The Wide Angle: Life isn’t what it’s shaped up to be

Published 6:30 am Saturday, September 5, 2020

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

I know I’m not in the best shape in life. I’m in A shape, but it’s not a GOOD shape.

It’s a shape that’s made for couches and far too much sitting.

There was once a time where I was in better shape. Most people within a certain age range can recount stories of being healthy and at the top of their game.

Email newsletter signup

In college I actually worked out and chiseled a body that, if not macho,  actually looked pretty good. There was a time early in my career where I could run to assignments and still feel pretty good.

To say those days are gone is an understatement and making it worse is the face I have nobody to blame but myself. Not that I haven’t tried to blame others, but in the end responsibility falls on these bony shoulders.

More recently, I’ve tried a number of things in order to be a little more healthy, but lately that has also slid as life becomes a little more hectic and stressful.

And I know. I can hear you now suggesting that exercise can be a stress reliever. Get out and do something and let your mind go.

And to that I say, La, la, la, la … I can’t hear you!

Regardless, the idea that I’m no longer in a shape that I should be was rammed home after a lengthy walk at the Jay C. Hormel Nature Center.

Wandering about the trails on a gorgeous Sunday morning proved to be  a great day to get outside. Mild underneath a sunny sky with a light breeze was just what the doctor ordered.

The walk took us clear out to the tower and beyond, but on the way back, the trip took a snaking turn into unknown lands.

I’ve been to most all parts of the Nature Center except this part, which wrapped behind the Austin Country Club.

Soon thoughts of, “Good grief I’ve never seen so many monarch butterflies at the Nature Center,” switched to “Good grief, my back hates me.”

It quickly became apparent that walking as of late has been more of a side hobby designed to get me from house to vehicle to desk to vehicle and home again.

Not long after my back started complaining then my calves had gripes, followed by my feet.

It was the unionization of my body and now I was in negotiations.

This was all as I was keenly aware that we were seemingly getting close to Brownsdale. Seriously, I really didn’t know that the Nature Center stretched to where it did and with each passing step I was closer to visiting the Brownsdale Cenex station.

It’s sad to have to admit this, but considering I once got turned around at the Nature Center during a snowstorm and lost track of where I was, it’s not at all surprising that I could screw this up.

Don’t worry, I used my expert tracking senses to get out of the snow storm. Follow the sound of Interstate 90.

Eventually, the familiar trail was found once again and we were back at it on the way back to the chariot.

By this point, my out of shape form was outwardly mocking me for my sloth over the years and it was hard to argue with it. At the same time, I was mocking myself for my erstwhile slothly nature. There is no real reason that a simple walk should result in this much uncomfortableness, and yet, here we are.

Upon making it home, I flopped my sorry self onto the couch and lamented the move as now I was curious as to whether or not I would ever be able to move again.

But the lesson was learned and I need to be more active. Will I return to a gym? No. We’ll work on baby steps like walking more places and riding bikes more. It’s never too late to change, they say. I will have to admit they are right and it’s time to take advantage of this.

Next, I’ll try running …. Hahahahahahahah. No I won’t .