Saturday, April 17, 2010

The Time of Our Lives

Welcome to "Same Old Sh*t" Saturday, where I have a tendency to repeat myself, a tendency to repeat myself. I'm still suffering from a rampant case of the Spring sillies, so I dusted off another serious post to balance the teeter-totter. Speaking of teeter-totters, I believe it's time for me and Pisa to go check what's shakin' on the playground...

Tick tock, tick tock.

Do you feel the rush of time slipping by like I do? I felt it more acutely when I was at my heaviest, but even now I sense the drumbeat of the calendar and feel cheated by the senseless waste of all those lost days.

That’s exactly how I feel now: that days and weeks and months (and, let’s face facts here… years) spent wrapped up in that uncomfortable and unfashionable fat suit was precious time that I squandered and have no way of getting back.

I mourn those spring days when I couldn’t run around and enjoy the breezy springtime, pity those once-in-a-lifetime moments with my family where I sat on the sidelines and watched good times being enjoyed and lament all those times I let my weight make me feel like less of a person than I was. I regret that I felt defined by my greatest weakness.

I’m fortysomething now, and once you make that turn to the back nine, you grasp with a little more clarity the fact that we don’t have all that much time on this earth. William Penn said “Time is what we want most, but... what we use worst.” I think it takes a bit of gray hair up top to fully get a handle on that.

I play basketball with some young cats, and they often seem tickled (and somewhat perplexed) by the fact that I still hoop so competitively and so often. I explain it to them like this: “We’re both at Disney World on a bright sunny day. For you, it’s 10 o’clock in the morning and you’ve got all the time in the world to do anything you want. For me, it’s thirty minutes before the gates close and I want to get in every ride I possibly can.” I don't know how much longer I can run with the young dudes, but I do realize that my serious playing days aren't all that far from an end.

I feel that way about the big picture, too. About life. There’s quite a bit I still want to accomplish, and up ‘til now this weight has been a big roadblock holding me back. Maybe it has been for you, too. For too many of us, it’s the anchor that makes us give in to the hardships and the hopelessness. It makes life seem unfair when, really, we’ve simply been unfair to ourselves.

That’s hard to accept: we did this to ourselves.

I don’t say all this to bring you down, to remind you of your own mortality or your own shortcomings.

I say it because it’s time to shake things up, time to remind ourselves that although we may have a finite number of days in this joint, we have an infinite amount of possibilities, a limitless number of things which we might accomplish if we set our mind and our heart and our will to it.

I don’t know if I’ll achieve everything I want to achieve or accomplish everything I set out to do from here on out. Chances are, I won’t.

But here’s the thing: it won’t be the weight that stops me anymore.

This is a brand new day, my friends. A new day filled with all kinds of promise, all kinds of possibility. There’s not a diet tip or weight loss secret I could share with you here that would be of any more use, any more important than this simple phrase: “time’s a’wastin.”

Get busy and get yourself in check. Take the steps you need to take to reclaim your body, your health, your life. It's the most important thing you'll ever do because it's the foundation for everything else you want to do, everything else you want to be.

Do it today, because tomorrow will be here in less than a blink, and you don't want to be that person who looks back and wonders what they could have had, what they should have done, what they would have been.

It's time to get going.

Tick tock, tick tock.


  1. Totally true. We did do this to ourselves. However, I have to say that enjoyed the hell out of alot of the crap food I ate, the big restaurant meals, the lazing out. It wasn't all awful on my journey getting fat.
    At the same time, I totally agree that this new journey now is SO MUCH BETTER. It has such a more fulfilling future. Have a great weekend Jack!


  2. You are right, my man! I am 51 and when I think of all the time I spent planted in front of the tube letting myself go it makes me sick! The thing is, I have young kids (15 and 10) and I'd like to be around to see grandkids (not that I'm rushing things). So the time is now! Hang in there buddy!

  3. It's amazing how just ten years ago it seemed like things wouldn't happen quick enough in my life. Now that I'm in my 30's I've noticed how fast ten years can go. I can relate to this post more than you know...

  4. I'm seeing this past two weeks just how much time goes by in the blink of an eye. Just yesterday I gave birth to this beautiful little brown eyed girl..and in 2 months she is graduating high school..and in 4 months she will be off to Spain for a year.It's amazing how fast 18 years goes by. These 18 years have been the most joyous of parenting..but also the length of time I've battled my weight and kept saying "tomorrow" I'll do something about it. Well, 18 years is still that tomorrow. Thanks for the food for thought!!!

  5. How inspirational! Just what I needed to hear today!!

  6. I would go along with Missa, having accumulated a few more white hairs than you Jack. Its true that things have been compromised by my inability to join in and do stuff, but I am not going to look back at what if's -- I will visit it sure, remind myself sometimes, I sure as sh*t aint gonna live there anymore. As you said - Times awaistin, and I ain't waiting for nobody - feets are on the move, and you best hang on to my coat tails cos you will be left behind otherwise *cough - splutter!

  7. I am there. Missing out on things with my family because of my weight. Even though I am on my way, I feel like it can't happen fast enough! It takes time. I will be forty this year and I do not want to waste another day on the sidelines. Thanks for the awesome post. :)

  8. I will own it. Because that gives me the power to change it.

  9. Awesome re-post! Yep! Re-claiming the body because the gates close in 30 minutes! Yes! Yes! Yes!

  10. Okay. This is what I needed to keep me from diving headfirst into a tub of ice cream. Better way to get through grief.

  11. Great post, Jack. I have about ten more years of gray hair than you, but I, too, realize that most of my life is behind me. So I am trying to lose the extra pounds, get more active, and get healthier so hopefully I can avoid those old-age diseases (diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure)that are so difficult to treat.

    You are such an inspiraton to so many. Keep it up!

  12. As always, great post! Even in my 30s I feel as though I've wasted a lot of time sitting on the side lines. I know that tomorrow isn't promised, yet I still sit here and watch it go by. It's amazing how I've talked myself into thinking that I really do enjoy sitting at home more than I enjoy going out, having fun...and simply living life! I continue to be held back by all of this weight, but I know that I have to change. More importantly, I think I finally have come to a place where I am ready to do something about it. So watch out Jack...I hope to be joining you in the land of the living very shortly! Thanks for the words of wisdom this fine Saturday morning!

  13. yup. Thats how I feel too.
    I wish I hadn't wasted nearly 15 years on being not just fat, but miserable. You can change, you just have to decide to...I keep pounding away at the same key to. I have noticed each blogger had their own key.
    so pound away jack.
    plink plink plink plink...and I will plonk plonk plonk plonk.

  14. So true. Time is such a precious gift that so many are robbed of. We have wasted enough, no matter what our age. It's time to become who we want to be.

  15. This post speaks for it's self. I am mad at myself for all the time I feel like I have wasted hiding because of my weight. I am just glad that I am doing something now and not waiting any longer.

  16. Speaking only for myself: I did not do this to myself. I followed the USDA Food Pyramid and ended up addicted to carbs. Exhausted. Eventually fat. I refuse to take responsibility for all that because I was following the expert's advice (mostly based on research co-funded by corporations with BIG conflicts of interest. Thank goddess I finally learned to listen to my own body and ignore all the one-size-fits-all junk science.

    Now THIS is living!

  17. so true, when it comes to weight loss or anything! basic message - we need to get off the sidelines and live in the present.

  18. i love this post! thanks for sharing it. you really have a way of putting things into perspective, and you've motivated me more than you could ever know with this post and more.



  19. Jack, I seriously needed to read this one again. I was doing so well ... thought I had it in the bag.
    I'm going to be 50 this summer. I DO NOT want to be wasting that decade too.

    Regrets? I've had a few too many.

    You're a great cheerleader.

  20. Thanks Jack!! You are soooo right. Getting my behind in gear as we speak!



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