Brexercise Part 3: Be in it for the long-run
I know this sounds bleedingly obvious advice, but underestimating the time and commitment necessary to achieve something is a mistake we all make and which Britain has been especially guilty of with Brexit. Britain has tried to withdraw from the EU as if it’s a sprint when it’s actually a marathon. Face it: trying to detach yourself from a forty six year relationship or an established way of life is not easy. That some in Britain think it can be achieved quickly and simply fits a longer-running problem in UK-EU relations of people thinking the problems inherent in it can be easily settled. David Cameron called the referendum in order, as he put it, to settle Britain’s European question. It was obvious from the start – and yes, it’s a ‘told you so’ from me – that he’d fail to do so whatever the outcome of the vote.
Despite this, that Brexit is, like fitness, a marathon without a clear finish line has still not registered with many. If you think Brexit will be done on 31 October 2019 (or thought it should have happened back in March) then it’s likely you’ve still not grasped the full-scale of the task Britain has taken on. Even if the UK leaves on 31st October – with or without a deal – it’s not the end of Brexit, more like the end of the beginning. What follows is a new series of negotiations and arguments as the UK and EU hash out the much bigger agreements over a new relationship.
Something similar applies with your fitness. Whether it’s changing an old habit, losing weight, or building up endurance, you need to stay motivated, take your time, have patience and maintain the willpower to carry on as you set new goals, maintain your fitness and truly change your body and lifestyle.
How have I been in it for the long-run?
I travel a lot for my work as an academic. Brexit has, it must be said, been good for me on that front. I’ve spoken on the topic from Singapore to San Francisco. It does, however, mean I’m frequently away from my home gym. But keeping fit is always possible c/o hotel gyms, through a gym in the UK booked via Hussle (previously known by the far more sensible name of ‘Payasyougym’) or a basic bodyweight workout routine that can be done in a hotel room or a friend’s apartment.
Despite travelling a lot this summer I’ve continued to focus on my workout, especially pull overs on a bar. It’s taken a while but the result is, as you can see, that I’ve hit my goal over a month earlier (see previous Brexercise post) than planned. My form is still not great, but I’m getting there.