Below is my current weekly workout schedule:
Monday: One mile walk on my lunch break, followed by one
hour of Zumba (high-low impact cardio) in the evening.
Tuesday: One mile walk on my lunch break, followed by one
hour of Zumba (high-low impact cardio) in the evening.
Wednesday: One mile walk on my lunch break, followed by a
two mile walk in the evening.
Thursday: One mile walk on my lunch break, followed by one
hour of Zumba (high-low impact cardio) and then another hour of Yoga in the
Friday: 20-30 minutes on a cardio machine (elliptical cross
trainer or treadmill) followed by 45 minutes lifting free weights. When
possible, I attend fun special events at my gym on Friday evenings such as
Zumba Step or Glow Yoga or take a two mile walk.
Saturday: One hour of Yoga in the morning, two to three mile
walk in the afternoon.
Sunday: Two to three mile walk.
This is my training schedule under ideal circumstances. I do
not always do all of it every week (for example, if it’s cold, raining, or
snowing, that impacts my taking a walk outside). However I do most of it on
most weeks, so about 80% of what you see up there gets done on an average week.
Also, you don’t see me taking a “rest day” because at my current fitness level
walks don’t really count as “workouts” per say, they’re just my body performing
its normal form of locomotion. So Wednesday and Sunday where all I do is walk –
those are technically rest days.
So why am I sharing this?
For one thing, I’m sharing it because I’m proud of the level
of physical activity I have worked up to. Judging by every statistic I’ve ever
read I get far more exercise than the average American, and that is something
to be proud of. I didn’t suddenly start doing all of this on a whim, I used to
just walk five or six days a week and that was it. I’ve been working up to this
level for the past eight months so as to include a good variety of
cardiovascular training, endurance work, balance, and strength improvement.
Even so, every single day, some part of my body is always sore. I don’t
consider that a bad thing.
I am not doing this to make you feel bad if you don’t do
this much. I have several things going for me that allow this schedule: such as
not having to care for small children, not being impeded by a physical injury
or disability, not working several jobs simultaneously, or simply not wanting
to. It’s a human’s perfectly natural state to want to conserve calories –
before our environment became so obesogenic that trait actually kept us alive.
If you don’t want to get up and do cardio every day that actually makes you
And even though I have the luxury of time to do all this,
things suffer as a result. My family doesn’t usually get dinner cooked for them
on Mondays, Tuesdays, or Thursdays – which means I eat a lot of quick
sandwiches before running to the gym and my family winds up grabbing fast food
burgers way too often. Left to their own devices the two skinny dudes I live
with will tend to do that.
So I work out a lot more than the average American and have
been doing so for the past eight months, and this is what I currently look
I am not thin. I may get thinner, I’m certainly trying to,
but I don’t actually know what I weigh right now because I haven’t checked in
over a month. My clothes fit, so I suppose I weigh whatever I did a month ago –
which I think was 230 lbs. Believe it or not, 230 lbs. when you have the eating
disorder that I do is not too bad. After all, I used to weigh 295 lbs. However
for the moment I don’t seem to be losing weight to any large degree, and it is
what it is.
So as you go about your life, you may encounter someone who
snorts derisively at a person my size and says something to the effect of, “if
they’d just workout now and then they wouldn’t be fat like that”, or “if they
would just get their fat butt off the sofa and take a walk every day they’d
lose all that extra weight”, or “they probably have diabetes, look at the size
If you encounter someone like that (often referred to as a
“concern troll” because they exhaust a great deal of mental energy being overly
concerned for the health of other people based on the use of physical
appearances they think are ugly as a diagnostic tool), feel free to send them
to this page so I can say, “hello”.
I realize they might shrug me off as a liar – but why would
I do that? I’m not claiming that I defy physics by eating barely 1,000 calories
per day and working out this much and still not being thin. True my metabolism
is slower than average, but I still weigh this much because I still eat enough
calories to support my 230 lb. body weight. I eat very healthfully overall but
I struggle against binge episodes on a daily basis and I enjoy dessert now and
again. That being said the concern-troll battle cry of, “put the fast food
down, fatty!” does not apply to me either. I eat a fast food meal about once
every three months or so – or about three times a year, which is not enough for
it to account for my weight.
In fact, according to quantifiable physical metrics such as
blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol, triglycerides, etc. I am “healthy” –
but I’d still like to take 60 more pounds off because I want my joints to last
and those numbers may not stay so good as I continue to age. It’s not about
appearance. An appearance that is physically attractive in the socially
acceptable way would be nice, but it’s not happening. Sixty pounds down from
here I’m going to look even more like a sag-bag than I do right now, and that
is what it is, I’ve got to accept it. I can be healthy though, I can be strong,
and I can have amazing endurance – those are attainable goals. Heck, I’ve
already attained them I just want even more of them. I also have binge eating
disorder and it’s not going away, so it could be a whole lot worse than it is
right now and I’m genuinely proud of how far I’ve come.
Concern-trolls simply may be enlightened to know that
sometimes the work a person puts in at the gym doesn’t show like they expect it
to on the outside for a myriad number of complex reasons they surely cannot
understand at a glance. And as always, it is impossible to judge a person’s
health or even activity level by looking at them.