My main fitness goal is to not fall into a debilitating depression. Which is not exactly a storyline that would get you cast on a reality TV fitness show.1
The meat machine that is my body shares this goal and has recently — and not unreasonably — demanded more activity. It controls the bulk of the seratonin supply, and throttles flow when it feels neglected. I haven’t gone running for many weeks now, for a variety of excuses that are too flimsy to deserve full sentences: “Well, you know, ah… “ or perhaps “Eeeee, yeah, I’ve been kind of, uh…” while my hands writhe about like they’re manipulating an unfamiliar accordion.
I’ve offered my body a compromise: a few minutes daily of gym-class warm-ups. Squats, push-ups, jumping jacks, that sort of thing. Actually just those three things. It’s a minimum payment. Just a little something to let it know that I know what my body is still owed.
A few minutes each morning helps. And it’s so easy it makes a guy wonder why he doesn’t do it every day, why he hasn’t been doing it every day his whole life, but I guess…
I’m debating whether to add this routine to Streaks. There’s a whole category of things in life that I’ll do happily until it feels like I have to do it. Then? Middle fingers raised at some invisible authority figure. Sometimes tracking habits helps me stick with them, sometimes it has the opposite effect. A quantum uncertainty; measurement affects the outcome.
But I did push-ups yesterday, and I did push-ups today, and I’m going to do them tomorrow, damn it. Christmas push-ups! Are you watching, Santa? I am trying to be a healthy boy! Bring me a treat.
- Or maybe it would? I mostly only watch Queer Eye and home makeover shows on hotel cable. And the occasional Ninja Warrior binge. ↩