New York Times Bestselling Author

Health & Fitness: The Importance of Warm Ups, Regular Workouts, and Other Lofty but Mythical Goals

Posted on Oct 31, 2016 |

I have a habit of getting fit and healthy for a couple weeks, feel smug and satisfied with myself, and then get bored with my dazzling healthy perfection. So then I let all of my muscles calcify and my gut balloon to the point that it gets into daily epic battles with the successful buttoning of my jeans.

The idea, of course, is to work out a few times a week and generally eat in a healthy manner. My reality, however, is that I work out like a maniac and eat like a saint for a couple weeks, and then I don’t work out at all and eat like the zombie apocalypse is coming so I should enjoy my sloth until imminent Armageddon. (That whole: live like every day is your last is lovely advice . . . unless you happen to wake up the next day and have bills to pay and would prefer to not to achieve the level of morbid obesity that would require firefighters to break down an entire wall to rescue you from a fire.)

After my couple of weeks of sloth and gluttony, when I get back to the work out and eat right phase, it’s unbelievably depressing that in just such a short time, all of the strides toward fitness I’d made disappear into the ether. Just a couple weeks ago I was patting myself on the back and bragging about how I could do fifteen straight-leg push-ups IN A ROW, and now I’m doing a few bent knee push-ups only to discover that the next day I find it difficult to lift my arms high enough to wash my hair.

It’s disheartening how quickly muscles atrophy. Seemingly overnight they become fossilized and cranky.

That’s one of the joys of middle age: When I was in high school I could go into the splits without warming up. Now, warming up is an achievement in itself.

When I watched the movie Magic Mike XXL, I did not, as one reviewer had stated, find it that it was empowering for women. Yes, the men are celebrating women of all sizes, but they are telling these women how beautiful they are BECAUSE THEY WANT THEIR MONEY. But the main thing I kept thinking was—these gorgeous men can’t just pull women out of the audience and start flinging them around—these women haven’t warmed up yet! What if they throw their back out! Think of sciatica health!

I’m currently in a work out and eat right phase. I spent quite a bit of time warming up, naturally—I hate throwing my back out.

Pardon me while I dwell in a cocoon of smug self-satisfaction . . .

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