Saturday, January 23, 2010
I woke up at three am this morning because I had a cramp in my left big toe. It hurt bad enough that I was fully awake. In five minutes the cramp was gone but I was still wide awake. I laid there for a bit letting all kinds of stuff float through my head. I am one of those people who if I cant find something to worry about, I worry!!! Damn, the luck that my life the past few weeks has been crisis and drama free. Given there was no trivial issue to obsess over I just laid there.
"You're fifty six years old and you have never read War and Peace"
That's the thought that stuck. I am an avid reader. It almost borders on obsession. If I am not currently reading a book I have issues. I'll read anything. My mother told me she believes it comes from how I was toilet trained. She sat me on the toilet with a book. But I never read War and Peace. Me being me, I decided that as soon as the library opened this morning I would check the book out and then when I woke up in the middle of the night the next time I could smugly cross that off the list of things I have done.
At breakfast this morning I shared my thoughts with my wife. She looked over her cup of coffee and said "Have you ever read any Tolstoy?"
"Nope" I responded.
"Maybe, you should start with one of his shorter works so you get used to his style of writing," she said. "I read War and Peace between my junior and senior years, it was a struggle.
Good advice, not only for Tolstoy, but for life. I think about all the times I plunged into something head long, trying to be bigger, better and faster than everyone else and ended up falling flat on my face.
Making transitions in life is hard enough, but when I choose not to enjoy those moments, when I choose not to savor very small victories I am not only unhappy John, but ultimately I'll fail to reach my goals.
My wife was right, reading War and Peace today would seem almost like a punishment. It dawned on me that I'd often looked at nutrition in the same way. "I'm On A Diet!!!" This automatically suggests some fatal character flaw.
I'm not on a diet. I am on a journey. I will enjoy the journey. I think this will be the hardest lesson of all for me to learn.
And............. my dear and precious friends, I thank you for your support
Friday, January 22, 2010
Nashville, Tennessee is one of my favorite cities. I travel there on business frequently, being that it is only a two hour drive from home. I havent been their since I began the Spark journey a little over a month ago. As I pulled into the city it dawned on me that I had always arranged my day so I could go home for lunch and eat in an appropriate manner. Now I was miles from home and there were fast food restaurants everywhere!!!! This was getting sorta scary
My stop that day included lunch with two clients who had also become dear friends. Their place of business had a restaurant in it that quite simply is to die for. (If you eat there often enough I believe you will die. Your arteries will close up!!!) They met me at the door and we went in to eat. They began to remind me of the fresh pasta bar. Today's special was fettucini with chicken, shrimp and lobster, in a basil sauce with garlic. My salivary glands started yelling "Hey, remember us???" They did have a hot bar. Yesterdays feature was fried chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy. The old country song, "Someone help me I'm falling" started playing in my head.
But, ahhhhhhhhh ---- There was a menu. "Chicken, chicken, wheres the chicken?" I whispered to myself. No chicken. There was however a turkey club sandwich with cole slaw. It appeared that it would do the least amount of damage, annnnnnnnnnnnnnnd, they served the mayo on the side. I ate half of it.
During the course of lunch one of the folks I was with leaned over and said "You really look good. What are you doing?" Her friends smiled and asked the same question. That's all it took. I launched into a journey through Sparkpeople.com and what it was, what it meant etc. They were writing all of this down.
One of them looked at me and said "What did you order for lunch?"
"Turkey club, with cole slaw"
"Change my order to that," she told the server. So did everyone else.
They promised to check out the web site and were very positive about the whole conversation. Other than being really proud I politely refused the peanut butter cheese cake for desert, here's my point:
Each of you who has been supportive of me, who has encouraged me and who has got on me when I needed it was there with me. That was our. I could not have done it without any of you. Each of you is important to me and I pray I do not forget that.
Once again, thank you. Have a memorable Friday.
Thursday, January 21, 2010
I believe I have created every excuse possible as to why I am over weight. Write me and I'll send you all of them. I quit smoking five years ago and my body never adjusted. I travel for a living and am forced to unhealthy food. (I have pictures of the people that hold me down and force me to eat it!!!!) I am getting older and my metabolism is slowing down....... I can go on and on.
What I have had in the past five years is a lot of failure. I dont care how positive you think, how much you try to motivate yourself, failure compounded by excuses makes John an insecure individual. Yuck, what a mess.
All I had to do was look in the mirror and that would make me feel even worse. I am sure a lot of you have been there and know what I am talking about. You feel so gosh darned out of place that you want to hole up in a corner and cry.
Enough with the sadness John.
I read a book, actually listened to it on CD. It's called "Excuse Me, Your Life Is Waiting. In my listening/reading the author challenged us to an interesting exercise. Every day for thirty days write one really good, great, and wonderful thing about yourself. Take that one thing and throughout your day think about it.
Let me tell you its tough. Every morning I'd get stressed. What else is there about me that's good? I made it through and now part of my morning ritual is to read all thirty things, out loud, to myself. I put a little bit of background music to it. They are not all serious things. I have fun stuff about me also. I am a most excellent cook. I sing very well. I play a mean set of drums. By the end of the list I am inspiring me. Who is this really cool guy????
It increases my capacity to give to others but most importantly it increases my capacity to take. That's right, take. I have participated in things similar to spark.com in the past but not without the overwhelming support I receive from everyone I have gotten to know and will get to know. I cannot do this alone and neither can you. But if I dont feel good about me I am useless to you. and if I dont feel I am worth it all how in the name of all that is holy can I allow you to give to me?
One thing about you each day for thirty days. Very tough. At the end you start seeing all those wonderful things in other people.
Thank all of you for being who all of you are.
If you'd like my list to get an idea of what I am talking about let me know and I'll
Spark mail it to ya.
Have a good day. A good day is any day that you're alive.
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
When the alarm went off I was already behind. Tat did not make for a cheerful mood. I tumbled around, showering, getting dressed, doing all the routine stuff thats part of everyones morning. Over in the corner, sitting quietly, was my gym bag. Like that commercial on TV I eard the little jingle; "I always feel like somebody's watching me...."
That part of my day had somehow slipped out of the equation. I'd like to tell you I raced to the corner and soothed my gym bags feelings. Actually Itried to kick the corner of the bed. Thank goodness I missed!!
"Just another something else!!!" I said
So I did what any rational person would do. I made a deal with my gym bag, even though in my mind I had a good excuse for not working out today. I decided I would keep it on the front seat of the car and I would work my measley forty minutes of cardio in there sometime today.
Yes, yes I should have a Plan B but somedays just figuring out Plan A takes all my energy.
Yes, yes I know i'll feel better once I do it and I'll reach a goal.
It's cold, its foggy and I'm a bit achy and my day is full. I'll do it, maybe not with a smile on my face and a song in my heart.
Like the commercial says "Just Do It"
I'll keep ya'll posted
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