My Fitness Manifesto

Okay. Okay I know this is going to be a touchy post for some people. See, when talking about fitness and cosplay, it’s really easy to say something insensitive that can hurt others, or insult them.

Please keep in mind, the post below expresses only my views about myself: my body and my quality of life.

Fitness is a personal choice. If you’re happy with a little extra fluff, that’s cool. You be you. If you’re happy being that one dude who ran won a marathon in the Texas Heat at World con, jesus. How did you not die? Let alone attend panels and parties after? I mean, uh, also cool. What you do with and for your body is up to you, and only you. Variety is the spice of life.

Like I said, this is my views about myself. My fitness is my choice, and I made a decision last Friday: I am getting fit. 

Not my favourite look.

I want to look better than this.

I want to feel better than I did then.

What I Want:

I want to be the person who is comfortable with a busy weekend and the go-go-go life of Cons, and have the energy to keep up.

I want to be proud to wear my costumes, not just because of the hard work I put into them but also because they fit, and they fit well.

I want to enjoy posing for pictures, and not have the letdown after the photographer shows me a shot, realizing that I don’t look like how I felt.

I am disappointed in where I am now, and my lack of commitment in seeing my fitness plans through in the past year. While there have been many health reasons why I had to slow down, or take breaks, there weren’t as many as I was making myself believe.

I want to be the person I was a couple years ago. Before my thyroid gave up, and before I gave up:

Goal

This was when I was jogging three times a week.

How I’m Going to Get Fit:

(And I am going to get fit)

What I want, is attainable, it’s just going to take hard work and dedication. Kind of like building a costume. There’s shortcuts available to do hems, just like there are for diets, but those don’t hold up over time.

I sit at a desk all day, and most evenings. While I eat better than some friends I know, I still cave and indulge in things too often. Wine, cider, cheese, etc. More than exercise, diet affects how we look and feel. If you eat junk, you’re going to feel like junk. While if you eat better…guess what?

Right now I’m on day 5 of NeilaRey’s 30 Days of Change. It sucks ass. I’m sore every day and grumpy at myself for being so sore, and for not being able to do everything on her list. “Run Twenty Minutes” just isn’t happening. By August, maybe, but not today or even next week.

Same with pushups. I friggen hate pushups. More than any other exercise. I hate them because I feel weak and they pull on some scarring inside.

But here’s the raw and shitty truth: unless I stick to working on things every day, it’s just going to get worse. The more I slack off, the more I’ll feel like there’s nothing I can do to change any of that. But fact is, the only way to get better is to push my ass back into gear.

But yesterday, after finishing my run (cough, laboured jog), I finally hit that runner’s high. I’d never had it before. It’s this heady mixture of pain, euphoria and pride.

After my two minute run, I was sure I wouldn’t to be able to finish. I mean, a man who had grey hair trotted by me easily, the other runners were more fit, had easier gaits. They didn’t even look out of breath. But I kept going. Oddly enough, my three minute run was easier. And my 4 minute, about the same.

Every day as I flop over, groaning in bodily protest, my brain throws up its nubby neurons and shouts:

I did that. I didn’t think I could, but I DID.

Fitness is A Choice. MY Choice.

I can choose to be more sedentary, enjoy being lazy and eating (almost) whatever I want… but I know that I wouldn’t really be happy with that. Because I’m not happy with it now.

I can also choose to be extremely rigorous with fitness. Eating carefully measured portions and exercising vigourously every day. But I also know that my body can’t keep that pace up for long. Mainly because my thyroid doesn’t work 100% (I don’t even know if it’s at like… 50%? Probably less), so when my body is ready to shut down, it just shuts the hell down.

naps

I need to find a balance, between rest and pushing myself.  

There is a point that some people reach, where fitness isn’t really a choice but a mandate from their doctor. Even then, the doctor can’t do much unless that individual makes a conscious effort to change. ‘I’ll change tomorrow’, doesn’t cut it. Trust me, I’ve used that lie on myself so often, I started to believe it. All that lie did was make it easier to let myself down. 

I’m going to stumble again, I’m human. We all falter at some point. But if I can really focus on being better, and making that a habit, then a little stumble won’t turn into a faceplant into concrete where I lay there, groaning, until I suck it up enough to get up and try again.

And I will have to get up and try again because…

It’s Forever

Want to hear a horror story?

I’m dying one breath at a time. We all are. Every step, breath and bite we take is a drop from our pool of life. Eventually, that will run dry. Life is finite, just like us. We don’t get to control how big our pool is at birth, but we can control how much each drop takes from it. We can also control how much we get out of it.

I can’t control a lot of things: my thyroid issue, the weather (sigh. I’ve tried), or Acts of God (also tried). 

But I can control how much effort I put into getting fit and living well. Every day I put change off, the initial hurdle of it will get more difficult. It’s already hard, I don’t want to let it become nearly impossible. 

So I started my new life five days ago.

Life: Act II, Scene 1

  • Eat smaller portions
  • Eat healthier meals with more vegetables, less grains
  • Pack lunches for work, I can control the size of portions and what’s in it that way. Also, cheaper.
  • Drink more water and tea, less alcohol
  • Excercise every day. EVERY. FUCKING. DAY. Even if it’s just a walk, or taking the stairs at work.
  • Move because I can. Stop taking that for granted. 

Running Trail

I’ve stopped waiting for a nice day, I live in Canada. Those are rare.

Like I said at the beginning, this is my own opinion concerning myself. If you feel inspired to get fit, all the power to you. If you are happy the way you are, likewise. Fitness should be your choice, and you should feel confident and happy with it, regardless of your decision.

xox Calamity

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