Wednesday, November 17, 2010


I have had several people ask about this "Isle of Belly" thing I talk about.

Well, the Isle of Belly is still amongst us. And just like real islands, sometimes it is bigger, and some times a bit smaller. (I think it has something to do with the phases of the moon myself.)

This all started several years ago, when I got a membership to 24-Hour Fitness. The goal: to get fit and trim. Mostly, trim. Shouldn't be hard. (LOL!) I had a personal trainer and all. We would stretch, sweat, do two miles on the treadmill, sweat, hit the weights, and sweat. Cool down on the exercise bike, and sweat. I would lose a few pounds, and put on a little muscle. A little muscle. Then it was off to the locker room to change to a swim suit and hit the pool.

Now when I was much younger, I could get away with wearing a Speedo. And I was told that I looked pretty good in it. In high school, I weighed all of 145 and that was after a full summer of weight training for football. Back then, I could eat EVERYTHING. Did not matter, I could eat and I never gained a pound. It used to really tick off my friends and family.

Now, there is no way that I can wear a Speedo. They would put me under the jail. I have found out certain truths as I have gotten older. One is guys should never wear a Speedo after the age of 40, and that's pushing it even then. Let's just say that if I put one on, it disappears. It looks like less than a thong.

Sorry if that just burned itself into your brain. It's much more than what you call a muffin top. Think of the biggest mushroom you have ever seen, now see it with a toothpick-thick stem. That's as close as I can get to what I look like now in a Speedo. And a regular swim suit is not much better.

So, after changing to a swim suit, I headed for the pool. Certain truth #2: Guys even suck in their bellies while in the locker room. Go figure. As you near the pool you always take a quick look around to see who is in the pool or around it. That way, you know how much longer you have to keep sucking in your belly before you get in the pool.

Once you make it in to the pool, you can let it all out, and breathe.

So, I'm in the pool and doing some laps, glad that it is not an Olympic sized pool. And as I'm going back and forth and timing my self on my laps, I decide to roll over on my back and swim the backstroke for a lap or two -- okay, one lap.

As I was nearing the far end of the pool, I just kind of looked out of the corner of my eye and could have sworn that I was about to run into someone -- or they were about to run into me. So I stopped and stood up. There was one other person in the pool, two lanes over.

So I went back to swimming on my back. And, by god, I could swear that someone was about to run into me again! This time I did not stand up, but raised my head up a bit more. And here is this belly of mine sticking out of the water, and me thinking it was someone else!

I scared myself. It looked just like an island bobbing in the water.

Do any of you remember being able to buy those real small turtles when you were a kid? The little clear plastic bowl with the little island for the turtle to climb up on? And they gave you a little green palm tree to place on the little island? Well If I had one of those little palm trees, and shaved a path across my belly, then placed the little palm tree in my navel, tt would look just like an island.

Thus, the Isle of Belly was born, I am sorry to say. But even after this, I still spook myself in the pool every once in a while.

If I just stand in the pool in water about up to my lower chest, I can look pretty good from the chest up. But when I swim now it is like I'm dragging bottom, as well as whenever I am swimming on my back.

I have my very own Island. The Isle of Belly is still with us. It has gotten just a wee bit smaller. But I don't really mind having it. It is like I have a swim buddy with me at all times.

So that is about the "ISLE OF BELLY." Thankfully not at a theater or pool near you.

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