Monday, December 22, 2008

Ho, Ho, Ho...?

Jennifer and I braved the traffic and the crowds at the mall for a little last minute shopping today, and I realized a few things:

1. I hate the mall
2. I hate crowds (see #1)
3. Online shopping is definitely the way to go (see #1 & #2)
4. There are a lot of overweight and out of shape people in this world, and they all congregate at mall food courts.

From my observations, the mall Santa was actually looking pretty slim and fit compared to some of the people that I saw today, and it was honestly pretty sad. At a time of the year where people are thinking of which gifts to buy for their loved ones, no one seemed to understand that the most important gift wasn't one that they were going to find on a sale rack.

In another week, thousands and thousands of people will be making New Year's resolutions to "lose weight" and get in shape. Unfortunately, most of them will fail after a few short weeks and fall back on the poor habits and lifestyles that they swore to change at the drop of the New Year's ball.

So why not change things this year? Instead of promising yourself that you're going to go to the gym (just like you did last year, and the year before, and the year before that...), why not give your health as a "gift" to someone else? Promise your spouse that you will faithfully exercise 2-3 mornings every week. Promise your children that you will go to your favorite bootcamp every Thursday after work. Tell your parents that this year, along with the tie and scarf tucked away under the tree, you're going to give them the most important gift that any parent could want: a healthier, happier child. Hold yourself accountable not only to yourself, but to the people that you care about the most...because they care about you too, and want you to be the best that you can possibly be.

This year, make it a holiday season to remember. Show the special people in your life just how much you care about them by letting them know that you "get it." What better gift could there ever be than to ensure that you will be happier, healthier and active for a long time to come, not just for yourself but for the people that love you, too?

...And stay away from the malls. Trust me on that one.

Happy holidays, everyone. Be safe and be healthy...and the happiness will follow.

-Jonathan

Monday, December 15, 2008

How About a Quickie?

...Post, that is.

Ok, I'll admit it: being too much of a perfectionist at times can be, well, problematic. That's why, when I'm low on time and don't feel like I'll be able to write up a good blog post, I'll let the blog, um, well, languish.

Kevin calls me out on a weekly basis about this, and I have to admit: he has a point. So here's a little something that I recently ran across on a forum that I thought was just about perfect. If this doesn't get you excited to lift, you need to have your heart examined!

Have you ever done deadlifts? I mean, have you gone into the gym thinking like. "ok today is deadlift day!"? No?

I do.

I think that there is no other exercise like it in the world. I fear it, hate it, and love it. I look forward to deadlifts like a child looks for candy. It is a drug and I am hooked. Tonight I go forth to do battle with it.

I feel nervous, like I was before my first real kiss. I will be singularly focused tonight to get a certain weight for 1 rep. This is the key for future deadlift workouts. I feel that this exercise could in fact have its own day if I could find the time. I must hit this weight, there is no question I am ready for it, just a question if my mental state will be strong enough to get it done.

I picture it now as I sit here waiting for the time to go lift to appear. The bar is loaded 4 plates on each side, it is resting on the floor. I see a face from a nightmare on the bar, it appears to be laughing at me, mocking me, taunting me to try to lift it. I walk over, squat down and set my hands. I breath deeply eyes not really in the present, mind tightening down to a narrow laser sharpened beam of utter concentration.

I take another breath, and lift it off the floor. I struggle, feeling the bar scrap my shins bloody. I feel the titanic strain on my arms, grip, shoulder, all over as the bar clears my knees. I stand up and pull the shoulders back, sweat running in a flood down my face, veins bulging on my neck. I lock it out and lower it to the floor.

It is done! The battle is over and I have beaten the demon, it no longer taunts me but rather sulks away to wait till next week. It never really is defeated, just beaten back for a time. I wipe my brow, my whole body is afire with a righteous blaze of accomplishment. Then, I realize that next time...next time is fast approaching for battle. I must stand ready each time to defeat the deadlift.

Good stuff!

-Jonathan