This Aggression Will Not Stand: A Recovery Series, Part One
Posted on August 24, 2021
Category: Zeedub Health
Zachry Wheeler, Science Fiction Novelist

I have always been a loner type. Call it what you will: introverted, anti-social, misanthropic, they all apply to varying degrees. Retaining sanity means seeking out activities that satisfy this need for isolation. It’s why I chose programming as my career, writing as my side hustle, and gaming as my go-to hobby. Most of my day is spent in front of screens, which traps me in a sedentary lifestyle. But even so, I have always been able to maintain health through proper nutrition and regular workouts.

And then the colossal shit show of 2020 happened.

As a brief backstory, my wife and I were living in Toronto when the pandemic first got traction. We were planning to move back to New Mexico later that year, but then Italy shut down, which kicked our exit plans into overdrive. We scrambled to cross the border with all our vital assets before it closed. We barely made it, and spent the next several months in limbo (with two very irritated cats). The rest of our move had to be conducted remotely. There were a million loose ends to tie up, all without a permanent residency. We eventually made it back to New Mexico and dove into a new apartment on the day the city locked down.

Needless to say, those months were a wee bit stressful.

My health and fitness suffered as a result. What was once a reliable part of my routine had turned into an afterthought. I lost my strength, stamina, and healthy eating habits. I gained a ton of weight and slipped into lethargy. The world being on fire tends to sap motivation, so I sank deeper and deeper into a dark void of disinterest. My days became a perpetual cycle of wake, sit, sleep, repeat. I would get out of bed, move to my chair, stare at screens all day, then return to bed. Clicking “Add to Cart” was the most exercise I got. I could go for weeks without ever leaving the apartment.

And then my hip gave out.

The stabbing pain forced me into the doctor’s office for some x-rays, where I learned that my weight gain and muscle loss had caused a pinch in my femoral nerve. It was the wake-up call that I needed. “This aggression will not stand!” I shouted at my leg. (Bonus points for naming the reference.) The motivation had returned, but I had no plan.

Enter Adelaide McMillan, Trainer Extraordinaire. (insert cool entrance music)

Adelaide is one of my besties and works as a personal trainer. She runs the Real Workouts for Real People channel on YouTube, which she launched during the pandemic to help her clients weather the storm. She has since returned to regular training, where she realized that many people were suffering from my same predicament. The light bulb went off and she conjured a great idea: “I should create a recovery series and use a real person as an example.” She offered me the “real person” part and the rest, as they say, is history.

Screw you, 2020! I am reclaiming the health you stole from me.

A big part of this involves stepping back from the publishing grind. I love to write, but it requires a lot of screen time that I already devote to my regular job. So for now, I plan to limit my effort to blog posts and newsletters. It’s time to push back from the keyboard and get my ass to the gym.

But fear not, dear readers, for I have not abandoned you. Quite the opposite, as I invite you to join me on this journey. I plan to document the entire effort and share the torture sessions … er, workout videos, that Adelaide creates. I encourage you to follow along and subscribe to my newsletter, where we can trade tips and share our progress.

So without further ado, I give you session one!

If you’re feeling inspired and would like to support Adelaide, you can do so at Patreon.

Continue the journey:
It Really Ties the Room Together: A Recovery Series, Part Two

Read more:
Let’s Talk About Writer’s Burnout: No Tips, Just Talk
Staring Into the Void: An Author’s Take on the Great Pandemic

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