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Another of my favorite sub-topics here is fitness. The site first really came into being on the heels of my great weight loss of 2012-2013. I frequently tout the advantages of getting in shape and staying in shape. However there are drawbacks.

Here I have tried my best to explain some of those healthy health-related problems. The following are both comical and serious. They are based on my own observations over the past four years. Here goes:

One. Fatophobia.

Once upon a time I was the epitome of the jolly overweight American. I thought to myself, then, that I wore it well. I didn’t. Others don’t either. When you’ve been there and come back, these things are very noticeable.

Two. Reverse fatigue.

Millions of Americans report chronic fatigue syndrome. This illness is real. And it’s curable. It’s caused by inactivity. Strangely, working out – over doing it – leads to some of the same symptoms. However, these are largely self-curing. It is something to beware of. Listen to your body.

Three. Rotating injuries.

This is part age-related and part over doing things. Curls on Monday lead to sore biceps on Tuesday, just in time for benching. That means a sore chest on Wednesday (with lingering arm issues too), just in time for breaking the back. The really sad thing is that one comes to enjoy it all.

Four. Beat up hands.

I lift and box. Both sides of my hands are constantly smashed up. At least there’s symmetry.

Five. Constant advice seeking.

Over a year or two you go from “Wow, You’re losing weight!” to “Hey, are you sick?” to “Can you give me some pointers?” I’m always happy to help. This is only irritating when I realize I really need to get my fitness book out. Demand is obviously there.

Six. No eating out.

Most restaurant food is garbage. Thus I almost never eat out anymore. And I don’t miss it. Until I do. Something about a double bacon cheeseburger. Gnome-sayin?

Seven. Getting hit on.

Yes, sweetie, I have guns.

You don’t have to touch them. (But it’s okay if you do.) I’m a crazy magnet so this gets complicated. If you shape up, get a stick.

Eight. Clothes don’t fit.

Now we come to the serious problems. I lost and rearranged 80 pounds. I lost about a foot off of my waist. I now have three outfits that fit properly and I hate shopping. This is a plus if you learn to embrace minimalism.

Nine. Can’t handle the booze.

Gone forever are the days of killing a bottle of Bowmore to warm up for a night of drinking. I have nothing at all against alcohol yet I find myself going weeks and even months without it. Two beers and done these days. And I really don’t miss it at all. Scotch and beer snobbery greatly contributed to the former girth. Maybe it’s not really a drawback.

Ten. Intolerance to cold.

This is by far the worst. Like a blubber-coated walrus, I used to happily go out in the snow in shorts. I have skied in a t-shirt. Now, when it drops into the sixties I feel compelled to sweater up. My hands hurt. This makes winter outdoor blogging problematic. On the plus side, the 100 degree days aren’t quiet as bad.


Chris Bray.

Yet and still, all of these issues beat sluggishness, breathlessness, and diabetes. It’s like a Nick Kershaw song come true – the grass really is (a little) greener over here. Join us. Bring gloves…