But, while these steps could certainly prove useful, and might well be worth adopting along the way, none of them -- or even the brainstorming itself -- is the first step. The first step -- and this is especially important if you are a slender but flabby single mother of four, pushing 50, satisfactorally employed but financially depleted, and only recently divorced from Beethoven -- is to get in shape. Miniature bat wings probably won't keep you from getting laid by a drunken guy in a bar (which virtually anyone in a very large bracket of adults can do if they put their mind to it), but your goal is not to have sex but to meet and marry an Irish man, with whom you will have fabulous, mutually-satisfying sex, as well as fabulous, mutually-satisfying conversations. This last pretty much cancels out the pairing up with a drunkard in a bar, since you hate drunkards, which will make meeting and marrying the right Irish man so important.
The purpose of getting yourself into shape is not, it is crucial to recognize, to make you more attractive to others. It is, first and foremost (beyond preventing osteoporosis and eliminating the need to drink that nasty skello-grow once a month) to help you feel better about yourself, and more attractive, so that, in turn, you will feel complete without a man (Irish or otherwise), but will, nevertheless, attract the right calibre of guy, such as that Irishman you are going to meet and marry. Besides, you will not be matched with the right sort of guy if your match.com profile declares that you never exercise.
How you get in shape is pretty much up to you, but I would propose not being too doctrinaire. You could return to your glory days as a 5k runner -- maybe even break that 30 minute mark, and meet a well-toned runner at that terrific nighttime run catered by the Columbia restaurant. But adding races to your schedule is not a great idea when you are a single mother of four, already overcommitted financially and temporally. Even if your ass is flabby. And when you finally have a weekend morning where you don't have to drive to a rehearsal or a playdate or a bat mitzvah, do you really want to get up and run? With that fair skin, Irish men should not be running out doors, anyway.
Your Irish man may not be hiding at the Y, but you can use the elliptical, finally learn to spin (if you ever figure out the schedule), try to rediscover your abdominal muscles (remember the four children?) in core class or pretend you are your instructor as you look in the mirror at Zumba. Plus, doing Zumba will prepare you for the night of salsa dancing with your Latin lover, Diego, and will help to save you that $25 a month co-pay for skello-grow. Even if it breaks Diego's heart, you can put that $25 a month toward your trip to Ireland.