First alarm goes off at 3 am.  Snooze activated.

Second alarm goes off at 3:15.  That’s when I get up.

Feed the dogs.  Heat up coffee and my usual preworkout meal – sweet potatoes with a half scoop of vanilla whey.

Grateful when I don’t have to scrape the windshield.

By 4 am, I’m at the gym warming up.  And then I get to lift.

I get to work about 6:15.  Quiet morning time to organize the day.  Once school starts, I’ve got 34 teenagers walking through the door every 75 minutes.  Keeping them actively engaged (and hopefully learning) for a 70 minute class period takes a bit of quiet morning organization.  By 2:35 pm, I’m completely depleted of energy.

I start my weekdays this way out of habit now.  Some mornings I don’t want to get out of bed, but not often.  I’ve been doing this a long time.  Two thousand, four hundred, and sixteen days since I started.  Most of those days, I didn’t quit.  When I’m mentally beat up, I throw my hands up in a dramatic “this is BS” fashion and quit for the rest of the day.  I don’t sabotage my eating, because I might want to start again.   Those few hours of a mental separation from this lifestyle that can be overwhelming help me relax and regroup.  I’m good to go again by 3 am the next morning.

I know I’ve accomplished a lot.  I proud of that and what I’ve been able to do, especially when I didn’t know I could do these things.  Many fears have been faced.  I still appreciate that some things I do in the gym everyday were things that used to intimidated me.

On Day 1, I didn’t know I was going to be a bodybuilder.  That didn’t begin to be a plan until sometime around Day 365.  Since then, I’ve competed a few times.  Placed last every time.  I’m not used to that.  I’ve always accomplished goals I set because I believe hard work pays off and time is relative.  But I will be 54 years old in a couple of weeks, so time isn’t as relative as it used to be.  To keep going, I remind myself that I haven’t worked hard enough for long enough to accomplish what I want to accomplish – yet.  I’m certain it’s going to be a great story about “paying dues” at some point.


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