Last Christmas, I gave myself a present: I quit working out. Yes, I abandoned my quest for the perfect ass.
My friends who have known me since Middle School when I climbed on the fitness bandwagon thought about staging an intervention. Thankfully, they let me be.
The whole thing was sort of weird. One day, I got up, put on my workout clothes and just like every other day, I headed to the gym for my marathon session with the Staimaster followed by an hour of throwing some iron around.
I parked the car, turned off the ignition….and sat there, staring at the gym with all its brightly painted pictures of women working out, smiles on their faces, Spandex barely covering their perfect tushes, and…
I couldn’t make myself go inside.
I physically could not move to open the car door and lever my bulk out. The gig was up. I was toast.
Yes, this is the gal who used to run up Pikes Peak, a 7000 foot vertical foot climb over 13 miles, and laughingly say, “I don’t know what the big deal is–there’s only ONE hill.” Frankly, it’s amazing someone didn’t shoot me….but, that’s beside the point. Yes,I’ve spent more of my life in gyms, pounding the pavement, lifting weights, and being obnoxious about it than almost anyone I know. You want to know the calorie count of any known food? I’ve got it memorized–or at least I did, when I cared. I could also tell you various runs of differing lengths starting from the front door of the top hotels in most of the major cities…here and abroad.
Yep, I had a serious addiction….until I didn’t anymore. And I came by it naturally: I come from a long line of addictive personalities. Thank God mine didn’t involve distilled liquids, however, it was equally as damaging in odd sorts of ways. I always had some weird ache or pain, and I would torture myself if I didn’t meet my workout goals for the day. And let’s not talk about food. Suffice it to say, that I never want to see another piece of overcooked, under-sauced chicken breast or dry, steamed broccoli again.
So what happened? Frankly, I just got tired….and bored. And I grew a brain. My ass, while a bit more zaftig than the skinny models, is fine just the way it is. And, no amount of dieting or exercise is going to change the fact that I have curves. And I’m okay with that–even though the current gold standard in female physiques appears to be a figure like a twelve-year-old boy. I’ve always been one to color outside of the lines so how I got sucked into this perfect picture, I don’t know. Perhaps teenage insecurity that I never let go of. Perhaps that addictive personality. Perhaps just an inability to say no…even to myself. whatever it was, it is gone.
My life has changed dramatically since I quit working out. I actually sleep through the night and awaken refreshed with the whole day stretching in front of me. I have more time to write, to spend with my friends, to enjoy a good meal and a saucy glass of Sancerre. And sometimes I don’t decide what I’m going to eat until I hit the drive-through:) Ice cream is back to being a summer treat. And my worst fears never materialized–I still wear the same clothes I did before. And my friends seem to like me more:)
I drive by the gym every now and again on my way to somewhere much more fun. And, the thought never crosses my mind that I should go back. The other day, I couldn’t find my tennis shoes. I couldn’t even remember if I had a pair, and, if so, what they might look like. But, I must admit, I still don my workout gear…everyday…it’s my writing uniform.
Now, I know that our bodies were designed to move, so I walk….outside…in the fresh air. Novel concept. I still sprint up the hills just for fun–and it feels good. But that’s enough. I do a bit of weight lifting–I have some resistance bands at home I use when I don’t have a resistance to them.
But mostly, I play….and I write. Who knew there was this much time in a day?
And, next time I feel compelled to have the perfect ass? I’ll go to one of the local watering holes and sit at the bar. He’s bound to walk buy and ask me to buy him a drink. On the other hand….perhaps I’ll just sit at the computer and play with my imaginary friends….who wants a perfect ass anyway?
What are your time drains that suck your day dry and aren’t worth it?