Semester Number 13

by Jeremy Chance

I feel like every new entry has to start with the obligatory “sorry for not posting in a while.” This post will be no different. The last post was at the beginning of August.

I had every intention of posting more throughout the semester, especially with it being my first in a new degree program. So much for this being my fitness blog, right? Hopefully I can get back into it a little bit over break, and once the semester starts, hopefully I can establish a habit of posting once a week or something like that.

It really is my intention to keep updating those who follow this blog, and I really did want to use it as a fitness/nutrition/weight loss blog.

So here goes the recap on the past 4, almost 5 months:

As I mentioned, this semester was my first in the new degree program, applied exercise and health, and I have to admit, it really feels like where I’m supposed to be. The very first day of one of my classes, the instructor was going over all of the different opportunities we’d have in the field with this degree, and I just got really excited about the future and the impact I’m going to have on someone’s life.

I think of all thirteen semesters I’ve been at Purdue, this may have been one of the most difficult ones I’ve had academically. It was difficult in a very different way than other semesters have been. All joke’s aside from my engineering friends, the communication degree was difficult in one kind of way. This semester has included a lot of biology and sciencey kind of stuff, something I haven’t had in a while, for starters, and definitely haven’t been very good at.

My anatomy and physiology class was probably the hardest class I have ever taken. While I was taking the exams, I was wishing my body could somehow just tell me the way it works; the exams would’ve been a lot easier if that was the case. Unfortunately that is one way the body does not work. I should end up with a B, and that was probably the hardest B I’ve ever worked for. It’s definitely a B I’ll be happy with. I would’ve been stoked with a C, but knowing I worked my butt off the last third of the semester to earn a B is pretty gratifying. Now I know how hard I need to work in 204 next semester.

I feel like now, because of this class, and this semester really, I finally possess knowledge that I can use in a conversation and sound like I have some kind of specialization or expertise. Let me try to explain this. I’ve never necessarily possessed knowledge that would allow me to “be an expert” in any given field, despite having earned a degree. For example, my friend Kevin Norman earned his degree in entomology and agronomy, and he’s definitely an expert on that topic. Any of my engineering friends could talk about all of these different concepts and theories and all this stuff, and sound very intelligent.

That’s it. I’ve never really had the level of knowledge to sound “very intelligent,” at least in the sense that I feel when I listen to some of my friends talk about their respective fields. There were numerous occasions we’d be out at a bar and it’d be Jason, Josh, David, Josh’s girlfriend Liz, all engineering majors, Kevin and his expertise. You want to talk about not fitting into a conversation??? I love them all and couldn’t have asked for a better group of friends, but it was a personal thing for me, never really having a level of expertise about any one topic the way they do in their respective fields.

Now, that’s not to say I have any mastery on any level of the anatomy and physiology of the human body. Trust me, because I do not. But the information I’ve learned this semester makes me feel like I could be a source of “expertise.” As a matter of fact, there have already been a few occasions where I’ve been turned to for help. Granted both have been by family members, but still. My mom asked for help with leg cramps she was having, and my sister has asked for training tips.

And I didn’t intend that to sound like a pity party for the COM major or anything like that, nor an indictment on my more intelligent friends. I hope it doesn’t come across that way. I am fortunate to have very intelligent friends!

I won’t update all of my classes. I tend to go on little tangents about each of them, and that would take up unnecessary space here. Grades come out in a couple days, and I think I should end up with 3 As and 2 Bs. One of the Bs is that anatomy and physiology class, so I’ll take that B for sure. The other B is a class that there’s no reason I shouldn’t have gotten an A in, so I’m a little upset with myself for not keeping up with the work, making it to class on time, and other crap that has prevented me from getting an A, most likely. Overall though, I’ll definitely take these grades this semester. Beats my fall semester from last year.

The beginning of the semester I had a bit of a hard time adjusting my workout schedule to my academic and work schedules, so there were quite a few weeks earlier in the semester where I’d only make it to the gym once a week. Now, to most people, sad to say but, this would be an improvement. But coming from working out 6 days a week most weeks since February, it was a little difficult to adjust to. I would say maybe a bit past the midway part of the semester I finally got back into a pretty good routine, and I really think that’s when my attitude about everything shifted back toward the positive end.

And Kelsey has started to work out with me a lot. She wanted me to be her personal trainer. I haven’t quite learned enough to necessarily consider myself a personal trainer, so I’ve just been having her do what I do. The benefits of this though is she’s really keeping me accountable and pushing me. Working out by myself is great, but now that I’ve started working out with her, I’ve changed the routines up a bit and really tried new things, and I think we’re both starting to see the effects of this, even after a couple weeks for her. I’ve gotten my weight down to 190, and I’m really starting to see some of the more physical results I’ve been pushing for.

Right now I’m at the 10-month mark for this lifestyle change, and I’m pretty happy with where I’m at. I’ve lost nearly 80 pounds. I feel good about the way I look. I feel good about the way I feel (what???). Today I actually came across a picture of me from 2009, and woof!! Looking back at pictures like that really makes me thankful that I made the lifestyle adjustments I have, and beyond blessed that I’ve been as successful with the weight loss as I have been. It’ll be really cool to see in two months, when I hit that one-year mark, how far I’ve really come and to see the actual physical transformation. Sometimes I wish other aspects of my life would transform as positively as this aspect has…but that’s not for here.

There have been so many different things I’ve been wanting to write about, I’m hoping to use these three weeks of semester break where marginally little will be going on to write some of those things. I guess as kind of a teaser, I’ll post potential topics I’d like to write about:

  • My admiration for those who have lost a parent at a “young” age; a number of close friends have lost a parent, and I just don’t know how I’d personally do it, so I’d like to write about my admiration for those who have had to deal with it
  • My best friend Shawn Dildine; in the past couple years, the man has entered the career-world, gotten married, has a child on the way, and bought a house; I think he deserves a blog post
  • This song “Do I Make You Proud;” WARNING: not meant to be a pity post; my reflection on making people proud, but not just those on earth, those who truly can see everything we as individuals
  • Life post-Glee Club; my observations of my first semester post-Glee Club

Who knows if I’ll actually find the time to write these. I’ll be working quite a bit over the next three weeks of my semester break.

I guess you’ll just have to keep your fingers crossed that you’ll hear from me soon! 😉

Take care!!