dad bod

Death to Dadbod: The Space Between

Danial Hooper Death to Dadbod

Picture this.

I’m in the middle of a Handstand Hold. Arms shaking, body giggling, blood rushing to my brain. Inside my head, a lightbulb turns on. An epiphany hath doth strucketh: Is it Dadbod or Dad Bod?

My normal reaction would be to shrug and say, “Who cares?” but there is a lot of weight in that little spacebar. This is my 25th Death to Dadbod. If I’m doing it wrong, what does that say about me? Sure, you don’t come here for the excellent grammar. My top-notch wordsmithiness isn’t the selling point. 

But dude, I’m upside down. Physically, teetering on the edge of falling over. Emotionally, teetering on the edge of falling down. These things shouldn’t matter, but here I am. Worrying about a thing, at the beginning of a workout. A Dad Bod has two capitals. A Dadbod is more homogeneous. How bad is this getting? I’m using the word homogeneous while upside down. How bad is it? I’m going to use “dad bod” for the remainder of this post, just to see how it feels. 

Hold up…

In literature, this is what they call in medias res

It’s when you start telling a story in the middle of a story.

We should backtrack, just so you can see how I’ve gotten here.

The Night Before

We live in a quiet house in a normally quiet neighborhood. The loudest person on the block is the tiniest person on the block. He’s the cutest, too. His name is Aran Winslow Hooper. Aka Roy. Blue are his eyes and bald is his head. Like a freaking miniature, hairless werewolf – he begins to roar at the stroke of midnight. He cries. A lot. No bottle will do. Nor will the binky.

His poor little tears. 

dad bod

Our poor sleep cycles. I wasn’t able to get him to sleep until 5:30, just enough time for an hour of sleep before my hour commute to my J.O.B.

My dad bod is a sad bod and soon I’m sitting at my desk job. Is working while sleep deprived considered a bad thing? What about working out?

Still, I choose to power through. Just like the baby, this dad bod isn’t going to put itself to sleep.

The Workout

Handstand Hold, 1 min

Double Under, 2 mins

Weighted Sit-up, 3 mins (I’m using my 25 lb. Dumbbell)

Handstand Push-up, 4 mins

Double Under, 2 mins

Handstand Hold, 1 min


I did Handstand Push-ups a few weeks ago. I’m going to try them again. They didn’t feel great during the warmups, though. So… we’ll see?

dad bod

3… 2… 1… Go!

Handstand Holds, 1 minute.

I flip myself over, and allow the blood to rush to my brain.

Now, we’re back at the beginning. I’m the only one who can have a breakdown in the first minute of a workout, huh?

My arms feel the burn. I have all the feels. My goal was to hold myself up here for 35 seconds, but I don’t exactly have a timer in my view. 

The way I see it, I got one option: Hold on until I can’t any longer.

Which equals about 42 seconds. 

42 reps.
Double Unders

Jump. Swishswish. Jump. Swishswish.

Thanks to my amazing Jump Rope from RPM, these Double Unders are smooth and steady. 

Until they’re not, and the rope slices into my buttcheek like a hot knife through a juicy, ripe peach. (insert peach emoji here). Here’s what’s going down on my rump.

dad bod

Why does it hurt so deep? The pain is running to my other cheek. Has anyone ever died from this? I want to swear so bad. Or scream in the mountains like a feral banshee who just stubbed his toe. I love this jump rope more than I love our third cat… but the pain is too much right now. The dad bod is in agony.

Okay, got that off my chest.

65 reps. 
Weighted Sit-ups, 3 minutes

I need more dumbbells. I haven’t added anything to my home gym since the rope (which I love more than our third cat). Maybe Danta Clause will bring me a nice set for Christmas.

My core is as strong as my baby’s neck. Sure, it works to start, but soon my giant head makes every effort a wobbly dive into a concussion. 

I try for 10 reps per minute. I should have used smaller dumbbells, but was too prideful to grab the 12s. I’m suffering through a rep every 6 seconds until the last 20 seconds, where I make a little race to the finish. The bad thing about these, they are killing my biceps. My gunshow is going to be on full display. 

33 reps.
Handstand Push-ups, 4 minutes

Here’s my dad bod one the first rep:

Except as I pushed myself to the top, my feet cried out for gravity and I toppled over like a drunken Jenga tower. 

I laughed. Then sighed.

I looked at the wall and wondered if it was worth it. How many reps would be worth it? 

I stood and walked away. Checking the timer. A minute has already passed.

Sometimes, time moves faster when you’re upside down. It’s like your body (ahem, dad bod) is so stressed that you black out for part of it. 


Sidebar: In college, I blacked out one night while at a predominantly Black Night Club. I say predominantly only because on that particular night, there was a lone white boy tearing up the dance floor. That night, I lost my cell phone and my shoes. Two days later, a girl tracked me down on social media and said I gave her my phone and said, “Call me sometime.”

I asked her if I gave her my shoes, too.

She said no.

Long story short, my shoes were in the trunk of my brother’s car. 

Another sidebar: Here’s me dancing. In case you didn’t know about the rhythm. 

Anyways, while I was telling you that story. My dad bod went into autopilot and I was able to get 8 reps in 3 minutes. 

In my final minute, I walked over to my yoga mat and did 4 Pike Push-ups while I waited for the next minute.

12 reps. 
Double Unders, 2 minutes.

Jump. Swishswish. Jump Swishswish.

Despite the dad bod fatigue, I’m moving good. I would be moving better if my shoulders weren’t on fire. The burn is lowering into my forearms. I want to drop the jump rope.

But, ya know, I love it more than my third cat. So, I keep it going.

61 reps.
Handstand Hold, 1 minute.

Ah, here we are. Back where we started. In medias fin. Or something. I would love to say that I swung myself into a handstand and held like I was holding on to dear life. But it darn near took me 20 seconds to even get started.

I procrastinated, out of necessity.

31 seconds of holding.

31 reps.

Score: 244

Verdict: Yeah, Dad Bod isn’t cutting it. There’s something about that space bar that feels… yuck. It’s not me. It’s a dadbod. Not a dad [pause forever] bod. If you don’t know the difference, then congrats, we’re giving out trophies in the auditorium. 

This is Death to Dadbod, no space. No gaps. All grit. 

*Oh, one more thing!*

I got invited to hang out at the Iron Games next week! Me, my Rib, Roy, and AJ will be in Cedar City from Thursday through Saturday night. If you’re going to be there, or if you live in Vegas, you should totally come say hello! 


Interested in learning more about OTB? Check out 10 Free Bodyweight Workouts.

Or hey, why not just sign up? Me and the Outsiders are waiting for ya.

Tune in next week for another Death to Dadbod.

And hey, follow me on Instagram! @Instadanial_

Danial Hooper Editor
Word Wizard/Lead Brewmaster/First Contact Seeker
I’m the family lab rat, if your family is a group of mad scientists. I mask my weaknesses by being funny and telling stories. Basically, I write posts for the blog, type up some emails, help where asked, and cry when Taz makes us run. My novels are available on Amazon. Something’s got to pay my daughters’ dance fees. I have four kids, three cats, and one wife. I love all of them dearly.