Hello and welcome to our first installment of what we hope to make a regular column here on Film School Rejects: Fitness & Film. This title may prove temporary if one of our genius readers can come up with something better – and hey, if you do, I’ll send you an Arnold Schwarzenegger movie. For real.
What Fitness & Film aims to accomplish is melding the worlds of… yeah, that seems obvious once you start writing that sentence. But the common perception of most film fans and film writers especially is that we’re a fat, lazy, doughy lot. While we perhaps at one point earned that reputation, there is no reason why film and fat must go hand in hand. Many of the Rejects team are athletic (Dr. Abaius is a Cross-Fitter, Rob Hunter a tennis player, and both Kevin Carr and Neil Miller have shed pounds, calling into question their “Fat Guys” reputation) and several of our online writing compatriots are gym rats.
So if you’re looking to get in shape and you’re a film fan, you’re in the right spot. We’ll present fitness and nutrition tips for your every day life and provide alternatives to a double Milk Dud Caramel Corn value meal at the local cinema. To add variety, from time to time we’ll also talk about in shape celebrities, characters, and anything else that gives me an excuse to post a picture of Jessica Biel flexing her biceps. For our inaugural column, with Comic Con literally kicking off in mere hours, we wanted to take a look at avoiding some convention pratfalls.
1. Bring Your Own Food
There are many reasons why you may want to do this – perhaps you’re not a fan of stale, greasy pizza or maybe you’d rather spend that $15.99 getting a limited edition Prowl Mighty Mugg. In no terms is the food at Comic Con good. In all my years going, I’ve avoided the traditional fare, but that left me with nothing but Mrs. Fields cookies, jumbo pretzels, and soda. I don’t think it takes a degree in Health Sciences to realize this is no good.
So, instead, bring your own food and drink to the Con. There are plenty of local grocery stores around, so you’ll not only save money to blow on comic memorabilia, you’ll also eat better. If you’re looking for the perfect portable snack that will keep in the heat, look no further than trail mix. Full of healthy fats, protein, and fiber, trail mix (nuts, dried fruit) can keep you full for long periods of time. Toss a couple water bottles in your bag and you’re set until dinner – when you can leave the Center and get a decent meal not stored in a revolving rack all day.
2. Wear Your Walking Shoes
And use them. Comic Con is gigantic. If you’re a busy body, it’s quite easy to walk several miles around the Con floor in a single day. Add in travel to and from your hotel, walking around San Diego, and you can put some serious mileage on your sneakers. That is, as long as you skip out on the taxis and annoying bicycle cart guys. Sure, if you’re pressed for time take one, but there’s no reason not to walk almost everywhere within a reasonable distance – and almost everything of interest is in a reasonable distance.
3. Stay Hydrated
With all that walking, you’re going to be thirsty. The smart move is on your own bottled water, which again saves money and saves calories. If you’re not a fan of water – grow up. Okay okay, fine. Diet sodas and teas are great, no-calorie options that won’t do harm to your burgeoning physique, and they taste good. The benefits of staying hydrated are many fold, especially in the Southern California heat. It will reduce headaches, keep you cool, and keep you full so you can stop yourself from purchasing that mid-day double chocolate chip cookie.
4. Have the Time You Want to Have
As an entertainment writer, travel and bad food surrounds me all the time. If I gave in all the time, I’d definitely be in a worse place health wise. If you’re in a similar situation, you should treat Comic Con as a regular day, not a time to splurge. This means watching what you eat, skipping out on the calorie dense sugar filled items, and behaving yourself. I’m not going to go as far as to suggest you do a circuit routine in your hotel room every morning, but this isn’t a vacation.
Unless, for you, it is. If you’re normally pretty strict on food and health concerns, it’s okay to have a little fun and splurge a little. What’s the point in looking good if you don’t enjoy yourself? Feel free to have a cookie and a pretzel while watching The Goon trailer. It’ll be okay. If you’re going for all four days though, you might want to have some trail mix or beef jerky on hand though, because a half-week of Con food will not make your bowels very pleasant.
So yeah, some pretty simple and logical tips for you to follow at Comic Con. There’s no reason you have to head into a situation like this expecting to gain weight – hell, with all the walking if you make the right food choices, you could come out a few pounds lighter. But, most importantly, have a good time.
For more of Robert Fure’s fitness, exercise, and nutritional advice, check out his Primer Magazine column 100 Days of Fitness.