WHAT UP INTERNET?!
I’ve many titles (all of which I’ve bestowed upon myself!) such as NerdLife Enthusiast, ConLife Connoisseur, Gamer, Writer, TruBro-but there is one I genuinely want to focus on: Fitness N00b. I’ve always been a fairly “fit” person. Ever since my college days, I’ve enjoyed lifting weights. I would run occasionally, but never on a set schedule or with any regularity. Additionally, I had the benefits of youth-I could eat and imbibe anything I wanted and always walked with a buoyant spring in my step. Despite the frequency with which I read numerous magazines and publications regarding fitness and health, I’ve always felt my devotion to the subject was relatively sub-par.
Last August, I had the desire to tackle my first race (other than a walking 5k), and I signed up for the 2016 Walt Disney World Marathon. While I did my best to strictly adhere to the training plans provided at rundisney.com, I found it incredibly difficult to keep up with the rigorous pace due to the fact my cardio base was relatively non-existent. My knees and ankles began to bother me as they never had before. The longest run I attempted before the actual marathon was 17 miles, and I had to spend the last two miles (and nearly 90 minutes) limping back to my car, as my legs were incredibly tight, my knees were killing me and putting any weight on my ankle felt like a Herculean task I couldn’t dream of completing.
Despite this, I was able to complete my first marathon last January. My pace was good for the first half of the race or so, and then around mile 13 my calf began to bother me. Considering I’d pushed myself during that fateful 17 mile run, I knew the wisest course of action was to listen to my body, slow down and take my time. After all, the old adage “Life’s a marathon, not a sprint” had never felt more applicable than during the race. Although I finished with an atrocious time, I had completed the race and never felt more elated. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life, but I finished that damn thing. I wasn’t trying to set any world records, I was trying to accomplish a specific goal for myself and I did. Because of this, I convinced multiple family members to sign up for next year’s race while I signed up for both this year’s Dumbo Double Dare (two days with one race each day – a 10k and half-marathon) and the 2017 Dopey Challenge (four days with one race each day – 5k, 10k, half-marathon and full marathon).
I printed out the training plans for both programs, circling the dates I miss and placing an “X” on the days I complete. Actually forcing myself onto the elliptical machine or onto the track after an exhaustive day of work has gotten slightly easier, and being able to use those calendars (as well as my medal from the marathon) as a tangible reminder of the tasks I’ve signed myself up for has been incredibly beneficial. Although I’ve gotten better about not skipping workouts, my diet and nutrition has been as terrible as it was during my early college years. While my nutrition will undoubtedly suffer when I’m out living the illustrious ConLife, there’s no justification for it not being up to snuff when I’m home at TruBros HQ.
As a gamer and NerdLife enthusiast, I spend a significant amount of my time sitting down being relatively inactive. I love composing content for this site and enjoy both chatting and playing with my Bros on Twitch, however I realize I’m not being particularly physical while doing my two favorite things. While I believe it’s important for everyone to maintain an active and healthy lifestyle, I feel the fitness industry has overlooked this particular segment. Gamers and ConLife Connoisseurs such as myself are devoted-you know any other group of people who would play games for 24+ hours straight to raise money for children in need? Can you think of another group of Bros who will wait in the California sun on concrete for 30+ hours for the chance to be physically present when new information is released regarding the new Star Wars movie? I can’t.
My mission with this site has always been to provide relevant information in a concise manner, without any of the fluff I believe permeates most content. As a proud, card-carrying (My ConLife badges?) member of the gaming and NerdLife community, I think it is imperative health and fitness be a subject of discussion for us Bros. If you’ve ever hopped by a Twitch stream-especially those where we’re playing WWE games-you know there’s one thing I love to discuss: gains.
Gains are progress, and I’ve always believed progress of the self to be focused on two things: moving forward and being better than you once were. It’s not about comparisons or trying to break world records-it’s about feeling good, being healthy and achieving the goals you set for yourself. As long as you’re willing to put in the work, your efforts will yield results. There is one thing I vehemently believe with every fiber of my being: you can achieve anything you’re willing to work for.
Whenever someone asks me to list my proudest accomplishments, there are two things which come to mind: beating the first Mega Man on the NES (which I did when I was around 20-no way I beat that bull when I was a youngin’) and completing my first marathon. These may seem trivial to some, but I believe they are indicative of not only my interests, but what I believe is required to excel at something. The earliest entries in the Mega Man series were brutal and required precise planning, skill and timing. In my opinion, the marathon was 40% physical and 60% mental. I was not adequately prepared for it physically-people twice my age passed me up like nothing while I slowly made the trek through the Walt Disney World grounds…but I completed it. I wanted to quit multiple times, but I didn’t. Because I didn’t, I pushed myself to do something new and made myself proud.
Deep down, we all know we can be better. I’m tired of knowing I can be better-I want to do something about it. It’s not easy-hell, just this past weekend I completely gorged on 7 doughnuts (all in the same day) and had way too much to drink. But I won’t do that again. I can’t. I don’t like the way I feel afterwards-and I don’t mean shame. I don’t apologize for a damn thing, because everything I’ve done has gotten me to where I am today and I like the life I live-but I know I can be better and I want to act upon that. I don’t want to wake up feeling sluggish, or go through the day feeling lethargic-I want to have the energy to bounce off the damn walls!
Nutrition has always been a massive hurdle for me and it’s something I’ve struggled with for years. Despite all the knowledge I’ve gleamed from the plethora of health websites I peruse and magazines I regularly read, I’ve yet to ever leverage this information for my own benefit. To finally push myself to overcome this and to help any of you Bros who may need someone to bounce ideas off of, I’ve decided to start a new endeavor of both TruBros.com and my YouTube channel: Gainz with Gabe.
I am not a health, nutrition or fitness expert-I just know what works for me and what I enjoy doing. I know if something is easy, I’m more likely to do it. If I enjoy or have fun doing it, I’m going to keep it up. This is my line of thinking for all things, but I believe it’s especially applicable to making healthy eating choices and working out. I’m going to tell you right now-I break a lot of cardinal rules when it comes to lifting weights. I hardly lift weights with my legs as I prefer to focus on running, the elliptical machine and rowing, and I don’t really enjoy things like squats (with barbells) or deadlifts. I haven’t done a deadlift in years because every time I did, I hated it. Hating something means I’d skip it, and I believe it’s better to do things you enjoy doing and you know are good for you.
From now on, every Thursday I’ll post a new video to my YouTube channel where I will do something related to making gains. If I’m following a specific workout plan I enjoy, I’ll post about it here and make a video showing how to do all the exercises. Perhaps when I do my meal prep for the week, I’ll make a video showing my process. Cooking is another thing I positively abhor doing, but it’s an essential component of living a healthy lifestyle. As such I’ve endeavored to do it more at TruBros HQ, however you’d better believe I’m doing all I can to minimize my time and effort in the kitchen.
My goal with this is not only to push myself to reach the potential I know I possess, but to help all of you Bros do the same. I know it’s not easy, but few things in life worth attaining come easy (like beating the first Mega Man). Fitness and health is not a particularly complex subject, but if you don’t know anything-much less, where to begin-and you’re lacking energy or support, it can seem daunting. I want to show all of you Bros it’s easy, sometimes the only thing you need is a Bro who has your back. That being said, there is one last thing I’ve got to spew while I’m on this here soapbox…
Don’t look for motivation. It’s fleeting, extrinsic and won’t always be there. Establish discipline. You know even if you’re too legit to quit right now, you could be better. I know I can be. I know I should be, so I’m starting today. If you’re disciplined, things become second nature. Discipline drags you out of bed because you know you have to and want to get up. When smart decisions and healthy lifestyle options become second nature, you’re on the road to Gainsville. You don’t have to complete a marathon or bench 600 pounds and you sure as hell won’t be able to do that right out of the gate. Don’t get dejected-know that every ounce of work you put in is going to lead somewhere. Can you guess where? Gainsville, Bros.
You ever pop by a Twitch stream, feel free to talk about gains with your Bro-it’s one of my favorite things to discuss! I find talking about working out and cooking makes me more likely to do it, and I’d reckon that’s the case for others as well. I may be a ConLife Connosieur and just a Fitness N00b, but I’m hoping by opening this dialogue with all you Bros, I’ll be able to go from N00b to L33t eventually. I want all of you to do the same. We’re all TruBros and we’re all in this together. Let’s make something happen. Until next time, Bros!