I'm having a really good day.
I dunno why, nothing major's happened really, maybe I'm going manic again, but it's always hard to tell, part of going manic is your self awareness tends to go completely out the window.
I haven't slept much recently so I should be wrecked, and work has kinda got screwed up and is sapping my good mood, but flirting with boys on twitter is keeping me going. My day started with going to Asda, that's how relatively unspecial my day has been.
But anyway, I was gonna blog about why I go to the gym, and why I enjoy it. Because that's what I feel like blogging about, so that's what you can read. I know I don't really *need* to go to the gym, sure I have the standard gay vanity issues, I'd love rock hard abs etc, but I'm 105lbs and a 27" waist with the blessing of an ongoing overactive metabolism - I can eat what I want and I don't put it on and somehow I get nutritional value out of it. So I don't need to go to the gym, I don't need to lose weight, I don't need to watch what I eat, I don't need to run off that extra slice of cake or bulk up on muscle - lets face it a 5'2" muscled boy would look a little odd. I certainly wouldn't suit it at any rate.
Gay vanity aside, I do like being healthy, it gives me something to do, and it's something you can see and feel very obvious results very quickly with. Whilst my stomach could probably extract nutritional value from anything, what i put into my body still has an effect. If i eat food that's shit for me, I don't suffer any serious health effects, but my skin is more prone to spots, I feel worse, my already odd digestive system gives me a fair bout of cramping as punishment etc. If I try and eat healthily, it works, I feel more alert, I can keep going for longer (yes in that way too :P) and my body ultimately works that much better.
When I was a kid I was a really fussy eater, now not so much, sure I still have my likes and dislikes, but I'm a lot more open to things now. And I've learnt for the same cost of a packet of chicken from the shops you can buy a LOT more veg etc and make a dish ends up bulkier, more filling, tastier, and even looks a lot better with the mix of colour. Colour really is a simple and easy way to tell how much goodness is in your food. Salads, stir frys, soups, paella, there's plenty of dishes you can make that you just chuck anything in and by the time it's cooked it tastes great no matter what.
Raw food helped me get over a lot of what I traditionally don't like. You can make just about anything as part of a raw food diet, ravioli, cakes, spaghetti, allsorts. It takes some forward planning but it's a good way to try different things. I don't like tomatoes, I don't like nuts, I'm not especially keen on turnip or avocado, but I like all these things in certain contexts I've discovered, usually such that I can't notice them, but hey it works. I'm not militant on my diet. I eat white bread and white pasta, if I want mcdonalds I'll get mcdonalds, I ordered pizza the other day, I ate an entire bar of chocolate yesterday. But once you start getting health stuff into your diet it becomes ludicrously easy to form into a foundation which you then build around and you feel better for it very quickly and see the progress in yourself within a week or two.
And that's why I like the gym, I can see my progress - I might not be where I want to get to yet, but I can see each week how I get closer to my goal. I can run non stop on the treadmill for 20 minutes at 80% of my top pace now. If I do interval training I can quite happily go for a lot longer. Earlier this week I upped the weights up using on my leg presses and today I was able to do the full workout with the heavier weight. Next week or the week after I'll be upping the weights I'm using on my arm workouts too I reckon. I keep pushing myself that little bit further each time. Especially with my cardio. Just one more minute, just until the end of the song, just until the .5/full km, just until that round number of calories... when I'm struggling I tell myself I can do those last 3 or 4 minutes at my normal pace and push through, or i can do 2 minutes at my flat out top speed. Of course my body will eventually work out I keep moving the goalposts and stop responding to it, but for now it's good....
Of course I get self conscious, I in fact really hate being at the gym in some ways, am I doing it right, are people laughing at me, what the hell is this gay ass skinny boy doing weights for, i can lift so little, that guy's so much bigger better etc. But I force myself to get over it, I blast my music into my ears and find a way to focus just on me, it forces me to deal with part of my severe self consciousness, and I get through it. And I figure everyone had to start somewhere; combined with the progress i get to see myself making, I know one day I'll be the guy that other boys are drooling over.
Plus you get that fun endorphin kick at the end of it all from working out, and the even better one when you hit a workout target one day. I was a really sickly child, 5 minutes of exercise used to have me in a hospital on a nebulizer, so the fact I can now run harder longer and steeper on a treadmill than most of the rest of my gym is a point of pride. And now that I've got som,e cardio strength back, I've started mixing up my exercises a bit more again - and oh god I'd forgotten just how crap I am at cross trainers. Within 5 minutes I was at the "no more, please no more" point. But now I have something else to work on, and I know I get there.
This is why I love the gym, I get the feeling of accomplishment from it, I get to feel healthy, I get endophins flooding my system, I get pain, which everyone knows I enjoy anyway, and I get to come home, make 3 bacon rolls, and eat them feeling perfectly smug because I know I worked off double that at the gym.