Just back from another 4-day trip, this time to Washington, DC. On November 11th I wrote, “We all make our choices, pick our paths. Some go to the gym and make muscles. I look in the mirror and wish I had the discipline to do that. Could I if I had to? Of course. But I don’t want to badly enough.” For whatever unknown reason, this thought stuck with me. I wondered if it were true that I could go to the gym more regularly. I can’t even get myself to do push ups each day…or week.

So on the 12th I did some bicycle crunches, then alternated the next day with push ups. It’s now nine days in a row that I have at least done bicycles or push ups. Nothing strenuous so far. Just 150-175 of the former and 43-52 push ups. But for me it’s a real achievement. This tiny bit of exercise discipline. Not sure how I was able to do it. Especially on a trip out of town, when pleasant time with others is dictating some of my schedule. At least I am exercising my stick-to-it-iveness muscles. Little steps…

Yet in many movies, and in my own life, I see that chores or achievements or obligations aren’t accomplished for long periods of time. And then something clicks. A person suddenly stops smoking, starts dieting, gets around to preparing taxes, begins some long-procrastinated, much talked-about project. Not sure what gets us off the dime. Sometimes it’s a traumatic event, like a near-death or serious accident scare. The lucky survivor makes a vow to do such-and-such and is able to stick to that pledge with determination. Maybe that is only in the movies. But after living so long, I know that moment will usually come for me eventually for minor stuff, like moving a suitcase into the attic, calling a friend I thought of talking to days or weeks ago, winterizing a car or motorcycle. Exercise? Nope. Not a regular guy in that department.

Of course there are semi-humans who are incredibly disciplined. They can do something routinely (daily or three times a week) without any effort. But I am not one of them. Never have been. Ignore a piece of meat or pie? Easy. Drop for a few push ups? Impossible.

Nine days. Let’s see how long the run goes.