Thursday, July 26

Baby The Skies'll Be Blue

This morning, after sleeping only an hour and half, I missed my hill climb to attend a seminar. Big regrets. Not for the seminar, which was terrific, but for the miserable time I had the rest of the day.

A certain family member has dramatic mood swings when she doesn’t eat enough. When we find ourselves at the receiving end of a bad mood, we stop the conversation and tell her to eat a banana.

Food-addled mood swings were never a problem for me, for two reasons: First, it's a rare day when I don't get enough to eat. Second, I simply don’t have mood swings. Other than when dealing with outrageous people (ie, snarky, eye-rolling teenagers and nutcase strangers who yell at me in grocery stores), I’m a pretty steady Betty. I wake up happy, I go to bed happy, I laugh a lot throughout the day. Even when I skip a night of sleep (and I frequently do), I don’t get fussed about it. I just sleep very soundly the following night.

So it was in this frame of mind that I was beginning to believe that exercise has no particular benefit. I may still be right, because the weight loss is grindingly slow.

But now it seems I was worse than right. I had it backwards. Exercise doesn’t have much benefit, but failure to exercise has an anti-benefit: It makes me awesomely cranky.

Since beginning an exercise regimen, I find that if my workout is delayed, I’m appallingly sad and grouchy. The mere presence of other people aggravates me. Television annoys me. The weather is bad. The floor is uncomfortable. My feet hurt. I hate you. Shut up. Go away.

Perfect. Now I’m addicted to working out. I may have been better off sitting on the couch.

Maybe if I practiced the piano longer than 20 minutes a month, I could trade in one addiction for another. It works for Steve Nelson, the Piano Guy: Me and My Cello: HappyTogether.


  1. Ok - Now I know you don't need another mother... However, not enough sleep will slow weight loss. It has something to do with your liver. Check it out, maybe?? And take a nap, then go work out. All will be well with the world!

    1. You make an excellent point. I hereby commit to an early bedtime for the next 30-ish days. Suppose it'll make a lick of difference?

  2. Yes! And I would love for you to share your ability to maintain happiness on little sleep. I'm an absolute monster to be around when I get too little.

    1. I once read a line in the Wall Street Journal that said: "When people say they didn't get any sleep last night, are they complaining or bragging?"

      When I don't sleep, I feel fortunate. As though I got in eight hours of living that everyone else missed out on. I just figure that if I didn't sleep, it's because my body wasn't all that tired. And if I do get tired, I just take a nap. So...yeah. I guess the secret is: Don't worry about it. You'll sleep when you're tired.