let me preface this entry with a statement: i have never been gifted in the upper arm strength realm. i have always been too fat and too weak to perform pull-ups, climb ropes, or do anything that relied heavily on lifting myself based on the strength of my arms. i can hold yoga positions; i cannot, however, do fucking push-ups. fuck you, tony horton, you spritely, peppy, push-up masterfuck.
for a few years now, i’ve been hearing about this phenomenon called “p90x.” it’s basically, for those of you unfamiliar with Tony Horton, a 90 day program meant to get the user in the best shape of their lives. there are basic minimums you should meet before starting (i don’t, by the way) and the program utilizes “muscle confusion” to achieve quicker, more noticeable results for the user. the program is split into twelve individual workouts which focus on different parts of your body. today was day one and we, me and Tony Horton, focused on the chest and the back today. let me tell you something– i don’t even know how to do a fucking push-up, let alone perform different variations, which are more difficult, for extended periods of time. today, i learned diamond push-ups, military push-ups, dive-bomber push ups, and some sort of wide fly push-up. THEY ALL SUCKED. but, i broke a serious sweat and i already feel the tension in my arms to tell me that i have been working. another problem is i do not have resistance bands, which i think would be more helpful than the pull-up bar. and my dumbbells are only 5lbs each. i may need to step it up and have a set that’s a tad bit heavier, just so i feel more of a resistance when performing actions which require the use of dumbbells. resistance bands and dumbbells. my arms hurt. either way, it was kind of fun and i think i’m really going to like it. apparently, tomorrow, the dear plyometrics session, is hard, too. i noticed there are some fucking jump-squats in there, so that should be splendid. i love/hate you, tony horton, but thank you for challenging muscles i did not know i had today. again, i kind of hurt. i’m sure it’s only going to get worse.
now, onto more serious matters. bashing tony horton is fun and all, but there are pressing matters facing our nation right now. as everyone should be aware, there is very serious news coming out of boston. if anyone doesn’t know, boston was the site of an attack against runners, civilians, americans. it was an attack against all of us. many people expressed their concern for me because i consider myself a (struggling) runner, and it has taken me a few days to really articulate what i felt. i feel like attacking marathoners is the wrong group of people to attack. these people have qualified for this race, trained for this race. they eat, breathe, sweat this race. they also eat, breathe, and sweat determination, perseverance, motivation, and self-control. these boston marathoners have overcome setbacks, they have experienced triumph, and their spirits are unwavering. yesterday, i ran 2 miles and dedicated my run to boston. while it may only be 2 miles, which is 24.2 miles less than a marathoner runs, i focused on how fortunate i am to have my life, my safety, and the ability to get out on the street and run. i have security that i am relatively safe when i run distances in my hometown and that is a feeling that was stolen from the city of boston and from the marathoners running the race. running is hard for me; i have a real hard time getting motivated sometimes. i love running races; i love how running makes me feel. but, fuck, man, it’s so hard while i’m doing it. but, i had a purpose on thursday– i was thinking of boston and of those people who may never run again, people who have been traumatized, people who lost their lives. muscle fatigue and sweating is nothing when compared to the drive of the human spirit and it was alive within me on thursday.
i love the running community. i love being a, albeit slow, runner. i love races. i love the spirit. i love the drive. most importantly, i love the human compassion that comes from the running community. there is such a desire to lift others up, to support others, to push others to achieve every goal. the safety and spirit of boston may have been diminished, damaged, but there is a country of people waiting in the wings to run for boston, to think of boston, and to stand behind boston. yesterday, i was boston. i will probably never approach running the same way again.
stay healthy, y’all.