I wasn’t always overweight. How many of you have said the same thing? How many times have you looked into the mirror and asked yourself, “What the hell happened to me?”

I was once a scrawny kid who grew up to scrawny teenager who, eventually, turned into this overweight adult. I know it’s impossible to achieve what I had in the past – I’m not that delusional – but losing a few pounds wouldn’t hurt, right? Like Lester Burnham said, “I just want to look good naked.”

While ex-girlfriends and Jyg might agree or disagree, I don’t think I ever looked good naked. When I was scrawny, my ribs were mapped out through my skin. Now that I’m overweight – just slightly, by the way – my stomach pushes out farther than I like. Added to the equation, I have a bad back and a knee – which John Capouya states in his book, Real Men do Yoga, are “common guy ailments” – the added weight doesn’t make them hurt any less.

So here’s what I know about myself already. I’m not a fan of weight lifting or heavy-duty workouts. Sure, I might use light weights for certain generic exercises, but nothing more than ten pounds. I do like walking and jogging (when the knee’s not hurting) and other cardio workouts – which are labeled  non-manly exercises by some douche bag. But I also like Yoga.

A few years ago, in order to complete my college core courses and graduate, I took a beginner’s modern dance course. This was a nightmare for me. I’m the last person who should be allowed on a dance floor. Uncoordinated, completely tone-deaf, that dance class should have been the death of me. But it wasn’t. I felt somewhat better about myself at the end of the semester. And it wasn’t the dancing that helped me out a lot, though that also added to it, but the fact that the instructor incorporated yoga into our work out/warm up.

Who knew stretching would fade the ache from my back? If it wasn’t for the Warrior’s posture, my knee wouldn’t have minded it either. I had to sit out for two weeks after my knee gave out – those two weeks were the most uncomfortable for me because by that time, I was the only guy (other than the instructor) in a class full of women. And in those two weeks, I started to feel like shit again. Ignoring the doctor’s advice, I didn’t sit out for the rest for the semester. Once back in, I started feeling good again.

All that’s in the past. I’m going to have to make the attempt to become a little more flexible. Through literature and video, I hope I can regain whatever I lost and lose what I have gained. Yoga and walking: It might be the key to my salvation. And looking good naked never hurt any, right?

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