February 2009

Want to get fit? Buy this!

By Galen Larson

The other night, around 2 in the a.m. while in the midst of a bout with insomnia, I was intrigued by the voice of a lovely lady and some excited exclamations from a man peeking over her shoulder as she dropped vegetables and fruits into a machine. Out came the elixir of life and the nectar of good health.

And I could have it all by purchasing it in several easy payments. Of course, by just waiting a few months, one can get the same machines in almost-new condition at your neighborhood thrift store for a pittanc, but why wait?

Changing channels, I saw that if I want to get my fast-food-shaped physique in tiptop shape, I will need an array of muscle-toning machinery as demonstrated by a star who played a Texas ranger on the small screen. The contraption cost an arm and a leg, but not to worry, just use the good ol’ credit card. No pain, no gain! With credit there is much pain and not so much gain, but of course you do get Christie Brinkley with your purchase. . . oh, wait, maybe not.

On to another station. For a somewhat lesser cost you can get a contraption to hook into your door frame so you can do pullups and knee bends in the air. By utilizing straps that come with it you can enhance your stomach muscles and get a real alligator belly.

I especially like the ad for the piece of equipment that has stirrups that seem to let you walk on air.

Now, the human body comes fairly well-equipped with all the necessary attachments to keep us healthy and wise (unless we don’t exercise our most important muscle, the brain). So here are some homespun, down-toearth methods of becoming healthy, wealthy and wise for a small sum but large benefits to both purse and body.

• Buy a couple yards of sand. Dump it in a pile, purchase a $20 shovel and spade. Move sand from one pile to another once a day. Good for back, arms, legs and stomach, and the kids get to play in it.

• Use spade to turn over soil and plant a small garden. Use no artificial fertilizers or insecticides; you will be surprised at the benefits.

• Plant a few fruit trees and get food, shade, aroma, and mulch from the leaves. Not to mention the berries and flowers will attract birds, butterflies and pollinating bees, turning your yard into Eden.

Then sit back, surrounded by your loving wife and children, who will admire your talents and enjoy the fruits and vegetables you produce. You have bent nature to do your bidding without harming her. You are now a healthy champ instead of a flabby chump, and it all cost so very little!

This is the month to celebrate some great presidents’ birthdays (Washington, Lincoln), a time to express love (I don’t know why we need a special day to express love for one another; it should be every day), and my 80th birthday — not bad for a short, cold month.

“Education of the mind without education of the heart is no education at all.” — Aristotle.

Galen Larson writes from rural Montezuma County, Colo.