Excuse me, miss? What’s the drug du jour?

May 12, 2010

“The drug of the day.”

I will be upfront and say that which is no surprise to anyone who spends time with me: I have an overactive mind and a really wild and hairy imagination. It’s true. And while encouraging parents will want to applaud this in you as a child, telling you it’s a gift, that you’re creative, that you’re special, I find that the only benefit I tend to get out of it is the ability to stare at a wall or out a window for hours on end without ever getting bored or running out of things to think about and elaborate on. (And yes, Anal Retentive Annie, I realize I ended both those phrases with prepositions. It sounded funny the other way.) On the other hand, I find it hard to shut up. Or to shut it down. And the mean reds tend to come all at once and out of nowhere, and can spend plenty of time turning my imagination into a nightmarish playground. It’s cute. Really.

This has led me to ongoing past attempts to either find things to shut all the over-activity up or to ride it like a wave. Alcohol was a steady fallback, for sure, for a grand old 6 years or so. Barbiturates, cigarettes, holy Christ—caffeine in amounts that made my ears ring, and some glittering, sparkling other things I’ve tried that swirled around in my head, attempting to fix it, stall it, or calm it down.

After years of desperately seeking a new drug of sorts—something that revs me up when I want revving up and calms me down when I want to rest, I have abandoned my former remedies nearly altogether (with the exception of a can of pop here, a glass of wine there). They usually never achieved the desired effect, as they all have undesired consequences. Alcohol—hangover; pills—grogginess and necessity of prescription; caffeine—crash. I tried other things too—walking five miles home from work in the evenings, electrolytes, cleansing fasts, altering my meal habits, etc. All were “eh.”

I seem to have recently discovered my new drug. The one I take which wakes me up, puts me in a phenomenal mood all day long, knocks me out at a reasonable hour, gives me tremendous energy, costs no calories, has no negative after-consequence, and doesn’t make me binge on sugar. And that is working out in the morning. Why it makes a difference to work out in the morning, I’m not sure. Some metabolism thing? Dunno. All I know is that working out in the afternoon or evening is….just working out in the afternoon or evening. Working out in the morning is the freaking answer to what we’re doing on Earth or something. Because, just, wow.

How have I never discovered it? I used to think those people who work out in the morning are total wack jobs. Truly sick individuals who must have nothing better to do. But really. Rather than doing it at the end of the day when I’m ridiculously tired, I do it before work. And I LOVE it. It’s like some mystical force I can’t explain. You know how the perfect cocktail just hits all the right places as it goes down? This is that cocktail.

I mean, don’t get me wrong, it’s a pain in the ass. But I love that the energy lasts all day; I love that I can sleep at night; I love the positive framework into which everything seems to fit afterward. Fuck. What have I been doing with my mornings prior? Sleeping? Ahahahaha!


And I’m not one of those obnoxious individuals who will walk around in track clothes or talk freakishly wide-eyed to other people about the gym or my workout habits. Really, it’s not an interesting subject, and I probably won’t mention it much to anyone at all outside of this post unless asked. It’s just that it occurred to me today that I should be in a really shitty mood.

I should. People have days; this one is not mine. But I worked out this morning. Sounds stupid, but I swear to god. The sun is still shining.

For instance, my thumb is killing me. Two days ago, I very nearly snipped the entire middle of the face of my thumb off while attempting to open a bottle of wine. …don’t ask. My thumb freaking hurts! But, like all I can think about with regards to it is “Eh. The pain isn’t that bad.” Or thinking about how after wounding myself and laying face-down on the ground for minutes with my thumb held up in the air (like a child) for my darling male companion to fix it, he then put a black pirate Band-Aid on it and we spent an enjoyable part of the evening fighting with his pirate Lego set afterward, since my thumb bandage had been inspiring me to yell “Yaarrrr!” and “Avast!” (and if you think it’s easy defending yourself with a tiny Lego sword and pistol when part of your thumb wants to separate itself from the rest of your thumb, you have another think coming). And that makes me smile. So. Intense thumb pain—fun with pirates. You see, I worked out this morning. Everything’s peaches.

Another example. I realized I hadn’t brought my lunch today and all I have at my desk is an old can of condensed soup. Also, I’ve been cold all morning. My reaction? “Hurray! I love when we have soup weather.” Then I opened a bag of crackers at lunch which proceeded to spill Saltine guts all over my desk and pants, and I laughed. In fact, I think I even had the nerve to give it one of those isn’t-that-cute smiles. Bills to pay—no worries. It’s all wonderful. Collection agent called. Have a lovely day! Rolled my ankle a little walking here from the gym–well, thankfully it wasn’t worse than that! Yeah. I worked out this morning.

This sort of optimism is really pretty out of character for me. Also, I’m relaxed, focused, and energetic. Rock my f’ing socks. So yeah, I’m going to attempt to keep trying for the morning. If you happen to see me in a pissy mood, remind me, yeah? Good stuff, people. Good stuff.

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