It began as other runs did, with heavy legs and an enthusiasm that was depleting quickly. However, as the sweat beads hit the pavement and I fell into a stride, the pain subsided. My legs became light and my body was in perfect form and rhythm. My run became a stride.
Fitness isn’t easy. Anyone who says it’s just a matter of the mind is either overly optimistic or trying to fool you; either way they are wrong. Fitness is hard. The tricky part about working out is that progress is directly proportionate to pain. The more moments you have thinking that death will soon be upon you or that you can no longer go on, the more progress you are making.
Never slow down. I know it hurts. I know you hadn’t bargained for this. Just keep going. The slower you move the slower you will attain that body you so desire. Keep moving because trust me, the more exhausted you feel at the end of the day (which I am feeling right now), the better you will feel about yourself. You can do this.
Look not at the bodies of others with envy or jealousy. Instead, look at them for inspiration. There is a lot of time and effort that goes into a well sculpted body and it is this fact that truly turns me on for getting fit. There is an attraction, not sexual, not spiritual, but a purely effort-based attraction that makes me want to get off my lazy ass and start sculpting it when I see fit people (whether men or women). Don’t throw shade at someone for having what you want. Get what you want and join their ranks, every body should be an inspiration.
I’ve not been blogging lately about my fitness routine. Granted, it did come to a complete stop at one point, but I’m back and at it again with my running. I don’t know, I sorta just run now. I don’t think it’s amazing, I don’t think it’s lame, I just run. I figured I would give it a few days before I blog again, to make sure that I wasn’t going to start and stop again.
I think I need to push harder. I want to feel the pain again of working out passed my current threshold. I want to drip sweat again. There’s nothing sexier than that, right? I don’t know. I might sound out of it but I think I’m reaching a point where talking about my fitness isn’t enough. I need to become better, an expert even, so I can drop knowledge on people. Otherwise, I’m just some guy complaining about how fast food is so tempting and that lifting weights is pretty great.
I think we’ve all had a moment where life suddenly became too much. There was just too much going on. Someone was hurting you, things weren’t going your way, you stubbed your toe; serious shit that can snowball into an avalanche of anger. And all that you wanted to do was run away.
I think runners experience these moments at a rather less metaphorical level. They literally can run away from their problems. Fighting with your significant other? Dawn those running shoes and get the hell out of there. Escape is found after shoes are tied.
However, with a runner, an interesting process occurs. You run back and, as you should often do with your problems, you return to the situation you left.
The act of escaping, releasing your anger, and returning to what you had left behind to face it anew seems like a piece of wisdom or something on a fortune cookie. It helps me a lot. I get angry fast and so blowing some steam by running some sprints is a perfect match. Don’t get angry, get running.
I’ve had a rash for some time now. Great opening, huh? Anyway, it comes from excess sweating brought on by repeated fitness. My running, the activity that brings me great life-changing joy, is also the reason why I can’t run right now.
Am I angry? Yes, of course I am. It’s killing me not to go running. Of course I can just go out and run but then the rash wouldn’t go away. Do I workout and increase my fitness or do I cool my jets and heal? With all that goes on in my life, this should be a very low priority.
There’s a monster behind you. It’s watching you lift that weight, it’s running behind you; it can match your every step. So what the hell are you doing stepping so slowly? You act like you can ignore it, as if that’ll make it go away. It’ll never go away, that’s the blessing and the curse.
The monster is you. It’s everything you shouldn’t be. It wants you to give up, be embarrassed, and cry. Seeing you at your worst will make it unstoppable and its paying very close attention to make sure it catches you slip.
There is a lot to fear, but, in a way, it’s the fear that you need. You need to be afraid of losing. You need to be afraid of giving up. Why would you push yourself forwards if you didn’t mind going backwards? The monster wants you to stay in and quiet the alarm for that workout session.
Move. Move your feet and get as far away from the monster as you can. Leave it in your dust. Let it witness your victory. Be afraid, be very afraid because it’ll be exactly what you need to win.
Working out can suck. Running can suck. Sweating can suck. It can hurt, it is tiring, and not all of us look really sexy working out (at least not in the beginning). It can seem hopeless and change and definition can come at a snail’s pace.
Never should you ever let that stop you. Your dream body isn’t a dream at all. It can and will be as real as you and I. No one is immune to change. If you keep at your fitness, you will become greater. Every human body is amazing, including yours. Stop living within your limits. Unleash the beast.
So, I’ve been off the radar for a while. My fitness has taken a backseat to me becoming a bit of a badass in the kitchen. Also, there was family over and really, who has the time for fitness when you have amazing hangout sessions scheduled? Well, at least I can’t.
Thus, it’s the time for saying, “Monday, that’s the day that I’ll be back on track.”
Well… it will be. There’s no problem with walking off the path for a little bit. Don’t beat yourself up because you’re doing other things. I’d rather get enormously fat living life than waste away on a couch. If you didn’t find the time for fitness, congratulations, you’re doing things. Just pick a day, mark it as your comeback day, and get at it again.
“I don’t count my sit-ups; I only start counting when it hurts because those are the ones that count.”
Mohammed Ali said that. Well, I hope he did. It’s a really great quote. The point is that it makes sense doesn’t it? People like to count from 0, they like to run for x amount of miles; everything is done in numbers. However, there is a measurement that works above all other forms – pain.
Measure the miles after you’ve become tiring out, count the reps when it starts to hurt. Maybe then you’ll see how much of the count is actually worth something.
Today, I stood on the sidewalk, my running route ahead of me, with pain in my hip-joint. My choices were to either turn around and walk slowly back home or steam ahead and damage myself. Rest now and heal or go forth and end up hurting myself.
I chose the smart option.
As I walked home (or rather limped home) I thought about the moments when the reward is far less than the risk. I would’ve burned hundreds of calories today on my run but then I would be ruining the rest of my week. It’s very easy to want to go full steam ahead. You think, “No pain, no gain, right?” However, most of the time, I think the thought should be, “No pain, awesome, that means I’m doing it right.”
Know how to pick your battles. Know when rest will reap more reward than risk. Don’t hurt yourself.