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The Danger of Resting on Laurels

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(This is actually a repost of a piece I wrote August 2, 2010 on the now defunct Cuppa Fit blog.)

How many times have you heard someone utter this statement, excuse?

“Well, I was a big athlete in high school.  So I know the drill.”

“Oh, I used to be an exercise instructor.”

USED to be.

I recently witnessed my husband making this statement.  And it’s true.  He was a huge athlete in High School.  Just as he was a strong athlete, I was a working actor in my teen years.  Paid.  Both of us experienced success back in the day.But we are no longer 18.Now in his 40’s, George can no longer follow the same exercise and fitness training regiment that he did at 18.  Similarly, I learned, the hard way, while working as an actor in my 20’s and 30’s that no one really cared that I played Dorothy in Oz at a children’s theater back in Virginia or that I as a child I had been nominated for an award at a theater in Old Town Alexandria.  And I most certainly couldn’t approach auditions the same way I did as a child actor either.  How embarrassing would that be?  Time to grow up.

So I was running a 5K yesterday and my mind started to wander.  As I was Gallowaying my 3:1 intervals I had a thought.  Brilliant?  Eh.  Nasty?  Yeah.  Somewhat.

There isn’t much of a difference between a middle-aged, out of shape former high school athlete and a washed up former child star.   Both are stuck living off of past laurels.

However, when one looks at former child stars who have actually disappeared for a time only to resurface after having DONE THE WORK and TRAINING to get back in the game, it reminds me of someone like myself who never thought I could regain the level of health and fitness that I had in my 20’s.  Come on.  I’m 40.  Plus one.

Example.  Jason Bateman (meow) had some rough years after his teenage TV career took a dive.  From Entertainment Weekly: Bateman admits to some lost years in the ’90s, but his persistence paid off (Arrested Development, Juno). ”I want to be around for a long time,” he told EW in 2007. ”Now that I’ve got another flash of relevancy, I don’t want to screw it up.” 

You think my secret Hollywood boyfriend didn’t have to make some changes to step back into the spotlight?  You think he approached his craft the same way he did as a child actor?  Um, think again.  He had to grow up. 

I feel like a broken record.  You want change?  You can not do the same thing that you have always done or rely upon what worked when you were 18.

If anything, you will have to work HARDER to reach those fitness goals because our bodies are, well, getting older and are thus slower at metabolizing and building muscle, and all that scientific stuff.

Thus, you need a workout that will really jump start the process.  Time to go back to school.

ChaLEAN Extreme was the magic bullet for me.  And by magic, I mean, it worked.  And by bullet, I mean, it just about killed me on some days.

Persistence.  The word doesn’t describe sticking with the same old plan.  You may need to change directions to keep going.  It’s time to try something new.  Something that may even be uncomfortable and unfamiliar.

Evolve.

Or continue talking about those glory years.  ‘Cause that’s all it is.  Talk. ‘Cause baby, your laurels be wilted.

From the horse’s mouth, folks.  I no longer talk or act like I’m in shape.

I am.  And I continue to educate and learn more as to how to keep my temple kickin’.

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