Last night, I walked five miles. Didn’t think I would actually come home from a long Tuesday at work and have the energy to do anything besides lay on the couch and catch up on Dexter, but I did. An hour later, I still have energy. Energy from exercise and released endorphin that begets writing.
I’m hardly the person to go to in order to attain physical fitness tips that work or anything close to it. My BMI hasn’t been under 25 since the second Clinton administration Now, the BMI system is horseshit, but that’s an different argument. So while I may not be in the best shape, I know that after 31 years of being awake, exercise does aide in the creative process.
The laziest time I can think of was the period of January through March 2011. I didn’t do barely anything besides watch the entire series of The West Wing, work 55 hours a week at my old dayjob call center gig, and eat very unhealthy amounts of cheese and cheese-related endeavors. And I didn’t exercise. And I didn’t write. And fuck me for not doing so, it’s entirely my own doing. Or undoing, as it would be. I only cranked out two short stories of less than 15 pages each during that time frame. And trust me on this one, they were terrible. Still are. Ugh.
In your life, you will have highs and you will have lows. That was one of my lows. But you know what I did? I fucking got up off my ass and started exercising. I didn’t immediately blast right into the Paul Ryan league of P90X, but I created and stuck to a consistent plan of working out and eating better. And in about six weeks time, I wasn’t feeling so shitty. And because my brain wasn’t so cramped up with atrophy and cheese, I was able to use it to be productive. And the good writing returned.
It did also help that I had dozens of episodes of Sorkinian dialogue in my head, too. Ah, writing. With exercise, ambition, and direction, there really isn’t a single thing that the human mind can’t create.