By Steve Sharpton, Parsons Training, Tucson, Arizona
August 9, 2015
I got to tell you, writing a blog is not easy, not by any stretch of the imagination. I have written before about the occasional mental blocks I get from trying o figure out what to write, especially during weeks where I seem to be doing very little in the gym and in the running track (like this entire past month….wish summer would end!). Anyway, trying to figure out what to write is always a big puzzle, for so many times I have wanted to pontificate about something and then realized “There is no way I am going to stretch this out for an entire blog article.” So yea, I run into those problems, mainly because you can only wax poetic so much about King of the Hill, Lord of the Rings and various classic movies that a great many people rarely see in this overplayed comic book movie landscape. Personally, I’m hoping I don’t bottom out anytime soon, but I have become frustrated with a lot of things this summer. For one, I’m frustrated in my job search, for my current job just messes up my body and restricts my ability to actually workout for a good four days of the week. I’m so hurt and bothered and tired (try working 36 hours in a 60-hour stretch) I don’t even want to run or do anything.
The stress on my ankles is the worst part, for the inability to handle my body is something that I need to maintain. I have seen my running distance go down to less than 10 miles a week, and it is thoroughly pissing me off simply because I need to do more, not because I want to do more. But it is this sweltering, ridiculous and unending heat. Call me weak minded or whatever, it has throughly beaten me this summer, and the added length of the monsoon seasons has made it more difficult as my body is drained out every day before I even go for a run. And the fatigue. Tuesday I felt pretty horrible, for I was so tired and out of it that I considered that workout a pretty bad. I mean, I had to bail on a back squat, which to me was the ultimate sign that I am effectively being drained and set back by my circumstances. I don’t know how so many people handle it. Right now, that whole mantra of “Why be healthy?” is starting to swirl around in my head again, and it is making me once again stress eat and lay around the house all day rather than look for work or work out. I’m, stubborn so to speak, for I haven’t really slipped up on my diet and I haven’t really given up the workout thing. But it is clear things need to change soon, because I’m falling back again and it frustrates me.
There are many days where I wish this fitness thing was easy, and I had the money to go train in better climate during the summer season we have in Arizona. No one should be living in a 100-degree house and expect to be healthy. The sweating alone makes me wish for death, and many times over I have decided to not run merely because I was throughly sapped and empty. But it is hard, for the maintenance side of the coin is something that really is really compelling me to leave this hell hole of a state I live in. The heat was pretty much the reason why I have decided to not be an electrician, even though I was fairly good at it. I just can’t function or operate in it, and it makes me lazy. I’m starting to believe that I will ultimately fail at my weight loss challenge for Ragnar Las Vegas (reach 230 pounds) and I haven’t really put any work into a book I wanted to write that was inspired by this blog. It’s just been a comatose kind of summer, and the heat is is just having adverse affects on my mental health and well being. I hate being melodramatic, for it seems so insincere. But since I have this forum, I would rather divulge the struggles I have been having the last couple months rather than blurt out random clues the form of memes on Facebook on something. I just think more than anything the stress has been bothering me the most. My car once again has a little problem that I have to keep putting off to fix so I can keep up with my bills. The same deal with my phone, where I am extra careful to not crack it any more until I can figure out how much it will cost to fix the screen. Until further notice, I have to run with a plastic baggie around it so it doesn’t get moisture between the cracks. I have been so tired that I am starting to drink coffee on a regular basis again, especially on days where I go to work and have to get up at 4 a.m. to prepare for a 12-hour work day that will be equally hot, humid and mind numbing. And of course, the diet is getting rough and dull. Rice, beans, potatoes, kale, tomatoes, onions, peanuts and bananas seem to be the main, boring staples. I think that is why I have eaten pasta twice this month, including getting some Gardein meatballs and have also gone to Chipotle three times! (I haven’t been to Chipotle that many times in a month since 2014). Plus I was so happy and joyful when I got some fresh pro-nuts from Christa (the new apple cinnamon will be a surefire hit!). This may not seem like anything, but finding joy in eating is not something I want to have in my system again. Once again I am struggling to maintain my “food is sustenance” mantra I managed to live out for the last six or seven months. I ran into a good article on Yahoo that might help me regain some leverage against the problem, for I really need to set the clock back now. https://www.yahoo.com/health/how-to-curb-emotional-eating-after-a-breakup-or-125949915352.html Now I’m not recovering from a break-up (sometimes I wish I was though), but the advice that was offered was pretty good in the least. Trying to control by not denying yourself the pleasure and keeping your home a clean food zone is a good start. I have to regain control. I need to. I don’t want this to turn into another 2014.
I know the big problem right now is my lack of food variety, which is something that has been looked at in the behaviors of human and animals alike. http://www.vox.com/2015/8/7/9113645/science-food-hangover Right now, the variety is lacking because I’m on a budget, and the old addictive nature of my past life has been coming back on me. People might say junk food is junk food, but then again, I ate all the varieties of the junk food spectrum, which is why I was able to maintain those urges for so long. Personally, maybe it is just discipline or mental control, but I just envy those that can maintain a juicing lifestyle or eat nothing but raw food or even do those ridiculous cleanses and detoxes that are kind of unnecessary. Either way, the research indicated in the article is stuff I have touched on before, only the previous blog posts were pretty focused on junk food only. Nowadays, people are starting to study the effects of why we fall off the wagon on the healthy stuff. I guess this is why I came to terms with the idea of me being a food addict, for I know this is an affliction that strikes lot of people. But my addiction may not be based on need and the need for good feelings anymore, it is based more around the idea of monotony and the lack of change. Maybe that is why the bastardization of our food culture keeps getting more and more outrageous, like people making bacon meatloaf and deep fried watermelon, discovering new ways to make ourselves unhealthy merely to the effect the old standards just don’t excite us anymore.
I guess this is subject someone needs to touch base on….Does a boring lifestyle compel someone to have a worse diet? It certainly seems fitting, for the restaurant industry has been getting more and more unhealthy here in Tucson. Places like Saint House and Food for Ascension Cafe, places that focus on a little healthier and finer cuisine, are getting beaten out by the pizza joints and the greasy spoons. I am not a unique person here in Tucson, for working my current job makes me realize how lucky I am to have few things and no desire for consumerist items like televisions, video games and clothes. So many of the people I work with kill their bodies much like myself, only they work a second job much of the time to maintain their vices. But then again, they may need those things to get away from the monotony as well, which is something I don’t do at all. I believe the work monotony drives a lot of people to bad eating habits, because if you can’t afford to really do anything other than work or eat, where are you going to take the adventures of life? Yeah, this might be a stretch, but when you ship and box some 800-1,000 orders a day, your mind can wander just to get away. And then 10 hours later you have to be up and ready to do it again.
Either way, I have to try and reset my will once again. I’ve had to do it a couple times already during this journey, but I honestly think this will be the toughest moment for me. I firmly believe I am at a crossroads right now. Do I continue going full tilt or do I just do it as a casual reminder that I can? Fortunately I have some new sessions coming in to help with the gym side, but the running side is definitely something I need to get back on. More than anything, the heat has made me hate this aspect of my fitness, and the humidity and the rain in the early evenings has messed up my running schedules. I don’t really know what to do at the moment, for I really need to get my mojo back and find something that will inspire me to work a little harder and set aside the pain in my feet and the fatigue in my body. Ragnar Las Vegas still feels so far away, and even though I want to run a couple half marathons later this year, I will have yet to register and thus have no incentive just yet. I don’t know what has hit me right now, but once again I can only describe it as a sort of melancholy. Perhaps I ma that opposing person that looks at winter in the same was as people look at summer.
Either way, I’m going to try and once again reset the clock on Monday in hopes of getting back some of my body’s gains and some of my fitness gains. I think falling behind makes it tough on my psyche, for the lack of achievement has been bothering me a bit. I just to find what was motivating me before and try to reapply it. I don’t have any ladies to impress or any competitions to prepare for. I think one thing that has been setting me back is trying to compare myself to others, and seeing the lack of results has made me jealous and angry with myself, so maybe just trying to clear my head of that nonsense will help. I really don’t know right now. The good thing is I recognize the slippage. The bad thing, I have to figure out how to stay away from the old habits that made the man I hated to be rather than the man I want to be.
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Meet the Author
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.
When you read this blog you are reading through the eyes of someone who is winning the battle of real weight loss. Steve is not a fitness professional, but he is someone we can all learn from.
Steve shares his journey once a week here on our blog. We hope that you find a spark of inspiration from reading his blog.
Any views or opinions presented in this blog are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the company. The author of this blog is an independent writer and is not an associate of Parsons Training, LLC. Any information or images displayed are done so solely at the authors discretion. Any dietary or fitness commentary is exclusively that of the author and in no way dictated by the company.