Tuesday, August 14, 2007
So what's my problem?
Last summer I was active, hopping on my bike most days, or going to the Y to work out.
I planned to do that this summer, too-- make up for my relative inactivity during the school year. When I got home from school each afternoon, my choice was: read the paper in a prone position on the couch, or go to the gym.
I told myself I'd make up for it this summer. I'd firm up, trim down and . . .. Oh, the best laid plans.
The thing is, I like to exercise; working up a sweat feels good, and makes me feel that I've done myself some good besides. I like being in shape.
So what is my problem?
David, soon to be off to college, has himself on a program to get ready for basketball season. "Just exercise when I do, Mom," he says when I complain about my slump.
But that's his schedule; the timing is not right for me. Or is that an excuse?
"Will you write me out a list of exercises to do?" I ask.
"Mom." He's stern. "You didn't follow the other list I gave you."
"I just can't seem to get motivated," I say. "I just don't have the desire."
"You just have to do it, Mom," he tell me. "Set a time and stick to it. It doesn't take that much time."
I know this. I use to tell him the same thing a couple of years ago. He's right.
So what, exactly, is my problem?
I've been restless this summer. Sleep is elusive. I wake early, my mind already in gear. This isn't me. Or it is me, some strange new me that I'm not used to yet, not sure I like as much.
My exercise this summer is fingers flying across the keyboard as I write, and walking with my camera, exercising my shutter finger.
This is not without benefits, just more mental ones than physical.
I walk, and drink in images that go straight from my eyes to my soul, and I need to capture them in more than my memory. So I snap picture after picture-- sheer digital gluttony-- until I have filled some well inside of me. Then I walk home, "writing" my thoughts in my head to be recorded later, maybe.
And why do I complain about doing something that is so fulfilling, so pleasurable? Maybe because it doesn't make me sweat? Maybe because it is what I want to do, not what I think I should do? Maybe because something inside says I should be doing something "constructive."
I need to find the balance point-- pure pleasure balanced against the "shoulds." Right now my scale is tilted in pleasure's favor. Maybe I'm just lucky and don't know it yet.