This is a POAM of how I am Pissed Off At Myself for breaking a streak. Yesterday was a perfect example of the how the ‘psychology of missed workouts’ works out and doesn’t work out. I missed my first workout of 2013. The first day of 2013 that I didn’t do some form of exercise. Now I’m pissed off at myself (POAM) because it was a wasted opportunity, a day without any physical exercise, all because of artificial laziness brought on by self-induced rationalization – excuses, complaints, whining, self-pity, lies, alibis, denials that all led to total bullshit that I completely believed even though none of it was real. None of it was true. I made it all up, then believed it. Result? Wasted opportunity and I feel worse than what made me miss my first workout of the year.

The psychology of missed workouts works top-down, from the mind to the body. It started with waking up to minor discomfort of ordinary stiffness from working out that I elevated to full-fledge pain – stiff lower back, two sore shoulders, pulled thigh muscle, bloated stomach. Through self-diagnosis, I convinced myself that I might be suffering from appendicitis, hernia, torn rotator cuff, strained/ripped IT band, broken back, intestinal blockage, sinus infection, flu…or worse. I got pissed off at my genetics. I got pissed off at all the genetically gifted.

I had a meeting at X Fitness, where people come for inspiration. Without being asked, I told four people in rapid succession that I was pissed off at the weather, jaywalkers, and gas prices. I told them that: (i) I ‘hate’ winter even though ‘hate’ is a strong word that I don’t like using. (ii) winter is physically and psychologically unhealthy because of perpetual darkness, grey skies, freezing rain, slush. (iii) three pedestrians and bicyclists intentionally jaywalked on my way to the gym. (iv) gas prices went up 3 cents at one gas station but not the other (v) gas prices are ruining civilization.

Then I called my chiropractor, Dr. Darryl Garner, at his clinic – Bridgepoint Chiropractic in Fort Erie. I made an appointment and used the word “emergency.” When I arrived, I told him I was pissed off about: (i) trucks on the QEW splashing water on my car. (ii) Great Lakes climate (iii) my football players who I have not yet met. (iv) “full-body pain.” (v) economic Armageddon that is threatening civilization.

Dr. Darryl Garner healed me but I disregarded my pain-free condition. I strongly recommend Dr. Garner. If you’re looking for chiropractor, he’s fantastic. Am I biased? Yes. He’s one of my former football players. But I’m telling the truth about his chiropractic skills. Check him out. He’s always fixed everything for me that needs to be fixed. His clinic phone number is 905-871-1657. This is not a paid commercial. It’s a solution so you can keep working out.

After my adjustment, I convinced myself that sudden moves would throw me back into a state of pain (no pun intended). I started walking with slow steps. I changed into my workout clothes but with double layers just in case the cold would throw my alignment off. Then I called home and said that, yes Dr. Garner had healed me 100% but I felt “dizzy.” I convinced myself that I needed more carbs so I started eating non-stop for several hours. Then, I doubled up on my BCAA drink after I convinced myself that my age had slowed down my recovery time. Two customers asked me about squats. I gave a squat tutorial. Then I thought, “Man, I just did squats last night. I better be careful. What if I’m not fully recovered from doing squats last night?” Then I took a picture of the main floor and posted it on Facebook with a caption stating that more and more people are working out after midnight. Then, I looked out the window and got pissed off that it was drizzling again. I dropped an F-bomb and asked, “When is this going to stop?”

I warmed up my new iPOD. My old one stopped working a month ago. My new iPOD pisses me off. I don’t like the battery. And, sometimes a song goes back to the beginning for no reason in the middle of the song. I let it piss me off during workouts. And I got more pissed off that my full library of songs hasn’t been transferred to my new iPOD. I need my full library of songs. A partial library isn’t enough. Then it happened.

My mind recapped every excuse I had made that day and it reached a conclusion – I needed a day off. So I broke my 2013 streak. Today, I’m pissed off at myself because I fell in the trap of delusion that convinced me to waste an opportunity for no reason. I didn’t need to recover. I didn’t need a day off. I lied to myself. There was no legitimate reason to miss working out other than outright laziness. That’s the truth. I was too lazy to workout. Now I’m suffering the true consequences – regret. I want to replay yesterday but I can’t. No instant replays. I can’t go back and rewrite bad history. And, contrary to the self-professed 21st-century experts, I can’t “just get over it.” Because if I do, I will internalize my bullshit that I piled up yesterday and justify more and more missed workouts until I reach early retirement from working out and find a rocking chair. If I “just get over it” I will become chronically absent from working out, which would be hell. Flat-out, straight-out hell. Missing a workout for no reason is hell. It’s a wasted opportunity .

The mind is a powerful weapon that can be used for you or against you. The mind is either your strongest ally or strongest enemy. It all depends on who wins the mind games. I lost yesterday. Two choices – either learn from losing or start a losing streak.

Peace.

Gino Arcaro
Owner – X Fitness Inc.
Head coach – Oakville Longhorns football team
Author – Soul of a Lifter