My New Exercise Routine

by Dave in

Thankfully I'm blessed with a metabolism strong enough to keep me relatively svelte without having to kill myself with exercise. My Italian wife's excellent cooking definitely keeps me honest in that department, though, and I guess playing the drums regularly works to stem the tide a bit. The net is I don't have to exercise in order to keep from buying larger clothing every 6 months.

But I'm not getting any younger, and my body occasionally reminds me of this. I'm no dumb-dumb, and I'm at least aware that regular exercise will be good for me as I age. It may not guarantee that I live any longer than I otherwise would, but there's good evidence to point to regular exercise maintaining my quality of life quite a bit longer, so I've been endeavoring to do it more... regularly.

The problem is that standing on a treadmill watching my iPod bores me to death. Inevitable as it is, death's not really the goal we're racing towards here, is it?

I have another issue: I'm a homeowner with a house that's nestled nicely amongst the trees, so there's a lot of crap to get done in the yard. Constantly. Occasionally we'll do marathon sessions on the weekends that kill us all, and then we spend the next few weeks feeling guilty about neglecting this, that or the other until we do it again. I guess this would happen even if we had a home with no trees in sight. Homeownership is a laborious joy for all of us, isn't it?

Thankfully, I stumbled onto a solution. I've recently traded in my not-quite-as-regular-as-I'd-like morning exercise routine (i.e. twice annually!) for a much more productive, kill-two-birds-with-one-stone concept of just working in the yard for 30-45 minutes a few mornings a week. It's amazing, really, how much different yardwork feels when I'm doing it to kill time as opposed to doing it to actually accomplish something. The results are the same, but I don't have that feeling of "oh crap I'll never finish all of this," because the reality is, I'm not doing it with the intention of finishing anything at all during any particular session. There's more to do than I'll *ever* complete, and the work regenerates, so really I think I've found the perfect solution. After 30-45 minutes, my heart rate's up, I feel like I've used my body for more than just sitting in a chair, and I've actually accomplished *something* tangible around the house/yard.

We'll see how it lasts but... so far, so good.