I have a goal for this weekend. It’s the same goal I have most every single day, but because last weekend didn’t go very well, I’m really focusing on it this weekend, so crappy weekends become the exception, not the norm. My goal is to exercise and make good food choices. I will work out both Saturday and Sunday, and I will not consume any gas station junk food.
I’m well-equipped to hit this goal out of the park, but as recently as 24 hours ago, I felt the opposite. Yesterday, I went to the gym to do my first weightlifting workout in a week. I didn’t intend to go a week without hitting the weights, but it just happened: I had the aforementioned craptacular weekend, followed by a Monday workout on an exercise bike, followed by a Tuesday night aerobics class at Slimmons, followed by an unexpected run on Wednesday (more on this in my next post). That’s a lot of wonderful cardio, but by Thursday all I really wanted to do was head to the bench press and blast my pecs <insert musclehead flexing and growling here>.
So I went to the gym, did my typical five-minute warm-up on the treadmill, and then headed over to the bench press I had been thinking about all day. What commenced was a terrible workout, soured mainly by my own attitude, which went from gung-ho to the toilet bowl in about 90 seconds.
Basically, thanks to my seven-day absence from the weight room, I discovered quickly that I felt weak, and I soon grew annoyed that I wasn’t completing the reps that I wanted to complete. No matter what I did – bench press, chin-ups, dips, flies – I wanted to do more reps than I could actually do, and it pissed me off. The actual reps wasn’t the thing that pissed me off – it was how feeble I felt after just one week away. It didn’t like not being able to accomplish something that I accomplished so recently.
It really shouldn’t have been such a big deal. I can’t expect to walk in and pick up right where I left off. But it ate at me, machine after machine, and after a while, I just wanted to throw in the towel and go home.
But I didn’t. I soldiered on for a full 30 minutes, then jumped on an elliptical for another 20 minutes and watched “Wipeout” on TV. Nothing gets my mind off a crappy situation like seeing dudes getting smacked in the nuts over and over and over again. By the time I got home, I felt happy that I carried on and finished a solid workout, and a little depressed by the thought that it only took my body a week to deteriorate as much as it did. What that means is that I can’t go a week without lifting weights. Ever. And that thought brings two sound effects to my brain simulatenously – this one:
And this one:
The only way to get back what I lost during that week is to keep lifting weights, so earlier today, I went back to the gym, and I brought a couple things with me:
- A better attitude.
- My friend Kristy.
I haven’t worked out with Kristy in a looong time. All last summer we took the same boot camp class (as did Kristy’s hubby, Mike), but I haven’t been to that class in months. I got her a guest pass to my gym, and we did a killer workout, both individually and together. After a warm-up, we did a 20-minute set with free weights (focusing on a variety of upper body exercises) while pedaling away on exercise bikes. Then we split up, and I did more weights: squats, leg presses, inclined bench press. We met up again at the end, and Kristy finished with lunges and flies, and I did a ton of sit-ups.
That workout was fantastic. It felt awesome to follow up a bad workout with an excellent one! Kristy came over after the gym, and we made a delicious lunch (which I will share in an upcoming post).
Speaking of food, there will be a couple occasions this weekend where I’ll be dining out. What I generally do when a menu is placed in front of me is jump immediately to the salads section, and find one that sounds good. With that salad in my mind as an option, I then peruse the rest of the menu, looking for other healthy options. Sometimes I find and order them, and sometimes I stick with the salad. Twice in the past week, I’ve stuck with the salad, and they were good. Here’s the citrus and berry salad I got at Hugo’s, one of my favorite restaurants:
Strawberries, oranges, mango, jicama, asparagus, green beans, greens, and some crumbled goat cheese, with a berry vinaigrette (that was a little on the tart side).
And here’s the salad I got at Cabbage Patch, a restaurant in downtown Los Angeles that I had never heard of until I walked into it:
Roasted baby beets, avocado, and mixed greens with a little cheese. Balsamic vinaigrette on the side. Fantastic.
I kinda fell in love with Cabbage Patch – it’s quick and reasonable (a perfect lunch spot if you work downtown), it has healthy options, and it’s in a fun two-story space that uses what looks like reclaimed wood. OH! And it has a mysterious skylight! There’s a frosted skylight at the top of the two-story space that brings light all the way down to the counter where you order, but the restaurant is located on the first two floors of a 10-story building. So, either the building has a center atrium/courtyard/light well that the skylight accesses, or… the skylight is completely fake! A sham! A ruse! See? Mysterious!
Here’s to a weekend filled with good choices!
KEEP IT UP, DAVID!