I’ve been frustrated lately. Like really, REALLY frustrated. I’ve been writing more than ever ✏️ (yay!) but I’m also gaining weight like crazy ⚖️ (boo!). I’ve gained about 20 pounds this year (not wanting to step on a scale today to give you an official number so imma guess that sh@t) 😩
THE BATTLE IS BETWEEN MY WORKOUTS AND MY WRITING, AND ONLY ONE CAN EMERGE VICTORIOUS
I spent the last 2-3 years losing weight. Now, I’m gaining it and I can’t seem to get back on the wagon. In fact, both my wagon and I are barreling down the hill at terminal velocity, losing wheels, and tumbling over ourselves like a couple of Cirque Du Soleil acrobats, unable to tell where one of us starts and the other stops. It’s bad friends. It’s bad.
I taught high school English from 2004-2014 (side note: I took a couple year break from teaching between 2014-2018 to work at a Big 10 university… that was soul crushing, BTW. Nothing like being a cog in an over-priced wheel that thinks its better than every other wheel in the world). Before the soul-crushing university job, I was teaching in a really rough school, and it weighed on me so badly I became a broken human. I was drained all of the time. I got home every day and was so stressed and unhappy that food and wine became my only source of comfort. Bad habit, of course, because tired = no exercise 😴 and eating 🍟 and drinking 🍷 to suppress anxiety = unhealthy weight gain 🎅 (yes, that’s a Santa Claus emoji because frankly, that’s how I feel lately).
Teaching stressed me out so badly that I had gained a lot of weight and then when I quit teaching, I lost about 40 pounds and was a svelte 121 💃. I was lifting weights, doing cardio, and made working out my top priority. When the alarm would go off at 4am, I would (slowly, and very much like a sloth) climb out of bed, strap on my tennis shoes, and go workout for one hour before work. I would also spend a lot of time meal planning and prepping since I no longer had to lesson plan and grade. I fought my cravings, got in a lot of steps, and it was great. My confidence was through the roof, and I was happy and always getting compliments 💪.
⏭ Fast forward to going back to teaching and mother-effing COVID ⏭
Teaching during COVID has been very stressful for me, and my new school gave me a VERY hard class to teach that takes up most of my time and also drinks my happiness like a vampire drinks blood 🧛♀️. I’m sick and tired of teaching taking so much from me, but at this point, with over 12 years of teaching experience and 2 M.A. degrees, I’m finally at a school that pays really good money. I have to work, and teaching pays the bills.
October of this year (2020) is when I decided to make writing my priority, even over my full-time teaching career and even over my small business (I’m a busy person). I rearranged my entire schedule to make sure writing was the first thing I did every morning, not working out 🏋️♀️
Well, that turned out to be the best thing in the world for my writing (I am about 87,000 words into my latest YA novel) but the worst thing in the world for my a$$. I don’t have time to do them both before work, and usually I don’t have the energy to do them both in a day. I have tried so many times, but my energy gives out. If I workout first thing in the morning, writing doesn’t get done. And when I write first, my workout doesn’t get done. It’s a vicious battle, a freakin’ Thunderdome if you will, and we know that only one can be victorious.
As a teacher, when I get home from school (well lately it’s off of Zoom), writing isn’t happening. Period. I just don’t have the mental capacity or the energy. It doesn’t help that I also have an autoimmune disease so I get drained faster than most people. And because of my autoimmune disease, I don’t have it in me to workout when I get home either.
I’ve been a massive slug and I can’t seem to unslugify myself 🐌
So here’s my goal (let’s see if I actually stick to it this week, but frankly, I don’t trust myself these days):
- Wake up at 4am and chug pre-workout drink (it takes like 20-30 minutes to wake me up fully)
- Let dogs out at 4:30
- Workout 4:35-5:35 (with built-in time for dogs to be a menace and harass me)
- Write from 6-7
- Shower (quickly) and get ready for school (even faster)
- Zoom at 7:35am
It’s just ONE WEEK before we go on break, so I am hoping that I can force myself to follow this for 5 short days. That’s all. 5 days. But I’m not gonna lie, when that alarm goes off, I’ve been abusin’ the snoozin’ for sure!
Fingers crossed I can get my butt back on the wagon and start feeling good again 🤞 Good luck to all of you who may be struggling as well!
Anyone else struggle to get in their word count, work their day job well, make healthy choices, and get in a workout?
Just the world’s BIGGEST procrastinator when it comes to my writing. I have lived in such crippling fear of not getting published (fear of rejection anyone?) that I was too afraid to even pick up a pen. How dumb is that? This is my attempt to write — no matter how it all shakes down. P.S. I also learned that if I didn’t write, it would destroy me one piece of my soul at a time.