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The Fancy Nike Bag

Posted by on December 29, 2019 at 10:40 PM

I am a starter... I guess that isn't the worst quality to have, I mean better than a couch potato or a non-starter. But I have come to the realization that I am only a starter. At least 50% of the time ( ok 75%) I have great ideas, I get a jump start and then.....nothing, nada. I have never taken the time to self-analyze enough to understand what thwarted my progress. What was it that got me excited, and then led me to procrastinate? Then I ran across a book that seemed like it was written with me in mind. Jon Acuff has written several excellent books, among them Finish, completed in 2017. I received two of Jon's books from my wife for Christmas after having them recommended to me. Finish speaks to the threat that perfectionism is to our goals and passions. Reading this helped me realize that I sometimes had to have every t crossed and i dotted before I moved on a goal. That brings us back to the title of this blog post "The Fancy Nike Bag". I have been on a journey of improving my health and lowering my weight for many years. It has been a battle that I have spent more time losing than winning and I know cognitively that I need to do something about it to avoid serious health issues which to this point I have been able to dodge. I started 2019 working out at a gym that was a considerable investment, learning exercises that I didn't previously know and feeling pretty good about the strength I was building. My weight wasn't changing and I realize that a lot of that came from not putting the fork down or cleaning the junk food out of the cabinets. I blamed the gym for not concentrating on more cardio,which in the past helped me lose the pounds. Later in the year, I moved to another gym, this one with structured classes an hour in length and even more strenuous to my budget. A back injury kept me away for two weeks, which turned into three and then a month. My rationale became that if I am not going multiple times a week, I need to invest less money into the effort. I realize now that it was pretty screwed up thinking. After paying several hundred dollars 10 months into 2019, the scale was pretty much the same. Planet Fitness is a "no- judgment" zone, just what I needed. Instead of $100+ a month, for the low cost of $22.99 I could go unlimited times and at the exact times that I wanted. I set the goal to re-start my dormant account with them and hit the gym. I wish I could next write here that all was happily ever after and I went 4 times a week and have dropped many lbs since joining in November. However, I encountered the enemy of so many goals- perfectionism. It started innocently enough- one of Planet Fitness's benefits are showers and lockerrooms so that I could workout, shower, change and head to work. With locations 4 miles from home and a half a mile from work, how could I go wrong? As I set the goal to start on Monday morning, I immediately talked myself out of it by reminding myself that Monday was the morning I took Zachary to school- a trip from my home in Zeeland to Cedar Springs, just under an hour before work. Ok, so Tuesday it is.....but then I realized I needed to have a nicer bag. My red Champion duffel had definitely seen better days.and if I was going to put my work clothes in and my sweaty gym clothes in, it better be big enough for some separation. Let me cut to the chase and outline the steps that I felt I HAD to take before sweat molecule #1 formed on my brow: 1. Order new workout shoes from Amazon 2. Spend 25 minutes in Dunham's Sports figuring out the perfect bag 3. Going to Meijer for travel size toiletries 4. Going back to Meijer because an old towel from home wouldn't do 5. A trip to Walmart when I realized I forgot a combination lock at Meijers 6. Wireless earphones ( thanks Amazon!) 7. Two color coordinated, moisture wicking workout shirts 8. One more trip back to Meijer when I realized I had no hairbrush Ridiculous, right? But let me tell you, I had the perfect set up. My bag was a medium/large Nike bag with a separate bottom shoe holder, plenty big for clean clothes on one side, sweaty (eventually) clothes on the other and all my assorted toiletries. I clipped the bluetooth earbuds on one side of the strap and the combination lock on the other side.I did this approximately five weeks ago. Guess how many times I have made it to the gym? Not four times a week, not three or two but on average one time a week. Five times! Can I make it sound worse? Three of those days were in a row. I've had some great excuses. It has been a busy month. It is the holidays, parties, work obligations, DJing some Christmas events, visiting with the kids. Acuff calls these "noble obstacles" they sound great, but all they really do is hinder. The gym story is just one example. The four year gap you see between this post and my last post is quite another. The upgraded bike that I jumped on buying last spring has been moved ( not ridden) about 12 inches since I purchased it. Oh, and there's more. But this new attempt at posting is not to beat myself up. It is not to just share with you that I start but rarely finish. It is my acknowledgement that the mystery is over. When you confront your timewasters, your fears and your perfectionism,you stand a fighting chance. You recognize them for what they are. You put yourself back in control. As Jon Acuff says " some is better than none". I will not create New Year's resolutions. I will take things one day at a time, one habit at a time. If I stumble with a bad meal or a bad day of meals, I will get back on the Paleo horse. And if I don't have the perfectly packed Fancy Nike Bag when I get to the gym, I will work out anyways. I wish you and yours a most productive 2020. I plan to share more of my passion for writing and helping others grow through my experiences- both good and not so good. I will try do so without sabotaging myself with 30 minute decisions on Font size and type or what beverage will be perfect next to the laptop.

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