Running was something done in high school to stay in somewhat decent shape between sporting seasons. Running was something done in college to either look better in front of a girl or to check out girls who also were running. Running has been something done post-college to either clear my head or to make myself feel better. Running has never been something I really loved or even enjoyed.
While I still do not totally enjoy running, the realization came to me while wheezing at the end of the race ... You need this exercise in your life man!
For the past several months I have been complaining about gaining weight. At the same time I have been doing very little about it. For years, eating anything I wanted whenever I wanted was never really an issue. Pizza, pasta, beer ... staples in my diet for years. Once I turned 30 that started changing. My pants got a little tighter. My belt loops started moving closer to my right hip. I was developing a gut and some handles with that gut.
I realize I am still lucky. I have never topped 200 lbs. I haven't even topped 180. However, when that scale read 174 a month ago I started to get embarrassed. I did not want to walk around the house without a shirt on. The fear of going to the neighborhood pool this spring/summer increased.
When I graduated high school, I weighed 135 lbs. That is way too small. When I finished my graduate degree, I was up to a comfortable 155. So 20 lbs of what I considered good, healthy weight. When I began working at Wake Forest in fall of 2000 I remember telling a buddy, my ideal weight was 165, and I wanted to work towards it. So since 2000, I had gained 19 lbs. Realistically I know that is not bad, but I also realize the weight I was putting on was not really healthy weight.
We all age. We all get to a point where we realize we are not 24 any more. This may be that point for me. I am not going to sit here on a high horse and say this is a new day for Jay Lowe. Exercise is still something I just do not love. And I love food. Great combination, eh?
I do have desires to be better. Be a better person, a better friend, a better brother, a better son and a better husband. Taking better care of myself and making smart decisions will all be a part of this. Righting the wrong, so to speak. Not allowing myself to indulge every chance I get. 10 years ago I could have eaten all the snacks people bring in to the office. Today, I need to avoid them. 10 years ago I exercised every so often. Today, I need to make it a part of my routine.
So while Saturday's race was challenging, I did enjoy celebrating with Courtney, Doug and Lindsey after. Do not plan to see me in 1/2 marathons anytime soon, but do plan on seeing me in better shape. It is overdue.
Best part is I was able to redo my workout mix on the ipod. I leave you with the first two songs on my mix which did get me off on the right foot (pun intended):