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It's the Shoes!

Image by Igrinz from Pixabay

Image by Igrinz from Pixabay

“But I still look the same! And I faithfully did the workout and ate the plate of broccoli and had the kale smoothie.”

Besides the mirrors, lots and lots of mirrors, the second best reason for going to the gym is the random conversations you get to “overhear”. Why do people talk so loud at the gym about things which should be chatted about a little more discreetly? The mirrors have a function, a sort of visual truth serum. They don’t lie. Instant feedback. And let’s face it, if we are at the gym there is at least a little vanity component to our motivation. Heck, we want to look better.

But conversations, loud, random, overheard conversations at the gym, well that is another story. The rest of us don’t really need to share in your journey. Lucky for you and me, however, we get to be privy to otherwise private conversations. And boy, can we learn stuff.

The man who said the words at the beginning of this blog stood there, perplexed, slightly annoyed, and really kind of demanding an answer. He was a big man, and in polite conversation, corpulent. He had on reasonably priced apparel. He wore appropriate footwear. He looked the part. He looked to be participating. And there he was, standing, asking for an explanation. Slightly annoyed. Slightly demanding.

The other man, some sort of physical trainer, stood there too. Leafing through his clipboard, trying to make sense of this man’s question.

“But I still look the same!”

“And you say you did all the exercises?”

“Yes, to the letter. The number of reps and everything. And I wrote them all down.”

“And you ate the Broccoli?”


“And you drank the kale?”

“Disgusting, but yes.”

The big man was really pushing for some answers. The trainer was looking for some reasons. The big man was wanting change, wanting it bad enough to drink kale smoothies. Disappointed by the outcome, wanting the trainer to explain where the plan had failed, wanting someone to be responsible for his outcome. There they stood.

Finally the trainer landed on something, looking up from his clipboard, he said “How long have you been at this program? I mean how long have you been lifting weights, and eating the vegetables?”

The big man looked perplexed. “What is this guy getting at?” he wondered. “Well, I did one day. And I still look the same! My energy level hasn’t improved either. And I still can’t sleep.” Implied in the response was, “And what are YOU going to do about it?”

“Really, after one day?” said the trainer.

“Yes and this obviously doesn’t work! I’m going to give it a few more days and then we have to figure something else out. My brother-in-law read a book about health once and he told me I need to get some different shoes.” (Always good to get advice from “experts“!)

By now you, dear reader, have got to be thinking, are you kidding me? And the fact is, dear reader, that yes I am kidding you. I did make this up.


As far fetched as this little conversation may seem, in some ways our society wants this to be true. We want quick and easy results, we want someone else to be responsible for our progress or lack thereof, we don’t really want the responsibility to manage our own health and develop the discipline to make it happen.

We want things to be different but we don’t want to do the work. And yes, I’m including myself in this critique.

Well friends, we can be victimized when it comes to our health, physical, emotional, financial. But we are still responsible for how we respond to circumstances. And we are responsible for our results. It is true, circumstances, or genetics, or time, or even our shoes can make the journey more daunting, but this doesn’t change that we have a choice in how we respond.

Most things come from us not to us.

What is coming from you? What is realistic to expect? How hard are you working at making small changes? (the smaller the better) How persistent are you willing to be? How bad do you want it?

Look in the mirror, it rarely lies.

Everything is a process.

Participate! Sweat the small stuff.



2 Join the Conversation

  1. Rebecca says
    Feb 22, 2020 at 8:51 PM

    Your a good story teller. It made me laugh - always good to laugh. However the rest of the message is true. We are responsible and small changes are always better because they become habits and benefit us in the long run. Taking care of our bodies is a life-time investment and takes more than a day :).

    • says
      Feb 25, 2020 at 10:07 AM

      Glad you enjoy the stories. I love a good story and hope to tell them well. You get it! Maybe you should be the one doing patient education for us!

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