The Battle With New Year’s Resolutions
Posted on January 2, 2013
Thirty-six hours after smoking ten fags and decking a full bottle of vintage port, I went in to full scale self-righteous mode this lunch time and embarked on my first trip down to the gymnasium since mid-December 2012. New Year’s Eve was the first and only time I really abused myself with toxins over the Christmas break, something that was partly due to being physically well off the pace and partly to do with deliberately avoiding my new found inability to deal with hangovers that seem to wipe out all my happy cells for at least 24 hours, as proved the case yesterday.
Eating is also something I have not over indulged in this year as the head cold I had in the build up to Christmas put paid my appetite. On Boxing Day, a day that is normally associated with devouring left overs in between going to watch Reading play, I ate nothing, preferring to spend my day either in traffic or in bed without food or football. Actually, when I look back on it, Christmas 2012 was an unmitigated fucking disaster, with the only silver lining being that I ate less (if you exclude the Quality Street) and drunk less, than what I would do on any other fortnight during a calendar year.
I arrived at the gym to find a full car park and lots of strange faces; there is nothing like a New Year for people to convince themselves to make a new start and why not, I say. However, the problem that arises for most people is finding the dedication required to find the time in between, jobs, kids and household chores to spend an hour plodding on a running machine or an exercise bike. Sadly, with gym equipment, there is none of the enjoyment you experience playing competitive sports with opponents standing in your way. It is, I am sorry to inform you, dead boring. The only reason, I stick it out and manage to go 2-3 times a week is because I often work at home, I live near the local gym and I spend my life fearing the day I am described as rotund, something that that at five foot and eight inches, is remarkably easy to achieve.
Some of the poor sods I saw today, have (if you excuse the pun) big issues and it kind of made me wonder how obesity gets to a certain point and how on earth it can be reversed. There are all sorts of excuses for getting this way, including being big boned, carrying too much water or having a slow metabolism. My personal case is simpler, if I eat cheese, drink alcohol and devour cream teas, I shove on weight. If I exercise three times a week and reduce my intake of food and alcohol I lose weight. It is a simple science and I kind of can’t help thinking that if people who claimed that they carried too much water admitted that they were actually carrying too many doughnuts, it may be a more realistic start to reversing weight gain. When I look at pictures that were taken during post war rationing, there seems to be a distinct lack of big boned water carrying individuals with a slow metabolism.
Of course there are other more genuine handicaps that stop people losing weight and those of you have been physically active in sports in your younger years, will only know too well the issues that come with knees and ankles that are so complex in design you can’t help wonder what the fuck God was thinking or indeed drinking, when he designed them. I have been so lucky with my knees and ankles, so far only suffering with occasional floating cartilage, but I have many friends who have had ligament and cartilage issues that have basically rendered them fit to do little else but walk okay. To be condemned to a life of celery sticks because of knackered knees is a cruel blow and most people just give up. I would as well.
My biggest issue currently, is not weight; I can deal with that and manage to stay within a stone of my alleged fighting size. It is the social smoking I need to crack. I have packed in this habit for varying amounts of time, including stints of six years, eighteen months, three months and two hours. I am not a heavy smoker, I don’t do it at all in work clothes (it stinks) or without a sniff of alcohol, but when I am in good form I can do ten in a night if accompanied by a few beers. Beer and fags go like hand and glove and I like a few beers on a Friday night, I always have and always will, so there is my problem, one that I will be trying to deal with once again in the coming weeks and months. I am now two days clean!
So, if you are someone trying to give something up in 2013, my thoughts and best wishes are with you all the way, it is not easy. If I am to crack the smoking again, I really need to avoid TV programmes like Panorama that show senile pensioners getting battered by some bastard in a rundown care home. It is like watching adverts to encourage you to die young, rather than spending your latter years getting a good hiding for wetting yourself. It always results in me racing down to the fag shop. So as well as smoking, another New Year’s resolution has to be to avoid watching programmes about the perils of getting old.
For the record (get your medals out please) I did a three mile run, two miles rowing and three miles on a bike as well as fifty sit-ups and ten press ups.
Amazingly, despite the Port, fags and Quality Street debacle of New Year’s Eve, the only side effects I have been experiencing are these strange shooting pains up my left ar……….