Hi all. I'm hopeful to get some thoughts and advice here. I know this is a bit off-topic from the practical self-defense view of karate, since I'm discussing karate mostly for its exercise benefits. But I suppose it's also a general motivational sort of topic.
I started karate a few years ago. Once I started, I got very interested in (read: obsessed by) the history of it, the history of Okinawa and Japan, the links to other martial arts, etc. - it's a rich field of fact, legend and mystery, particularly for a guy like me who's obsessive about understanding things.
So in doing all that reading, I sort of lost my interest in actually doing karate. Partly it's because I'm not a big fan of exercising at all (I'm just being honest here), and partly because I'm debilitatingly introverted, so training with others became really hard for me.
But partly it's because I concluded that I was never going to be able to really do it right, because my study of the history of martial arts made me aware of all the devotion and dedication it took to really do a martial art, which I know I'll never actually put into it. In a way, I read myself right out of karate.
Now, I've come to realize (again) that I really need to exercise more, and I'm thinking about avoiding actual martial arts altogether because I'm concerned I'll get obsessed and demotivate myelf again. I think I need an interesting training format without so much intellectually stimulating historical context.
For a little background on me, I'm in my mid-40s, with an academic job and a family, and live in a safe suburb. I mostly spend time at home, at work and at church or with friends from church. No bars, no nightlife for me...I'm pretty dull, I know. The things I most certainly need protection against are heart disease, obesity, etc. Bad guys do exist out there, but the statistics favor me living a life safe from criminal violence but eventually dying from the effects of sedentary living unless I change. So what I need most out of any training is primarily physical exercise.
Any thoughts or advice? Thanks in advance.