Saturday, August 9, 2008

Boys smell and slipping up.

So my most recent revelation... brace yourselves for this one... is that boys smell. Yes, indeed. After working out for an hour and dripping with sweat... boys smell -- really bad sometimes. It's kind of gross... kind of disturbing. What's even more disturbing is that.... I smell too. WHOA! The other day I was on the treadmill working out, and was wondering what in God's name that stink was... I looked around and there was no one else around me. That's when it hit me. I stunk! Well, not so much me, but one of the numerous baseball hats I've been sporting while I work out. And I need to wear a hat to keep all of my hair out of my face (a problem easily solved by getting a haircut, but we'll reserve that debate for a future blog). And hats tend to stink over time. And you can't wash hats every time otherwise they can lose their structure. So I have a dilemma... destroy a perfectly good hat??? Or shatter a perfect dillusion that somehow, I don't stink after working out. You're probably overwhelmed with the depth and profoundness of my commentary... but that's what's in my head.

I guess it goes back a bit to the first meeting I had with Sebastien, my trainer. During his interview he was trying to get a sense of what activities I did and didn't like to do. He started with 'likes'. Of course, I'm bull headed and difficult, and told him it would be easier to start with 'dislikes'. He indulged me... he's new, forgive him. HA! My response was... "I hate to sweat." He laughed. I laughed. He moved on. But I was serious. I hate sweating. I hate being messy. I hate my clothes sticking to me 'cause they're wet. I hate the fact that sweating means you can't re-wear a piece of clothing. This then results in more laundry. And for those among you who have ever stepped foot into my bedroom, y'all know how much I HATE doing laundry. In spite of not liking being messy. I know... I'm a complex, complex man... and good luck to the poor sucker who has to figure me out.

And that poor sucker is Sebastien. LOL! I'm feeling ever more confident with my choice to hire a trainer -- especially one who indulges my stubbornness, my circular and verbalized thought process, my bitchy sense of humour. He gets me. Well, he kind of has to... isn't that what I pay him for??? All kidding aside... this all seems to be clicking. And I'm learning a lot from my sessions with Seb (I've just decided it's easier to just type the first three letters of his name. I've also realized that I'm kind of talking about him like he's not here... but he is in a way. He's probably going to read this very shortly.) I digress....

I guess what I'm trying to put out there is that I feel like I'm in a good groove. Making positive changes about one's health is in a large part due to forming good behavioural patterns, and thinking about those changes realistically. I'm taking my time on this one. I've been at it for about two months... and I don't really know how 'the numbers' shape up. I don't really want to know. All I do know is that I feel amazing. My skin has cleared up (finally). I'm eating for fuel and am starting to tune into what it feels like to nourish my body -- knowing that the goal is to have good energy levels to hammer out a good work out at the gym every day. Yep, every day -- except for my one day off a week. But I'm now at the point where sweating and stinking aside, I'm really looking forward to going to work out and am not really willing to give up that slice of 'me time' for much of anything. It feels good to treat myself to this daily pleasure.

I'm also learning how to not punish myself for 'slipping up'... knowing that 'slipping up' should be a part of life. From the numerous times I've sat in Weight Watchers sessions and other programs, I recall the sense of guilt that gets put on your shoulders (voluntarily or involuntarily) when you've 'had a bad week'. Or how you can feel like if you don't follow 'the program' to the letter, that you won't have the results you want on the scale, and ultimately won't get your gold star for losing 10 pounds. What Seb is teaching me in a round about way, is that I should plan to slip up. I need to allow myself those moments where I go out and have a good time and don't obsess about what I'm putting into my system. Because my workouts and good work leading up to that point create a condition where my body can deal with it. And my mind too.

So last night, I had one hell of a 'slip up' night. My friend Paul and I went out for a drink. 'A drink' with Paul starts with a beer at 8:00 and we leave the pub at 1:00am. Stella Artois is a lovely lady... HA! I went to the gym before hand, and I wnt to the gym this morning (it's amazing how an hour long workout clears up a hangover!) But I don't feel one lick of guilt for having a great time last night. I had some wings. I had a great salad, too. And we had our fair share of beer. And I'm cool with that. What's interesting to me now, is that I'm now on my own new 'program' (if I can call it that), and I don't feel like crap for slipping up. But previously, when I wasn't on any program whatsoever, I felt like shit if I did slip up.. and I slipped up often. I know.. my brain is a complex beast... and I'm still trying to figure out how my dysfunctional thinking works. But in doing so, Seb and I are chipping away at the psychology of making this life change, and I feel like we're making progress.

It's a good thing.

A quick note... before I slipped up with Paul last night, I made a quick stop en route at a pub in Toronto called 'McVeigh's'. It is an Irish pub (an authentic one.. not one of those 'Firkin' chains) where my aunt Majella met her partner of many many years, Liam. Liam loved McVeighs. He loved the atmosphere. The pints. The meatloaf special. Liam passed away yesterday morning in Ireland where he and Majella moved a few years back.. He had a fairly short battle with cancer.. and passed on with Majella at his side and, I know, all of us in his heart. He was a man who knew how to eat well and drink well... a fine meal and a great glass of wine followed by a few pints were the markers of an evening well spent with Liam. But more importantly, he was a man who lived and loved even better. A huge heart. An open mind. An open home. Liam was always so very supportive of me... my career... my education... my coming out. Every step I took in my life since I've known him, he always helped me see as a positive thing -- as yet another thing we do in our live to expand our minds and stretch the boundaries of our perceived limitations. I know in my heart, that he would see my new path towards health in the very same way. So I took a moment last night at McVeigh's..grabbed a quiet table and a pint, and toasted a man who touched the lives of all who had the privilege and honour of sharing in his wonderful, joy-filled, world of optimism and opportunity. He will be missed. He already is.

Slainte, Liam!

and Kia Kaha, my friends.


  1. So you smell..........? I think I already knew that. You sound like you are having a good time and this is what counts. Feeling great,lots of energy.....the road to sucess........congratulations !
    As we can only post 1 comment per e-mail, Dad will finish this off. Great idea McVeigh's!!!!
    LOL Mom xoxoxo
    If you had taken all the showers you claimed you took as a kid maybe there would be no stink left in you.
    Take a tip from the Biker Community. wear a Dew Rag which can be washed after each use. Ha great idea for your Christmas gift. A box of Dew Rags.
    Nice comments about Liam and sounds like a meaningful visit to McVeighs.I will have to do the same next time in town.
    Stay healthy and smell good, Love Dad

  2. Hey Chris:

    Glad to hear things are falling into place for you and the workouts are going well. I am confused though, didn't you tell Seb you did not like to sweat? How come you are allowing this to happen? If he were to cease and desist with this truly shccking aspect of your workouts, wouldn't this solve the "smell" problem. On the other hand if this Seb guy can help you or anyone workout without sweating, he would be quite the trainer indeed. Maybe I should check him out, I think he duped you-but in a good, old fashioned slap you on the back what a kidder you are Chris kind of way! Stick with the program; the forces are with you man. And you're right Liam is toasting and cheering you from above as we speak as we all are. Love H.

  3. I know you're in the right place and Lima would be touched...a bit miffed that you dodn't have the meatloaf...but touched indeed.

    He will be missed.

    Love you for all your efforts and for starting to share more.... that's got be some weight off your shoulders.
    xo Me