“This would be more interesting if
I got an Xbox achievement for it.”
Photo: Vera Kratochvil,

I’m a geek and I exercise. I’ve had an on and off relationship with the gym for a few years now. I’ve had one with my Xbox, too. I put at least a hundred percent into my career, school, and marriage, but for some reason I can’t commit fully to my gaming system and the gym. What’s with that?

Part of it is that most of the time, results aren’t immediate. In gaming, achievements don’t appear instantly. You have to work for them. In the gym, muscle building and weight loss takes time.

However, when I write an article, I usually get paid the next day. Instant gratification.

I should feel fortunate that work is more gratifying for me than hobbies like gaming and exercising, but it can get annoying, too. Three cups of coffee and eight hours later, I haven’t relaxed, and that doesn’t help my work habits.

I know geeks of all different types. Some pride themselves on fitness while others fit the WoW stereotype of living in the parents’ basement. I fall somewhere in between, probably because of my age (it’s a lot easier to keep the weight off at 20 versus 30) and due to previous dietary habits.

So I found a gym down the street. It’s cheap and bare bones. There’s no contract, so I’m going to give it a whirl, even if it means a painful breakup down the road. At least I’m trying!

Don’t tell anyone that my main motivation is to look better in a costume. I’m putting it out there because it’s true. Screw bathing suits…anyone can look good in those. But not everyone could pull off a Xena costume. (Also: I would like to be able to run up the steps of the art museum like Rocky, which is also pretty nerdy, but it’s good motivation.)

Halloween could have been worse for me in terms of access to candy, but it should have been better. I’m about to get to that gym now and end my procrastination and my innate fear of muscles (muscles = people who make fun of nerds). Time to get over the stereotypes and just be me–a me that adds working out into her routine each day.

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