TGTHAFO (Thank Goodness the Holidays are finally over!) Now that it's a new year-- we're done with all the holidaying for another 11ish months. Don't get me wrong-- I love the holidays. (I may not take down my trees for another month out of sheer stubbornness.) My body, however, did not love the holidays. I boldly said on Christmas day (and I quote) "That tomorrow, after a day of eating what I want and enjoying it, I'll be back to working hard. That the holidays won't ruin me." Apparently I'm fine with lying to myself, because that's not exactly how it played out.
What actually happened was that I ate whatever I wanted. It started out small-- just a bite or two here and there. Then it turned into grazing. And of course, I didn't know how to track it, so I didn't. Then it became a "well, it's the holidays, this is what is supposed to happen thing." And then I was too sluggish to workout well, and then I deserved...and got... a lecture and The Look from He-who-trains. He made a point that I'd never really considered: that living this way is a lot like a marriage. If you cheat on it, it won't work.
I had good intentions. But of course, I'm vaguely remembering some expression the road to Hell being paved with those. I bought stuff first for the open house, then for our Christmas guests. Stuff I never would have bought otherwise. And who can bear to throw things away-- especially when they are perfectly good? (Which is, of course, different from good-for-you.)
Yet, I did. As soon as everyone left, I threw every bit of it away. It was The Great Purge. Then I met He-who-trains at the gym, and he introduced me to my new favorite buddy: Mr. Punching Bag. He left us alone for a while to get acquainted. An hour and a half later, I left a sweaty mess. I was spent. But I knew the fight that was raging in me was finished. Now I could get back to business.
And I have. When I saw He-who-trains at a New Year's Eve fete, and he asked me what I'd eaten before he got there, I could honestly tell him that I'd behaved. I ate some ham and some fruit and the tiniest little bit of macaroni and cheese. I couldn't even tell you what kinds of desserts there were because I never made it that close. I'm actually completely ok with that. But more than that, I could look him in the eye and tell him that I'm doing this, that I mean it, and that I'm back to being a rockstar.
In the course of the last two weeks, I made the mistake of telling He-who-trains that I like my workouts to be really challenging. (And I do-- I get ill when I have a lame-o workout.) So today, he gave me exactly what I asked for. I really thought to myself-- at least during the first round-- "He's trying to kill me. He's actually trying to kill me."
Of course he is. Just not in the way I thought. I've used the illustration a lot as a pastor, but it seems to fit now. Rebirth only happens after a death. If something is healthy, it can grow. But sometimes the new can only come after the old has been allowed to die off. I realized today that there's not room for my old habits and thoughts, because they were choking out the new growth that was just beginning to show.
At the end of the workout, I was spent. And grinning from ear to ear. Because I felt good and alive and focused and passionate and strong. And because there's been a thanatopsis (good death) of some things that needed to go.
To that, and to a year of doing the things I always believed impossible, I raise my glass. Here's to 2013: the year of the pudgeless parson!