To Indulge is to Pay the Price

Well, I paid the Iron Price again.

Easter weekend came and went, and after a week of birthday parties and holiday indulgence I got back to working out and eating right. Then another weekend rolled around and Friday night I made the mistake of pulling up Netflix.

I had a show in mind I wanted to catch up on but for some reason it wasn’t there. Maybe it got dropped, maybe I’m just Netflix navigation challenged, but that’s not the point. The point is, I stumbled upon a show I’ve been watching for years and foolishly pulled up the pilot episode and several episodes after midnight I got to bed.

In and of itself this might not have been too bad, but I did it all over again on Saturday night. I might say that “One of these days I’ll learn better” except that, at this stage of my life, nah, I’m not going to learn better. Occasionally I’m going to stay up too late binge watching a show, or finishing up a great book, or something. I do this knowing full well there will be a price to pay, but I’m willing and able to pay it.

Anyway, Sunday came and spring cleaning began. A whole lotta work got done, and I collapsed into bed more or less on time. The problem being, I was already sleep deprived, and one normal night’s sleep after missing about six hours over the previous two isn’t going to fix that. I got to work yesterday feeling pretty ragged.

And then some dirty so and so brought homemade Nanaimo bars. Now, if you’re not Canadian, you might not be familiar with the Nanaimo bar. Let’s just say that it’s concentrated evil. Wonderful, delicious, concentrated evil.

Yah, this is healthy food (go read that recipe).

One of the problems of sleep deprivation is a lowering of resistance to food cravings. I don’t generally get food cravings, so I don’t actually seek out things like Nanaimo bars, Vachon cakes, Oreo cookies, ice cream bars, etc. My body simply never tells me to go looking for crap.

Unfortunately, while I don’t get food cravings, I do get food temptations, most of which are tied into nostalgia like the list above (lucky for me I can resist anything, except temptation). If you add in being physically and mentally overtired, my resistance was very low when I walked into the cafeteria and saw that tray of delicious, evil temptation. So I…walked away.

That’s right, in spite of my lowered resistance to temptation, I walked away. The tray was untouched and I wasn’t going to be the one to crack the seal, as it were. I got my coffee and went back to my desk. And drank my coffee. Fast. Because I was tired. And when I went back for another, the tray had been started, but not finished, and I caved.

Oh, that bar was good. Really good. Except that I ate it on an empty stomach (except for coffee) when I was already physically wrung out from the weekend. So I spent a good chunk of the day mildly nauseous from it.

Fortunately Monday is Inferno Hot Pilates day; high intensity interval training in a heated room. I have written, at length, on making a schedule, showing up and pushing through. Decide yesterday to work out today. Don’t skip, even if you’re sleep deprived and jacked up on sugar, trans fats and caffeine.

I don’t think I’d be much of a healthy lifestyle guy if I couldn’t take my own advice so, despite feeling like crap, I went to class hoping just to survive without throwing up. I didn’t just survive, I thrived. 10 minutes into class I’d sweated out that nausea, the blood was flowing and I was feeling good.

When all was said and done I had a great class, so much so that after class three people, including the club owner, commented to me that I was “really in the zone.”

If you’re just starting out trying to live a healthy active lifestyle, you may find this implausible. That you can start a high intensity workout feeling sick, go all out and come out feeling better, stronger and more energized sounds crazy, but it’s true. It takes effort, time and dedication, but stick with it and it will come, and all the benefits that come with it.