg!

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