Day 7: The Lull

Last week was great. I went to the gym (almost) every day. I pushed myself. I exceeded my expectations. I also lost three pounds.

Then there’s this week.

It’s Wednesday and tonight I have things to look forward to. The Origin series Game 2 is on tonight. It’s a pivotal game. If the New South Wales Blues don’t win, then they lose the series to Queensland. I don’t want them to lose. Like any sports fan, I have pre-game anxiety on behalf of my team.

I’m also looking forward to a night with my wife. As much as she hates sports, I know she’ll indulge me and think I’m cute. And since she’s been feeling poorly these last few days, I’m hoping that her doctor’s visit today has helped. She’s getting her prescriptions filled and we’ll be back to our semblance of normal.

And then there’s the gym.

I miss my morning workout because sleep is just stupidly hard to come by. I miss one day without a sleeping pill and I’m a mess. Last night, I had a sleeping pill and slept an extra three hours to make up for the deficit. Those three hours coincided with my workout time.

So tonight I can go to the gym and do kickboxing. It’s an hour and a half class that ends at 7:30. Kickboxing is my wheelhouse. It’s close enough to my TKD training from high school that I should be pretty comfortable doing it. It also sounds like a lot of fun. No one loves punching things more than me.

 

However…

It ends at 7:30 pm. The game starts at 7:30 pm. And my wife gets home at 5:30 pm. To workout, I have to miss time from both of them.

This week is a lull for me. It’s a lull in the initial excitement. It’s a lull in my initial confidence. I’m doing new things again and now I’m nervous. That has taken some wind out of my sails.

It’s also where I realize just how much I have to sacrifice in order to achieve my fitness goals. Time with my wife, time watching footy, sleep – I have to change my usual combination of these things to accommodate my fitness. Something’s gotta give.

Here’s something you can’t be told about fitness: sacrifices have to be made. Sure, you may expect to sacrifice cookies or alcohol or some combination of food. But you don’t expect to sacrifice time with your family or time doing your hobbies. Even if you’re not training for something specific, like a marathon or something like my own body goals (which are quite specific), your physical fitness will require this agonizing type of sacrifice.

But think of it this way: by not focusing on your fitness, you’re already making a sacrifice. You’re sacrificing your health daily. If I wake up early enough to go to my morning workout, I’m losing 2-3 hours of sleep. But I’m still getting 7-8 hours of sleep, which is all the sleep I need. Yeah, staying in bed and cuddling my cats is far more enjoyable than having my coach kick my ass, at least initially. But it will be less enjoyable in, say, ten years when I’m in bed because I’m short of breath because I never did any cardio and gained another 100 pounds.

This week is a lull. I’m a bit down about it. But I’m trying to look at it in a different way. This is the time to get into a rhythm, to find a routine. Basically, I’m checking out which sacrifices need to be made. Ultimately, I will be able to enjoy everything more when I’m healthier. So this is the crucial time when I find out how I’m going to do that. In the lulls. That’s where all the work gets done.

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