Monday, January 17, 2011

Late, But Great, New Years Resolution

I've never been big on New Years Resolutions. I think they're kind of hokey, and the vast majority (read: all) of the time I make one, it never fails to fail. I think it's because all my resolutions have always been so specific:

Lose twenty pounds.

Go to the gym five times a week.

Save more money.

Etc, etc, etc.

These resolutions, for me, do not a good year make. I can hold myself to them for a few weeks, but then it just becomes too much. I get bored, I get annoyed, I get distracted.

I went to visit my parents this weekend, and on Saturday my mom and I went to see her best friend, a woman who is like a second mother to me, and she looked at me and said, "You're in a really good place right now". And I am - I'm not sure when it happened, or how it happened, but I am in a better place right now than I have been in over a year. Over New Years weekend something clicked, something in me snapped, and unconsciously I decided to change. I didn't say I need to change, I decided to change. This, I think, is the biggest factor between resolutions that are kept and resolutions that fail.

It wasn't as easy, though, as deciding to change. Change encompasses so, so much. What am I changing? What needs to be changed? How am I going to facilitate these changes that I've decided to make?

I wasn't sure how to navigate these questions, this broad area of newness. But then, something happened. I bought this:

Honestly, I only bought it because I liked the colors, and the graphics on it were pretty cool. It shows an evolutionary progression from an amoeba, through various animals, to a present-day man hauling a briefcase and smoking, to a more evolved present day man riding a bike with wind turbines behind him.

But I've been staring at that big, bold word in the middle of the bottle and it dawned on me: Change was not what I needed to do. I'm a pretty decent human being as I am. What I need to do is EVOLVE. There is an inherent difference, in my mind, between change and personal evolution. It is the difference between saying something within me is not good enough, and I am good as I am but I can be better.

I am good as who I am, but I want to be great. I want to be amazing. I want to be the best person that I can possibly be.

My New Years resolution? It's simple.


Thursday, January 13, 2011

Body-Fat Challenge

Since I moved here in April, I had driven past Mike Duffy's Gym almost every day. And every few months, I saw a sign posted outside for a Body Fat Challenge. Mike Duffy, the gym owner, holds a 6-week contest every season where, for a certain fee, you get 6 personal training sessions, unlimited boot camp classes, nutrition guidance, and unlimited use of the cardio area of his gym.

I had wanted to do this since I moved here, but I always made excuses. I didn't have time, I didn't have money, my arthritis was too bad to work out. But really, the only reason I didn't do it was because at some point over the past year and a half, I had lost myself. I stopped caring about myself, I stopped taking care of myself and putting myself first. I lost myself in an abusive and demeaning relationship, where my single concern was whether my girlfriend was going to get mad at me, and what I needed to do to avoid it.

It was an extremely unhealthy situation for me to be in and I let myself, my confidence, my strength, my voice, the very things that make me who I am, fly out the window. I stopped running, I stopped working out, I stopped exerting myself, all in an effort to put all my strength into keeping my girlfriend happy.

We've since broken up, and it was a very difficult and painful process realizing all of that. Acknowledging that not only had I suppressed my personality so much that people who met me didn't like me, but that I had alienated the people that actually did like me for who I am.

The end of November and all of December was a time of serious introspection for myself, and I've since realized that I don't even know who I am anymore. I look in the mirror and I don't recognize the person staring back at me.

Flash forward to today, and I'm coming out of my depression. I'm working out, losing weight, making friends, and generally living life. This is where Mike Duffy comes into play. I'm using his 6-week body fat blast to help me get my life back, to help me get my body back, to help me get me back.

It's easier now that I'm spending all of my time focusing on me.