You’re so vein. And skin. And bones. And sinews.

October 20, 2008

There is a photo of me at Saturday’s 2008 New Zealand National Bodybuilding Championships in Wellington. I’m pointing at a 25-year-old male competitor who is lifting his shirt to reveal his six-pack. I’m smiling. Don’t ask me why. Granted, the camera puts on 10 pounds. And that is an awfully bulky coat I’m wearing. But still, come on — this guy is half my age and a million times more in shape. I suddenly feel very old and very fat and somehow less than a man.

Yes, reality does bite. Right in my glutes, apparently.

Notes from the event:

* Normally, I don’t attend such freak shows. If you’re going to show me every single tendon in your body, you’d better be naked and bringing me a Starbucks coffee. But the company I work for is one of the sponsors, so here I am in Row 3. These are VIP seats, reserved for sponsors. It took an hour for someone to sort out that we should be seated here. Apparently, only one organizer knew this fact. And, not only did no one know where this person was, they also didn’t know what he looked like. Good start, guys.

* The venue is Wellington’s venerable Opera House. We’ve gone from Verdi to V-taper. From La Boheme to lat spread. I weep.

* I’m in the lobby, waiting to be seated. Gazing at the meat on display with all the dull curiosity of a cow watching a passing train. See one fellow with biceps larger than my thighs. Imagine he could take me between his thumb and forefinger and snap my spine before breakfast. Wearing a T-shirt so tight it appears he is wearing football pads underneath. Wonder not how he achieved such a build, but how the heck he lies on his side in bed.

* Discover that low body fat equals zero boobies. Personally, I like my women with a bit more meat on their bones. Also without the clear and present danger of having my head cracked open like a walnut between her thigh muscles.

* Came expecting acres of orange spray-on tan and gallons of baby oil. Instead, it appears someone held the competitors by their hair and dunked them in some dark-brown, mud-like goo. It may make for better definition under the lights but, away from the stage, they look ready to join John Rambo for a night-time assault on Kabul.

* They lift weights and build up cardio and eat little more than cardboard three times a day. But, as I found out, the entrants also stop ingesting fluids before they compete. That’s so the skin, lacking hydration, will suck in to sit flat against the bones and muscles and cartilage and various organs. And this is healthy how?

* Spotted in the lobby, Part II: a bodybuilder, finished with the competition for another year, snarfing back great, messy handsful of chocolate cake to restore blood sugar levels. And this is healthy how?

* You can either flex your muscles or you can smile. Not both. Not at the same time.

* Bodybuilders have no sense of timing. Several of them walked off the stage while their music was still playing. Others simply continued to pose long after their ditty was finished, accompanied only by the announcer clearing his throat in obvious embarrassment.

* How exciting is the competition? One guy achieves partial wood in his Speedo while posing. Needless to say, he doesn’t win.

* The two competitors we sponsored are 49 and 54 years old, respectively. They make me look bad. They make me feel bad, about myself and my body and my lifestyle and my lack of any real exercise.

I’ll tell you exactly how bad I feel right after I finish eating this doughnut.

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One Response to “You’re so vein. And skin. And bones. And sinews.”

  1. George said

    Ew yuk. Bodybuilders are truly freaks, not healthy and not cool. They wreck their bodies to achieve what you see. Gross.

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