In concert with the time for self-improvement career-wise, I took the steps and effort to improve my body.

As my business was growing in early 2008, I took it upon myself to walk to our local gym and ride their stationary bicycles while watching TV. This was I combined the practice of news-entertainment and self-information with the monotony of riding. I’m not sure if I lot a lot of weight this way, but I sure did build up my stamina for exercise.

After a year and just as the recession began, I looked for extra costs to eliminate and the gym membership was one of those casualties. Instead, I decided to use the stationary bike I already owned. Although not as sophisticated as those in the gym, it was plenty robust and functional, especially when placed in front of the TV.

Nevertheless, I found that after an hour of TV watching while cycling, I was hardly sweating so I decided to run up and down the stairs before riding. Counting the cycles up using a counter on my iPhone made my exercise consistent and certainly sweaty. After 20 and then 30 cycles, I would ride the bike for 45 minutes watching the news.

This worked great during the New England dark times (December through March) where it’s just too cold and too icy to go out running. As spring approached, the stairs-bike combination was getting dull, my son suggested I should run for a short distance (1.3 miles) around our neighborhood. I did. It felt great. After a few months, I simply changed my route until today, where I’m running either 4 miles if I’m in a hurry, or 5.3 miles if I have the time and feel the urge to go a little farther.

Through diet (no carbohydrates like pasta, bread, potatoes) control and this excellent exercise regime, I’ve lost 40 pounds in a year and feel great. So at the very least, I’ve made a great personal improvement as a result of this terrible recession.

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