May the force be with you
Would you willingly expose yourself to excruciating pain, to experience temporary disability and to being commanded like a toddler? I did. And even paid a preposterous monthly fee in order to have that privilege. This is how I got back to gym.
Recently I visited a customer in Bogotá, which is known for its 2600 m above sea level and, therefore, its thinner atmosphere compared to Cali. Despite knowing all of that, I strode confidently to the stairs, determined to get to the fourteenth floor by foot instead of waiting 10 minutes for a crowded elevator to take me there. Horrible mistake. By the time I reached the ninth floor my legs were burning, my lungs were as useless as a congressman on Friday. Fortunately no vampires going downstairs stumbled upon me; otherwise they would have taken me for a kin since my face turned so pale and cold. While I was seated on the stairs catching my breath and waiting for the stars to stop orbiting my head, I decided to make a New Year’s resolution: to get in shape again, no matter the cost.
Back home, I paid the outrageous inscription fee in hope that my indignation would last long enough to ward off the urge of quitting, at least for a couple of months. My plan was to get so used to the routine that in time I would actually miss going to gym, as my more active friends have told me. But first things first. I set an appointment with the gym’s physician. He seemed kind of impressed by my flexibility and coordination (finally the tango lessons paid off), but when we got to measuring body fat indexes, he seemed disappointed. To put it gently, if I manage to turn several pound of fat into muscle, I don’t need to lose weight. However, I cannot afford to gain an ounce or my file at the gym will turn on like a Christmas tree with dozens of red flags.
The smartest approach seemed to be to see a nutrition expert. Basically I got lectured about finishing my lifetime romance with sugar (to lose fat) and to increase the intake of proteins (to build muscle). Since then, I don’t turn away a steak or a hamburger no matter the time of day or night. I vaguely remember something about combining the new diet with a very demanding routine of exercise, but that last part didn’t stick on my head.
In short, since I wake up early to go to the gym, afterwards I am sleepy the rest of the day, counting the minutes until it is time to leave the office. My muscles hurt so bad that it is a challenge to make foam in the shower by rubbing my skin with body gel. While I walk the distance between my car and home, I am as defenseless as a little girl and it takes several seconds to step from one stair to the next. After a long while the gym strikes back and is having its revenge like an abandoned lover. However, I am resolved to get even and, in the long term, to return as a less fatty and more muscular Jedi. Well, as soon as I am able to stand up.
Por: Andrés Meza