Friday, August 18, 2006

Busy resting

I learned something about myself on my quest for fitness and health. When I tried to be less perfectionist, less “Type A” and to “break” bad habits, I struggled – and still do.

One example is studying. When I study or read, I eat. Constantly.

Try cutting out that habit when starting a Ph.D. program. Nuh-uh! Didn’t work.

Instead I had to change what I ate. I used to go through entire family-sized bags of chips while reading at night. Now I chow down on celery stalks and cucumber. I was unable to “break” my habit. I had to change it, instead. I had to trade really bad habits for better ones. Thinking about eliminating them was just inconceivable.

(I’ve just come in from being outside for an hour and a half, reading. My gut is stuffed with veggies as I write this.)

This week, I’m supposed to be “resting”, taking it easy, doing “light activities”. When I think of this, my brain goes into a tailspin. Rest? What the hell? I mean, I sleep every day. Isn’t that enough “rest”? The thought of “doing nothing” shorts out my personal mental programming.

So instead, I have re-framed my week of being banned from the gym. I have decided that for one week, my job is to be the best slacker I can possibly be… no going to the gym, no “secret” workouts at home (yes, I have some weights and exercise equipment at home… I just prefer the gym) and no stressing about the fact that I am not working out.

Nope. Instead, my job is to put my feet up, slack off, laze about and practice not feeling guilty about any of it. I can do “light” cardio and in fact, I went for a short bike ride last night. But otherwise, I am in Full Slacker Mode.

My house mate is away until Tuesday, which means I can be a slob at home, too. I purposely have not done dishes in two days… just because my job now is to be a slacker. I came in to work later than I had planned yesterday… just because I could. Heck, it’s summer and my hours are supposed to be “flexible” anyway, so why not?

I have scheduled more coffee dates and lunches for next week than I’ve had in weeks. I mean, heck, aren’t socializing and eating out considered somewhat “slack” activities? Besides, let’s be honest… eating is one of my favorite past times…

So, instead of 'doing nothing' (the very idea of which fills me with a certain dread and guilt) I have decided to be an Over Achiever at slacking off, resting and taking it easy. I do have one thing planned for this weekend that I'll tell you about in the next post, but apart from that -- bring on the slack life!

Hell, I’m considering not even showering for the next few days.

OK, so that part was a joke. But you get the idea...


backofpack said...

Yowza! You look totally different in your new profile picture! Love the hair!

I'm a good slacker, I don't even have to work at it. It's almost time to start back to work, and I'll have to do the opposite - work at not slacking. Going to lunch and coffee dates is the best! Have fun (but please, do shower!)

angie's pink fuzzy said...


"How to be a slacker, by an overachiever"

I love it.

(and your new profile pic)

madcapmum said...

Thou art transformed! So, that's the "new you", the skinny, slacker Sarah. ;-)

Sarah said...

Enjoy your slacker-ness!

wthenrest said...

I have to say I am an excellent should have asked me! I come at very reasonable rates:0)
Great new pic by the way. Love it. An A type slacker that is very ironic...I like it.

oshee said...

I like the hair too!
Good for you for figuring out how to make yourself relax. You know yourself very well.

olga said...

Shoot, celery sticks...I do that too, though without joy:) I like the way to trick your brain. That's power I don't have yet. Enjoy your slack!
And the new picture - yeah, looks great!

craig said...

Some habits don't die but they can be transformed. I like your philosophy. I admire your commitment to give your new assignment all you've got.

Granny said...

Sure, much of the time it's better to adapt.

Your new picture is wonderful.

Did you change your "profile" a little too. I hadn't read it in ages.

sissoula said...

Way to put a positive spin on your temporary exile from the gym! But it makes sense -- if you weren't enjoying going to it, you should be enjoying not going to it. No justifications necessary.

Anvilcloud said...

Now I chow down on celery stalks and cucumber. I'm glad this works for you, but I feel sick already. :)

Sounds like an at-home vacation, and I'm sure that's a very good thing for you to do.