Back in the Y.M.C.A.
Why is it that good habits are so easy to break and bad habits so easy to keep? Earlier this year I was a gym-going-fool, just about every day for 30 minutes to an hour. I reached the point that I even enjoyed it and looked forward to my daily ritual. I had never really liked going to a gym so I thought that I had made a big breakthrough to my future mid-life health.
Then in July, my family and I took an extended trip to the Midwest to visit friends and relatives. We were gone about 3 weeks, and even managed to get to the gym a few times during the trip. However it was that break in routine that was the catalyst for my downfall. After our trip, the final nail in the coffin, my step daughter wanted to get become involved in Pop Warner Cheerleading.
Those of you who have experienced being a ‘cheer parent’ will understand, for those who have not, let me try to explain. THIS CONSUMES PRACTICALLY EVERY MINUTE OF YOUR FREE TIME! At least it did for my wife, Kathy; so her trips to the gym became a very rare event. My main influence and chief butt-kicker was on hiatus! I will give her ‘mad props’, she was much better at squeezing in exercise than I. Walking miles on Sunday mornings and at times around the athletic fields during evening cheer practices.
So what was my excuse? None really, I just fell back to the familiar confines of my big comfy couch. It was like I never even had went to the gym at all; didn’t miss it, hardly ever thought about it. Yes Healthy Midlife fans, I backslid, my YMCA key fob hung on my chain un-scanned and unfulfilled; just another widget to get in my way as I unlocked the front door.
This all changed Saturday morning. Kathy walked out of the bedroom and declared, “We are going to the gym!” There was no way I could even give her a hint of a negative response. Cheer was over, it was time to get back on the treadmill for both of us, but mainly for me. I looked forward to it actually, and to my surprise, I arrive at our local YMCA to all new equipment! The new treadmills are fantastic! Touch screen displays, built in TV’s, i-pod docks – the works!
Thanks to Kathy’s influence, it seems that my desire for exercise has returned. I’m glad to see it back with just a couple of visits to the gym; and I hope that I’ve learned a very important lesson about changing routines and to be more diligent when life gets in the way of a good habit.