12.3.18 - Work It! Is It Worth It?

Dear Sweet Babe,

Today I want to talk about exercise.

What’s this? A topic that is relatable and non-existential? Where has your guncle gone, and who is this casual writer who’s taken his place?!?
Well, fret not, sweet babe, it’s still me and I’m about to break this topic wide open!

So, there are all kinds of exercisers. Besides the plethora of people who do not exercise (do not fall into this trap of sloth!), there is a host of varieties of people who do exercise and enjoy it. There are cardio queens who run on sidewalks, and trails, and treadmills like Forrest Gump brought to life. There are bulk monsters who gobble pre-work-out and protein powder, and lift so much weight that they look much less human and more like The Hulk or The Thing (but not Doomsday! We are a Marvel family, young lady!). There are the casual exercisers and the daily, go-hard exercisers. There are those who workout for hours and those who workout for minutes. There are as many different types of exercisers as there are different people who exercise.

But, why do these people do these crazy things like running and lifting and lunging and rowing? What would drive someone to leave the comfort of their bed to *gulp* work out?

Well, some do it because they want to be attractive. They worry and fret that if they don’t have a tight six-pack, or a bubble butt, or Michelle Obama arms that they won’t be considered beautiful or handsome or sexy or attractive enough to ever find someone to love them. They equate their physical beauty with their inherent worth, and they let the fear of inadequacy drive them to work out.
Others do it because they love the feeling. They chase after the high that serotonin and adrenaline give them as voraciously as a crack-head or an over-caffeinated college student during finals week. Every final leg of the run or additional five pound dumbbell is the fix that get’s them through their day. But, like any addictive substance, these exercisers become dependent on feeling, even if it leads to detrimental effects on their body.
And others do it to socialize. Every trip to the gym or to a spin class, to group yoga or on a jog with friends is a time for them to reconnect with others who share their interests. They may even distract themselves so fully with catching up and gossip that they neglect pesky things like proper form or joint pain.
But me? Personally? I do it all for me. Don’t get me wrong, building my body to be more attractive is a plus, and adrenaline and serotonin feel great when they course through my veins, but I don’t exercise to socialize, and I certainly don’t work out to be more attractive for others. I work out so I can be healthier, and feel better. I work out so I can reconnect with my body and spend time giving my oldest possession the appreciation it deserves. I work out so I can look in the mirror and fall farther in love with what I see, as it is my creation. I work out for me, just me, because to work out for others is to chase an impossible goal. Remember: there will always be people who don’t like you…so don’t concern yourself with others’ opinions on your body.

And finally, sweet babe, I’ll leave you with this question: what reason will you find to exercise?


Erik SchneiderComment