“I've made a mess of me, I wanna get back the rest of me –
I've made a mess of me, I wanna spend the rest of my life alive.”
- Switchfoot, “Mess of Me” (video after post)
My wife and I both exercise consistently; unfortunately, only one of us seems to be getting any benefit out of it. At least, that’s the conclusion our video game system presented us with earlier this month.
If you don’t believe me, perhaps a visual representation is in order. This, according to our new Wii Fitness program, is me - or, in proper Nintendo parlance, my Mii:
I’d be the pudgy guy in the corner stretching out the belly of his blue sweatshirt. Prior to receiving our balance board, I created a Mii with my facial features, which was then attached to a body shape of my choosing. I made mine somewhat tall and slightly lean, keeping with how various people have described me over the years.
However, when you order the balance board and fitness program, you enter your height, and the board measures your weight to calculate your BMI. Then it displays what the board “feels” you must look like. And if you're me, you look like this:
Let me ask you: does that look like a guy who’s ready to run an ultra in a few weeks? It looks more like a dude on the Blue Team waiting to meet Bob and Jillian at the Biggest Loser ranch.
More insults were quick to follow; my BMI rating came out as borderline overweight, and my “fitness age”, determined by BMI and my performance on some rudimentary balance challenges, was 49.
I’m, um … not 49. Barely within a decade of it, actually. But apparently all that swimming and biking and lots and LOTS of running in my past have only served to hasten my demise. I suppose it’s likely that my chocolate chip cookie addiction hasn’t helped my situation either. Somehow over all these years, I’ve managed to make a nice mess of myself.
On the other hand, consider my lovely wife, who in real life - as if that matters - was born just a few months apart from me (and no, I’m not saying who’s older). This is her Mii:
Very easy on the eyes, wouldn’t you say? Slim and curvy, and rockin' a snug green t-shirt. She runs a few days per week, and does a variety of workout videos on the days she doesn’t run. It must keep her in great all-around shape, because …
… even from the back, her Mii has got it goin' on. Given how out of my league she is, I sometimes suspect that her Mii might be looking around Wii Plaza for an upgrade to her virtual spouse in this picture. A guy can only wonder.
Whatever she’s doing fitness wise, it seems to working, because her Mii is perfectly lovely. Not only that, she’s much healthier than me; her BMI is smack in the middle of the “healthy weight” range, and her fitness age is – get this – 33. On the plus side, all this means that in Wii Fitness terms, I’m hooking up with a girl who is 16 years younger than I am. Go me! Or rather, go Mii!
Predictably, my kids now enjoy perpetuating my Mii persona as a tubby slob who struggles just to get a high score in Tilt City. Perhaps the ultimate indignity was voiced by my 6-year-old this week as I was about to eat a cookie: “Dad! Don’t eat that! Your Mii will get fatter!!” And so it goes.
Supposedly the Mii body will morph and adapt and become leaner once I spend some time burning calories on various games, or once it detects that I’ve lost some weight. Time will tell, I guess. Either way – whether it’s the prospect of running a 50-miler next month, or the shallow vanity of squeezing my Mii into a size smaller trousers – one thing is becoming clearer with each passing day: I need to get a little more serious about this training stuff.
As for the song, there’s not much explanation to it other than the obvious one, and for being a current favorite of mine.
Switchfoot, “Mess of Me” (click to play):