Throwback Week: The antidote to “I ate too much, so I don’t want to exercise.”

This post is fairly new (as in, last week). But it’s the answer to yesterday’s Throwback Post “I ate badly yesterday, so I don’t want to exercise today. Ha ha ha.” The answer is so simple it’s a little silly. Just get back to business. Bad meal? Plan your next meal, and make it a good one. No exercise yesterday? Get out there today. See? Super-simple.

Planning Workouts 101: We interrupt this workout for an important message.

[Originally published May 21, 2014.]

Yes! That's what it feels like when you eat well, then have a super workout. What's better than that? (Image courtesy of stockimages / FreeDigitalPhotos.net)
Yes! That’s what it feels like when you eat well, then have a super workout. What’s better than that? (Image courtesy of stockimages / FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

It’s Wednesday of Planning Workouts 101 week at Every48, and this post was originally supposed to be about pairing your workouts up with activities you want to do (such as listening to your favorite music only when you go for your power walk) to make them something you’re looking forward to doing.

But then on Monday morning, I suddenly, finally had a decent 7-mile run pop out, after weeks of feeling lethargic, and wanted to share what I think is going on around here. So I’ll write about the magic of “pairing” tomorrow.

Here’s what happened to me in the last 48 hours:

Sunday: Ate really healthy meals. Monday: Lots of energy.

Coincidence? No. I do not think this is a coincidence.

Sunday: Good nutrition. Monday: Good energy. Hmmm. I think this is what is known as a "no-brainer." (Image courtesy of imagerymajestic / FreeDigitalPhotos.net)
Sunday: Good nutrition. Monday: Good energy. Hmmm. I think this is what is known as a “no-brainer.” (Image courtesy of imagerymajestic / FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

It’s not been a major major theme of Every48 so far in 2014, but it’s starting to bubble up to the surface more and more often: the absolutely undeniable link between solid nutrition that fuels our bodies, and sustaining an energy level that makes it possible to, say, run 7 miles first thing on a Monday morning. You know what I’m saying?

Have you ever seen an unhealthy-looking person sitting behind the wheel of a fancy sports car? (I know, that image just screams “midlife crisis,” but I do know some people who just love awesome cars – and who, in a lifestyle choice that has always puzzled me, don’t really take great care of themselves.) What is going on there?

We know how to take care of our cars. We learn it early (or we don’t, and blow out the engine on our first car at age 24 because we didn’t replace the oil cap when we tried to change the oil ourselves, causing $4000 worth of damage, which at that age feels like it’s going to take a break-in at Fort Knox to pay for the damages – but I digress).

We know what to do for regular maintenance. Gas. Oil changes. Fluid top-offs. Air in the tires. Belts checked. Air filter replaced every so often. Tune-ups at 50,000 miles and 100,000 miles. Et cetera. We know we’re riding on a machine that costs a pretty penny to fix if it croaks, so we care about it.

But when it comes to our bodies, sometimes I think we miss the memo. Exercise alone cannot “fix” poor nutrition – even though it can mask poor nutrition for some lucky folks among us who can just exercise a little more to lose weight.  Good nutrition – and by that I mean the Michael Pollan variety (eat food, not too much, mostly plants) – does incredible things for our bodies. In my case, I finally got a shot of adrenaline that translated into a super workout on Monday.

This is an important topic, one that I want to make sure gets addressed a lot this year at Every48. It’s not “just” about exercise. It’s about a whole vision of health, where we take breaks from work regularly, keep moving throughout the day, have healthy foods conveniently available to us for snacks and meals (that means the candy jar goes out the door and the fruit bowl comes in the door, for example), and we have a reasonable amount of time to spend with our families, and we get enough sleep on a regular basis. That’s good health. Exercise is a big part of that puzzle. And so is nutrition. It’s not an add-on. It’s a “whoa, I have the energy to exercise because I ate well yesterday and slept decently too.” It’s a system.

Back in the saddle, indeed! Best wishes for your own great day of nutrition and a super workout too.

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