This blog contains short stories, thoughts and other writings in support of my memoir: The Other Side of Town
Here’s a health tip for all you gym rats that have limited time during the week: start going to the gym on your lunch break. I started going during lunch a few months ago and ever since have had more energy during the day than ever before. Of course, I had to join another gym near where I work for convenience, but it was totally worth the 20 extra bucks a month. One way to look at it is: what would you rather pay, 20 bucks a month or thousands in medical bills when something really serious happens because you let yourself go?
In addition to the workouts, I’ve stopped drinking coffee in the afternoon and, because I’m drinking lemon water as a substitute, haven’t had a craving for junk food before I leave work. I think lemon juice is an appetite suppressor along with aiding in digestion.
I try to make the most of my workout, so I don’t half-ass in there and I break a real sweat; as real, or more real, than even after work. Working out at lunch forces you to shorten your routine or, at least, go through it really fast which makes it more intense. But Instead of feeling tired and worn out, you will feel energized for the rest of the day.
When you first start going, you’ll probably feel hunger pains right around lunch. This is perfectly normal of course. But you can ignore those; because they will soon subside just as air is hitting your body on the way to the car.
Workouts suffer in the evening because, whether you realize it or not, you have less energy. Conversely, between the hours of 12 and 2 is when you’re at peak energy levels; and will have plenty left in the tank for the second half of the work day and beyond.
It may feel strange at first breaking your usual routine of sitting in the lunch room eating a cold turkey sandwich with no mayo but you’ll feel pretty fantastic if you can make this your new routine. So while familiarity is comfortable, and part of healthy living actually, it can also be stifling if too inflexible.
Since I started exercising at lunch, I've had to modify my work out for brevity. I used to use heavy weights and it would take a while to go through everything because I needed to rest between sets. But now I do a more intense, CrossFit-style regimen without much rest in between. Including: singlehanded strap pulls from the floor with a kettle bell in one hand, pushups, burpees or platform jumps, shoulder presses and, lastly, lat pulldowns on the machine. I do this circuit 3 times and I’m done. It may not sound like much, but if you do it fast enough, you’ll feel the burn.
Another benefit of this type of kinetic training over heavy weights is: the pain from the Bursitis in my elbow has subsided somewhat. There’s still swelling that probably won’t go away until I get it drained, but I can deal with an ugly, distended elbow for a while.
Okay so maybe you don’t have Bursitis. But if you don’t want to get it, or other injuries, stay clear of really heavy weights. I’m not saying stay away from free weights altogether; just make sure you mix it up.
Now when I get home from work, going to the gym is a pleasant option—yes I still go after work sometimes actually. But for those dreading the possibility of having to suck out an hour of your evening, this idea is for you.
" The Other Side of Town was so good! It doesn't sound like jokes a lot of the time which is brilliant. I was laughing out loud! " ~ George Verongos LS