Jeffro's Space Gaming Blog

Microgames, Monster Games, and Role Playing Games

You Don’t Have to Be a Nerd

I have been unfit for my entire life.

Changing that wasn’t easy. Every other year or so for a long time I’d attempt to do something about it. Usually within two weeks I’d injure myself somehow. I had no idea what sort of things would yield the best results. And I had no idea how to actually get on the right track.

My advice now for nerds that are sick and tired of being nerds would be this:

  • Don’t waste your time jogging, doing exercise DVDs, and doing the stuff you remember doing in your high school P. E. class. If you are ignorant of how fitness works, there is no way you are going to get this right.
  • Join a gym… preferably one that has physical trainers that can give you constant feedback on getting your form right from the start. LIFT WEIGHTS.
  • Don’t go overboard too quickly, but try to ramp up slowly. However… if you are chronically unfit, you may find out where your physical limits are and end up in a lot of pain. If that happens to you, go to your doctor and make it a priority to get it figured out.

Here is what things were like when I got to the three week mark:

So I’m in the gym doing my routine, two sets of twenty on all the upper body machines I can comprehend. I’ve been at this for three straight weeks now. I keep going over to the dispenser to get the paper towels to wipe down each machine and I look at that guy in the mirror and I think. Ah, I just stand up straighter lately, that’s all. I look again the next time and I think… maybe I just look different when I’m doing weights because I’m flexing. Third time I look again, and I can’t deny it. SOMETHING IS DIFFERENT. I get home and take pictures for the before and after thing… and good gosh. I’ve got pectoral muscles. I’ve got a freaking chest.

Three weeks. Three days a week. A forty minute routine. It made a difference. Yeah, I was jogging and biking, too. I traded out cereal and replaced it with steak and eggs. I dropped soda and candy bars entirely.

I can’t believe it. I… I didn’t know this was possible.

And here is what things were like at the six week mark:

Okay, so it’s been six weeks since hitting the gym. I started out focusing on chest, shoulders, and back. It’s not that much difference, maybe, but I feel like a football player.

So Friday I’m walking my bike home after something went sideways on it. I walk past this mom with her lanky teen-aged daughter The girl steals a glance at me, locks her eyes right on my pecs, then looks down and away. (Hey, “eyes up here” is your line.)

Okay, maybe that’s just in my head. No big deal. Next day I head to the gym and this blonde is coming out as I’m going in. She looks at me… then she looks me up and down. Obviously I’m imagining things. But while I’m working out, I turn around and I catch this other cute blonde checking me out. Same girl twice.

Okay, so maybe this is just a gym thing. It still hasn’t sunk in.

Then I’m on the bus today minding my on business. This cute chick sits in the back sort of diagonal from me. Fifteen minutes later I glance up… and she’s freaking staring at me. I look at her with this sort of “what are you looking at” type look and just stare back… but she doesn’t look away. Her expression doesn’t change… except for just this hint of a smile.

No, this is not normal for me. This is new.

And I don’t know what I thought would happen, but this ain’t it.

What I think is weird is that it’s only the attractive ones that do this. The truly nerdy girls are… well they’re behaving like nerdy guys would. They hang back. They hide in plain sight.

This is nuts.

I see people that are like how I was. Slouching, skinny, pasty white. Creeps, basically. I look at these guys when I see them and I have to say… they don’t look particularly happy. I feel bad for them, because I know this isn’t working for them and nobody will tell them what they need to know to really get on top of things. Not their mom. Not their preacher. Not their guidance counselor. Not their therapist. And not the nerdy dudes they hang out with.

It bugs me that so many people are being propped up in an endeavor to make do with something that just can’t work well no matter how it’s spun. But that’s the shape of it. So let me tell you what nobody else will:

Get to the gym. Go three times a week. Eat right. Go outside. Be physically active.

The only reason you wouldn’t is because you’ve decided that you’re simply not worth that kind of investment. That vibe is all over you. And everyone around you picks up on it and takes it for granted that it’s true. Even your posture communicates it.

But you really don’t have to live like that anymore. You’ll be glad when you’ve changed. And you might be surprised at just how fast things can change.


6 responses to “You Don’t Have to Be a Nerd

  1. Man of the Atom August 17, 2017 at 4:28 am


    Outstanding, Jeffro! Keep up the effort and keep us posted. You provided us the key examples and forgotten history for Pulp and for TRPGs. Now, you’re doing it for fitness. You da Man!

  2. lastredoubtwpadmin August 17, 2017 at 5:35 pm

    FWIW – when I sarted lifitning, I was using the stronglifts 5×5 program

    the specific progression – it was similiar to rippetoes – is irrelevant, but one note is key here

    he insisted that people start with an empty barbell and work up

    this is, as far as I can tell, as much for form as the fact that, yeah, you might be able to push 100 lbs over your head, but 25x? without hurting yourself?

  3. Xavier Basora August 18, 2017 at 11:16 pm

    Well done Jeffro. As someone who’s been in an out of shape, I agree that going to the gym and doing exercises is a big help. It’s also good for your mental health and helps put any problems in perspective. Also, exercising helps with your writing. More oxygen to the brain ;)

  4. brtrain August 28, 2017 at 11:20 am

    Jeffro, what’s your take on Yukio Mishima?

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