While most people would start wondering about their bills and their car or whatever, for some reason, I have been transfixed about my personal training. I know, I should be thinking about dumping my cable package and holding off on turning on my heat to keep the gas and electricity down. But instead, I wonder about my health. Wednesday was my last official paid session, and while I have an agreement with Jon in regards to maintaining a somewhat regimented workout routine at his gym, it still worries me. Without that personal one on one guidance to push and challenge me to new levels, will I fall off the wagon and regress a little?
Personally, I doubt such a thing will happen to me. I’ve made enough progress to continue a good routine on my own time, even if my idea of weight lifting is not quite akin to Jon’s ideas. But I’m still worried, because a lot of times you need that extra push to make sure you are not falling off the rails. But at least I will continue with the three-day-a week routine in regards to the working out, but who knows when I will be able to get more money into the coffers to supplement my “real” workouts. I’ve never been one to admit it, but I don’t mind doing the heavy Olympic-style weight lifting that leaves my wrists sore and my legs screaming out of anger. I don’t mind putting myself through the ringer in regards to these workouts, because if anything, it is working and making me a better and more healthy person. This will probably end up being one of my worst years financially, and my subsequent lack of funds will hurt me in just about every way imagined. It means I have to put off getting a new bed once again, especially since my car is once again in the shop and costing me money I don’t have. If anything, the best part about staying at my parent’s house and watching over my sister and their property and feeding the dogs last week was the fact I got to sleep in a much more comfortable bed than my own. It was a revelation to say the least, for I felt better and had a little more energy than I normally would. But another setback now is the fact I’m going to have to work my shoes to the bone before I get some new ones. If I want good worthy shoes that will maintain the wear and tear I will place onto them, I will at least need to fork out a good 130 clams. Of course, I am running low on my b12 supplements as well, which means I will need to drop some more money soon to make fill up my coffers. Not to mention all of the other things that come along with working out on a regular basis, like finding good comfortable clothes and then washing the said clothes, which makes the bills go up.
My money troubles sure make for a troublesome situation for me, and this is a situation I have yet to really address as I have moved along. Why are so many poor people overweight? Now before you start sending hate mail to Jon’s message box, this conversation has come up quite often in the discussion of our country’s waistline problem. The primary issue with obesity amongst the poor is mostly contained in the food that is most available to them. Those super cheap, off label cans of spaghetti, those cheap cans of syrup soaked “fruit,” those cheap frozen pizzas filled with processed junk and chemicals and of course the Ramen noodles we love and cherish so much are all going to place a toll on the body. There has been some good ideas on how to conquer this problem, but so far, these solutions are mostly localized rather than implemented on a larger scale. http://www.npr.org/blogs/thesalt/2014/11/10/361803607/how-double-bucks-for-food-stamps-conquered-capitol-hill
We have to remember one important thing though; food isn’t the only part of the equation to good health. Exercise is extremely impotent, if not more so. At least in my case, the eating part of the equation has been controlled better by my new perception of food. Food isn’t necessarily pleasure and female companionship for me anymore, for now I merely regard it as something to stop the freaking headaches I get when my body is low on fuel. Yeah, my old relationship with food is still quite a bizarre one, but when feeding an addiction for so long, finally breaking through can be tough. But with all of my financial problems slowly but surely coming into the forefront, should I even ponder the idea of spending money on personal training or even a gym?
Now for me, the answer will be a resounding yes, merely because it has become a part of my life and has made me a better person. It is finally paying off in my personal, giving me the confidence to let go of certain fears and anxieties that became such a fabric of my life for the better part of a decade. I look at what happened to me on Monday as a prime example. With no car, I have been taking the bus whenever it was necessary. While I could take a bus that goes down my street quite easily, I instead walk for a good 20 minutes or so to a bus line that is a “main vein” that goes to the central transit center downtown. So right there, I have taken a little initiative to go out walking, even if it is in the heat of the day (which it was roughly 89 degrees at the time). On my way to the gym, my friend texts me about seeing a movie called “Birdman” that night. Since I got in early to do my workout, walking the nearly four miles from Parsons Training to the movie theater was certainly a possibility, for I had the time to partake in such an exercise. But I opted for something different, something I would have deemed quite stupid back in the day. I was gonna run to the movie theater, with the details be damned. I didn’t have a change of shirt for the run, so my sweaty shirt I was wearing was the one I would be running in, which would not just be uncomfortable but might also scrap up my nipples (trust me, bloody nips are a runner’s worst nightmare!) Plus I didn’t have my good running shoes, but rather my standard workout shoes that didn’t have a whole lot of tread left on them. Plus I had a whole bag of stuff to run with, including two water bottles that I filled up and my good clothes that I came to the gym in (I don’t like wearing sweaty gym clothes, especially on the bus). If anything, the whole thing seemed rather crazy, especially when you look at the fact I did a lot of push presses and tired myself out with alternating side raises and PVC push-ups. But at the time, it seemed like a good idea.
So I started running at Wilmot and Broadway, quickly learning that Broadway is very much like a wavy potato chip, constantly going up and down even though the street moved at a descent in total. Not to mention I had to be completely aware of the traffic, mainly because Tucsonans love making blind turns without looking at the sidewalk (Case in point, when I crossed the street to get to Wilmot and Broadway, some old fart in a truck didn’t seem to care about the fact I had the technical right of way. I tapped his camper as he passed, but I doubt he heard because he was old. And then as I am running, some guy tearing out of the Savers thrift store didn’t bother stopping either, like waving to me in forgiveness was perfectly acceptable even though he almost ruined my run. These incidents both happened within the first half mile of my run!) After those incidents, I fortunately didn’t have to worry about anything else for the rest of the run. But one thing I did learn about myself. I did make the stupid decision to run across to the opposite of the street, only to realize it was a stupid decision and then “jay-run” my way back to the other side. Fortunately the traffic was fairly light at that time, and the threat of becoming street pizza wasn’t a big one. By the time I hit El Con Mall, I was thoroughly soaked. Carrying around 15 pounds of stuff was a bit of a rarity for me, so I sweated a little heavier than normal. But it was kind of fun to do a one way run, which is rare when you really think about it. While I had to learn a couple hard lessons that night in regards to my backpack (it is not sweat resistant and my regular clothes got a little wet!), it was another reminder of why I put myself in this situation, finances be damned. The good thing though, was the risk payed off quite well. I succeeded in a time where failures continue to be present in my life. I had enough time to cool down, and the movie “Birdman" was quite satisfying, helping me solve a long lost problem with a story I had been sitting on for years but never put on to paper. Hopefully it will be a good story with the added inspiration and the releasing of some personal demons the last two weeks, and maybe I can actually finish it now. I call the project “Sonmium,” or ‘dream’ in Latin.
There is always going to be people that use excuses to massage their fears about losing weight, using their situation to refrain from the harsh truth about exercise. It is hard. It is tough. It will make you sweat and feel disgusting. But here is another thing, it will help you live. While Tucson is not the norm in regards to public running paths and spaces, I can be thankful I have a lot of these amenities at my disposal. I should have used this in my last blog, for it would have been a perfect reason for stating why I like living in my home town. If anything, you have no real excuse to be unhealthy in Tucson. While we do have an expanding restaurant and beer industry in this town, we also have an expanding public health sector that allows us to work out for free. Near my parent’s house is a rather small park that has a lot of equipment you can use to work out. Even along the river walk near my house, there are little workout stations that are perfect for arm exercises and push-ups. While there seems to be a lot of obese and unhealthy looking people in my neighborhood, I find it sad they don’t use these great public utilities to their advantage. I think that is why I continue to get giddy about the continuation of the river walk between Ajo and Silverlake. I will actually be able to run to downtown if I so please. I just have to keep running the path I have been running, and pretty soon it will be much nicer and more full filling. So even though I might take a little detour with my one on one personal training, I at least know there is plenty of resources at my disposal.
About Parsons Training
Parsons Training is a Tucson leader in fitness and personal wellness training. Every personal trainer with this company designs and implements effective fitness programs for their clients; these programs serve as the foundation for good health, fitness, and wellness. Additional information about Parsons Training is available at http://www.parsonspersonaltraining.com
Any views or opinions presented in this blog are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the company.
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Steve, a Parsons Training Client, went from 400 pounds to Running half-marathons, from lifting pizzas to lifting hundreds of pounds through training with us.
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