Thought for the day
Today’s a holiday. The gym is more packed than normal. It’s great to see that people in my community don’t take a holiday from working out!
In my small town situated on the Mexican border, Mexican food is to die for. However, there are not many healthy food options. Last week a juice bar opened next to my work—well, there are no words to express my excitement. I can’t afford to go everyday, but I am praying that they generate enough business to stay open.
Don’t tell anyone. You have to swear to keep this a secret. For breakfast I ate two pieces of berry crumb coffee cake and a large, very large piece of birthday cake. In addition to wanting to throw up, I want to hide my head in shame. Why would I want to jeopardize all the hard word I do at the gym every day? I don’t know. I don’t know. Guilt overwhelms me.
It’s my friend’s fault. She made me do it. Last night was her birthday party. As I was leaving she wrapped up the birthday and coffee cake. “No, no. Really, I don’t want any.” “Yes. Here. Take some home.” “No, no. Really.” The plate was already in my hand.
Even if I hated it, which I didn’t, I would have had to take the cake. It’s only polite.
However, politeness had nothing to do with eating three pieces of carb hell for breakfast. Why didn’t I stop after one piece? Compulsive sugar binge. There’s no other way to describe it. Self will run riot. Total loss of control. Can’t anyone stop me?
I can’t put all the blame on my friend. I do have to accept responsibility for my part in this debauchery. I was in charge of the cake. I bought the most decadent birthday cake available—buttercream frosting, cheesecake filling, and probably some other evil sugar loaded ingredient. I wouldn’t want my friend to think I scrimped on the cake for her special day.
And, drum roll please—birthday girl is my workout buddy. Why would she do this to me? Really, though, can I blame her. It’s only fair. After all I brought the cake. I was planning my sugar overload when I ordered the cake and again when I picked it up. This sugar binge didn’t happen by accident. Nope, it was planned. “It’s just one day,” we said to each other. Permission granted. Go ahead.
It’s over now though. The cake is gone. I now own all the calories—probably in the neighborhood of 3,000. But what’s done is done.
It’s been 8 hours since breakfast. I don’t think I can eat anything. I really feel sick. But when I do, it won’t be cake.
My ideal reader–Who are you, anyway?
When I told some friends that I was writing a blog, their first response was, “are you making any money yet?”
“Money?” I thought. “Blogs are for making money?” But I didn’t say that because I figured they must know more about blogging than I did. Heck, almost anyone knows more about blogging than I do. That won’t be the case for long though. In case you haven’t noticed, this “Fundamentals of Blogging Course” is actually paying off. Go figure, huh?
Sadly, but not surprisingly, none of my friends asked to read my blog or even where they could find it. Good thing I’m not counting on them to buy anything!
One of my co-workers asked me if I was going to be published. “Published? Well, I’m publishing posts when I can remember how.” That was the end of that conversation.
I’m still no closer to finding my ideal reader, but I know you’re not a shopper or a publisher.
In real life, meaning physical not virtual, who are my friends? If you are my friend, there’s an almost 100% probability that you are fit and healthy or that you want to be. That’s what I do almost all day every day. I am a personal trainer. I work out, and I eat healthy most of the time.
If clubbing is one of your main weekend activities, chances are we’ve never met.
I also do yoga. This is probable is not surprising—fitness and all. But yoga ceased to be merely a physical activity for me several years ago. Yoga is part of my spiritual life now, and, yeah, I have spiritual friends.
Now we’re making progress—a physically healthy, spiritual person who doesn’t live a party lifestyle.
What else? Oh yeah, the age thing. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know age is just a number and old is a state of mind. But I’m 68. While that may not be interesting in and of itself, it is a big attraction for the event called “JB”—that is me. I never intended to be old, but hey, if I’m going to be old, I’m going to be the best old person out here. Old people like me; I inspire them. Young people like me because they think I’m proof that getting old may not suck. For whatever reason, many of my friends think their age or my age or anything about age is important.
Making big strides here: my ideal reader is a healthy, spiritual person who doesn’t party and is mindful of aging.
But enough about me! Who are you! Finding our who you are has got to be the most unexpected benefit of blogging. I had no idea you were there. I’m excited about getting to know you. And if you’ve even read this far—well, I’m not sure we can be friends. Most of my friends have shorter attention spans than I do, and I can read blogs of about 500 words before …
When I look at my day now as a personal trainer, there are times when I can’t believe it is me. I pretty much work out all day or help others workout. I am not a natural athlete, but somewhere along the way things changed.
I never liked to go outside and play. I had an awkward walk, was uncoordinated and had no balance. Recess was painful. I was usually the last one picked for any team sport. I don’t think Charlie Brown existed when I was growing up, but he and I have a lot in common.
Other kids watched the clock waiting to hear the recess bell. They would be bouncing off their seats as the teacher said, “Wait. Put your books in your desk. Then you can go.” It was a stampede to see who could get out the door the fastest.
If the recess game was softball, I knew my name would not get called. The rules were the team captain picked one boy then one girl, and everyone had to play. When I was the only one left, the captain would sigh and wave me over and say, “Okay, we’ll take her.” Like he had a choice, but hearing those words. Well, it made it worse.
Three outs happened fast, and I usually didn’t have to go to bat. When I did walk to the plate, bat in hand I knew what to expect. Taunts from the team in the field: “Easy out! Easy out!” My teammates would groan loudly. It couldn’t get much worse than this.
When the recess game was dodge ball, I thought I might actually have a chance to stay in the game. I mean dodge ball, come on. Just don’t get hit by the frigging ball. How hard is that! But I was like a fence post cemented in the dirt. A target. The person with the ball always went for me because I was, once again, an easy out.
The other kids made it look so easy. Running. Laughing. Weaving in and out around each other’s sweating bodies. I was dizzy watching all the activity. It was like I was the maypole, the flag pole and everyone and everything else whirled around me.
My brain was busier than my body. “Run right, run left!” I would start to move, or at least I thought I was starting to move, and then the blonde girl with the perky pony tail would run in front of me. Giggling, she was always giggling. The cute boy holding the red dimpled dodge ball aimed for her, fully intending to miss. The ball hit me instead. I didn’t groan or squeal or make any of the noises the other kids made when they were “out.” I just turned and walked out of the circle.
Usually, I didn’t have to go outside for recess. When I said I needed to finish my homework or was writing a story or reading a book and wanted to stay inside, I think the teachers felt sorry for me. It was such a relief to escape the horrors of the playground.
In the sixth grade I read the poem “Outwitted” by Edwin Markham. The words gave me hope. I don’t know why because I certainly wasn’t going to make my fellow dodge ball players think any more highly of me. But I read and re-read the poem, imagining myself in a more inclusive future.
“He drew a circle that shut me out- Heretic, rebel, a thing to flout.
But love and I had the wit to win:
We drew a circle and took him In!”
Week 2, Day 1 of our 12-week workout program
If today’s workout is any indication, our 12-week program is going to be amazingly insane. It started this morning at 6:00am when Tonette showed up for spin class. Honestly, that woman never stops. “I’m doing two workout a day, starting this week,” she said.
At 6:50 am Sheila showed up. Sheila is also Tonette’s mother. This is the best part of living in a small town! Seriously, it is just like in the movies—everyone does know everyone!
Sheila and I like quiet for our yoga, so we booted Tonette out—not an easy task. I basically had to push Tonette off her bike. The day was just getting started.
Workout time for “The Three of Us” was 1:30 pm. When I arrived at the gym, Tonette was busily revising our workout and told me that Alisha’s sister, Jazmyn, was joining us. “Now we are four,” she said. Tonette is madly scratching through her planned workout, reorganizing and restructuring. She enters in pencil every exercise, reps, sets and weight in a small notebook she carries from station to station in the gym.
“Let’s just go,” I said. “We’ll figure it out.”
Tonette loves to be in charge, and I love to let her take over planning our workouts. As a personal trainer, I am so ready to not be in charge of a workout. But even by my standards, and I tend to be a little obsessive about planning workouts, Tonnette is over the top.
We decided to partner up. Jazmyn and I would be together; Tonette and Alisha would pair up.
We love our gym, but it is small and has limited equipment. This usually isn’t a problem, even when the gym is crowded. But today it was. We all wanted the same weights, the same bench, the same everything! Tonette changed the order of the exercises and moved us around, and we still argued. It was laughable.
At one point, after Tonette had told me three different things to do, I balked. “I’m doing cross cable flies,” I said.
“That’s not the fly we’re doing,” she replied.
“It’s the fly I’m doing,” I said and set up the cables for the exercise. Smiling, I looked over at her and said, “Bitch.”
“You’re the bitch,” she smiled back pointing her finger.
Like I said, amazingly insane. Workout time tomorrow, 2:30 pm.