The Pillsbury Doughboy

I started going to the gym again. When I last had a health club membership, it was something I did because I knew I should do it, but going was a chore. I went once a week and going once a week is like not going at all. Now, I want to go. I can’t explain it, but I’m just sick of looking like I do.

I don’t think my problem is eating. While I certainly can make some improvements in my diet, I don’t think that is the primary problem. The big problem is that I have a very sedentary life. Like most kids, I was pretty active playing outside all the time. I played sports through my sophomore year in high school. Then…..I joined the debate team. While debate is probably one of the best things I’ve ever done, it doesn’t do much for your body. If you’ve been to a debate tournament, you can take a look around and realize this pretty quick.

In a larger sense, I’m sort of representative the problem society has with weight. For most of human history, the primary focus of humanity was eating. Hunting, gathering, and farming. The amount of time it took to acquire and prepare food was many many times greater than it is now. Today, (in developed countries at least) the amount of work needed to acquire and prepare enough calories to survive is trivial. We pay farmers not to grow food. The largest dietary problem amongst the poor in the US has dramatically gone from malnutrition to obesity.

On the other end of things, we don’t have to work very hard anymore (in the burning of calories sense of the word, not in terms of time). Television is often blamed for most people’s lack of exercise, and to some extent its true, but even with out TV, people wouldn’t necessarily be out working up a good sweat. My personal devil is the PC. I don’t really watch too much television despite the link up above. My television watching is pretty efficient due to Tivo, and I really don’t care for most of the programming outside of the educational channels. The PC is a much greater time suck for me than TV ever was, because TV is finite in its content whereas the Internet is not.

So, having eaten the easy to come by foods and having sat on my ass, I am now counteracting it by running in place, lifting things that serve no purpose, and sweating like a pig (and when I sweat, I really sweat). Nonetheless, I like it and feel much better having done it.