There are many reasons why I'm crap at exercise.
There's me; uncoordinated, unfit and unwilling to wear luminous lycra. I've no drive, no competitive edge and no team spirit (unless it's Bacardi) and I'm out of breath at the very mention of circuits.
Then there's exercise; boring, painful, and about as much fun as a night on the tiles with Geoff from accounting.
In a bid to exorcise my demons, here's the first of several blogs investigating why I'm intolerant to exercise.
Fourth period games
Why was I always picked last for the team, behind even Wheezing Wendy and Sweaty Susie?
How I longed to be athletic and nimble, with tits like midget gems; instead of slow and unsporty, and wearing two sports bras.
Netball. Firstly, I have to wear a stupid bib. Secondly, I'm surrounded by some very tall girls and, at 5ft 1 and 3/4, I feel like a yappy dog jumping up to retrieve a reward. Only, what's rewarding about trying to get a stupid ball into a stupid net?
Cross Country. More like crossing the South Pole as snow and ice cover the sports field. A wintry gust of wind blows up the slip of material that represents my gym skirt, to reveal my backside to the entire school.
As the Chariots of Fire swots vye for pole position, the smokers and I walk at the back, complaining of stitch and dehydration. Our classmates are in third period Woodwork by the time we finally return all chilblains and disorientated, like Scott of the Antarctic.
Why do I want to climb a rope? I'm not a sailor, nor do I need to escape - Kathleen Turner, Romancing the Stone, style. Plus, I'm not a teenage boy, so the experience will not give me a stiffy; just burns and possibly some static as polyester hits twine.
Why do I need to straddle a horse? Will I ever visit Texas or take part in a Pentathlon? Petrified of the rumour that one misjudged split would break my hymen, I wore a Doctor White's sanitary towel for the whole of the third year, as a precautionary measure.
Why should I walk across a bench? Once again, I'm not a navvy; I doubt I will ever need to walk the plank or balance on a ledge, unless I am doing a midnight flit from a hotel room after accidentally moving a Barbie sized bottle of Pernod 1cm in the mini bar.
I must confess to have always liked swimming and my breast stroke is half decent. But the onset of puberty put pay to that.
Not only did I hate the idea of mixed swimming and boys pointing at my rapidly expanding breasts poking out of the side of my navy costume, I was scared that Charlotte's web - which sprouted from her Speedo gusset - might crawl into my fanny, and that I too might develop an Octopus's lady garden.
Sports day: The final humiliation. A sudden bout of illness on the day was preferable to being forced to compete in the 400m as a stooge to make the proper runners look even faster. Collapsed in heap after the first bend, I pray that one of the sixth formers will carry me off the track Officer and a Gentleman style. More like head teacher's office if they found out I was pretending.
In primary school I made my equally unsporty mom enter the parents' race. As she teetered in her hot pink Noddy Holder platforms, I knew the fall was imminent. I just didn't realise that she'd also take down one of the judges, Reverend Plum, along with the table of medals.
Batting for the other team
My Cuban cigar smoking gym teacher, Jiffy Jenkins - who makes Sue Sylvester look like a gym fearing pansy - had given up on me a long time ago.
My feigned asthma attacks and eternal periods, combined with my sheer inadequacy, left her reaching for the Lucozade.
Each time I 'forgot' my PE kit this simply resulted in me having to don the dreaded spare kit. This consisted of tiny or extra large bottle green knickers, minus the elastic; a 1950s swimming costume with a perished lining; and an off white polo shirt, complete with yellow underarm stains.
From the fourth year we could choose games 'options'. So while all the other suckers chose to run 'round in the cold like hamsters on wheels (and actually enjoyed it) the overspill of misfits played ping pong, nattering in the warm and having crafty tokes on their ciggies by the fire exits.
But we still had to face the changing rooms, as Jiffy herded groups of fresh teenagers into cold showers.
Maybe, it was being surrounded by fannies or boobs, or maybe it was the fact that I did not have the bod of Kim Cattrall in Porky's, or maybe it was sound of Jiffy's whistle in my ear as she made me return to wash behind my ears; but since then I have never been able to willingly expose my naked flesh in public - unless alcohol was involved.
But more on gyms and changing rooms in my future blog..