Scheming on a Thing, That’s Exercise Sabotage!

If you perused our 2013 Christmas Card, then you might have noticed I mentioned losing over thirty pounds this past year. One of the largest factors in that accomplishment is the four nights a week I put in at a gym we joined this spring.

The decision, far from being motivated by the altruistic endeavors of better health and greater wellness, was instead predicated on a really good discount we could get through our insurance.

“Light body, heavy wallet,” I always say.

Sometimes I add “…and heavier metal,” and then nod my way through an inferno of an air guitar solo. Stairway to Heaven? Absolutely. Layla? You betcha. Free Bird? This chicken shall be wrongly cooped!

In any case, saving money encouraged me to workout.

It really came at the perfect time. I was learning way too much about the food industry — adding “industry” to innocuous terms, like “food”, results in horrible things — and everyone else in my family was dropping weight like a weight lifter guy after he’s done doing a weight.

The first question was what exercises to do. I started with the bike. Hello, two birds: here comes one massive stone. I figured I could turn my gym time into reading time by bringing an e- or physical book.

Riding bike worked until it didn’t. After several months, and despite increasing the resistance, I wasn’t progressing. Around this same time, my iPad developed this strange bug where I would try to launch iBooks and would instead play Plants vs. Zombies 2 the entire time.

Holli had always spoken highly of the stairmaster/treadmill love child called “the elliptical”. After some Chaplinesque negotiations, I grew balanced enough to use it. This, too, worked beautifully until it didn’t. Also, the elliptical is rubbish for properly aiming Angry Birds.

Both issues were solved by moving to the front row: treadmills (or treadies). I am no stranger to the treads. Running, in general, is nearly third nature to me given that I raced in Cross Country my four years of high school. In a way, trotting on a tready felt like coming home.

The other benefit of Row 1 is that you’re directly in front of the TVs, which is kind of a big deal. I returned my iPad from whence it came and, instead, became acquainted with the evening programming on The Food Network. I’ll write more on that in a later post.

It was at this point I realized why the bike and elliptical had stopped working for me: I had drastically underestimated my ability to be subconsciously lazy. I call this phenomenon Sabotage.

At least atop tready, it would be more difficult for Sabotage to get a foothold (pun). You set your duration, level, and weight, and the machine makes you move or you get injured. So far, this has kept my lazy alter ego at bay.

It’s still my machine of choice. It worked until it didn’t, right around Thanksgiving (which I blame entirely on another phenomenon I call Gluttony). Throughout the holidays, my workout regiment was rather a struggle to hold the ground I had fought to gain than any new battles won. Hot on the heels of a new year’s momentum, I’m hoping to move 20-Forward and finally hit my weight goal.

Zombies can wait.

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