Friday, October 16, 2015

Dusting off an old wish list

Years ago, I used to make lists of things I wanted to achieve in the coming months and years. It wasn't a bucket list, which sounds so terminal to me, but these weren't really New Year's resolutions either. They were just concrete examples of things to aim for. Number one on the list was always to lose weight, of course. Sometimes I would even write down my current (at that time) and projected future weight. Then there were the activities I wanted to do, either as a means of reaching the weight loss goal, or ones that would again be possible once I'd shed the 50 or 100 pounds needed to reach it. As my weight has fluctuated up and down over the years, some of these things have seemed more or less ridiculous. Here are some of them:

  • learn to dance (maybe ballroom, later something more energetic like Salsa)
  • have an abundant organic garden
  • run a marathon
  • ride a bicycle regularly, and a tandem would be fun
  • climb Mount Hood in Oregon
Now that I am "on the wagon" again - in a weight loss sense, not to do with abstaining from alcohol - it's time for me to dust off those lists and start thinking about a brighter future again in which these things are once again possible. For me, having an end in sight helps me on the journey to that end. If I want to run a marathon, for example, I know I'm not going to be able to hop out of bed tomorrow and run 26.1 miles (42 km) just like that. I know that I'll have to get into good enough shape that I can run at all without getting out of breath. Then I'll have to run 1 mile, then 3 miles (5 km), then 6 miles (10 km), then 10 miles, then a half-marathon (13 miles). Finally, after sufficient training, I will be ready to tackle the entire 26.1 miles.

I was never a confident dancer in my youth. Years ago (like, maybe, 18 years or so), I took some classes in Irish dancing. Michael Flatley I was not! (Michael Flatfoot, perhaps). Then, about six years ago, I used to take my daughter contra dancing (similar to square dancing). It required a lot of energy and stamina. I can't imagine doing it now - I'd collapse after about 30 seconds - but it's fun and a good way to burn up calories and energy.

No comments: