Mad Brad: Walk before you run

I recently decided to reengage in physical activities, and as I went for my first early morning run in months I had many anticipations. I stretched, breathed in the day’s dew and remembered the glory days of track and cross country. As I took off down the street I thought, “I’m going to be in the best shape of my life!”

About minute and a half later I was walking along the side of the road. My mind and heart were on fire with youthful vigor to be a physical specimen of man-tastic proportions, but the fire in my legs did not share the same sentiments.

I tried a slight jog, but I was going so slow that mosquitoes were able to land on me. After trying for a few more minutes I just started to walk back. With very little sweat on my body I waved at a middle-aged woman in a turquoise windbreaker who was out for a brisk walk as well.

What happened to me?

I remember at the end of my freshman year in high school I decided that I wanted to make varsity cross country . That entire summer I ran everyday, and when the fall came around I made the squad. I lettered twice in track, and despite injuries went to state both years.

We also won both of those years.

When I wanted to gain muscle mass I delved into protein shakes. By the end of my senior year I was called Buffalo Basker, and despite my unhealthy lifestyle I was 215 pounds of power lifting man love.

My mass of Catholic schoolboy goodness would carry over into my college career, and even though I partied a lot my freshman year I still would workout all the time.

Some nights I would party until about 5 in the morning. I would stay up to make sure that I would be one of the first 10 customers to Kaldi’s so I could get a free cup of coffee, and then I would hit the weights around 8.

Say what you will about my priorities, but at least I was devoted.

So when I lay sprawled out on my living room floor in pain, I didn’t know what to think. What should I have expected?

I’ve spent the last 5 months writing, studying, eating bagels with New York cheesecake spread and watching every episode of The Office. Although The Office is one of my favorite shows, it is hardly conducive for perfecting my physique.

It was good to get defeated so swiftly, because I had no idea how much my physical status had fallen. I’m 179 pounds of weight room leftovers with the heart and mind of a brand new jock strap. I’m going to go at this with all my might.

But even though I feel that way, I know that it’s going to take progress through dedication. I’ve got to walk, before I can run.

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