Readers, I’m about to upload pictures of my body onto the internet. I hate doing this, despite how proud I am of the progress I’ve made through the combination of a regular exercise routine, and a diet of constant, merciless eating. I guess that stems from a lifetime of asking people to delete the photos that they just took of me without my shirt on. Until very recently, I was embarrassed of my skinny frame, and not because it was any detriment to me. There was no lifting attempts of cartoon weights, only to see my arms droop. No bullies played the xylophone on my rib cage. No one ever excluded me for being an extra in the hypothetical remake of Tod Browning’s Freaks.
I was embarrassed because I couldn’t stop comparing myself to other people. I had those middle/high school locker room insecurities that many males go through when they feel a few years younger than their same aged peers. You find yourself crossing your arms to hide the awkward slant in your pectorals, and feeling self conscious about the way your clothes seem to hang off you, as if you skipped right past the t-shirts in your dresser, and went straight for the pillow case collage.
I wanted to change it for years, but two weeks into every workout plan marked that workout plan’s failure. I couldn’t stick to one. Why lift weights again that week when you could just say that you’d make up for it the next day? I finally decided to push past all my gym hesitations in January, and after that initial feeling of futility when you’ve only been going for two weeks and still criticize yourself for not yet being The Rock’s bodyguard, it was smooth sailing.
Working out consistently is like writing every day. There’s is that initial magic of “Yeah, I’m doing it!”, but that magic fades away fast, leaving you with two options:
A) Push past that feeling of inadequacy and doubt, and turn it into a habit, knowing that when something becomes a habit, it doesn’t necessarily make it any less special.
B) Find yourself, seven years later, once again telling your friends that the novel will be finished “soon.”
I don’t like working out as much as I like writing. I tongue bathe writing every morning, while I still give working out a massage with a slight butt touch, but they’re similar, at least when it comes to the options I just gave you.
Okay, here are the pictures. The ones on the left were taken in July of 2013. The ones on the right were taken last night.