back-in-the-groove I have just discovered something about myself.

I don’t like schedules, at least not very rigid ones. That’s why I don’t like the nine-to-five routine and why I have struggled against that cubicle life for so long. One of my favorite things about life in academia is that there is so much variety.

No two semesters are the same. You don’t teach the same courses two semesters in a row. Even if you did, you don’t get the same students, so it’s still a difference course. There are always new theories to read about, and ways for you to contribute to those conversations if you’re felling so inclined. And you can always create a brand new course that doesn’t exist in your organization’s curricula, addressing a gap that you are uniquely qualified to fill.

This is not something new, either. I have never appreciated routine, especially if it is extremely rigid routine. Variety has always been the spice of my life.

And yet … and yet, every now and then, I discover that stability is good for me.

I’ve been having a really hard time establishing something close to a routine when it comes to my workouts since the new year arrived. At first, I thought the problem was simply that I needed to wait until I had my house to myself again. I’ve known Derek forever, but sometimes, for some obscure reason, I get embarrassed about working out around him. Go figure.

Only that turned out not to be the problem. I kissed him good-bye and sent him on his merry way north but I still was having trouble getting back into the groove.

My classes start tomorrow. Today, I had a meeting with my advisor. I did that, very productive meeting and all went well. I came home, ran upstairs and changed, and did a workout. And I’m suddenly realizing that that was my routine. Go to school, do school things, come home, change and work out. Followed closely by dinner, homework and bed.

And I find that I was having all that trouble doing my workouts regularly because I was on break. When I’m on break, I don’t do anything regularly. I sort of float along in a fog of not having to do anything but get some rest. Of course, I con only do that for so long. Doing nothing is really not like me. But evidently, I am able to do more or less nothing for at east three weeks.

The upshot of all this mental meandering is the discovery that, when I’m not in school, I need to have some kind of routine at least to get me to workout regularly. Over the summer, I have a bunch of different things I’m hoping to do that will require scheduling, so that’s a good thing.

Classes start tomorrow, as I said.

Stability returns to my life. And to my workout routine.