It was August and I was coming up on my Senior year of college baseball. We had a few really strong muscular dudes on the team throwing rockets and dropping bombs. I had always had a slight interest in lifting weights. I lifted off and on throughout high school and in the offseasons in college. But I never really made it a part of my life consistently and I never took the time to learn about how to train really effectively and eat properly. I can remember friends as far back as high school lifting weights and getting stronger and seeing their bodies change. I also grew up watching things like He-man, The Incredible Hulk and of course professional wrestling. I had decided I wanted to be the jacked up catcher dropping bombs in the cleanup spot with muscles popping out of his sleeves. So once I made my decision, the next step was deciding when I would start. Since it was August, of course I did the typical “I’m going to start after the Summer” plan we hear so often. I didn’t even have a plan for what I was going to do when I started, I just decided I was going to do it not now, but later. That summer I was working on campus for my baseball coach and I told him in the fall I was going to build muscle like some of the other dudes and put more power in the lineup. He said, “Why are you going to start later, if you want to do it why wouldn’t you just start now?” I thought about it and realized I couldn’t answer the question. If this is something I really want to do, why am I putting it off? So I immediately got a gym membership and started going. I had lots to learn, but I had enough basic exercise knowledge to get going then I could keep learning and figure things out along the way. Since then, whenever I had a goal to accomplish I would get some knowledge as soon as I could and start as soon as I could and figure things out as I went along. So thanks Coach V! I got in great shape and just kept getting better. I actually ended up sucking at baseball my senior year and ended up in the bullpen chewing Red Man all season, but to this day, nobody can break my world record RedMan spit puddles. However, I did end up becoming a natural competitive bodybuilder and having a successful career in the supplement industry.
So next time you’re waiting for the right time to start taking care of yourself there are 2 things to remember. First, there is never a right time. There will always be a holiday, a birthday party, a wedding and other things to justify procrastinating. Second, you have to realize that if you really want to do something there’s no reason to put it off. Taking care of yourself is not a seasonal thing, or occasional thing, it’s a lifestyle thing. There will always be things that come up that will not allow for you to work out that day, or eat something you wouldn’t normally eat, and that’s ok. You have a life to live, and you should! Go to a Birthday party and have a piece of cake. If you have too much to do one day who cares, exercise the next day. Fitness is not an all or nothing thing. This is why New Years resolutions never work. When someone says, “I’m going to start after the Holidays,” what they’re really saying is, “ I dread doing this and I am going to start at the last possible minute.” What is it about the holidays that don’t allow you to take care of yourself? You have Thanksgiving, Christmas or whichever religious celebration to partake in, and New Years Eve, Maybe a holiday gathering after work one day and that’s really it. So you can’t exercise and make good moderate food choices over the course of 2 months because there will be maybe 4 or 5 days over that course of time where you will eat something sugary, or have a few beers? So January 1st people go to the Gym, starve themselves and run on the treadmill for two hours a day. A month later they’re so tired, hungry and burned out that they give up and end up gaining more weight than they had before the new year. If you start during the holidays, that will help you get used to having exercise and making good food choices a part of your life while allowing events and times that cause you to stray from your routine be something that you can and should enjoy while you simply get back to your routine the next day. It will show you how to apply healthy decisions into your life, rather than trying to apply your life to healthy decisions. You will gain power and control over your quality of life and no matter what comes up down the road, you will always be able to look back at how you took control before, and reassure yourself this is you’re show, you’re in the drivers seat and there’s no reason for that to change. So ask yourself, “Do I really want to do this.” If the answer is yes, Coach Vadnais says, “Do it now!”