DAY 16 – Wednesday the 25th
Proto-superhero/early 1930s radio detective The Shadow would utter his catchphrase at the end of each episode, “The weed of crime bears bitter fruit. Crime does not pay!” One could apply that line of thinking to jealousy. While I knew that this undertaking would be difficult, it’s hard not to look at people, both men and women, who are farther down that road and be envious. Most of the weekend was spent watching the NBA playoffs and bits and pieces of the NFL draft and while it’s fun to imagine getting into that kind of shape, it’s also a bit disheartening to see how far that road is.
One of the main reasons that I, and many others, avoid going to big gyms is due to the fact that those first steps have to be spent in the shadow of perfectly toned bodies. It takes a lot of confidence to be able to walk into a gym and begin those workouts. Even at my small apartment gym it was not exactly easy fitting in. The free weights range from 8 lbs all the way up towards 70-80 lbs. As someone who is using weights closer to the lower end, it makes me feel a bit exposed to use those. Fortunately it’s rarely a packed gym so you can work out in anonymity fairly easily. But I do wonder when I have to move and use the university gym if I’ll feel better about walking in there to use all the equipment.
I never once used the gym here in Corvallis. I had many friends who did, even my elderly Japanese instructor, and I always got good feedback about how friendly it was at the gym. While the gym could be packed and you might have to wait for a machine, it was welcoming to people at all fitness levels. Certainly that’s something I’m hoping for in Utah.
The Shadow’s advice rings true even when talking about jealousy. Being envious of people in better shape won’t help me in any meaningful way. Envy won’t make my gut smaller or give me better cardio. Unfortunately, one does have to grind and keep chipping away day after day. It’s a mindset that’s difficult to get behind but once you can realize that the only thing that matters is your happiness with yourself. Avoiding outside comparisons will increase your personal happiness and you’ll slowly see those results.
That day off did wonders. Not only did my calf feel butter but now I’m hitting sub-16:00 times daily without feeling dead like the first time I did that when I wasn’t really ready. At this pace it’s possible I could start hitting sub-15:00 and sub-14:00 times fairly soon. It certainly is amazing to me that this could be done in 16 days.
SONG OF THE DAY: “Green” by Atheist