photo by lululemon athletica

WHAT IS A WORKOUT? by George Allen

A workout is 25 percent perspiration

and 75 percent determination.

Stated another way, it is one part physical exertion

and three parts self-discipline.

Doing it is easy once you get started.

A workout makes you better today than you were yesterday.

It strengthens the body, relaxes the mind,

and toughens the spirit.

When you workout regularly, your problems diminish

and your confidence grows.

A workout is a personal triumph over laziness and


It is the badge of a winner—the mark of an organized

goal-oriented person

who has taken charge of his, or her, destiny.

A workout is a wise use of time

and an investment in excellence.

It is a way of preparing for life’s challenges

and proving to yourself

that you have what it takes to do what is necessary.

A workout is a key that helps unlock the door

to opportunity and success.

Hidden within each of us is an extraordinary force.

Physical and mental fitness are the triggers that can release it.

A workout is a form of rebirth.

When you finish a good workout, you don’t simply feel better,



I pulled these inspirational words out of a folder of papers I hadn’t looked at in years, because I figured I needed a big swift kick in the ass when it comes to exercising—remember why it’s so great for you, blah blah blah. It’s now taped prominently where I can see it, in the hope that it will remind me that no progress can be made in my fatness unless I MOVE.

I got on this cookie rampage around the holidays and come end of January, it still hadn’t stopped. Sugar for me is like cocaine; I ingest a little, but then I want more. And more. And more. And I can’t stop eating it, until it’s time to get into a bathing suit, and then I’m like…Oh crap!

So I told myself: “Self, you need to get your sugar cravings under control before you’re forced to shop for Delta Burke Clothing.”

Self said, “Uh, I don’t think so. Hey, can you grab me a chocolate-covered granola bar. You’re closer.”

“No really,” I said. “I’m not kidding around. You’re like this insatiable monster that can’t get enough.”

“Yeah, and…?”

“Well, none of your clothes fit anymore.”

Self thought about it for a moment. “That might be a problem, I suppose.”

“Not only that, but you’re turning 45!”


“You don’t want to be fat for your birthday, do you?”

“Depends. Will there be cake? And if so, will I be allowed to eat it?”

It was a losing battle, so I knew drastic measures had to be taken. I came up with the brilliant idea to do the Master Cleanse—nothing but lemon juice/maple syrup/red pepper in water for 10 days. I decided to do it my way though. I still drank coffee with heavy cream, (no way in hell was I going to experience food AND caffeine withdrawals) and I ate a few veggies, and a bit of fruit. The first day was no problemo. The third day was hell and a hot flash—and not because I was hungry, but because I couldn’t think straight; it was what I imagine encephalitis to feel like. And I had the kind of headache that felt like 20 woodpeckers jackhammering my forehead. And I went to bed at 8:30 after getting up at almost noon.

This morning I decided that not eating truly madly deeply sucks, and I’d rather stay toxic than go through a freaking headache like that again, as well as perpetual brain inertia. But it did get my sweets craving under control, and the entire miserable ordeal showed me that if I want to eat then I have to exercise. Because it really doesn’t matter how thin I am if my mind can’t form coherent sentences and I end up passing out from lack of food in front of a moving bus.

4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Menopausalmother
    Jan 28, 2013 @ 20:52:18

    I’ve got the same problem going on over here! I got into cookie mode before, during and after the holidays, then gained another 10 pounds! Freaked me out! I’m back to eating rabbit food this week and walking daily. Dieting sucks. Why can’t chocolate be a healthy food group???


    • Tiffany N. York
      Jan 29, 2013 @ 08:16:58

      Actually, the really dark chocolate is good for you–but obviously you can’t eat a boatload of it. Everything in moderation. I HATE moderation, that’s my problem. I always read how models eat like one snack-size Snickers if they’re craving something sweet, and I’m like, Really?! How is that possible. I’m all about the Fun size!


  2. Cie
    Jan 29, 2013 @ 16:10:48

    Loved the conversation between self and Self. Made me laugh cause it’s so true.


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