Wednesday Afternoon Gym Class Update

This week has been hectic – but when is that not the case? If you can flawlessly adhere to a regimented diet and exercise plan, day in and day out, your life must be pretty boring. That’s fine if you’re 40, but at my age, my food-and-workout recording booklet is going to include a few 12-hour booze and barbecue binges.

Thursday of last week, I drank my face off and had a bun with my triple burger. Fortunately I was able to counteract these indulgences through exercise, i.e,  a long night of dancing, walking home because I’m too cheap to spring for a cab, and selfish drunken sex.

Friday, I got my vitamin D on by walking around all day wearing nothing but shorts and a cape. Again, I drank like a fish and ate junk food all day, but I managed to work it off by exchanging 3am words and blows with an insolent hooligan who looked at me stink-eyed.

Saturday, I slept in late and spent the day in bed eating, banging, and watching crappy movies.

Sunday, I woke up bright and early to spend an hour running, climbing, crawling and trudging my way almost to the point of passing out. I hadn’t worked that hard since my intercollegiate rugby days, and I’m still feeling it. I ate a delicious post-race meal of chili, a hot dog, blueberries, dark chocolate, a brick of cheese, and a bag of sliced salami. Healthy-ish.

Since Monday, I returned to form. The past three days I have eaten nothing but nearly-perfect paleo meals, and done some light exercise – a frisbee game and a long hike – each evening. I’ve been slowly stretching and foam-rolling the knots out of my brutally-punished muscles.

Overall, it’s been a week of extremes. Two nights of hard drinking, with all the ill health effects that entails, and one day of extreme exercise. I honestly think that the not-even one hour of extreme challenge is worth more to my body than 3 months of dinky workouts and jogging would have been. I also re-discovered a physical and mental capacity for pain endurance that I’d forgotten I possessed during my almost-two years outside of the competitive sports scene, and realized that I desperately want it back.

I thus award myself an B for this week. Some poor choices, yes, but also an achievement that I’m quite proud of. (Edit: No matter how grueling the race was, two nights of hard drinking is still two nights of drinking.)

Freedom Twenty-Five Readers, two questions for you:

1) What are your current health and fitness goals, and how did you do in them this week?

And,

2) What style of martial arts would you recommend to a beginner with no fighting experience outside of drunken wrestling his buddies? Some additional information that may help you tailor your advice: I’m mostly interested in the physical and psychological benefits of competing in a martial art (i.e, I want to fight people, not just punch the air) but I would also like to have a few tools in my belt that would be useful for self-defense. Also, I’ve had a few concussions in my day and would rather not needlessly expose myself to a large chance of serious head injuries.