The Trouble With Changing

sleepy weightlifter
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I was lazy this morning and didn’t go to the gym.

Oh, I woke up in plenty of time, but I was feeling tired and unmotivated. After all, it was just a cardio and abs day and what really motivates me is lifting. If it had been a lift day, I would have pushed through and gotten up.

Also, my wife and daughter return from their trip to Oregon this afternoon. This was the last morning when things were going to be really quiet around the house.

So I stayed in bed until nearly 5 a.m. That’s “sleeping in” for me, although I didn’t actually fall back to sleep.

When I got up, I did the usual things including reading various comic strips online, just to wake up. Had my cup of coffee and glass of water, but then I decided to fix myself a cheese omelet. Added a little hot sauce to give it some “zing”. It tasted wonderful.

I had plenty of time to get organized and get out the door to pick my son up from his place so we could commute into work together.

Yes, I feel guilty about not going to the gym, but it was also a nice break from the routine. Of course, due to my eye problems, I didn’t do abs and cardio all last week either, so this is an extended break.

What I have noticed is that I can lose weight by lifting as well as by cardio. I overindulged in my eating this past weekend since I was playing “bachelor,” and it showed up on the bathroom scales Monday morning when I first got up.

This morning, I saw a loss of several pounds, both from the previous day’s workout as well as my eating more sensibly yesterday.

I still think cardio has value, especially for the older person who needs to maintain their cardiac muscle and oxygen uptake, but sometimes it’s good to take a break and relax. I’m also hoping that this break will also contribute to my recovery between my lift days.

I continue to notice small changes in my body. For instance, yesterday, quite by accident, I realized that my triceps were getting a bit larger and more firm when flexed. This is true for my forearms as well. Not sure about my pecs. They seem about the same. However, whatever I’m doing is having some sort of impact, although the changes are happening at a very slow pace.

Jeri Ryan
Jeri Ryan as Seven of Nine

Of course, I’m only into changes that I want and can control. Fortunately, lifting at the gym has become a habit and integrated into my regular lifestyle. Most of the time, when some change injects itself into my schedule, I resist a great deal.

For instance, my son started going to a chiropractor three days a week after work, so three days a week, instead of taking him home, I take him down the busiest street in my area during rush hour to his chiropractor. For two of those days, my wife is also there, so all I have to do is drop him off, but on one day, I need to stay and read a book until he’s finished.

That too has now become integrated into my schedule, but even though I love my son, I have to admit that the little routinized critter that lives in my head was pretty put out at first.

The character Seven of Nine (played by Jeri Ryan) from the TV show Star Trek: Voyager, often spoke of her ability to adapt because she had been a Borg.

Harry Kim: Come on, where’s that Borg spirit? We’ll adapt.
Seven of Nine: My ‘Borg spirit’ gives me an objectivity you lack.


Seven of Nine: [from her daily log] If we do return to sector 001, will I adapt to Human civilization – a single Borg among billions of individuals?

Borg Drone: You will not survive. You cannot survive without the Collective.
Seven of Nine: I will adapt.
Borg Drone: By becoming weaker, less perfect.
Seven of Nine: I will adapt as an individual.

And then…

Seven of Nine: I am Seven of Nine. I am alone. But I will adapt. I will…

adaptI realize I shouldn’t be so resistant to change since it’s unavoidable and change can certainly be beneficial. To become better in any way is to change, to adapt to new circumstances, to face new challenges and overcome them.

Adaptability is even a middah, a Jewish virtue or character trait:

There are many ways to reach a destination.

Adaptability is accepting change and unpredictability, as well as knowing when to remain constant. With this trait in check, those who meet change do so with promise and are successful. Adaptability out of check displays itself as either a giddy chameleon that is far too changeable, or a rigid, unbending and frustrated type.

Suggested practices:

  • Enter a new situation and discern what is positive.
  • Approach a new situation and see how you can modify your behaviours to perform, adapt and settle.
  • Identify what is uncomfortable in a new/old situation and how you can approach it differently.
  • Try a new food this week or perhaps make a new recipe that is out of your usual cuisine. Explore the flavors and note your reaction.

OK, I like trying new foods, although I know people who loathe the idea. That said, it’s still easier for me to watch a film on my computer once it comes out in DVD than to go to the theater. My weekend viewing of Avengers: Age of Ultron is proof of that. Even though I wanted to see it on the big screen, I couldn’t get my “posse” together to arrange a day and time.

LouTo live is to adapt. Some people are better at it than others. I tend to suck at adapting but somehow, I always manage, and that’s the important part.

No matter how difficult change is for you (and it’s definitely hard for me), in order to become a better person, to lose the pounds you want to lose, to gain the muscle mass, to eat in a more healthy way, to be kinder to others, to give more of yourself to those you love, you must face change and adapt.

Even if you do nothing, life around you will change and you’ll be forced to adapt…

…or be left behind.

The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack of will.

-Vince Lombardi


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