Earn Your Body

I’m not going to lie. And it’s all stuff I’ve said before, but I’m overweight. I’m fat. This post is going to be a string of consciousness post laden with pop culture references and quotes. Buckle up.

Go home, take a paper bag, cut some eyeholes out of it. Put it over your head, get undressed and look at yourself in the mirror. Really evaluate where your strengths and weaknesses are. And be honest. – Joan on Mad Men

The sentiment here is clear, you have to be objective. If you look at yourself, you see you, but when we look at others – people we don’t know, we judge them. We judge them based on how they look. The bag on our head, even the metaphorical bag, enhances your ability to disassociate yourself with your body and look at your flaws, and your strengths.

The key to my exercise program is this one simple truth: I hate my body. You understand that the second you look in the mirror and you’re happy with what you see, baby, you just lost the battle. – Perry Cox on Scrubs

Change only happens when we have become so dissatisfied with the current state of things that we must change. I left the comedy club due to a single staff member who made my working there unbearable. And thanks to him I doubled my salary, then doubled it again the next year. All because I worked with a class-A raging asshole. Now, I must find that equivalent in my body and use it as leverage to cause change.

Here is the thing though, you cannot take a leap of faith without knowing where you’re aiming to land. Otherwise you end up being one of the characters in Super Smash Brothers where you fall to your death, fall forever and never reach your goal.

A goal is akin to a dream. Separated by a thin veil. Dreams require we admit to what they are, and risk to ourselves that we may not realize this dream. Like asking a woman out on a date, chasing a dream exposes ourselves to danger.

I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.
– W. B. Yeats

I first heard this in the movie Equilibrium, and then I looked up the poem. Powerful stuff. It finds another risk in admitting our dreams, that others will crush them. Children dream of Santa, and it falls to parents to one day tread on that dream to educate them about the world. If my dream is to have six pack abs and a body of a god, then there are hundreds of people who will tell me it’s impossible, I’d never get there. And here is where my resolve, determination and bullheadedness come in. To them I say: Fuck off. It’s my damn dream so get off my cloud! This post is what happens when I stay up late watching Fight Club and coding PHP.

Earn your body.

I do not know where I heard this quote, I apologize to whoever said it and came up with this great truth. In so many ways I’ve spent my life taking the “free demo” of my body. Even during high school sports I struggled to push myself and earn it. For a short while after college I was earning my body. Daily workouts. Eating well. And I was earning it, seeing the pounds slip off. Then I didn’t fall of the wagon, the wagon exploded around me and my body slid backwards to the worst shape of my life. Here is a simple truth: Your body wants to be fat. Fat = sustenance and in famine it means you can live longer. But unfortunately for your body, your goal is not to survive famine, it is to survive time. And science shows that time is conquered by not accumulating that fat. And so it’s time I begin earning my body again.

This is your life and it’s ending one minute at a time. – Narrator, Fight Club

The time is now. Not tomorrow. Not next week. I need to start earning my body. Tonight. Aside from the desire to look appealing, it has become more and more apparent that my future requires I make these changes. Both of my parents have fought disease, my dad is a cancer survivor and my mom died from her disease (forgive me for not going into more detail, I don’t need to delve deeper than I already am.) My family has history of heart disease, diabetes, alcoholism, and more. A clear sign that I should get moving and stop wasting time. So what stops me? Fear.

I must not fear.
Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.
I will face my fear.
I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.
Where the fear has gone there will be nothing.
Only I will remain.

Fuck fear. Simply. I’m able to do this if I become dedicated and stop cheating.

I’m going to earn my body.

3 thoughts on “Earn Your Body”

  1. I’m right there with you, man. I’ve become so sick of being overweight that I can barely look at myself in the mirror (paper bag or no). So I’ve made a promise to myself to get into shape this year.

    I’ve worked out every single weekday this month that wasn’t snow day or holiday that I had to watch the kid. The problem I’ve run into is that my body is rebelling. I have thyroid issues and I’ve GAINED 5 pounds this month despite working my ass off and eating rabbit food. grrrr. While it’s frustrating right now, I’m seeing a doctor once a month and have a trainer that are working with me. I’m planning on venting that frustration out on the treadmill though. Fuck fat, man!!!!!!!

  2. You won me with the Bene Gesserit’s Lethany Against Fear. Im in a likely situation, and happens to think quite similar as you do. Maybe it helps, maybe not, but you got a companion for this trip from Spain now. C ya on this very same blog in a few months, buddy.

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