Friday, April 8, 2011

The Grisly Truth about Writer’s Girth

The grisly truth of writing is that it’s a sedentary pastime. We sit for hours pouring our heart and soul into words. We sustain ourselves through quick snacks and write some more. And, when we aren’t writing, we’re reading. Also a sedentary pastime.

So, how do we guard against a growing girth? We schedule in, as part of our daily routine, at least 30 minutes of exercise. Yes, that’s a whole 30 minutes a day when we can’t write and we can’t read and we can’t create. Gasp. But you know what? It’s the best thing we can do for ourselves. We come back refreshed and revitalised.

I’ve taken to listening to podcast short stories while I either walk or spend my allotted time on the exercise bike. What do you do to guard against the girth?


Note: This post is part of the A-Z Challenge. To learn more about the challenge click the image on my sidebar.

43 comments:

  1. OH MY GOSH...I was just thinking this today! I was like my butt has gotten big scense I wrote that book!

    ReplyDelete
  2. This is fabulous advice. I find I have more energy-- mental and physical-- when I'm taking care of my body. I try to take walks with my son or do a workout video as often as I can.

    I've found that it's actually a great time to think about my WIP, too. I've gotten some great ideas while exercising! Exercise is helpful in all sorts of ways. :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. If I'm not too buried in the story I'm writing (or trying to write) I'll get up and jump around the small trampoline in the living room every hour or so.

    ReplyDelete
  4. why do you always connect writing process with snacks, Lyndy :) Is your writing world built on chocolate bars and M&MS? :)

    I wish I had time for writing, but after 8 hours of translating in my office it's just physically impossible to stare at a WORD document any longer. If I had time, I would probably have been a bestselling writer by now :((

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thats my music time, I walk and half dance while listening to music for at least half an hour every day. I am lucky to live by the sea and to have great places to walk. I get lazy though when it is too cold or slippery outside. Oh...SO looking forward to summer.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I love my food too much so I have finally gotten into a routine of 40 minutes aerobics exercise, 6 times a week. I have too - or I would seriously be clinically obese! It's just enough to keep the weight off but it was very very very very hard work convincing my mind and body that the 40 minutes of jumping around was good for me! LOL!! Oh how I resisted!!

    Take care
    x

    ReplyDelete
  7. Walking the dog is what I do.
    It helps me think and lose an ounce or two.
    And when you're feeling smug at a flattering review,
    nothing keeps you grounded like picking up poo.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I usually go to the gym for an hour a day. Either taking classes or just knocking out some cardio. But I have found if I don't go as soon as I wake up in the morning...I usually don't go at all.

    Yesterday I was sick so I missed...and today I had a ton to do this morning. So I am subbing a work out video here at home. Or sometimes if I miss the gym I will jog around my neighborhood.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I have two dogs who need lots and lots of exercise in the form of runs and walks.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I have been known to use a giant exercise ball, instead of a desk chair. Of course, I have fallen off more than once, doing crunches while editing.


    Linda Ann

    I stopped by via the A to Z Challenge for April, and I invite you to visit my blogs at:

    NICKERS AND INK – poetry, humor, inspiration and more

    PRACTICALLY AT HOME – inspiration, humor and how-tos for family, home and garden, and more

    THE MANE POINT – a haven for horse lovers

    MEME EXPRESS – daily blogging prompts for the A to Z Challenge and more

    ReplyDelete
  11. Yep, yep, gotta get that blood moving because more oxygen to the brain is conducive to more creativity. Rah! (Yes, I DO relate everything to writing LOL)

    ReplyDelete
  12. Read, hehe, it happens ;)

    Shallee, yes! So true! clears the mind AND gives us thinking time (I always have a notebook close at hand)

    Golden, oh a trampoline would be good..hmm, maybe not. I can be quite clumsy. I'd probably injure myself LOL

    Dezzy, lol, and why do you think your cakes look so awesome to me? Because they'd make the perfect writerly snack ;) Inspiration food! And I don't doubt you'd be a best seller by now.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I go walking and running with the dog whenever I can. Wish I had time to get out more though.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Siv, it helps to be close to picturesque places to walk rather than along busy, noisy roads.

    Old Kitty, I'm totally spent after only 30mins. I'm impressed you can do 40mins.

    Gary, HAHAHAHA yep that would definitely keep anyone grounded ;)

    Brea, yep, I find mornings are the best time to do a workout too.

    ReplyDelete
  15. M J Fifield, yep, it's easier to do when it's for someone else (such as pets).

    Linda, those giant exercise balls scare me LOL...my goodness, that's a lot of blogs.

    Carol, hehe, it's a good way to be. Creativity is after all important.

    Liz, ah yes, to have more time to do everything!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Today I did hip hop abs at home...and my cat was convinced I was trying to play with her...throwing herself at my feet. And then during the floor work she kept grabbing at my hands and feet...le sigh.

    ReplyDelete
  17. lol, Bea, my cat stays away when I start jumping around (probably a good thing) haha.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Man Lydia, did you hit home. Since writing two years ago I put on a TON of weight. Now I'm spending an hour a day moving. I'm dieting and determined to get the excess girth off by the end of summer.

    My winter weight will hopefully be a thing of the past. Winter in Chicago is a challenge. With temps for months below 0 degrees or slightly above, I tend to hibernate. I hope to find some kind of program to do in my condo.

    This is great advise! The weight creeps on and before you know it, it's a major issue.

    ReplyDelete
  19. I've always gone to the gym at least four days a week. Lately, I started setting my alarm and working out first thing in the morning. It wakes me up and gets me fully energized. After a shower and a decent breakfast, I'm ready to write.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I'm skinny like a rake, lucky me, despite being a dedicated writer.

    I suppose I exercise by going for my walks, during which everything outside becomes a narrative in my head -- soon to the page.

    I'm glad you acknowledged and face the "girth" issue with exercise. Perhaps a fast pumping heart nurtures creativity.

    ReplyDelete
  21. I watch DVDs while I run on the treadmill, which I love, but it's still hard to pull myself away from the laptop somedays.

    ReplyDelete
  22. I walk a lot and I'm not a big junk food person so I guess I'm luckier than most. I do love to eat but when I'm writing I usually forget food or drink. Writing is fantastic for my diet.

    ReplyDelete
  23. 'Guard against the girth' - love it!! :)

    I try to walk home from work as often as I can.

    ReplyDelete
  24. I do a power walk for 20 mins, 5 times a week. And that's about it. Well, other than that I do walk around (though not necessarily all that fast). So I guess I do more.

    ReplyDelete
  25. I can't seem to want to exercise for 30 minutes but I find I can fit in 3 ten minute sessions. So that's what I do. 10 for abs, 10 for thighs, 10 for cardio.

    ReplyDelete
  26. I try to exercise and go for walks when I'm feeling up to it. :O)

    ReplyDelete
  27. Eep! I definitely need to do more! I do A LOT of sitting every day!

    ReplyDelete
  28. I am addicted to my workouts: walks which help clear the cobwebs from my head, yoga for relaxation and my exercise cycle. Plan to do deep breathing exercises too.

    ReplyDelete
  29. I try and be very disciplined with exercise. I work out at least three times a week before I start writing and try to keep the snacks healthy.

    A healty mind and body does wonders for writng, I like to think! :)

    ReplyDelete
  30. I try and be very disciplined with exercise. I work out at least three times a week before I start writing and try to keep the snacks healthy.

    A healty mind and body does wonders for writng, I like to think! :)

    ReplyDelete
  31. It's a huge problem--huge. I'm wanting to retire soon and guess what I want to do with my time--write. I worry about it. It's easy to schedule 30 minutes, but when I'm engrossed, I forget to take it, then I stand up and I find I'm stiff. But you have to do it. You have to tear yourself away.

    Thanks for the inspiration

    ReplyDelete
  32. Sometimes I move my laptop to the counter and I stand up while writing. Then I can move around a little. My Mother-in-law, has attached her computer to her tread mill, so she walks very slowly while writing.

    ReplyDelete
  33. I'm a dog walker, so getting out to walk is mandatory. But I find I do better work during those dog walks than at my laptop. Being away from the keyboard gives me time to reflect and forces me to stop and think instead of hammering away mindlessly.

    ReplyDelete
  34. Girth. It's a bad word through and through. I walk everywhere which protects me a little, but I also eat tons of chocolate, so feel am a ticking girth time-bomb!

    ReplyDelete
  35. Easy. I had six kids. They keep me running. That, and I do yoga first thing. It gives me the sanity to run after six kids. :)

    ReplyDelete
  36. Pilates, yoga and cardio. At least 3x a week. Starting end of next month, the observatory reopens. Then I can add hikes on mountaintops.

    The yoga always recenters me. I do some of my best thinking during yoga.

    ReplyDelete
  37. just that--what you said about scheduling time to exercise. It also has the added benefit of getting those creative juices flowing. I always think of my runs as blowing out the carbon buildup on my brain... :D LOL! <3

    ReplyDelete
  38. Michael, that's so true and my goodness Chicago sounds COLD! :)

    Paul, yep, first thing is best

    Loveable, I get many ideas when walking too.

    Susan, yep, once I'm exercising it's fine and I wonder why I have to force myself lol

    Hannah, yep, I've been known to forget lunch when I'm in the zone (oops)

    Jemi, that's great!

    ReplyDelete
  39. Trisha, yep, it's good too just to get out :)

    Clarissa, that's pretty good.

    Madeleine, feels good doesn't it?

    Talli, yeah I feel I could do more as well.

    Rachna, oh, I should give deep breathing a go :)

    D U Okonkwo, yeah that's a good plan. I'm not so healthy on the snacks--need to cut back on the chocolate ;)

    Elizabeth, yes, exactly.

    ReplyDelete
  40. kmckendry, standing up while writing is interesting. I think I'd just get a sore back hahahaha

    Heidi, you have a very good point. Exercise can still be good creative time.

    Jayne, hahaha I hear you! I love my chocolate as well.

    Shelli, wow, yep, six kids would keep you on your toes :)

    M Pax, I'm not very good at yoga. I love the idea of hikes on mountaintops though. yum

    LTM, hehehe and it works :)

    ReplyDelete
  41. I need to start scheduling some time for this. The weather is finally warming up enough for me to brave the out of doors.

    ReplyDelete
  42. So True! My husband shakes his finger at me sometimes and says "Do you know how long you've been sitting at that computer? You're going to get yourself a flat tushy."

    Exercise- Good for the body and the soul.

    Found your blog via the A-Z challenge. Following You! Come on over and say "hi".
    Blue Velvet Vincent

    ReplyDelete
  43. I haven't done anything to guard against the girth. There in lies the problem and with this A-Z challenge even more time in the chair and not moving. Not good:)

    ReplyDelete

I'd love to hear your opinion. Thanks for leaving a comment.