My father has a crackpot medical theory. It’s become known as the “Wasted Heartbeat Theory.” It goes something like this: we are all born with a certain number of heartbeats, and when we exercise, we raise our heart rate, and use up more heartbeats… so stop exercising.
Now, don’t hate on my dad. He’s a doctor. He knows of what he speaks.
Ok, so fine, yeah, it’s baloney. You know it, he knows it, I know it. (Sidenote: he’s a regular exerciser and schools the young ‘uns in the 60+ age bracket at pickleball on the daily.)
It’s fun to think about your crackpot medical theory. I believe we all get one.
But, in the time of coronavirus, we’re all letting things slide a wee bit, so I’m going to allow you two: the one you had before, and your new one.
Here’s my old one: I have dense bones. I come from a family of tall people. And, yet, on my best days, I’m 5’5.75” (Don’t ever take that three quarters from me, or we’re gonna have words.) So, here is my thinking. I should have been 5’8” easily, but I never made it. My bones have 5’8” programmed into their DNA. So, because I never made it that far, they must just be dense. I mean, I’ve never broken a bone… so, that’s science, right?
And here is my new one: carrying around a few extra pounds during coronavirus might just save your life. Good news, right? I can already hear you saying, “Huzzah! Amazing! But where is the science?!?” The best part about crackpot medical theories is that they don’t need no stinkin’ science. But here’s my ridiculously, non-factual, pulled out of the clear blue sky, anecdotal logic: your body burns calories to fight off disease, which is why we are always so tired and why we lose so much weight when sick, so wouldn’t it make sense that carrying a few extra pounds into this crisis might be just what the doctor ordered?
I’m not saying to go out and, like I did this morning, eat a canister of Cheez Curls at 8:00am. (*No actual cheese was harmed in the making of this breakfast, nor was the Cadbury Creme bunny, yo.) What I am saying is this: cut yourself some slack, give yourself a break, and worry about the extra few pounds when the world settles back down. You don’t have to go out and gain a Quarantine Fifteen. But you will survive — emotionally for sure, but maybe even physically, too — if you stop wasting your energy worrying about the extra bits.
Go outside every day. Enjoy the sunshine. Get some exercise with a friend (who is six feet away from you). Waste those heartbeats. It’s good for your soul.
But know that Cadbury Creme Eggs and Cheez Curls might be good for your soul, too.