Exercise Regimen One: The Fall of Thin, Smoking Mike

Before we get into things: Hypercorps 2099 has surpassed $5,000! We are 3 digits away from funding!!!!

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Right then. I’d like to clear away a few things here before we begin:
1. I quit smoking about a month ago and I was pretty bad about it – two pouches of rolled cigarettes (where you buy your own tobacco and papers) a week. After Public Health England’s unbiased research study (vaping nicotene is 95% less dangerous than smoking cigarettes) I went out and bought a vape.
2. Any time that you see me doing anything even remotely resembling physical work, I am exercising so my wife will let me put it in her. Literally everything. Trust me if I can avoid moving to do a thing, I avoid moving to do the thing. The only reason I ever physically exert myself even slightly is to impress or meet the standards of my wife.
I suppose the thing to take away is: Mike is a lazy savage that does not exercise regularly.
3. I used to be a real athlete. As in, “Mike could pole vault 11 feet into the air and run a 6 minute mile” real athlete. Then I started smoking cigarettes because—surprise surprise—it was an easier way to keep thin (before #2 my concerns were similar, just swap “wife” with “current woman fooled into liking Mike”). While vaping hits my nicotine cravings and definitely acts as a stimulant, it does not sufficiently suppress my appetite.
4. I’m using google maps to plot this out and the surprise you read is genuine.

After stretching a bit and failing to find my sunglasses I hustled myself outside and got onto my route. It’s an easy beginning – downhill for about 1,000 ft. (if you’ve never been to Pennsylvania, all we have is hills) until it hits a bit of flats, another short downhill, and then some more flats. Much to my surprise I managed to continue a straight run here for 4/5ths of a mile (I am aghast that I can actually go that far before needing to break).

Things were going pretty good up to here.

Then we cross the smoggy Boulevard of the Allies and head into Schenley Park (which about finishes mile 1—dear god I cannot believe I’ve been nearly going a mile that way).

Hey if you’re from Pittsburgh and you haven’t been to Schenley park yet, you should really go. It is legitimately a nice place and I’m always admonishing myself for not spending more time there.

Somewhere around Mile 1.3 my heart was like “HEY WTF ARE WE DOING?!” to whit I replied, “oh god please stop” and it occurred to me that my LUNGS had started to outpace my HEART already. I think this probably has more to do with a damaged heart than recovering lungs, but either way I’m looking at it like it’s a good thing (heart = muscle = something I can fix). I sullied on and managed to run 1.6-1.8 or so, then got to the stairs.

Remember, we’re in Pennsylvania.

At the Panther Hollow pond/lake/whatever there’s a set of steps that take you up to the top of the same trail. All told there’s probably something like 100 of these. Much to my pleasure, I managed to take them all at once without a break until reaching the top.

My stomach was like “HEY WTF ARE WE DOING?!” to whit I replied, “oh god please not here”.
The top of those steps mark about 2 miles.

There was a lot of walking after that—maybe a third of a mile or so—and then I finished out the park and started the stroll back home, including a small quarter-mile sprint on the sidewalk before reaching my street.

All told it looks like my “daily run” (*cries*) is a little under 3 and a half miles, and that I actually run about 2 miles of that. I can definitively say that after only a month of vaping rather than smoking, I am already seeing very tangible results to the quality of my health. While I’m displeased that the lack of appetite suppressant means I have to exhibit discipline and exercise, I can’t say that I think it was a bad move to switch.

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