Copywriter, Journalist, and Content Coach

My Exercise Program

Photo by Rene Asmussen —


Forget where you left the phone and run all over the house trying to find it before it goes to voicemail.


Rep 1: Rather than make two trips from the garage to the house with the groceries, open the rear hatch of the car, heft two bags on one arm and two on the other, then close the hatch with the bags in your hand.

Rep 2: Put two bags down again while holding the other two up and opening the door.

Rep 3: Lift those two bags again and walk into the kitchen. Put all the bags on the counter.

Rep 4: Pick up the bag that fell off the counter onto the floor.

Repeat next week.


Leave dishes unwashed for several days. When the counters are covered, get drunk, and wash them all at once, singing, to feel the burn and exercise the lungs.


Realize you need something and go downstairs. Get into the kitchen and forget what it was. Turn around three times scanning the counter while waving your arms back and forth with your hands at shoulder height. Go to the living room and repeat. Sigh deeply and go back upstairs. Sit down at the computer. Remember what it was: you wanted to get the mail and see if any checks came in. Go back downstairs quickly, open the front door, and check the mail. Nothing. Go to the kitchen and fix a stiff pot of tea. Climb stairs slowly and log on to your bank account. Uh-oh.


Instead of vacuuming, stoop down and pick up clumps of accumulated fur your oversized, long-haired, double-coated dog has shed since yesterday. 10 to 15 reps per day.


Go around the house collecting stacks of papers. Make new stack. Ignore for five months. Eventually sort through stack, pulling out obsolete material. Instead of getting up to place in recycle bin, toss across the room. Miss the bin. Get up, walk to bin, bend over, pick up old stuff, and drop into bin. Repeat as long as stack exists. Start new stack on kitchen counter or some other relatively un-cluttered surface. If all else fails, put them on the seat of a chair you don’t like.


  • Sip tea, turn page of book. Hear kitty cry, get up slowly to work hamstrings, walk across room, open front door and let cat out. Sit back down slowly to exercise quads.
  • Go back to reading. Sip tea, turn page of book. Hear dog scratching at back door, get up slowly, open door, and let dog in. Refill tea, sit back down, forget to sit slowly.
  • Hear kitty cry faintly, get up, open front door, and let cat back in. Go back to chair, remembering to sit down slowly to exercise quads.
  • Hear a deep sigh, notice dog staring at you, then turning to stare at the door. Get up, open door, let dog out. Go back to table, sit down slowly to strengthen quads.
  • As fascinating plot twist develops, hear kitty landing on table. Look up and discover cat’s ass in your face. Sigh loudly to exercise lungs, get up, check cat food bowl (full), check litterbox (filthy), squat to clean box. Stand up slowly to exercise hamstrings. Go back to reading, forgetting to sit down slowly again.
  • Hear ferocious barking in yard. Jump up, go to back door, open door, and shout at dog for five minutes to strengthen lungs. When that doesn’t work, coo, “I’ll give you something nice.” Dog runs to door, comes in, heads to treat cupboard and snouts it. Give treat, sit back down slowly.
  • Sip tea, turn pages. Hear kitty complaining. Look up, see kitty hovering near bathroom door and staring at you over her shoulder. Stand up, go to bathroom and turn on the tap. Go back to table, sit down slowly. Get involved in plot, forget to turn tap water off.
  • Repeat 3 times per day.
  • Get water bill for $96.34


Leave cigarettes at one end of the house and lighter at the other. Run back and forth when the urge strikes. Also works as training for future quitting strategy.