Running on Empty

Get up off the couch…and go straight to the cookie jar. An unreasonable request from my conscious is telling me to put on my running shoes and go outside for a long journey around the neighborhood, however, my immediate urge is to eat the cookie and sit back down on the couch.  As soon as I sit back down, I find myself seeing work out video commercials, a news story on Jillian Michaels, and a Weight Watchers Program infomercial.  The questions then become, what happened to the work out drive and how does one get the motivation back?

Back in “the day”, only a few short years ago, we felt young, invincible, and could bounce back from a night out on the town in eight hours.  Now that we are past our college-kegger and fraternity house partying days, we think that the weight might actually fall off considering we aren’t drinking as much beer.  If we aren’t taking the calories in, then we surely will be losing them, right?  However, we are at the age where our metabolisms begin to slow down and our bodies change from adolescents to men and women.  We have to move our tushies, get up, get out, and stop eating swirly cakes.  But how does one find the time or motivation?

Whether you are working 70-80 hours per week, a nine-to-five, or have yet to find that perfect job, we all have at least a half an hour per day to ourselves.  As most people do, we would like to take that half an hour to get on Facebook, watch our favorite show, or text that someone special.  We need to find that “oomph” to get our butts moving again.  Throw on those ridiculously tight clothes that have now probably gotten even tighter because of the lack of exercise, and run around the track like a mad man! We not only need motivation, but someone figuratively and literally pushing us out the door.

Oh how the mighty have fallen.  We used to look so good in a bathing suit and tight jeans.  Now, we are jealous of 21-year-olds’ thighs and 5-year-olds’ energy levels.  Yet, if we sit down and truly think about it – we don’t need to reinvent the wheel.  The old-fashioned tactics still work.  “Go play with your friends outside,” the mother (or father) voice says to the 10-year-old self. If you find that you don’t have friends, then go play with your dog.  If you don’t have a dog, then go rescue a dog, and play with your new dog.  And if worse comes to worse, go outside with a soccer ball and kick it to your imaginary friend.  This may be the pre-video game and internet explosion activity, however, it will help us on our journey back to a healthier, lovelier, person.  And maybe, just maybe, by taking this approach, we will grow (emotionally, not physically of course) as people. Just another thought from a graduate’s perspective.

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