Oh yes, I did: on my own and without coaching or the use of a map. In the northern hemisphere at least, it is that time of year when we face up to ourselves and say,
” YOU, Yes You. That slouchy plumpy guy sneaking in a helping of cake while watching a television programme on installing bathroom cabinets in the sure knowledge that you will never install one in your life. Stand up, look in that dust-protected mirror and say to yourself, “No more, not on my watch. I will be the best I can be as soon as I know what that is. I will read more challenging books, learn to enjoy lettuce without any dressing and, most of all, go to this new gym on a regular basis.”
The guy who runs it, sadly, looks as if he knows what fitness is, and looking at me, is sure I do not possess it. He has machines and weights of every shape and pain threshold but no coffee shop; no cake counter; no soft music to ease the shock associated with facing up to your failings: progress will be painful, but unavoidable.
Why unavoidable, one of the most chilling words in the English language ? Because I actually meet the owner nearly everyday and it is one thing to slide quietly away from your resolutions towards the comforting world of bar music and salted peanuts, and quite another to be seen to do so. In future, if I falter on the path to fitness, I know I will have to explain my conduct to him, and he will join that army of acquaintances who look at me reproachfully as I walk over yet another ‘line is the sand’ while distracted by some engrossing article on the sports pages of my daily paper,
I have recently published a series of photographs located via that FB page portal seen beside this post to help publicize the book I have had published recently, the name of which currently escapes me, but I am sure it will return, along with photographs of me smiling, but guarded by less chins and bearing that weight of responsibility recently assumed by me with a smile, certainly, but less chins: I look forward to that day!