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Re: Ab-doer, Part 1

Re: Ab-doer, Part 1

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Posted by Ilya on October 22, 2000 at 00:33:23:

In Reply to: Ab-doer posted by ryan on October 07, 2000 at 01:17:28:

: Has anyone seen the ads for this? Just wondering what people thought of it.
Gentlemen, It's Gut-Check Time

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Posted: Wednesday June 14, 2000 06:11 PM

Rick Reilly joined users for his monthly chat on Wednesday, June 14. Click here to submit a comment.

I finally found the one thing that will bring me peace, happiness and deep satisfaction.

Rock-hard abs.

I know this because all men's fitness magazines scream it at me from their covers. They beg me to be gutless.

The cover of Men's Workout: GET RIPPED! KILLER ABS. Muscle & Fitness: FREE GIANT GUIDE TO ROCK-HARD ABS. MuscleMag International even put out an entire issue on abs. That's 210 pages, all abs, all the time!

There's always a 22-year-old Swede on the cover with abs you could cut slate on. To get abs like that, these guys must do crunches 16 hours a day, including at stoplights. They must do sets of crunches between sets of crunches. Many will expire in the butterfly crunch position.

Priest: And so we return thee, Lars, to ashes --

Altar boy: Hold on, Father, we can't get the lid closed.

Abdominal showman Frank Zane said he did 1,000 sit-ups a day to get his ripplers. The abnormal model in Men's Workout, Leonardo Pacheco, says he eats no oils, no salts and no sugars. In fact he even eats baby food. "It's got no salt, is bland and pure," Pacheco says. "Try it!" And why not top if off with a refreshing glass of ipecac syrup!

Still, the magazines all said I could have the same abs. This was surprising to me, because I hadn't even seen my abs since my first-grade Minnows swimming class. Actually, none of my friends have twisted-steel, rock-hard abs, either -- except for the lifeguard at our pool with the pierced nipples, and I know he's sucking his gut in, because he hasn't exhaled for 12 minutes.

Why do we relish washboard, twisted-steel, rock-hard abs, anyway? In many developing countries rock-hard abs translates into haven't eaten in two weeks. You think the folks in East Pangladoon are proud of their rock-hard abs? Hell, no! What's on the cover of their magazines is a fat guy in Peoria plowing through Chee-tos and a case of Mountain Dew. LOSE YOUR ROCK-HARD ABS IN 72 HOURS!

We deserve this, of course, we men. For years we've objectified women by their breasts. Now women are judging us by our abs. We catch them snickering as we come out of the tub. We pull up our T-shirts to wipe our faces, and we catch them sneering. Sure, we put our shirts down and go right back to our Wendy's Big Bacon Classic, but inside we're hurting.

So, what you have now are a lot of men walking around, constantly inhaling, feeling insecure about not having cobblestone, washboard, twisted-steel, rock-hard abs. Worse, because we don't, we're quite sure women will soon beat the holy bejesus out of us. We know this from watching 7 a.m. women's aerobics shows.

First, women did simple, gentle aerobics. Then they did aerobics on a ridiculous $49.95 footstool, which they called "step aerobics." Then they put headphones on and started hollering at their steps. Then they started stepping on each other's steps. Then they started getting on the top of the steps and kicking and punching at some unseen enemy (us), chanting scary things like, "Kick! Punch! Reload!" Soon there'll be roving bands of leotard-wearing women barging through doors and throwing steps at men, who will have to take cover behind their Chee-tos.

Gentlemen, it's gut-check time. We've all got to get us chiseled, cobblestone, washboard, twisted-steel, rock-hard abs. So, as a service to my gender I've spent the last six months figuring out how, exactly, to do that.

Here are my findings: Forget about it.

I bought the Ab-DOer (don't). I paid $119.95 for the Body by Jake Ab Rocker. (The hardest workout is trying to figure out how to unfold it.) I used Original Doctor's Ab Cream. (These were the actual instructions: "Apply lightly to target areas at least once a day. For best results apply twice daily." And to get perfect abs in a weekend: Apply 7,072 times daily!) I even tried the BodyVibes abdominal belt ($49.95), which basically buzzes you every time you don't suck in your stomach. My wife does that for free.

So I've come to the conclusion that there's no way to have killer, chiseled, cobblestone, washboard, twisted-steel, rock-hard abs without quitting your job, leaving your family and doing nothing but crunches all day, every day, except, of course, when enjoying a delicious dinner of two jars of Gerber's exciting new Cream of Swiss Chard. In other words, I abdicate.

Now please stand back. I'm going to exhale.

Issue date: June 19, 2000

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