The Lazy Journalist at the Prince Regent gym - An improved diet, but crikey, what a faff!

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Dusty Springfield sang; “Being good isn’t always easy.”

And I wonder if the songwriters behind that tune were watching what they ate at the time.

Prince Regent Swimming Complex, Brighton.

Prince Regent Swimming Complex, Brighton.

No-one ever said it was going to be a cakewalk (mmm, I remember cakes) but I’d forgotten just how much effort it takes to diet.

I’m not just talking about the mental effort.

The diet and forays into fitness are relatively new and I think I’m still in the honeymoon period, so I’d be quite a hopeless case if my mental fortitude was failing after just over a month.

Obviously, I miss beer and crisps, like the desert misses rain, but I’m (mostly) keeping it together.

The biggest issue is the effort of buying and prepping all the healthy tucker.

At the moment I’m spending more time in supermarkets than the late great Dale Winton ever did, and more hours in the kitchen than your average Victorian scullery maid.

It seems whenever I’m not thinking about food (which admittedly has always been mostly fleeting moments), I’m messing about in the herbal tea aisle, or trying to work out how to combine the cooking times of bulgur wheat and tri-colour quinoa.

Those halcyon days of pub lunches/dinners, take-aways and ready meals didn’t demand nearly as much endeavour.

I’ve lost count of how many peppers I’ve sliced, avocados I’ve scooped and onions I’ve diced.

But obviously this is good thing.

There’s no denying the fact I feel much better since I’ve curtailed my worst excesses.

I’m no longer experiencing huge dips in energy after meals because there’s an awful lot less food on my plate (there was previously enough for your average Polynesian tree logger), and what’s left is lower in carbs, fat and sugar.

So, unsurprisingly, I’m feeling perkier.

Unfortunately, I’m still not quite translating that into more punishing, but ultimately rewarding, sessions at the gym.

I don’t want to become an angry, testosterone-fuelled weight-lifting troll.

You know the type – lots of powdered drinks, unpleasantly revealing vests and a tendency to noisily throw very heavy weights to the floor.

But I do need to push myself a little bit harder.

I definitely have more energy than a month ago and I’m getting myself over to the Prince Regent gym on a regular basis, but I still haven’t yielded any endorphin rewards.

I can just about remember the rather marvellous post-gym hormone rush – the ‘runner’s high’ and hope I’ll be feeling it again, sooner than later.

Obviously I’ve loved the Pilates sessions and my recent introduction to Qigong, but I’d very much like to replicate that level of enjoyment/effort in the gym.

It’s a psychological problem rather than a physical one, although at the time it always feels physical and due to a perceived lack of energy.

Hopefully this will improve in the next few weeks and I’ll soon be bursting with vim and vitality, and not quite so childishly resentful of eating fresh, but labour-intensive food.

To find out more about the gym and classes at the Prince Regent visit www.freedom-leisure.co.uk