The Gym & A Job

I kinda feel bad writing a blog about my health and fitness when all around, the world seems to be falling a part.

Wars in the Middle East, a credit crisis across Europe and the U.S and now riots, on the streets of London. You can only fill your head with this stuff for so long. It’s all so desperate. I pray that God will give wisdom to those in leadership to protect people, property and stem the violence. I also pray that all the mindless thugs and robbers will be caught and punished for their crimes.

Hey, life goes on I suppose and whilst I can, I need to stay on point with my life, my health and my fitness, for me and for my family, so, if you want, read on and I’ll tell you about my day…

After a couple of days off from exercise, I went to bed last night really looking forward to a ‘mash up’ at the gym today. I set my alarm for 7am, it went off, I woke up, switched it off and went back to sleep. I know, how bad was that?! The muscles in my back and shoulders were still sore from Friday and that was annoying me, so again, I thought maybe the long run on Thursday really did take more out of me than I initially realised, maybe. Or, maybe I just hadn’t replenished more bodies energy requirements, or, maybe I’m just full of crap. The bottom line is, I wasn’t feeling an early morning gym, so I didn’t go.

Jan (she of the infinitely better half) wasn’t feeling too good so I decided to stay with her for a while, I did my good Son-in-Law bit and took the M-i-L shopping and then I went back home. I just had no energy what so ever. I was determined not to have three days without exercise, so when it hit 4pm I thought I don’t care how energy-less I feel I’m going the gym.

I got to the gym and again the weather was nice, windy, very windy, but, nice. I decided on a 5k run (37:15) around the Marina (which was in to a mean head wind) and then I just walked it out on the treadmill inside for half an hour. That my friends was that. I decided against weights and more cardio, I just think I need to take it easy. It’s really frustrating me tbh!!!

My heads a bit sidetracked today, I think I know why, it’s because of my job, more to the point, no job, situation and I just feel… look, I don’t know how I feel.

Some background is needed I think.

I lost my job about 18 months a go. I’ve always worked and losing my job hit me really hard. Harder than I think I at first realised. I won’t go in to the details of why I lost my job, I will one day, but, basically I tell people it was because of funding, it wasn’t, it was much more complicated and heart wrenching than that, but, for now, let’s just say it was lack of funding.

I took it really bad and I lost a lot of confidence as a result of it. I looked at myself. I was 42 years old, I had no qualifications, I was grotesquely over weight and all I could see ahead of me was, well, nothing. I thought my life was over and what I hadn’t realised, was that I was quite severely depressed.

Yes depressed. I hate that word, that label. My mother was a manic depressive for most if not all of my childhood and as a consequence, I find it really difficult being around people with mental health issues. The thought of me ever being depressed has always frightened the hell out of me, but, here I was, depressed. A very different depression to my mothers, but, never the less, depressed.

I think I must have been that way since about March/April 2010. I didn’t accept it, or seek help till about January 2011. I have a great GP and she suggested some medication. I tried that for a couple of months, but, it wasn’t for me. The breakthrough eventually came when I started on my road to a ‘healthier’ lifestyle. Exercise, the gym, fitness, transformation. It was the key to a healthier mind as well as a healthier body.

So what about work? Well, here in lies the problem. I’ve not found a job, but, if I’m honest, I’m not really looking for one either. I’ve got a big blockage in my brain, the cogs have ground to a halt and I just can’t face the reality of finding a new job. I’m actually scared. Yeah, I think that’s what it is. It sounds pathetic, I feel pathetic, but, I’m kinda scared of getting a job.

Look, I’ve not really spoke about this, so putting it here on the blog is a biggie for me. Jan knows how I feel and is having to deal with the consequences of that, but, I’ve not really spoken to a lot of people about it.

It’s starting to bug me now though. As a Christian, were the heck is my faith. Why am I allowing this to hold me back. It’s having an obvious affect on our finances and it’s like I don’t care. I do care (obviously), but, it just looks for all the world to see that I don’t. Do the right thing Paul. Take your head out of your backside and do the right thing. Yeah okay, I will, maybe tomorrow, maybe next week. That’s the kind of conversation I have with myself daily. It’s all a bit weird. Thank God Jan is the wonderful, understanding woman she is.

Maybe I’m still depressed. Maybe I’ve conquered some/part of my depression, but, this is still something hanging on that I need to get a breakthrough with. I’m not at all sure, I just felt like telling you about it.

Right I’m off, gonna hit publish before I change my mind. This is my blog and it helps me to be honest about stuff, so I am being.

This is Paul Bentley signing off. I’ve eaten okay, I’ve been the gym and I’m slightly fed up haha. Catch you all tomorrow.

Peace and love,

Paul (Kracker)

“I Can Do It…!”


About paulbentley

My name is Paul Bentley and I started my blog in May 2011. I live in Liverpool in the North West of England, UK – I have always had ‘issues’ with my weight! When I got to 27st 13lbs (177kgs or 391lbs) I finally decided that ‘enough is enough’ and I need to make changes. As part of the process I decided I need to make myself accountable, so I’ve decided to be accountable to you. Thanks for offering ;-)
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15 Responses to The Gym & A Job

  1. cbailey74 says:

    Well Paul I know how you feel. I have been unemployed now for 21 months. You want to talk about pinching pennies? I always felt like I was a disappointment to my wife and children. Being brought up on “You have to be the man of the house and bring home the bacon all the time” was always the monkey on my back. No body, I mean, No body is hiring in my city. I have put in countless applications with no replies. I had to sell my car a year ago to pay the rent for our apartment or we were going to be evicted. That was a sad day. But I remembered that my redeemer lives. He is interceding for me at the right hand of the father. He has been providing for us even though things are tight. I may not have what I want yet, but I am thankful for the little that I have. He who is faithful with the little, will be entrusted with much. I am taking advantage of this time of unemployment and seeking HIM and focusing on my lifestyle and family because I know when I find a job, time is going to be more precious. Be encourage my friend. With love from your brother in Christ and His Kingdom…Charles

    • paulbentley says:

      Thanks for your words of encouragement brother. It seems we have yet another similarity, our joblessness.

      I believe that all things work together for good and I’m trusting Him that I will be lifted from this temporary funk.

      Stay blessed.

  2. FatGirlUSA says:

    Hi Paul… I ran across one of your comments on my blog and decided to check in on you since it has been awhile. I’m sorry to hear about your job loss but stay strong and keep taking care of yourself first and foremost and everything else will fall into place. GOOD THINGS COME TO GOOD PEOPLE and you seem like good people from what I read on your blog. I will keep you and your family in my prayers.

    • paulbentley says:

      Thanks so much for the comment and thank you for keeping me in your prayers. I’m in the midst of a dip, but, I know it will only be short lived. I’ve come too far. God willing I’ll sort out the remaining pieces in my jigsaw.

  3. K Tobin says:

    I feel your pain. Unemployment is a huge mental weight, and the economy is not helping either. But keep the faith, man. You are the most important person in your life. It is great that your wife is supportive. Be strong. Stay true to your goals.
    On your body, listen to it. If you are tired and feel weak. Cut your intensity level. Walk for 45 minutes, instead of running. You don’t want to injure yourself.
    Keep up the good work.

    • paulbentley says:

      Hi Keith. I’ve tried to reply to this comment through my dashboard but wordpress seems to be messing up. Hopefully this one will register.

      Thanks for your kind words. Life is complicated and I’ve taken some massive strides in the past few months. By God’s grace this next piece of the jigsaw (a job) will be found soon enough.

      Thanks again man.

  4. ggardner21 says:

    Jeremiah 29:11
    11 For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord. They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.

    God’s got good plans for you Paul, good luck.

  5. Janet says:

    Hey Paul,
    thank you for opening up like that. For myself I have discovered that acceptance is one step in the right direction for me. It’s actually not that easy to accept certain things that are going on in ones life but having people who support you does help. Keep on walking on that healthier path you have discovered for yourself and I am sure the more you achieve there, the more you will love yourself and the more outgoing you will become until there will be another job for you. Keep it up.

  6. paulbentley says:

    Hi Janet. I’m determined to stay on the path and I’m so much happier now than I was a few short months a go. A job is one part of the whole that is ‘my life’. I’m so grateful for all the other parts, I’m not going to allow this one thing to pull me down.

    Thanks for your support and encouragement.

  7. M says:

    Hi Paul, I just read your blog for the first time, and just wanted to say that I know exactly how you feel as I’m in the same boat. Unemployed since last March, overweight and out of shape and experiencing an extreme lack of confidence in myself. I’m thinking that trying to get my weight and health in order might give me the confidence boost I need to find meaningful employment. I hope it will do the same for you too. Hang in there – I’ll be hanging in there right beside you!

    • paulbentley says:

      Hi M. Thanks for your comment.

      I agree totally. The process of getting healthy in your body can only help in getting healthy in the mind. Little by little I’m getting there. I feel like a different person to the one I was in April this year.

      I know I’ll eventually get a job. My self image re employability is a harder nut to crack, but, I’ll crack it.

      Thanks for joining me on my journey. I’ve just tried to have a look at your blog, but, it’s marked as private 😦

      • M says:

        Hi Paul, sorry about the blog being marked “private” – my mistake – which I have now set right! Stop by again if you want to. I know exactly what you mean about the “self image re employability” thing – I feel the same way. Talk to you later!

  8. Somehow I missed this post earlier in the week. It’s very touching. My heart goes out to you.
    My BF was made redundant last year. Slightly before it he was diagnosed with depression and undertook counselling which he found to be a great help…. even if he was a bit reluctant in the first instance. After about 8 weeks he was able to come off his medication. His confidence hasn’t fully recovered yet but I know he’ll find himself again soon just like you will.
    It took my him about a year before he started applying for jobs. I’m not really sure why. I know his confidence was knocked and his morale was low and most likely like you he was scared. He picked up a 6 month contract position a month or two ago. Maybe because it was a contract and it had an end in sight he was able to take the first step back to work. He’s now looking to the future and applying for permanent ones.
    I don’t have any great answers for you but just wanted to let you know that there are others out there who have or are experiencing similar things.
    The most important thing is your health and wellbeing and it sounds to me like you are doing exactly the right thing for yourself right now by focusing on both of them.
    Your blog is a great inspiration to me. To have gone from not exercising to running a 1/2 marathon in such a short period of time shows you have great mental strength.
    You can do whatever you want… as adidas say nothing is impossible.

    • paulbentley says:

      Thanks for a great comment.

      It’s so strange how a person can display ‘great mental strength’ in one area of their lives (health/fitness), whilst exhibiting equal mental weakness in another (employability). We are nothing if not complicated.

      The encouraging thing I suppose, is that a few short months a go, I had the same mental weakness with regard to my health. Maybe in a another few short months I’ll be employed (or on the way to being employed) and confident in who I am and what I am able to give 🙂

      I’m happy for you and your BF and wish him every success.

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