Words & More Words

This Romance Writer’s Life…

The Mental vs. Physical Workout

I recently joined the health club by my house.  After two years of sitting on my butt, I finally got back on the treadmill.  I had my excuses.  Some were validated - heel spurs followed by surgery and herniated disks in my neck followed by six rounds of cortisone shots.  And some were, well, me being just plain lazy.  So, last Wednesday, despite the fact that all I wanted to do was sit on the couch and watch the remaining three episodes of "Nashville," the hubby and I went and signed up for the summer membership.   We agreed that we'd "try out" working out on a regular basis and if we succeeded at going consistently, we'd sign up for a regular membership in September.

Now, that said, I am a big fan of accessorizing.  So, I dug out the best looking, shiny Big Buddha bag I had and filled it with a makeup bag, toiletries, and such.  Stuff that will get me from the gym to home in an acceptable manner, just in case I run into someone I know.  I loaded up on the cutest and coolest t-shirts that would make a statement.  There are the concert shirts that say "yeah I was at that show, I'm such a rockstar" and the plain short sleeve tops that coordinate nicely with all my tattoos.  I even downloaded a couple apps, like Couch to 5K, to get me through treadmill time. 

These, you see, are the tools I need to motivate myself (aka trick myself) into doing something I know I enjoy (once I freakin' get there) and is good for me.  It's a lot like writing.  I recently bought a new desk, bookshelves, two kitschy lamps for my home office because I wanted to "get serious" about my writing.  I have books about plot, outlining, creating memorable characters, notebooks (that I've hoarded) for each story idea I come up with.  I have a lot of pretty pillows on the daybed in the office that coordinate with the decor, because it's important to me that I am in a trendy-looking environment.  I have an app on my phone for notes because sometimes they come to me in staff meetings, on the way to work, in the bathroom.  I surround myself with all the things I need to be creative.

The struggle is to, and I hate to quote a certain sportswear company because they hired a terrible human being as their spokesperson, "just do it."  I know I don't need all these things to exercise or write.  I don't need to be all fancy when I exercise just as a pen and some paper would be fine to use for writing.  But it's nice to have that kind of support.  Just like having a new pair of running shoes can make all the difference, I couldn't live without my Scrivener program.  It's getting my butt on the treadmill and in the chair to write that needs to be the goal because the heart needs to be stimulated just as the brain does creatively.  

So back on the treadmill I go, fifteen minutes into my workout I start to smile.  I completely forgot how much I enjoy the exercise.  It all just clicked.  Just like when I write for a long period of time, and the plot points come together or I have a "eureka" moment, I get that same look on my face.  I'm not just sitting in front of the TV, watching the screen move, letting my butt and brain become sedentary.  It's so worth it to push myself.

And plus, I sure look cute in my headband!


Kelly DuffComment