Some days there is just no motivation in side me to work out. This was true pre-transplant and it is still true post transplant.
There were many days before my hospitalization that I did not want to go to pulmonary rehab and get on that tread mill.
After being put on ECMO, my body did not want to get out of that bed and shuffle around the ward. My poor entourage of medical staff following along at my snail’s pace.
I’ll admit after getting my new lungs I wanted the h… e… double hockey sticks… out of that hospital bed, but it took my body a little while to get on board with the idea. And as I started feeling better I really wanted to head back to the gym.
Even feeling this way. There were days I did not want to lean on that rollator and see how fast and far I could get around Methodist’s seventh floor. It was painful. And no amount of cheer leading from the nurses, therapist, etc (While greatly appreciated) made me want to do it again the next go round.
But I did…
Day after day. I made myself get up from that chair or that bed and move. Now 6 months later… Monday through Friday and sometimes Saturday, I make myself go to the gym and exercise.
That’s not an attempt to be braggadocios on my part. It’s just the truth.
The thing is, I couldn’t tell you what motivates me. Yes, I want to be healthy. Yes, I want the result that come from exercise. But its easy to fool ourselves into saying we’ll do what we need to tomorrow, to get what we want. (There’s always tomorrow. Until there isn’t.)
Excuses always trump motivation.
The internet is full of blogs and article about getting motivated. Amazon and bookstores have shelves lined with self help books promising the way to strengthen your inner drive. I’m not going to make you a “how to” or “steps to” list promising to reveal some hidden spiritual enlightenment. Because basically it would be a rehash of something somebody else has already said and not the truth about me.
Simply put… I just do it. (Sorry, to the Nike haters.)
I ignore the excuses and reasons both for and against exercising and I just go and do it. It’s really just that simple. I apologize if you were hoping for something more profound. I’m not trying to be callused. I’m not saying it is easy. Just simple.
The thing is. Usually… no matter how much I didn’t want to go work out or go to rehab. I’m glad I did once I’m in the thick of it.
Those awesome folks at the hospital always seemed to praise my drive to push my self physically in the hospital. I’d always tell them I was just stubborn. Half joking, but half not so much.
Perhaps that should be my advice. When it comes time to work those lungs… dig in your heels and stubbornly just do what you can. No excuses. No motivation. Just be in the moment and do what needs to get done so you can keep breathing as well and as long as possible.
Nick, I never told you this, but I can’t tell you how many mornings since this disease, and since your transplant, I’ve gone out for a run and said to myself, “I’m running for you Nick” (because I knew that if you could, you’d rather be running then struggling to breathe. By the way, the day you were transplanted I went out to run for you (and recorded your getting transplanted in my RunKeeper)… the next day, I went out for our run (you were still in Surg ICU) and I while I was running I sent your Mom my view – a rainbow.. God is good. He gave us a promise that day.. and you later got to finish your surgery earlier than expected (so to speak). God is good… all the time. And yes, I’m another one that doesn’t really want to get out there, but when I do I’m so glad I did.
Thanks for this post.