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  • Writer's pictureMarc Lalonde

The darkest of times AND a blessing in disguise?

This is me March 8, 2021 after three months of shredding. I weigh 239 pounds here. Hoping to hit 215 by June 1.

Me on Nov. 26 281 pounds

Please excuse my language in advance, but it’s my blog;

I really do have my head up my own ass sometimes.

Since Christmas came and went this past year, my life, like that of many other people in my situation here in Montreal, has often been a dark, cold place in the first two months and change of 2021. I have lamented the darkness, the curfew, the social gathering restrictions and the lack of gyms, restaurants, human connections and the general malaise of life under lockdown, where all the endless mundane delights of life – the stress of work, the bills, the labor and the chores – are present, but the moments of joy and magic, such as travel, sports games and tournaments, family gatherings, the excitement and passion of meeting a new love, discovering a new favorite restaurant, and other things I’m sure others love and miss terribly are fewer and further between.

There’s still love and magic. I just had to look a little harder to find and nourish it.

There’s still joy. I just had to work a little harder to create it and nourish it.

There’s still purpose. Beyond survival, the promise of some form of return to normal life appears tantalizingly, just a few months away. I’ve found some and I was hoping to share it with you, because, dear readers, I care about you.

I also like to hear myself talk, though, too.

I know at least one of you is nodding to themselves right now and rolling their eyes about that last one.

But in all seriousness, I know that like many of you, it is unlikely that I’ll look back on the early part of 2021 and think ‘Oh, yeah. Good times.’

That being said, I know that if and when we come out on the other side of the COVID tunnel of awfulness, I will have become my best self, and I’m not ashamed to admit it. I’ve tuned up my nutrition once more with the goal of getting into bodybuilder shape as I had hoped to do a year ago, but failed, because of my first-lockdown-eating-habits and an autumn where I allowed myself to get off track terribly, nutrition-wise.

Hard to say, why, but I’m sure an Oxford comma would explain everything.

On Nov. 28, I weighed 281 pounds. I didn’t like the way my clothes fit, I didn’t like the way I felt about my body and I didn’t like the person I had become and was using food to salve that pain.

I identified the source of my hurt, allowed me to love myself again and decided to double down on my training and my nutrition. Today, I write to you at 239 pounds with visions of getting to 215 well defined pounds of muscle by June 1. Through December and January, I focused on merely fixing my injured psyche and being mindful about my nutrition and meditation. I healed. I trained. I ran. I ate healthy. I did it again and again and again. I’m happy with my progress to date, but not satisfied.

March 13. I'm smiling because I've kept my focus and my mindset

I started running again regularly for the first time in years and my torn quadriceps muscle is starting to get stronger and stronger. I put in more than 100m km running in January and more than 150 in February, despite three fewer days (!!!!).

My body and my health have been my main focuses over the past little while and the results bear that out. I filled the unforgiving three months with distance run, and I’m excited about what lies next for me.

I have refocused my weight training and cardio alongside my spiritual reawakening. I have refocused positive energy onto the world and the rewards have been myriad in both tangible and intangible ways. I’m giving back to my community in different ways and I’m being deeply rewarded in my heart, which is AS important as the wallet, if not more so.

So my challenge to my readers – and I know a couple who are doing this right now – is this. Find your body project and make it one that you can take on. Maybe it’s the challenge of committing to weight training, running, or not using food and drink to soothe hurt feelings and change moods.

Maybe doing the hard thing during this hard time won’t be too hard. I can tell each and every one of you that the Marc that you meet and come across when lockdown is over will be the best I have ever been.

Tell me: what else have we got to do with our time?

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