Dark Chest Of Wonders


Right, so yesterday I was very, very adamant on not allowing the “adult life” get in the way of your fitness goals. The truth is, many of us will get more and more sedentary as we age and worse yet, will see our metabolism begin to slow after age thirty. To put us into a deeper hole, we tend to have our eyes glued to the television set, which unless one is watching sports (my Browns, or in Pittsburgh’s case, the Steelers), should be a new-age cardinal sin. Why? Look at all of these new fads out in the limelight today. We have the Atkins, Keto, Metabolic, Weight Watchers, and Zone diets among others designed to aid Americans in weight loss. Then we see other products that never work long term such as Insanity, the latest cardio machines that always tend to burn five times the calories yet are constantly changing year in and year out, one size, fits all workouts from what I like to call tourist trainers (those online trainers that cut the cost of training in half only to hand all their clients the same workout that isn’t geared towards their results), and those odd dance videos that guarantee abs which people are being paid to endorse, and have probably never used. If any of these products listed above actually worked, I wouldn’t be in business in what I like to now call the lifestyle industry.

What do we all desire? We all want to live a healthy, active lifestyle where we not only feel better about ourselves, but also where we have the energy to get up and do what we would like to do on weekends, or at the end of the workday. If you have not done so yet, please read my previous post, as this one is merely a continuation of it. In that post, I talk about the workday and lifestyle of what I refer to as the average American, their intentions, and their tendencies. We all wish to live a lifestyle where we feel on top of the world, yet life throws us daily curveballs, putting dents in those good intentions. Here is my newsflash: even those who live an active lifestyle are thrown curveballs. We aren’t lucky to live this lifestyle. We’re simply prepared for that curveball, or any breaking ball, in that full count. And guess what, we aren’t striking out, we’re going for the base hit, or better yet, the homerun. Heck, we know that curveball, or worse, that knuckleball, the only pitch I ever learned how to throw, is coming. And we’re hitting a grand slam.

Think back to when you were a kid, and what you did. Did you work eight hours per day? No, really? You didn’t work eight hours per day? Because I know I did. I put my eight hours in Monday through Friday, for thirty-six weeks per year. If you didn’t work eight hours per day when you were a kid, you’re telling me you didn’t go to school. Oh, that, yeah you did that, didn’t you? How many of us engaged in extracurricular activities? Think of that as your gym time. Wait, how many of us had younger siblings? Isn’t that like helping take care of a kid in a way? And how many of us had older siblings who had to help haul us around to get to our events? Okay, even if you have kids and you’re taking them to practices, events, and games, isn’t this the same role but in reverse? If you were able to do all of this as a kid, and still get very good grades because you had to take extended time to study (working overtime, just as I mentioned in the previous post), and play three sports in middle school and high school, why aren’t you doing this as an adult? You have to take care of your house? Didn’t you also have chores over the course of your childhood? We can go all day with this, and you aren’t going to trump me.

You did the same thing as a kid, excelled in your chosen sports, and as you aged, you stopped doing what you were doing, because life got in the way. It looks like life has always gotten in the way if you look at the above scenario, because that’s a lot of a kid but I’ve known people I went to school with who did just that. Anything listed above, they were doing. Guess what? None of them are gym members today. None of them are living the fitness-oriented life they said they would be living when they were in high school. And if they are gym members, they aren’t maximizing their time in the gym. They may even be engaging in one of those fads I mentioned earlier. Life isn’t getting in the way: excuses are. What are excuses? They’re lies we tell ourselves. We tell ourselves that Person A can live the life they’ve always wanted to because they’re in an ideal situation to do so while I cannot do so because my situation isn’t as ideal. I guess I’m not lucky enough to do so despite my intentions. The excuses need to go. We need to be honest with ourselves, each and every day.

We were given the blueprint for success at this at a very, very young age. So many of us peak in high school. I want to say it goes back to the kids mimic their parents theory. Yep, even at an older, mature age, kids still mimic mom and dad…for the most part. They saw mom and dad peak in high school from a fitness standpoint, look great in their sports photos, get selected for All-OVAC, and receive numerous honors from both an athletic and academic standpoint. Then, once high school ended, they gradually gave up their active lifestyle into what the average American typically becomes. That, is called a has-been. It’s a very harsh word to use in order to describe others, but it’s also a brutally honest word. The kids mimic this, have kids of their own, their kids become star athletes, grow up, have kids of their own, give up their old active lifestyle for the sake of their kids, and the cycle continues. Why? Life gets in the way early and often, yet we overcome these trials early and often. We have absolutely no reason and no excuse to stop this after a certain age and if you think you have reason, you’re lying to yourself, better known as making excuses.

I honestly couldn’t care less what your excuse is. An excuse is an excuse, and that’s all there is to it. You have two kids today and a fifty to sixty hour per week job? You spent forty hours in school as a kid and you spent and additional twenty studying and doing chores around the house, but you found the time to engage in three sports. Oh, and you also had two younger siblings to help tend to as well. Oh, the commute is bad? Stop it. I rode a bus an hour and a half to and from school each and every day, five days a week, yet still found time to be active twice a day in high school. Now I get to fight Pittsburgh traffic on most days of the week and I still find time to be active twice a day in my twenties. I don’t make excuses, I find solutions.

You need to put your brain to work if you want to find solutions to your problems. And I’ve actually had people tell me in the past this is too hard for them to do. Did you put your brain to work when you made so many different academic honors list in middle school and high school or did you simply put your name on your paper, guess right, and turn it in? Are you kidding me? It’s seriously time to be honest with yourself.

Even if you have to look in the mirror and admit to yourself you were just slacking all these years from a fitness standpoint, it’s a good start, because you started being honest. You’ve come to understand what you’ve been doing just hasn’t been working but now it’s going to change for the better. That’s what this post is all about, motivating you to get honest with yourself from a lifestyle standpoint. I’m here to tell you if you were able to do this as a kid with limited control of your life, you can definitely do this as an adult with full control of your life. Yes, full control of your life. We’re all capable individuals here. You have full control of your life and that needs to be realized. I don’t care about the curveballs, don’t use them as excuses. I don’t care about anything else except for you getting brutally honest with yourself.

There’s that old saying that goes “Three months from now, you’ll wish you started today.” How many more of these “three months” have to fly by before you start taking responsibility for your actions? It’s time to change. Right now. Like I said in my previous post, this isn’t going to happen tomorrow, next week, next month, or next year. It needs to start happening now. Tomorrow may never come, but today has.

We are all special specks of dust in a vast universe estimated to be at least ninety-billion light years in length, lost in space and time. They say every single atom in our body was once part of a star, a star just like our sun. With that said, we’re capable of doing anything we set our powerful minds to. We’ve fallen from the cosmos, sleeping, opening our eyes to an awesome world. We have only decades to spend our brief time in the sun. Make the most of it, and stop making excuses. Get started today, you’re more than capable.

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