Tag Archives: exercise

Hitting the Wall

Running, for me, is awful. Whenever I do it, I’m tired and sweaty and angry and taking it all out on my tiny girlfriend, which doesn’t really make me look like the best of people.

But…the last time I ran, I hit a moment.

It was toward the end of the run and I was badly flagging and all I wanted to do was stop and throw up under a bush and then sleep it all off under that same bush.

And then…there was a this moment where it was easy. I had hit a point where I could not only keep running, but I could go faster and farther than I ever had before. I had summoned up some deep reserve of strength that allowed me to tap into some mystical force. I felt like a goddamn superhero. I started to run past Emily, instead of trying to keep up with her. I burst ahead and it wasn’t hard. It felt natural.

In that single moment, I had tapped into something that I had never even been aware of. I was able to run, with minimal effort. It wasn’t exercise: It was fun. I joyfully threw myself into the run. I didn’t care about how much my legs hurt or how hard I was breathing. All I knew was that I was running and it was easy and I didn’t want to stop.

It was the most coordinated I had ever felt. Everything lined up just right.

I felt invulnerable.

And then it slowly drained away and I was mortal again and we slowed to a walk.

And then, later, I fell down some stairs.

But…for one, brief, moment, I was completely in tune with myself. I was able to reach my potential. And, for one brief moment, I was able to understand why people run on a regular basis.

-D-

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Going the Distance

I have a huge problem with exercise: it’s not instantaneous. I’ve always had this problem.  I’d run for a few days and I’d still be winded or my time wouldn’t dramatically increase and then I’d get discouraged and stop. I couldn’t see any real progress being made and that was inordinately frustrating.

And I’m running into that same wall again. “God damn it, why aren’t I instantly in shape now? I ran for THREE DAYS.” That’s not a joke. That’s how I really feel.

What makes it even more frustrating is that I’m fully aware of how stupid that is. Getting into shape isn’t going to take three days or a week or two weeks. And it’s not something I can just attain and then stop doing. “Wellp, I done my running, I can quit till the End of Days.”

This time, I’m glad I have a bigger goal than just “get into shape.” I want to box. I want to step into the ring and see how that feels, so I can either let it go or keep at it. And because I have something very specific to set my eyes on, I think I can keep this up. Even on those days when I feel like I should be doing better. Even on those days when I’m panting and I’m feeling every cigarette and every day I just sat in a chair for ten hours and every double quarterpounder (with cheese!).

All this so I can let some big dude whale on me for three, three minute rounds.

I am not sane.

Dylan Charles

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Dressing the Part

Today I made my first step toward my boxing goal. I went to the store and purchased running shoes.

As  mentioned last time, I’m no where near in shape. So I thunk to myself. What would be the best way to start getting into shape?

Why running of course. With running I could increase my endurance and also start getting into the habit of, you know, exercising. I figure it’s the best way to start some good habits without breaking the bank with a gym membership or expensive equipment.

First things first, I need proper shoes.

I went into City Sports with a list of potential shoe candidates. Or, at least, I thought I had. It turns out I left that at home. So I ended up staring at the Wall of Shoes without a clue. Until City Sports Employee (I’ll call him Tobey since he reminded me of Tobey Maguire), came up and asked me if I needed help.

Once it was determined that I knew nothing about running, he asked if I knew what kind of shoe I needed.

“I need…stable…shoe.”

“Ok, well these are our stability shoes. They’re more for overpronators.”

“Oh I have normal arch! I step on paper and it’s normal!”

“Well, someone with a normal arch usually isn’t an overpronator, but if you take off your shoes and socks I can see what type of step you have.”

So it turns out I’m an overpronator (when I step, I turn my foot inward, causing my arch to flatten more than is normal) and I need stability shoes (shoes with extra support for people with freak feet). A stability shoe helps to correct for my tendency to step wrong and keep me from needlessly injuring myself while running.

After trying on three different shoes, I picked the Saucony Progrid 3, which just felt damn nice. Which is what I’m wearing on my feet right now, cause why the hell not?

So now I have the right shoes (hopefully).  Now I just need to see if I’m capable of sticking to an exercise schedule. Which means drafting an exercise schedule. I have two weeks to get into some kind of shape before I try out a free boxing class. Excitement!

Dylan Charles

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On Boxing

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I’m going to take up boxing this year. As I also mentioned in that earlier post, it’s because I watched Rocky a whole mess of times. That’s only about 90% of the reason why however.

I’ve never been in shape, except for that one time that I took a running class in college. That was about four or five years ago now and I only dimly remember what it’s like to run from Point A to Point B without contemplating a nap midway. Coupling this with a series of life decisions that at best could be called “disastrous for my health,” and I am not the pillar of godly healthiness that you might think I am.

So that’s part of it.

“But Dylan!” I hear you saying, “There are other ways to get into shape besides having someone punch you in the head repeatedly!”

“That is true,” I’d say, as I pat you on the head condescendingly, “But I’m using my built-in obsessively competitive nature to bolster my desire to get into shape. One will inform the other. I know that I’m incapable of just exercising. So I’ve got to give myself end goals and a reason to get into shape.”

As part of this process, I’m going to be keeping a journal of sorts on the blog. So you’ll be with me up to the point that I throw my recently purchased boxing gloves on the floor saying, “I quit!”

I think we’re going to have fun!

Later today, I’m buying my first set of running shoes and we’ll see how it goes from there.

Dylan Charles

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Filed under Sporting: Baseball, Boxing and Sports Not Starting with a B