The scale at Floyd Fitness this morning confirmed a loss of ten pounds since beginning an exercise program of cardio and strength workouts that started for three mornings a week and expanded to five days after finishing physical rehab at Peak Rehab.
I crawl out of bed at 0430 each morning (4:30 a.m.), don some exercise gear, and take the five-mile drive over to Floyd Fitness for at least 45 minutes of workout.
The goal is to lose at least 45 pounds and bring some pep back into daily activities.
I’ve had to do that other times over the years, usually after letting physical health drop during my days of hard work and harder partying. I’ve been a workaholic for all of my adult life and as a teenager, when I worked full-time at The Floyd Press while in high school and later as a full-time reporter for The Roanoke Times trying to keep a busy class schedule at what was then the Roanoke center of The University of Virginia.
After working on days off, skipping vacations and pushing too hard, I would have to refocus and spend some quality time getting back into shape. Each time, I would promise someone — like a wife or a girlfriend or family — that I would slow down but then would get back into the same routine.
Today, at age 70, I find myself still getting up before the sun comes up, working most of the day and night on assignments, shooting photos and/or videos, editing a national political news website, writing something for Blue Ridge Muse, writing an OpEd piece for some national publication or some other profession-related task until hitting the sack around midnight.
A little over two months ago, the doc noted that I had put on 20 pounds over this past winter and I needed to get back into shape. He sent me to Peak for some therapy on my legs, still bothering me after the motorcycle accident in 2012 and another one last September and I reactivated a long-dormant membership in Floyd Fitness.
Is it working? The signs say yes, I ride a Cardio cycle for 30 minutes each morning. This morning, the summary on the panel of the bike said I covered 5.75 miles, burned more than 150 calories with a heart rate that peaked at 188 and average 94 during the 30 minutes. The bike’s resistance ranged from 3-10.
After a five-minute cool down, I died 75 reps with 60 lbs on a weight machine and 50 sit ups, an increase from the start of the program when doing 10 was a chore.
Breakfast later this morning will be coffee and a bowl of fruit. Lunches and dinners usually at baked or grilled chicken or fish and some veggies: No breads, no drinks containing sugar and lots of water.
With luck and work, I hope this results in better shape this year for coverage of FloydFest and the Old Times Fiddler’s Convention, assignments for The Floyd Press and other projects.
Or I will be dead. At age 70, those are really the only two viable options.