So motivating myself to eat better was easy enough.
Just buy better food than what you’d normally purchase – cut out the bagel bites and the pizza rolls and replace them with protein and vegetables and rice cakes and almonds.
That’s basically how it went down. Replace soda with tea and water and the occasional Gatorade. Cut out as much fast food as is humanly possible. Seek out chicken and rice when it’s available, and stay away from the food that if consumed regularly will clearly give you a heart attack.
But finding the motivation to work out is an entirely different story.
I’m relatively confident that I’ve conquered the biggest portion in the life change aspect, but finding time to actually get down to the gym – or even lace up my running shoes for a run – isn’t something that’s coming very easily.
It’s not that I don’t like working out. I genuinely do, and I’m fully aware of all of the physical and mental benefits that exercise provides once it’s completed. But here’s the rub for me – if I want to go to the gym, it either has to be in the morning before work, which means I either need to shower at the gym or go home and do so, or after work, and I’m again faced with the shower dilemma. The evening workout scenario is a little bit easier for me, but then I’m sacrificing time with the family either by being there or by showering when I get home.
And what if I want to soak in the steam room or sauna? Then I have to bring a lock for the locker and keep all of my clothes, plus the change that I’m going to need when I get out. And what about my wallet and cell phone: Do I keep them in my car, where they can get stolen, or the locker, where they can get stolen?
What started out as a simple trip to do something healthy has now turned into an ordeal. And nobody likes ordeals.
So here’s what I’ve been thinking about doing in addition to keeping up a moderate gym schedule to make it seem a little bit less like the work that it feels like it has become.
I want to get a bike. Not the beach cruiser that I always told myself I needed, but an actual bike – some sort of a hybrid between a road bike and a mountain bike (do they make those) so that I take advantage of the riding trails near the park through the house that my family will be moving into shortly. I’ve known several people that have lost large amounts of weight by throwing themselves into riding, and while there are spinning classes at the gym that I attend, we get back to the whole timing of the shower scenario and the fear that my cell phone and wallet will get swiped from either my locker or my car. If they’re both on the kitchen counter – behind a deadbolt – I’d feel a little bit better about it.
And I want to get to the point where I can play a sport — indoor soccer perhaps. I absolutely do not have the lung capacity or the coordination for that matter to venture out onto any sort of a pitch at the moment, but I’ve had friends that never even looked at a soccer ball that had a blast getting involved with leagues and got themselves into tip-top shape in the process. I used to play quite a bit of racquetball with a former co-worker, but he’s now working elsewhere and those high-impact games – several a night several times a week – kept my weight down despite a self-destructive lifestyle that I no longer live.
I’m not getting any younger. And with a job that’s mostly sedentary, I’ve managed to let myself go.
But three months into this and I’m already noticeably thinner and feeling much better about the choices of what I put into my body. Now for the next round.
Eye of the tiger?
Let’s hope so.
To contact reporter Jason Campbell email email@example.com or call 209.249.3544.