Monday, February 25, 2013

[The Corey Project] Wake up call

It's hard to believe that it's been more than eight months since I got married.

That was about the same time I put "The Corey Project" on hold.

My gym attendance has slumped.  I haven't run more than two-and-a-half miles since the wedding, and even that has been rare. The occasional "splurge" on tacos, burgers and pizza (and beer) has happened more frequently.

This picture was taken around when
I was at my smallest, March 2012.
I can't see much of a difference in how I look. Maybe a little rounder in places, but I expected that. My clothes still fit more or less the same. Sometimes it just takes a little extra tugging to button the pants.

A couple of weeks ago, it was especially hard to button a pair of pants. My shirt felt a little snug around the middle. I decided to weigh myself, see the extent of the damage. I hadn't done that in months.

My scale tracks your weight, showing how much you've gained or lost since the last time you got on it. I held down the corner until my last saved weight popped up: "179."

To be fair, that was some time before the wedding. I had weighed myself since -- though not recently -- and was in the 180s, but I didn't want to save that. I liked the look of 179.

I knew I was more than that. I expected it. But I didn't expect this. The three little lines bounced up and down on the display and a number popped up: "205."

Twenty-six pounds.

I felt like I had been punched in the stomach. I couldn't believe it. I hadn't weighed more than 200 pounds since May 2011. I made a little promise to myself that I wouldn't go back to that. But here I am. Back.

I'm not happy about it, but I think it's exactly the kick in the pants that I needed. A week since that weigh in, I've dropped a pound. Not much, but the needle is moving in the right direction.

But I'm not motivated to run and 40-minute round trip to the gym is frustrating. I need to mix it up. So Courtney and I bought "Insanity." We started Sunday. If the first two workouts are any indication, my body is going to be sore for 60 straight days.

We took all our "before" measurements (see mine in the image below). We will remeasure every two weeks when we do the fitness test. I know it's going to be tough, but tough is what I need.

The Corey Project resumes.

Note: I know the weight below is higher than the weights mentioned above. I took the above measurements in the morning, before I ate. The one below was in the afternoon after a big Sunday brunch.

My initial measurements

Monday, February 11, 2013

On being Southern ... ish

Sometimes I wish I was more Southern. I'm not sure that's common, but there it is.

I was born in Cary, which is about as far from Southern as you can get in North Carolina. (Charlotte is probably a close second.) If you've heard of Cary, you've heard of its nickname: Central Area for Relocated Yankees. And it's true.

Sitting just west of Raleigh, the "Town" of Cary is the seventh largest city in the state, thanks to technology jobs coming to SAS and Research Triangle Park. It's a great place to grow up; It's not the South.

My family is from the South. My mom grew up in Greensboro. My dad grew up in Roanoke Rapids. The Inscoes came from England and settled in southern Virginia, into northeast North Carolina.

My parents don't have strong accents, though. At least none that I notice. I don't think I have much of an accent either.

Sure, it comes out sometimes in the "yessirs" and "ma'ams" and the "y'alls." I can fake one pretty well. But when I travel to the mountains or down East, I realize I've got nothin'.

I love my barbecue (Eastern style, please). I grew up on NASCAR and love football. I'll take some liver puddin' for breakfast and a hot dog with chili and slaw for lunch and some fried chicken for dinner. I'll take some bourbon for a nightcap.

I've always liked bluegrass and can even appreciate some country music.

But I've never been hunting. I've only fished a handful of times. I grew up in a townhouse less than a mile from the Cary Towne Center mall. I've never lived more than a couple of miles from a WalMart or Harris Teeter.

I never did yard work until I moved into my current house. I guess yard work isn't a distinctly Southern thing, but it feels un-Southern to not do it growing up.

I hear and read stories about the South and Southern culture and I want to connect to it. (This post was inspired by reading "All Over but the Shoutin'" by Rick Bragg.) I want to feel like it's my heritage he or she is talking about. And I guess, somewhere higher on my family tree, it is my heritage. But it doesn't feel like it.

I feel like I'm stuck in the middle somewhere. My granddad ("Paw Paw") grew up in a small town on N.C./Virginia border. He's definitely Southern. My dad grew up in the same small town and lives Down East in Wilson. He's Southern.

Me? The Cary-ite turned Charlottean via Chapel Hill? I'm Southern ... ish.