I’m not a health nut though at age 47 I’ve worked on being and doing better. My wife ensures I have a salad and smoothie daily. Yet, exercise is a low point for me. Not intentionally. Working out at home lacks motivation and the gym, where all the fit people exist, creates a different realm of challenge for me. Underneath this fine face (joking people), great personality and love of people, lurks a man ashamed of his body. Of course the natural reaction is for people to say, “well, stop talking about it and do something about it”, and if it were quite that simple for most of us we would. Actually, it is that simple but indulge me for a minute, ok?

As a special guest cohost on Hotspot Radio (que4.org) I enjoy my first Friday’s with them. We talk politics, music, education, and celebrity news. It’s helping me gear up for the launch of my own show later this year. (ok, that’s me dreaming). One of the guest was Darin, owner of Fitness180. For the first time I confessed to feeling body shamed. The self-love and discipline it takes be consistent in working out easy for some and not for others. Most of us, like myself, are addicted to sugar. Sugar, by far the most harmful, addictive, and seductive elixir ever made, is the most alluring threat of our times. You name it, I love it! Ice Cream, cookies, cakes, no soda so much, donuts, brownies, Little Debbie’s, oh man, I can go on and on. Yet, not much is done to minimize the sugar rush of media or those food deserts that often plague minority communities.

One year we took a family trip to a water resort with our god-family. I stayed in a tee-shirt and shorts and read a book because I was ashamed amongst the hundreds of fathers with six packs and thin waste playing with their children. Then the most bizarre things happen. A guy game out with his kids whose belly was twice the size of mine and he had no shame. I watched in envy as he and his two children played and laughed in the water for a very long time. My daughter would come check on me and then, off to play with her god-family. It was a moment I can never get back with her. The next year we went and I swallowed my bruised ego and had the best time of my life with her, belly and all. I didn’t even wear a tee-shirt. The crazy part is, I think people were so busy enjoying their own kids they didn’t even look at me. I was so busy wondering what others thought that first year and I was able to let it all go and really enjoy my family.

It’s a challenge to have people looking at you, commenting on your weight, calling you fat and pudgy. They don’t seem to know the underlying causes or struggles for some of us. The level of insensitivity is unreal, annoying, yet, it wreaks of so much truth.

But, there should be a desire to do better. While I have maintained a steady weight for the past two years, I haven’t done enough to decrease it and I’ve done just enough not to increase it. My wife and my daughter are super fit. I want to be around for both of them for a long time. Last week I decided to start slow by working out at home (yep, that wellness fee per month is not gaining any traction). My wife caught me lifting 25lbs barbells and my daughter is creeped out by my grunts and facial expressions. Yet, it’s a small beginning. I acknowledge my shortcomings and I’m cutting this blog short because my daughter wants to play WII Fit.

Onward and upward. Maybe I’ll post some before and after pictures over the next few months. But, if you don’t see them, uh, no judgment, ok?