I Don’t Work Out Cuz I Look Good

By Slim Jackson

As I saw an older and out of shape caucasian fellow jogging up the street very very slowly, I started to laugh and was very tempted to make jokes, then I realized he was doing more to take care of himself than I was…at least for the time being. Aside from realizing I needed to find a new gym, I got to thinking about a somewhat mature question.

At what age do people consider the way someone takes care of their health when considering a significant other?

I’m not talking about physical appearance alone. We all know people with that speedy metabolism, or natural fit look, that do little more than open refrigerator and fast food restaurant doors. I must admit that I’m a hater of these type of folks, not to say I immediately head to Sloppyville when I don’t work out. But seriously, over the course of my lifetime there has only been one chick who ever mentioned that she liked the fact I take care of my health. Granted, she was making this assumption based on a shirtless Facebook picture that was taken immediately after a set of push ups and crunches…but still.

To me, fitness and health is one of the first things I’ll notice about a chick. If she’s naturally slim, she’ll get a bit more Slim slack. But then there are those who look great with all their wholesome thickness, but borderline refuse to work out:

“I mean…I look good. I been holdin it together all these years without working out, so why start now?”

Someone actually said that ish to me. Immediate softness for yours truly. Chances are if I were to take a look at her mommy, I’d get a true indication of what she’d look like in 15-20 years. Fortunately/Unfortunately, I’m too lazy to deal with all that. I’ve tried to figure out why I take it so seriously. Perhaps it’s because of things I’ve experienced with regard to family members. Maybe it’s because I’ve played a sport(s) my whole life. Maybe it’s because I’m scared I’ll sign a contract (pronounced marriage) only to find out that I didn’t read the balloon clause that releases her of all accountability for blowing up behind my wildest nightmares.

Regardless of my banter, I’m curious. At what point do you start to care about how the other person takes care of their health (eating habits, working out, etc.)? Do you even think about it? Do you even take care of your own health or do you expect someone to take care of it for you?

Hoping My Heart Doesn’t Look like the Southeast Expressway at Rush Hour,


27 responses to “I Don’t Work Out Cuz I Look Good

  1. Sowhatiff Jenkins

    For me it starts, once it becomes evident that I will spending quality time with this person. If we are just chillin once in a while then who cares? But if we are “dating” (what does even mean anyway), and even as we are on the road there, I pay attention to his health, eating habits, etc. At this point, I have some semblance of an interest in his current and future appearance.

    I must admit though, I take my body for granted at times, but ya girl is athletic so I can snap back pretty well. 😉

  2. “We all know people with that speedy metabolism, or natural fit look, that do little more than open refrigerator and fast food restaurant doors. ”

    LOL! I am sooo that person you are talking about who appears healthy but has NO healthy habits. But because I don’t look unhealthy I don’t like people encouraging me to do healthy things! I have had to tell many a dudes, I didn’t work out b4 so what makes you think I will now?! I think accepting someone is accepting them for who they are, not who you want them to be. So as a naturally slim girl, I like to think I won’t ever have to live healthy but if that day comes I think I have enough pride in my body to work out should my metabolism slow down. If AT THAT TIME, I start getting a little bigger but don’t want to do anything to remedy the situation then a guy can get a upset about it, but until then don’t want me to work out just because you have to 😉

  3. RightCoastLexSteele bka God's Gift to Humanity

    As God’s Gift to Humanity, I was blessed with superior genetic makeup. Or so I thought…

    I personally started to care about my own health when I started walking up normal flights of stairs and would be winded than a mugg by the time I got to the top. Or when you’re @ that party and you start hoppin and you are pretty much done for the rest of the night. I guess reality starts to hit you when your body starts operating differently or you dont bounce back from back to back to back to back nights of all out drunkeness like you used to. Needless to say it definitely depends on your diet tho. Where I’m from we eat less processed foods and that definitely plays a big part. Some saltfish with fresh green fig, yam and cassava is way healthier than a double heart attack combo with fries.

    Dont tell anyone I said this, but I agree with Tiff, when you start having a vested interest in someone’s future, you kind of cringe when they put half the salt shaker on their Olive Garden double oil with pasta meal. I think I’m more concerned with eating habits than working out. Someone who is physically active during the day and eats healthy is in a better position than someone who eats Big Mac’s at their desk all day then goes home and sleeps it off.

  4. Seattle Washington

    I feel you on the acceptance. If you weren’t working out when I met you, I can’t expect you to start hitting the gym hard. But on the other hand you would expect your man to be in some shape. I remember in college my boys and I would hit the gym only to be greeted by White, Asian, Indian and a few Hispanic women.

    The only time I saw Black women in the gym was right after Christmas break. We called it the New Years Resolution epidemic. And it usually didn’t last past February.

    I mean, if I’m hitting the gym to get that summer body or at least working out to keep those cuts, couldn’t you lift more than the remote and run to more places than just the Coach store?

  5. Insomnia, I think we have beef.lol.

    I’m clearly not gonna convince you to change your habits, but why not be proactive? I kinda think that’s a problem not just in Black America, but in the U.S. I couldn’t walk in from the gym or track everyday and see wifey sittin on the couch with some ice cream, pork rinds, french fries, or other heartstoppers on a regular basis. Not to say she needs to be eating salads and vegan frozen meals, but damn. Usually what you do to yourself today doesn’t even impact you til later on.

    By the way, the excuse of “I’m trying to put on weight” or “I used to be an athlete” is not an excuse to eat sloppily and not get your heart rate up at the gym or on a jog or sumthin. Sex does not count either. Right Coast, yeah we know. When a chick gets that island sausage, she’s exhausted. yadda yadda.lol.

  6. RightCoastLexSteele bka God's Gift to Humanity

    No, no…I’m not waving my pumpington this morning (Dude, that word is great). Sex doesnt count…it’s the event you get ready for. You know you just cant go long jumping with out proper training and stretching. Some people play basketball. Some football. Others tennis. My event is wang slanging.

    And it’s an island pumpington…pumpington. (Yes, I’m 10.)

  7. Hmmm beef sounds good I could use a 5 guys double bacon cheeseburger as I sit at my desk and daydream of hitting the bed to sleep it off 😉

    Naw but seriously, I guess yall have a point that you shouldn’t want your loved one having a heart attack at 35. But can yall at least give us lazy chicks a break, we cant even count sex now?!? what about the long walk from the mall to my parking spot?

  8. “But can yall at least give us lazy chicks a break, we cant even count sex now?!?”

    Doesn’t the fact that you are lazy imply that you take frequent breaks?lol. But yeah, we do cut yall slack. You’re allowed to expand a certain amount horizontally before we step in and check you.

  9. Pumpington is an interesting word.

    I digress. I love working out. I’m not a waif, but I feel better when I am eating right and working out. Honestly my energy level flies through the roof.

    Now as for the people I date…as long as you have enough stamina to make it through what I want or need I’m good 🙂

  10. Different type of stamina.lol. Just cuz a dude can run 3 miles doesn’t mean he can realign your spine over 15-30 minutes.

  11. LMAO @ realign your spine!

  12. Sowhatiff Jenkins

    And, by the way, dudes don’t get judged nearly as much as women do for getting all round and rolly as the relationship goes on…

  13. WithRainbowSprinkles

    So this is something I happen to be passionate about. Being skinny does NOT mean you should not or need not work out. Physical activity is a necessity for everyone, big, small, short, tall…it doesn’t matter…your body and your heart need AT LEAST 30 min of physical activity 3x a week. All this talk of waiting until your metabolism slows down to start working out is stupid (no offense), but what makes you think that years of eating however you want to and lazying around only walking from the mall to your parking spot will not have some long term effect? One day and 25 pounds later when you realize that your metabolism is “slowing down” you’re gonna have to work much harder to get yourself back together. Look at the older women in our society…how many times does one of them say “Oh, I remember when I was that size” Yeah, lots, because life happens…muscle memory is a beautiful thing and if you’d just raise up off your behind now while your responsibilities are minimal you’d be in such a better position for the future…I’ll be damned if I wake up 50 pounds heavier and a size 22 reminiscing on the good ‘ol days when my man used to be able to throw me around the room…no, thanks…
    And if you’re worried about your hair…get over it…
    Lastly, I’m sure we’ve all seen flabby skinny girls…it’s not cute…as far as I’m concerned it’s worse than being fat…skinny girls should not jiggle…

  14. lmao @ skinny girls should not jiggle.

    I am sorry but skinny or fat I just dont find joy in getting hot and sweaty for no reason. Luckily my genetic history does not give me reason to worry that I will blow up in the near, or distant, future. If I went to the doctor and she said you need to exercise then MAYBE i would think about it, but if some dude wants me to get off my ass just because he is then he is in for a big suprise when i say HELL naw. now hand me my doritos!

  15. Sowhatiff Jenkins

    LMAO @ “I’ll be damned if I wake up 50 pounds heavier and a size 22 reminiscing on the good ‘ol days when my man used to be able to throw me around the room…no, thanks…”

    That, and I’ll be damned if his behind can’t do that cuz he has been lifting nothing more than a fork to his mouth for 20 years.

    I am somewhere between WithRainbow Sprinkles and Insomnia…I think I want to go work out now, and reward myself with about 6 oreos. Thanks ladies!!

  16. “Skinny girls should not jiggle”

    I think that’s quote of the week. If I had money I’d launch an ad campaign on public transportation with just that message. How do you think people would react if they saw that ish on the side of a bus?

  17. RightCoastLexSteele bka God's Gift to Humanity

    “I want to fill you full of my mango seed with my pumpington that is sure to re-align your spine.”

    Keep the hits coming, Slim.

  18. “At what age do people consider the way someone takes care of their health when considering a significant other?” (I believe that was the question)

    Mi 2 Cents: Slim brings up a very good question here however, I believe a better question would have been, “at what age SHOULD people consider (or at least start) the way someone takes care of their health when considering a significant other?”

    My answer to that would be @ least 25. Y 25? Well lets see! Life, to me anyway, occurs in 4 stages: Stage 1 being 0-12 (adolescent years); Stage 2 being 13-24 (teen/young adult years); Stage 3 being 25-65 ( CLIMAX OF ADULTHOOD); Stage 4 being 65-Death.

    Now during stage 1 you could care less about your health or any significant others b/c you most likely have mommy, daddy, or some other significant family member making the majority of your health decisions and girls/guys have cooties.

    Now during stage 2, you start to care a little more about how you look and how others perceive you. You notice the girls paying attn to the Athlete fellow in your crew or other crew; for girls you notice the dude who’s got “cuts” in his arms/chest area and you want to be appealing to the opposite sex, so you possibly start going to try out for sports teams (track, football, b-ball, etc.), making sure you make at least one appointment annually to the doctor/dentist to keep the smile nice and not get any diseases. And if the opposite sex is not attractive/attracted to you, you can either care less or get very self-conscious.

    Stage 3 (the most important stage to me) is the one where it ain’t no more, I use to be an athlete, or I used to eat fast food everyday when I was young and I stayed in shape so I should be good now. See at this stage the love handles creep in slowly, the arteries get clogged, back problems began to occur and you potentially start to look for someone who you’d like to have in your life for a while ( a while being key phrase). Now, being that most people take up the habits, both good and bad, of their partners and the people they’re most in contact with, you’re not going to want someone who sits and eats junk while you’re out working out. You’re not going to want the girl with stomach that sticks out more than her booty do. (for ladies, you’re not going to want the man who’s stomach hangs so far out he can’t see his feet (or other extremities). You’re not going to want someone who can pass along potential health problems to your seedlings. Bottom line is, 25 is when most people begin the rest of what is considered your life and if you want to attract someone who is as healthy as you, you must begin to look a little further than the surface at this age (i.e. eating habits, family history, picture of mom/dad, if staying in shape is even important). Now this doesn’t mean that you can’t get with someone who is unhealthy, however just don’t be expecting them to change unless that’s bought up from the jump. With all things considered, if you start paying attention to the health of those you are thinking of making a potential mate at 25, you might actually make it to stage 4 together!

  19. “Lastly, I’m sure we’ve all seen flabby skinny girls…it’s not cute…as far as I’m concerned it’s worse than being fat…skinny girls should not jiggle…”

    This is so true. I much rather date a fat girl than a skinny girl that jiggles.

    PS Just because you are skinny does not mean that you are healthy. There are thousands of skinny people who are not healthy and will soon be having heart attacks simply because they do not workout. I promise you that I, at 6ft and 300lbs, am a lot healthier than alot of skinny people out there.

    “I have had to tell many a dudes, I didn’t work out b4 so what makes you think I will now?! ”

    I think this is bull.

    PPS I am that large because I was the starting defensive tackle at a Division 1-AA program and I am still trying to play football professionally. If anyone has something to say, I bench at least 2 times what u do and I’m probably faster than you too. That is all.

  20. One’s health is so amazingly important, and it kills me that some folk feel like they don’t have to do anything to preserve it. I haven’t worked out in a few months and that’s killing me! Yet, I see and hear of people who can’t even remember the last time they exerted any type of physical activity beyond mall walks within the last few years.

    I’ve always been fit, and I plan to always be that way. For me, it’s not only important for my physical well-being, but for my mental as well. It’s been studied and proven that those who work out and remain physically fit are more satisfied with the quality of life than those who don’t. (As an aside, I pretty much want to be the mom who looks to young to be on the PTA committee.)

    Anyhow, to answer the question, I want my partner to be as on par with his health as I am with mine. We should be able to work out together and motivate each other through our respective health practices. I expect that he’ll keep me in check when I OD on a meal and that he’d expect the same from me. I want my hubby to still be good-looking and fine when he’s past 40. You know…like Tavis Smiley and such.

  21. OK OK OK! you health fanatics win, I promise to power walk to my parking spots from now on!

  22. “We all know people with that speedy metabolism, or natural fit look, that do little more than open refrigerator and fast food restaurant doors. ”

    Ay, Ay! I am one those lucky people with a blessed metabolism. Frankly, I am ashamed of the fact that I don’t work out consistently. In spurts: YES Consistent: HECK NO! I only work out when I could pinch my belly fat. Ten thousand miles on the treadmill later, the pinch of belly fat is gone along with my motivation. I eat alot and I eat pretty badly. I hardly ever find time to workout, yet people ask me if I play sports or run track. My answer: GUFFAW!!!

    “Chances are if I were to take a look at her mommy, I’d get a true indication of what she’d look like in 15-20 years.”

    Oh yeah, Mommy and I wear the same clothing size. Grandma is smaller than us. 🙂

  23. ok I lied…I do work out consisently just not in the traditional sense of pre-coordinated routines and gyms. I plug in my ipod and dance my ass off in my bedroom for an 1 hour (each weekday) and 2 hours (on weekend nights). I walk about 2.5 miles to the train station everyday because I’m too damn impatient to wait on unreliable, incompetent MARTA [that’s MakingAfricanAmericansRidiculouslyTardyinAtlanta (on top of CP time, so their asses could get fired!) for you non-peaches]. I take the stairs instead of the escalators and elevators because they are in a perpetual state of “out-of-orderness” at my university.

  24. “…MARTA [that’s MakingAfricanAmericansRidiculouslyTardyinAtlanta]”

    I used to live in Atlanta…that has to be the funniest and realest thing I’ve ever heard! Lmao!

  25. @ Brooklyn’s Own;
    I’m 25 and I just started working out, so I guess you’re right. Up until a few years ago I figured it didn’t matter because… well I honestly didn’t think I’d live this long. But I did, and I swear if I sit still I can feel myself aging. Knees pop. Backs crack. I can’t shut the club down like I used to, even thinking about staying out that late makes me very, very tired. I see someone 30 and think, thats not so old, then I see someone 20 and want to shake my fist at them and tell them to get the hell off my lawn. I don’t even have a lawn, yet somehow I’m already a crochety old lady. I am hoping exercise will slow the process and keep my body from totally crapping out on me.

    Also, I got married. And while my husband thinks I look great now, I don’t want him pushing me around in a wheelchair in 30 years because I got diabetes from lying on the couch eating ice cream and had to get my legs amputated. And I don’t want to watch him die slow of heart disease and leave me to be a hot old widow either, so he comes with me to work out. I gotta say I’d never even consider doing this for just some guy I was dating, but when it’s ’til death I think the other person does have a say. After all, they’re going to be the ones stuck with your old sick ass if you don’t start taking care of yourself now.

  26. I see we got some real grown folks hittin up the blog droppin that knowledge. Please, show us young lads and lasses the way.lol. But seriously, good comments. I don’t want to be wheeling anybody around or wheeled around at 45 because I didn’t handle my health.

    25 is the age to start caring? I guess your right. That would explain why I wrote this entry when I did.lol.

  27. One as for age and whats old, I dont want to go backto 21 I wasnt as smart or accomplished nor had a job with bennys. Todays 20 somethings get cuddle by their former teen parents…not I.

    I was working at 16 so who cares about the 20 somethings today..they sexing in cribs they dont pay rent for.

    Now for me, I dropped thirty lbs this year all by walking and changing my entire diet.

    No red meat LOTS of greens and brown rice.

    Funny things is cooking this way is a single mans dream…nothing I cook takes more than an hour and I use a pot and pan to cook-eat with paper plates. Also I dont drink soda and I havent had kool aid since 12 or 13-I am 32. Nor do I use salt or sugar. Cranberry juice, OJ and water.

    It could be that being a native NY’er I grew tired of “soul food” real quick knowing theres all kinds other dishes to try and cost as cheap as 2 bucks, shit in high school I barely ate at Mikey D’s.

    When I think about it I didnt come back to them until they started serving chicken and salads. Now collard greens and cabbage is sold food but face it ppl only make the meat part of soul food. The greens in soul food is still the best (no I cant even f-with that gotta go to Mom dukes). On Thanksgiving I dont eat any meat that night just greens and the other sides, as the week plays out (and the fact that I am single) I rack up on the leftover food (no pork).

    Whats funny is KRS ONE is the OG of vegan eating ..go and listen to “My Philosophy” and that was in 88 but when me and my boys got with the not eating pork part ppl got offended started asking us are if we muslims. But now fools trying to be cute drinking wheatgrass and ish.

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