Metrobilly Guide to Maintaining Chubby

Everything is a balance - work, life - parenting, relating to our children - the wheels on my vehicle - drinking on weekends, not drinking during the week - and of course the balance between diet and exercise.  I'm squarely in my mid to late forties, so now more than ever I'm watching what and how much I eat.  Like many people, I work out almost daily, as a reward to eat and drink almost anything I want.  For several years my mantra has been that I run 20 to 25 miles a week just to maintain proper "chubbiness" - and although my weight and level of health fluctuates a bit over the course of a year, I adhere to this practice of working out regularly for a number of different reasons, in this order:

1)  It's meditation - I know REAL meditation is about emptying your mind - blah blah blah - but running every morning actually allows me to do just that {to a certain point} while listening to extremely loud music. 

2)  It's a reward - I know that if I work out hard, I can eat whatever the fuck I want without any cause for guilt.  Basically, I have little self control when it comes to all kinds of things, and food is one of them.  "Hey, Case - wanna grab a beer?"  Sure - Let's GO!  "Honey, I'm craving pasta.."  Great - Me too!  "Dad - I'm craving something sweet.."  Well, I'll be - Let's go to Shake's at 9:30pm on a Tuesday night!  See - I have NOTHING to hold me back from those edible cravings - so, running, working out allows me to eat just about anything I want, whenever I want.

3)  I crave it -   I wake up almost every morning, save when I'm hung over or sick, craving my daily run - I'm sure there are endorphins and stuff nudging me forward, but it's something I look forward to - religiously - even though I'm far from religious. 

4)  It's good for me - I know at the end of a long work out that I've done something good for my body, mind - the sweat, the soreness, the stink - these are all not so gentle reminders that I've actually accomplished something physical for the good of myself, and I suppose the people I love.  Fuck yeah, I'm altruistic and thoughtful to boot - I'll take it!

Here's a relatively typically day {yesterday/President's Day} of being on a good path of health for maintaining chubbiness:

6:30am wake-up - coffee, vitamin c, gingko biloba

9am arrival at the gym with reluctant adolescent daughter {GEORGI} - 3 Mile run on treadmill, maintaining 8 1/2 to 9 minute mile - yes, finished a bit in front of me - 20 minutes on the stair-master {I totally kicked her ass here} - 25 minutes of upper body work-out - 20 minutes on the stationary bike - steam and shower. 

Noon lunch at Charley's Taqueria in Springdale - carnitas special with rice, beans, and Negra Modela.  The pork was fork tender, and when embellished with salsa verde and bots of tongue from Georgi's lengua tacos, nothing short of culinary nirvana.

4pm basketball in the driveway with ambitious adolescent daughter {still GEORGI} until about 5pm - walk the dog.  Watch Olympics while working until dinner.

7pm dinner of Spam Fried Rice prepared by better half - she's asked to prepare dinner this week, and this was a "throw-back" dish from her childhood, Arkansas Americana made with SPAM {fuck, yeah}, rice, peas, carrots, and soy sauce, oil - I dunno, she was very secretive - plus, a green salad with tomatoes, cucumbers and a delicious Caesar dressing - NO BREAD {dammit} - and an Ozark APA.  *Side note:  Family competiveness forced us all {sans asshole dog} to leave the table for five minutes, as we argued out of the garage, into the street, around the block about which direction I was pointing when describing something -  upon our return, said asshole dog had licked almost every bit of SPAM from our plates and table, so as you can imagine, I was only allowed HALF of what I would normally have eaten. 

8:30pm - "Dad - I'm craving something sweet.."  Well, damn - Me too - Let's go to Braum's and get a Butterfinger MIX.

10pm - Bedtime - Atlanta Monster podcast - SNORE!

It's that easy, folks - you TOO can have this semi firm, mushy, middle aged body after just a few, short weeks of a healthy balance of proper diet and exercise - just set your sights on the very obtainable goal of CHUBBY.  Last week, a woman at the gym commented, "You work out so hard.." and at first I reflected, wondered if it was because I'm always red-faced, out of breath as if to finish "you work out so hard...I hope you don't have a heart attack"; or if she was actually giving me a compliment.  

Regardless, blood pressure - check.  Stamina - check.  Cholesterol - meh.  Happiness - BIG Check!